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Green Man Paperback – 15 Oct 1998
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Top Customer Reviews
But he's seen in hundreds of English churches as a leafy head, and he certainly tells us something about our human relationship with the natural world.
There’s a popular belief in this figure: Film director John Boorman says that as a child, the Green Man saved him from injury when he fell from his treehouse and that he's been trying to find the mysterious tree spirit ever since.
Composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle describes the Green Man as 'my own personal god'. He wrote an opera, based on the medieval poem Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. (In Gawain (Gavin) and the Green Knight, the Green knight appears and joins in the Christmas feast at the round table with Arthur. He issues a challenge — he will be passive to any blow providing he who gives it seeks him out in New Year following and is also passive.Read more ›
For a new age thinker, William Anderson is fairly well behaved. He saves the more outrageous theories for a short final chapter. But throughout the book he does use the old magician’s trick of distracting you, while he sneaks things past you. It’s done well. He shows off his learning about Medieval thought and society and while you, the reader, are absorbing that, he sneaks in unsupported theories as established truths.
This is fine, provided you, the reader, keep your wits about you. Even if the raw facts do not quite speak for themselves, the many excellent, well-chosen photographs certainly do. The trouble is that many of the same subjects can be found in the original work on the Green Man, Kathleen Basford’s The Green Man (1978). Basford largely limited herself to picture, description, location and date; although, in her introduction, she did attempt to link the Medieval Green Man carvings back to Roman images of Bacchus and Okeanos.
Of course, the impulse to speculate on what an apparently pagan symbol is doing in so many Medieval churches and cathedrals is almost irresistible. He has been “traced” back to ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome and even to Jain temples in India. He has been linked to a Celtic god, Arthurian legend, and May day ceremony and other folk customs, all of which are themselves of mysterious origin.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A really interesting and well illustrated book which arrived very quickly.Published on 25 Dec. 2014 by Forest lover
A well-researched book giving worlwide examples of the green man and very detild information about the green man in EuropePublished on 9 Dec. 2014 by gordon
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