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The Mabinogion (Everyman) [Paperback]

Gwyn Jones , Thomas Jones
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
Price: 7.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

7 Oct 1993 Everyman
"Destiny, magic and chance, human strengths and weaknesses-The Mabinogion's stories are among the most compelling and beautiful in European literature. " Compsed in the golden age of Celtic story-telling in the eleventh century or earlier, they bring together the grotesque and the warmly human, the entertaining and the richly significant. Culhwch is here, perilously wooing the Giant's Daughter; Owain is here, winning the Lady of the fountain by Knightly feats of arms;and -a portent and a miracle both -King Arther is here for the first time as a prime mover in a significant prose narrative ('Culhwch and Olwen'), and thereafter as King and Emperor of what is still the world's most famous royal court. 'A magnificent acheivment...It is hard to think that in scholarship or as a piece of English prose the present translation will ever be bettered'-Sir Idris Bell, "The Welsh Review" 'Magisterial ...the authoritative translation, notable for its meticulous scholarship and a fine literary style'"Oxford Companion to the Literature of Wales"

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Phoenix; New Ed edition (7 Oct 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0460872974
  • ISBN-13: 978-0460872973
  • Product Dimensions: 20 x 13 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 623,194 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful
Format:Paperback
"The Mabinogion" remain the greatest, the grandest and the most moving of all Medieval Welsh fabular prose, and Jones and Jones' English translation, even though it is over half a century old now, has yet to be rivalled.
Taking admittedly difficult and often corrupted manuscript text, they have succeeded in making a comprehensive and vibrant edition of all eleven tales, with copious notes which range to satisfy not only the scholar but the casual reader. A map and pronunciation guide complete the mix.
From the "Four Branches", those stories of gods and would-be-gods in the mists of the past, wooing and slaying, deceiving and conquering, are brilliantly and stirringly represented by the translators, and the full tragedy of Branwen's fate, or of Rhiannon's penance, the wretched savagery of Efnissien, the boldness of Bran and the guile of Gwydion are here given as much loftiness and power as in the original Welsh.
The four "native" tales, which feature Arthur to varying degrees of prominence, are dwarfed by the beast within their number, "Culhwch and Olwen", a rollicking sprawl of a broad comedy (with its moments of pathos), which is admirably executed by Jones and Jones, evenm if they occasionally lose sense of the author's dry humour.
The "Three Romances" are tales of derring-do by the warriors of Arthur's retinue, where jousting, magic and fair damsels are the aim of the day. Strikingly different to the "Four Branches", these tales are more patently 'medieval', and will appeal greatly to the admirers of Malory or Chretien, and of the Arthur stories which have inspired many a Round Table spinoff. Forget the imitators. These are the originals.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Mabinogion (Jones and Jones translation) 4 April 2006
Format:Paperback
In my opinion this far and away the best version of these classic Welsh myths. The language is slightly archaic but much truer to the original texts from which it is translated.
This edition is infinately superior to the Charlotte Guest version Bowdlerised as it is for her victorian audiences and laced with mistranslations. Gantz's translation is good but loses something in it's attempt to update the language used.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars a classic 20 Mar 2004
Format:Hardcover
Although it can be quite hard to get into, the mabinogion is certainly a classic piece of literature, with a number of fantastic stories. It's suitable from any age, and is a clear insight into welsh, celtic mythology. Each story is beautifully written, with some really unusual storylines. Its an important piece of welsh literature, showing a number of wales' great legends and myths, and is a must read for all, from child to adult. It's simply enchanting.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars 9 July 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Its ok
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