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King Arthur'S Raid On The Underworld : The Oldest Grail Quest Hardcover – 15 Oct 2008

3.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Gothic Image; First Edition edition (15 Oct. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0906362725
  • ISBN-13: 978-0906362723
  • Product Dimensions: 20.3 x 1.3 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,265,561 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description


I applaud the fruits of scholarship which have exposed the themes and underlying coherence in this most difficult of, enigmatic of texts. The experience is overwhelming; a kaleidoscope of glittering images and correspondences. This book is very welcome, setting out the themes clearly and leading us gently through a poem which has never been satisfactorily dealt with until now. As a bonus, the presentation is wonderful beautifully laid out on thick paper and with stuning full colour iullustrations. It really must be seen and stroked. In this format, even the timid would-be scholar is led gently through the commentary which outlines the mystery at the heart of Taliesin's great poem.

Penny Billington, --Touchstone, December 2008


This is a treasure trove of a book, beautifully presented and packed with artistry, information and tales of wondrous deeds. The main subject of the book is a famously enigmatic early Welsh poem commonly known as 'the Spoils of Annwn' and attributed to the legendary Taliesin. An introduction by John Matthews lets us in gently with a description of the poem's subject matter, author and background.
The poem itself is printed ina new translation by Caitlín Matthews, with fabulous facing pages of artwork by Meg Falconer. These painting s are very special and create an evocative synergy with the text. This is the inspirational heart of the book, which can be returned to time and again.
The following chapter Uncovering the Treasures; is a line by line study of hte poem by Caitlín in which she gives detailed explanations of the characters, places and themes, drawing on nurmerous sother source materials and cross referencing with relevant stories from Wales, Ireland and Scotland. Specific themes are the Descent to the Underworld, the Cauldron/Grail and the Great Prisoner.
The Welsh text is then presended on pages facing the English text followed by anappendicx outlining the themnes of other related stories, such as the Death of Cu Roi mac Daire and Culhwch and Olwen.
Thje book is a facinating journey into our island's earliest recorded culture; an oral culture written down centuries after the stories were fist composed. Caitlín, John and Meg have combined in a wonderul way to create an ambience in which these ancient tales resonate anew. My best commendation for this book is the loss I felt when I had to hand it on to another reviewer. I want it back!

Mike Jones

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on 24 July 2010
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase
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Most helpful customer reviews on 4.4 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
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4.0 out of 5 starsTaking the King Arthur Myth Deep into PreHistory
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Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase
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5.0 out of 5 starsA luminous new translation with insights into Celtic Myth and Imagery
on 14 September 2009 - Published on
Format: Hardcover