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Toads and Toadstools: The Natural History, Mythology & Cultural Oddities of This Strange Association [Paperback]

Adrian Morgan

Price: 14.95 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

22 Feb 1996
While many field guides and cookbooks have been written on mushrooms, fewer books have been devoted to frogs and toads (certainly field guides and perhaps a cookbook)—but none that we know of has ever addressed their curious historical relationships throughout the world. Artist and scholar Adrian Morgan has spent twelve years collecting, studying, drawing, painting, observing, and eating his subjects. The result is a glorious feast for the eye as well as the intellect. An astonishing compendium of art history, cultural anthropology, pharmacology, herpetology, mycology, and serious conjecture. TOADS & TOADSTOOLS will delight and amaze any armchair biologist. Brimming over with almost 150 illustrations.

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WHY SHOULD A FUNGUS be named after a toad? Read the first page
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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fraught with Frogs and Fungi! 10 Jan 2003
By repelli - Published on Amazon.com
A real treat of a book. Morgan peruses various aspects of two subjects that are as different as chalk and cheese biologically, but are frequently linked culturally. Chock full of gleefully esoteric bits of knowledge, the author has done his homework. Even better than the research is that Morgan is his own favorite guinea pig for exploring the physiological effects of these organisms. There are many delightful moments where he dutifully reports in detailed, utterly deadpan fashion the effects of stuffing toxic bits of toad in his nose or sipping his own urine after consuming fly agaric mushrooms. The author's own illustrations are also phenomenal. I especially like the belly-up toad victim of overenthusiastic mating on page 54. It is strangely reminiscent of John Everett Millais' "Ophelia".
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Interesting, beautifully illustrated 2 Jan 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was pleasantly surprised by this well illustrated work after I picked up a copy at the San Francisco Fungus Fest (where else?). The author points out that mushrooms and toads are linked in the mythologies of many different cultures, that both can be entheogenic (hallucinogenic), and both are credited with spiritual characteristics. He never does answer the central question - why are toads and "toadstools" so often linked? - but he gives you so much neat art and interesting mushroom/historical lore that you don't really mind.
Enthusiastically recommended.
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