Exploring the World of the Druids

Exploring the World of the Druids In this authoritative account Miranda Green unravels the truth about the Druids Examining the archaeological evidence Classical commentaries and early Welsh and Irish myths she shows that the Druid

  • Title: Exploring the World of the Druids
  • Author: Miranda Aldhouse-Green
  • ISBN: 9780500050835
  • Page: 196
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In this authoritative account, Miranda Green unravels the truth about the Druids Examining the archaeological evidence, Classical commentaries and early Welsh and Irish myths, she shows that the Druids were fully integrated into Celtic societyfulfilling varied and necessary roles, both secular and religious The Roman writers are seen to reflect the double standards of anIn this authoritative account, Miranda Green unravels the truth about the Druids Examining the archaeological evidence, Classical commentaries and early Welsh and Irish myths, she shows that the Druids were fully integrated into Celtic societyfulfilling varied and necessary roles, both secular and religious The Roman writers are seen to reflect the double standards of an invading society condemning as barbaric the public sacrifice of enemies by the Druids while accepting as civilized their own practice of slaughter for sport in the arena Yet the Classical sources can be used to help reveal the real Druids We learn of their multiple roles as judges, teachers, healers, magicians, philosophers, religious leaders and fomenters of rebellion.

    One thought on “Exploring the World of the Druids”

    1. Good overview of what is known about druids…actually known, not speculated over.Very little is known though…and most of that from hostile sources (I’m looking at you Rome!). The rest of the knowledge is from archaeological sources and therefore subject to interpretation.The quality of the illustrations throughout is fairly mixed, but that’s a minor point. Otherwise a very good book and an antidote to some of the more neo-druid pish that’s out there.

    2. This is a comprehensive, copiously illustrated volume that is sufficiently academically rigorous for the well-informed layperson, but straightforward and sufficiently full of eye candy for the neophyte. Green covers what we actually know about the Druids (not a lot, really), their place in myth and legend, and the Neo-Pagan Druidic movement.

    3. This was an OK history book. Uses more archeology evidence that I usually like in a history book. Excellent pictures of Druidical items. Recommended

    4. This was a very informative, it not also still an ambiguous book. The book attempts to discern the origins and purpose of the Druids. What initially makes the book ambiguous is that the Druids and Celts are almost intertwined; it seems that the Druids were the learned/priestly part of the Celtic society, while the Celts are the general (and largely European) masses. Yet, this inference is not conclusive, nor defined in the book. Moreover, the geographical lines in Europe that we know today, as w [...]

    5. This is like a Doring-Kindersley travel guide - lots of pictures, not so much text. The book is organized well enough, if repetitive, but the bottom line is that from Classical authors, Irish and Welsh legends written in the Middle Ages (but containing story elements likely composed much earlier), and the archaeological record, we just don't know much about pre-Christian or pre-Roman Celtic culture, let alone who druids were or what precisely their function was in society. So if all you've read [...]

    6. Informative, but really served to point out how little we know about pre-Roman history in Europe. Most of our knowledge is inferred from archeological evidence and a few Roman historians, including Julius Ceasar himself.

    7. This book examines Druidism in both ancient and modern times. A most interesting point, which is not made until near the end of the book, is that the modern traditions have very little to do with the ancient. In fact, during the romantic movement of the 18th century, antiquarians such as John Ogilvie, John Aubrey, and William Stuckeley revived the long-dead Druid tradition by completely recreating it, assigning it new rituals and prayers that became new standards of practice. Modern Druids claim [...]

    8. This book is one of my favorite beginner books on the Druids. It tells the truth about the Druids without romanticism. It gives the descriptions available from the classical writers and tells you why they said what they did. It talks about the possibility of human sacrifices that a lot of books just won't talk about.The book is well researched and documented. It is written in simple language and makes for an interesting read. There are a lot of pictures in it to corroborate the text and it is be [...]

    9. This book is very comprehensive in the historical documents by Greek philosophers and Roman authorities and the archaeology of the Druids and Celts. Certainly this is an eye-opener if you think Druids are adventurous sorcerers with nature empathy and Celts are the Irish of antiquity--an unfortunate stereotype that I, as a gamer, had fallen into. Miranda Green addresses a little bit of all topics and supports her composition with a myriad of quotes from Pliny the Elder, Cicero, Julius Caesar, Str [...]

    10. This is a literary and archeological overview of what is actually known about the Druids role in early (think a couple of centuries straddling 'year zero') Celtic society, which isn't a heck of a lot. It's actually a bit refreshing in its straightforwardness, and even traces the the contemporary romanticization and rise of Druidic societies from the 18th century to present day. A neat trick, given the evidence that the real druids had a penchant for violent sacrifice. And Stonehenge? Not Druidic [...]

    11. This was well written and has lots of graphics to interest the reader. Its not meant to be a reference work but the bibliography lists many authoritative works that are reference works should one need to delve deeper into the topic of Druids and Druidry. Like many cults, the early Druids seem to be particularly barbaric; later Druids seem to be reluctant to share the how-to's of their wisdom; but its really quite difficult to know this particular group of individuals since they had no written la [...]

    12. Forget about the thinner volumes stuffed with mystical whimsy and photographs of Stonehenge and dark forest glades. This is probably the most comprehensive , academically rigorous and readable survey of what is known and supposed about the Druids, from ancient to modern times. What's more, there are lots of images - the artefacts, the sources and the myth that now sticks the topic like half masticated toffee.

    13. It was a good read - a bit redundant at times but that is how history can be, many things criss-crossing over themselves. One thing became clear to me - no one really knows much about the druids, and the accounts are based on limited historical accounts that very well may have been sensationalized to make the indigenous Druids unpopular. This happens all the times when history is written by the so-called "conquerors".

    14. A well presented overview of the Druids backed up with by both Roman written records and archaelogical evidence from all over the Celtic world. A fascinating insight into the belief systems, rituals and practices of the Druids with a whole host of illustrations and photographs to help the imagination.

    15. Everything you ever wanted to know about druidry. I'm not much of a non-fiction reader, and I didn't actually finish this, but not because I couldn't, but because I got a bunch of other books in, then I was reading too many at a time and this one fell by the wayside. Not an overly erudite work, but no schlock either. Would interest other armchair medievalists or fans of books about Merlin.

    16. An easy read, set out like a kid's Eyewitness book with illustrations on every page and information boxes. It examines the evidence, written and archaeological, in a balanced and accessible manner. It even addresses the Druid renaissance (or reinvention depending on your viewpoint) of the 18th century and its progression into the 1990s. A good overview.

    17. A detailed, interesting look at ancient druids using the very limited information we have on them. A great final section on modern druidry. This includes a awkward mention of shamans, who recite, and I quote, "mumbo-jumbo." Ouch.

    18. It was alot of information to absorb but I now know alot more than what I did about the history of the Druids. It wasn't too easy of a read yet, the artwork was well placed. I thought the illustrations were the best part of the book.

    19. This is the best book I've come across that introduces Druids and Druidism. There's a nice balance between text and pictures and just about every subject that pertains to the people and religion is covered.

    20. Interesting information, print font is way too small especially in the sidebars plus they are italicized. Sometimes dry to read, but still interesting to skim through.

    21. I learned about the druids, who they were, what they believed and how important they were to the Celtic people. I thought she did a good job providing a great overview of the Druids.

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