Enjoyable but specialised Structured in two halves. The first is an exhaustive, very detailed. and sometimes repetitive micro-examination of the criticisms made by a scholar in the same field, Gordon Wasson, of John Allegro regarding his ideas and book, The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross. The criticisms are on the whole rebuffed but with some qualification and are not always easy to follow but there are some insights for the inexpert. The second is a catalogue of plates of early Christian paintings that are described as more evidence, subsequent to Allegros book, of the mushroom in Christianity. The kindle is not the best medium for these images. They are small and monochrome which make the virtually impossible to see any detail. I read Allegros - The Sacred Mushroom and the Cross when I was a teenager and found it deeply interesting but had since become sceptical probably because of these criticisms of him and his work. I was looking to re read it again but this was the nearest thing I could find for the kindle so I had a look.
This is a very important book for our time in regards to the study of the mushroom. Allegro and Watson. This is a very significant work by Jan Irvin showing the truth about these two men and the works they both achieved in their lives. Allegro is shown to be a genuine scholar who did the best he could in the time he had in these studies of Christianity and the mushroom, which seems to be the area that Watsson dared not delve into and we see in Jans work documents and personal letters between the two men that bring about an understanding for the reader as to just whaat waas going through the minds of these two men. Both had aan important role to play in the mushroom information, however there is still debate here as to whether or not one or both men were in error with their works. This book serves as a detailed discussion about these men. This book is als filled with fantastic colour artwork of ancient Christian artworks that clearly shows the mushroom in its full glory - the mushroom as the fruit that was forbidden and other portrayals too. I thoroughly recommend this important work to every serious reader who wishes to gaain an understaandding of the debate about these men.