Buy New
  • List Price: $18.00
  • Save: $5.44 (30%)
FREE Shipping on orders over $35.
Only 15 left in stock (more on the way).
Ships from and sold by
Gift-wrap available.
Add to Cart
Want it tomorrow, April 18? Order within and choose One-Day Shipping at checkout. Details
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

The Golden Legend: Selections (Penguin Classics) Paperback

Amazon Price New from Used from Collectible from
"Please retry"
$10.39 $4.40

Frequently Bought Together

The Golden Legend: Selections (Penguin Classics) + Tristan: With the Surviving Fragments of the 'Tristran of Thomas' (Penguin Classics)
Price for both: $25.32

Buy the selected items together


Big Spring Books
Editors' Picks in Spring Releases
Ready for some fresh reads? Browse our picks for Big Spring Books to please all kinds of readers.

Product Details

  • Series: Penguin Classics
  • Paperback: 432 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Classics (May 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0140446486
  • ISBN-13: 978-0140446487
  • Product Dimensions: 7.7 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #166,043 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Latin

About the Author

Jacobus de Voragine (c.1229-98) was the medieval Archbishop of Genoa. He entered the Dominican Order in 1244 and became prior of the Order in Lombardy in 1267. In 1292 he became Archbishop and in this capacity was actively engaged in peacemaking between the local feuding families.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
4 star
3 star
2 star
1 star
See all 3 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Blaise on November 29, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Jacobus Voragine's "The Golden Legend" in and of itself deserves six stars. The amount of myth, artistic insight, and reference for all things medieval makes it a very valuable piece of literature and worth buying. Notice, however, how I listed myth as the first of a series of reasons why one would profit from such a book. For me, the very reason why I bought "The Golden Legend" was because of the knowledge that Voragine's accounts were stretched at best; perhaps dishonest. I was lured in through hearing how he made up etymologies for the saints' names, fabricated the history of their lives, and embellished truths in order to produce, intentionally or not, a more magnetic work. A work which shed ample amounts of light on human nature; and what's more fantastic is that this human nature was documented over 800 years ago: the need to lie, to stretch truths.
A True Masterpiece.
Imagine my disappointment when reading the preface of this version to hear that the translator/editor intentionally left out the most enlightening facet of the piece for the very reason why it is enlightening. The editor claims that these etymologies do not appear helpful and that they are not convincing. But I ask, does not the more unconvincing they are make them better? Is that not what makes Voragine so spectacular? Is his deception, his tendency to stretch truths what makes him most appealing?
For me:yes. For you: perhaps not.

Bottom line is that if you are looking for a document to help you with art history, or just in the mood for some good stories about saints, then this edition will do. If you are looking for a document that represents philosophy in literature, then Voragine is definitely for you, but this edition is not.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Giordano Bruno on June 14, 2010
Format: Paperback
Here it is, the Medieval compendium of hagiography (stories of the lives of saints) that did more to shape Medieval art and literature, popular ideas of sanctity and virtue, and arguably the whole popular belief structure of Christianity than any other, not even excluding the Bible! As the amazonian product description declares: "The Golden Legend is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand medieval imagery, art, and thought."
In fact, until the 20th C, virtually everyone would have read it. I'm calling attention to it because of its significance in Emile Zola's novella "The Dream" (La Reve), which I've just read and reviewed. But believe me, even the most secular high school car boy in Ventura knows some of the stories from the Legenda Aurea.
I searched for it here on amazon and found that editions in German and Latin outsell English translations; amazingly, many of the Lives are even available on "kindle" in Latin.
Besides being "fun" to read in small doses, the Golden legend is the best tour guide to Renaissance painting and sculpture you'll ever find. Take it with you on your next European vacation; you'll finally be able to make sense of all those stained glass windows.
4 Comments Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bene Dubitare on April 1, 2010
Format: Paperback
The most exhaustive lives of the saints I've come across, this book will delight Traditional Catholics. I wish I had read this book before spending two months in Italy, where I heard about it. Beginning with St. Andrew on Nov. 30th, the 71 saints selected are arranged in the order of their feast day according to the liturgical year.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Product Images from Customers


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?