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Religions of the Ancient Greeks (Key Themes in Ancient History) Hardcover – June 28, 1999

ISBN-13: 978-0521382014 ISBN-10: 0521382017

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Product Details

  • Series: Key Themes in Ancient History
  • Hardcover: 232 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (June 28, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521382017
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521382014
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #7,187,444 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Price has admirably filled the long-standing need for a concise and up-to-date critical survey of the place of religious practice in Greek society....an exceptionally useful and stimulating book." Choice

"This book offers much diverse material for courses on Greek religion, a diversity greater than any comparable resource." Phoenix

"Not abstract and self-contained systems of religion or myths, but local practices and ideas of Greek religious life from the eigth century BC to the fifth century AD are what interest Price..." Reference & Research Book News

"[a] striking accomplishment." Journal of Religion

Book Description

This is a book about the religious life of the Greeks from archaic times to the fifth century AD, looked at in the context of a variety of different cities and periods. Simon Price examines local practices and ideas in the light of general Greek ideas, relating them to gender roles, for example, political life, Attic tragedy and the trial of Socrates. He lays emphasis on the reactions to Greek religions of ancient thinkers - Greek, Roman and Christian. The evidence drawn on is of all kinds: literary, inscriptional and archaeological.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Christopher R. Travers on March 21, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
First, this is not the comprehensive study of the subject that Burkert's work is. If you are looking for a comprehensive look at the subject, "Greek Religion" by Walter Burkert is the book to get.

However, this book offers an interesting set of topical studies which have added to my understanding of the topic. Price's viewpoint is quite useful in addition to any other books on the topic.

Material in the book includes an introduction to myths and festivals and to our source material in this area, a discussion of social control and Greek religion, gender roles in Greek religion and how this differed in Roman religion, and a look at how Greek religion was perceived by other groups (Romans, Christians, Jews, etc). Each of these studies adds to the field and is not a mere rehash of what I have read elsewhere.

I would recommend this book along with "Greek Religion" by Walter Burkert and "From Religion to Philosophy" by F. M. Cornford.
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Religions of the Ancient Greeks (Key Themes in Ancient History)
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