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The Druids: A History Hardcover – 21 Mar 2007

4.4 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Hambledon Continuum (21 Mar. 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1852855339
  • ISBN-13: 978-1852855338
  • Product Dimensions: 16.6 x 2.5 x 24.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 9 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,072,440 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

mention- Book News Inc./ August 2007 ."..a compact and lively account"--Gary Lachman "Independent, The " ."..a compact and lively account"--, "Independent, The " "This famously thorough author has researched British Druidism since AD1500, and created an entertaining and new narrative of Druids patriotic (Jedi forging historical consciousness in the new UK), wise, green, demonic, fraternal and rebel." Revewed in British Archaeology, Sept/Oct 2007 'Scholarly and very funny'Evening Standard (London), 2007 Mention of title in article by author in Independent on Sunday, December 2007. 'Scholarly and very funny' Evening Standard (London), 2007 ."..a compact and lively account"--Sanford Lakoff "Independent, The " ."..detailed but readable...hugely entertaining..." A longer version of this review also appeared in Pentacle, 2007.--Sanford Lakoff "Independent, The " 'Hutton's book provides a more accessible introduction to the mysterious Druids' - David Clarke, BBC History Magazine--Sanford Lakoff "Demons, rebels, or patriots? What have Druids been thought to be by others and themselves through the centuries, and what does this mean for British culture and modern currents and future trends of political protect, alternative religion, and literature? University of Bristol professor Ronald Hutton follows up his Witches, Druids and King Arthur with the Winter 2007 Hambledon Continuum $29.95 history hardcover, The Druids, illustrated in color and black and white, mostly with archival art plus some contemporary photography. Archaeology of the Iron Age reveals some answers to this mysterious age-old fellowship, but studying what people themselves have observed and believed over the past 500 years reveals more. Today's Books put The Druids on The A-List." -"Today's Books" "Hutton's conclusions rest on real scholarship. He has read widely - both in history and archaeology - and is also an accomplished amateur anthropologist, conducting fieldwork and extensive interviews." William Whyte, Times Literary Supplement--Sanford Lakoff "Times Literary Supplement "

Synopsis

Ronald Hutton's latest book is the first comprehensive study of what people have thought about the ancient Druids and why. Written in a racy and accessible style, it is essential reading for everyone interested in exploring our mysterious past. Most books written on the Druids hitherto have been by archaeologists specialising in the Iron Age, who have occupied a great deal of space trying to find things to say about the 'original' ancient priesthood. Most have then devoted a final section of their books to people who have called themselves Druids since 1700 - until recently with contemptuous dismissal. Hutton's contention is that the sources for the ancient Druids are so few and unreliable that almost nothing certain can be said about them. Instead, he reverses the traditional balance of interest to look at the many ways in which Druids have been imagined in Britain since 1500, and what this tells us about modern and early modern society. In the process, he achieves many new insights into the development of British national identities, established and 'alternative' religions, literary culture, fraternal organisation and protest movements.

He also suggests new ways in which the discipline of archaeology can be perceived - which will delight some practitioners and enrage others.

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