on 18 October 2001
Whilst the previous volume was a narrative history, this one is a book of sources. This means it probably won't interest the casual reader as much as the first volume, but it is a must for the student.
All the sources are well chosen, and provide depth as well as variety. If you're new to the field, then this book will be your introduction to lots of the primary sources which you may want to go and research in greater detail. This makes it a good starting point to use when researching for an essay, and will lead you to the rest of your bibliography.
The authors also provide introductions and notes along with the primary evidence, helping to explain it and set the context in a way suitable for someone with minimal or no prior knowledge of Roman religion.
on 10 January 2015
When I read the excellent preceding volume I was marginally disappointed by the limited scope regarding for example Mithraism presumably this was why it became necessary to produce a source book for reference purposes? The reader may find some enjoyment from insightful glimpses into a variety of ancient documents concerning beliefs, practices and historical criticisms. Though do not expect every Roman belief system to be fully represented and there was still a tendency to use cult for example The Cult of Mithras which tended to denote a lesser important religion rather than embracing all religions on an equal footing. If I used the term the cult of Christianity without a doubt I would be vehemently castigated in print by certain sections of the readership.
Certainly both volumes 1 and 2 have a strong appeal to the Theologian, Historian and perhaps to a lesser extent Archaeological students of Rome. There is however nothing to stop readers without either an academic interest or having had higher education from gaining enjoyment from reading either of these volumes. Though admittedly you would need to be interested in the subject or aspects of it to start with.