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The Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries Paperback – January 1, 2004


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 523 pages
  • Publisher: New Page Books (January 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1564147088
  • ISBN-13: 978-1564147080
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (29 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,120,344 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

A bit dry but well written, extremely thorough and easy to understand.
Punychick
Still, Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries is one of the best, and most important, scholarly works on the topic, and I strongly recommend it.
Skip Church
The older versions are far better and worth the trouble of tracking down if you can find one.
Luna Scorp

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

98 of 99 people found the following review helpful By Kelly (Fantasy Literature) VINE VOICE on July 28, 2001
Format: Paperback
This book was written in the early twentieth century, and my opinion is that no faery book has yet been written to equal it. Evans-Wentz was a sophisticated scholar, and yet treated faery beliefs with the utmost of respect, and even devoted a chapter to scientific and psychological findings that render such beliefs valid. Without looking down his nose on anyone (except maybe stuffy fellow scholars who lost their imagination somewhere along the line), he reports stories of faery encounters in every Celtic nation. He interviewed great numbers of Celtic people in his travels, and collected a vast treasure trove of tales. These range from firsthand accounts to "a friend of a friend" legends to stories handed down through the generations.
After presenting a mass of information on the modern faery faith, he goes on to relate the ancient faery beliefs held by the Celts of old, as recorded in their mythology. Many pages are devoted to the adventures of CuChulainn, Arthur, Bran, and other figures who moved in and out of the Otherworld. He also discusses the Otherworld itself, the misty land where the faeries, the gods, and the dead dwelled. Especially stunning is his assertion that the Celts participated in mysteries much like those of Eleusis. The mythological evidence IS THERE, as Evans-Wentz proves. I only wish someone in those days had written something down to indicate whether or not this is true!
This is the best book ever written on the fae, IMHO. It ought to be on every Celtophile's shelf right next to Squire's _Celtic Myth and Legend_. As a matter of fact, the two books make excellent companions for one another.
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48 of 48 people found the following review helpful By S. Roit on November 18, 2002
Format: Paperback
...to what others have said.
There is no book on this subject I have found that equals it.
This is a testament in itself, as this was first published around 1890.
Wentz was an academic, a scholar, yet in early chapters his descriptions of each area of the Isles is breathtaking. It's not dry, it's not stuffy. He spent years collecting encounters, traditions, and beliefs from the most correct source. The people themselves. This contrasts rightfully the tendancy (even more so these days with anything Celtic especially) to project things onto a culture it does not contain. No frilly, watered down, ... little creatures at your beck and call here, which is what other "authors" would have you believe.
For some, the latter chapters of this book will seem a bit dry compared to the first. Regardless of what you think of his theories, they are all intriguing, and well thought out by the author, though I agree he became a bit enchanted himself during the writing. (not a bad thing, IMO, I was enchanted as well) The collection of tales alone is worth the price. I enjoyed every page.
This should be on the shelf of anyone who says they want to learn about Faeries, Celts, and the cultures they came from.
Why read what any old outsider says? Read the words of the people who were born and raised in these cultures. They know themselves better than anyone else, no?
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35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Skip Church on January 6, 2001
Format: Paperback
Walter Evans-Wentz set out to write this book as his dissertation, at the dawn of academic anthropology. Along the way, he became more than a little entranced. Still, Fairy-Faith in Celtic Countries is one of the best, and most important, scholarly works on the topic, and I strongly recommend it. Don't get sucked into buying a lot of phoney 'fairies-with-wings' junk. The real deal is much more interesting. Stick to Rev. Kirk, Peter Narvaez, K.M. Briggs, Sir John Rhys, and Evans-Wentz, and you'll be on the right track.
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47 of 53 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Murphy on February 7, 2006
Format: Paperback
If you care at all about books' content and appearance, avoid spending your hard-earned money on this edition. A classic Evans-Wentz's book may be, but New Page Books, the publisher of this edition, has made it look ridiculous by punctuating the text with cheap clip-art style doodles. Almost every page is defaced by art that's silly, cartoony, and does little to illustrate or advance the author's argument.

An even worse crime against Evans-Wentz's work is the incompetent typesetting. Even a casual glance reveals howlers: "uncivilized" has become "tin-civilized"; "Karnak" is turned into "Karnab." Was there even a cursory attempt at proofreading? A professional publisher wouldn't have let this monstrosity see the light of day.

If you buy books just to keep them on the shelf, this edition may be fine for you. If actually intend to read this book, find another edition.
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39 of 44 people found the following review helpful By WP on March 24, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The New Page edition of this book is a true piece of cr*p! Every single page has multiple typographical errors, obviously deriving from shoddy proofreading of the text they scanned. I thought I could deal with it, but it reached the point where it was distracting, so I ordered the Dover edition instead. I was an idiot not to get that one in the first place. Don't repeat my mistake!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Luna Scorp on December 26, 2007
Format: Paperback
I have to agree with those who posted one star ratings on these newer editions. I would also avoid the edition by NuVision. Both of these publishing companies seem to have the same errors. Maybe they share the same bad editing department and computer program.

I finally found an older edition that seems to be much better. This edition is from the Citadel Press - Carol Publishing Group, published in 1990. The older versions are far better and worth the trouble of tracking down if you can find one.
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