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Gods, Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor and Romance

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s/t: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor & Romance Life among the gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece was a pretty lively affair. Take the day that the great god Zeus asked his son to split open his head with an ax...or the time Apollo "kidnapped" a boadload of Cretans so he'd have someone to worship him...or the argument between Zeus and his wife, Hera, that ended when he hu s/t: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor & Romance Life among the gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece was a pretty lively affair. Take the day that the great god Zeus asked his son to split open his head with an ax...or the time Apollo "kidnapped" a boadload of Cretans so he'd have someone to worship him...or the argument between Zeus and his wife, Hera, that ended when he hung her over the edge of heaven by her hends (with a big stone fastened to each foot). Here's a book that shakes the dust off mythology. You meet the gods and goddesses, the heroes and the men of Ancient Greece in fast-reading tales that are full of action and drama...humor and romance.


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s/t: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor & Romance Life among the gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece was a pretty lively affair. Take the day that the great god Zeus asked his son to split open his head with an ax...or the time Apollo "kidnapped" a boadload of Cretans so he'd have someone to worship him...or the argument between Zeus and his wife, Hera, that ended when he hu s/t: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor & Romance Life among the gods and goddesses of Ancient Greece was a pretty lively affair. Take the day that the great god Zeus asked his son to split open his head with an ax...or the time Apollo "kidnapped" a boadload of Cretans so he'd have someone to worship him...or the argument between Zeus and his wife, Hera, that ended when he hung her over the edge of heaven by her hends (with a big stone fastened to each foot). Here's a book that shakes the dust off mythology. You meet the gods and goddesses, the heroes and the men of Ancient Greece in fast-reading tales that are full of action and drama...humor and romance.

30 review for Gods, Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece: Mythology's Great Tales of Valor and Romance

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sonia ahmadi

    ketabe khili khili jalebie, hatman bekhooninesh;-)

  2. 4 out of 5

    Elizabeth

    I couldn't finish this. I'm not a fan of the writing; it lacks detail and a literary feel. I'm going to seek out Edith Hamilton instead. I couldn't finish this. I'm not a fan of the writing; it lacks detail and a literary feel. I'm going to seek out Edith Hamilton instead.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Amanda

    This book was a great introduction to ancient Greek myths. It was very readable as well as concise, and would be a good choice for reading aloud.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Marcia Campbell

    Rouse, W.H.D. Gods, Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece: Mythology Great Tales of Valor and Romance, New York: Penguin Books, 1957 Genre: Mythology Recommended for 9th Graders Story: “Theseus” “Theseus” is one of the great hero stories in Rouse’s anthology of mythological tales. Theseus, son of the Athenian king, Aegeus, was a great hero who possessed incredible strength far surpassing any other being. He grew up with his mother in Greece, and while still a child, rolled away a massive stone to remove Rouse, W.H.D. Gods, Heroes and Men of Ancient Greece: Mythology Great Tales of Valor and Romance, New York: Penguin Books, 1957 Genre: Mythology Recommended for 9th Graders Story: “Theseus” “Theseus” is one of the great hero stories in Rouse’s anthology of mythological tales. Theseus, son of the Athenian king, Aegeus, was a great hero who possessed incredible strength far surpassing any other being. He grew up with his mother in Greece, and while still a child, rolled away a massive stone to remove a sword and pair of shoes hidden there by the king, his father. He then set out on a “treacherous” journey to join his father in Athens. During the journey, he meted out justice to evil Cercyon (Sciron in other versions), Procrustes, and countless bandits who constantly terrorize travelers in the region. When Theseus arrived in Athens, he was welcomed by his father. Theseus continued to use his strength to conquer evil creatures and monsters including the Minotaur, a great beast to which children were fed to avenge the anger of Minos, the powerful ruler of Crete whose son was killed while visiting King Aegeus. Theseus went on many quests, and came back the victor. “All loved him for his goodness and admired him for his nobility” (151, Hamilton). However, he was not infallible. The death of Ariadne, Minos’ daughter who fed him a clue to conquer the Minotaur, was abandoned by Theseus and ultimately died. The death of his father was a result of his forgetfulness. However, he became King of Athens upon the death of his father, was “wise but disinterested.” The city prospered under Theseus, but he could not resist the lure of adventure. His pride and thirst for adventure, ultimately led to his downfall. This is a great hero tale. Teenagers will love the exploits of Theseus and his friends, and cheer for the wrongs avenged by this great hero. The themes in this story are universal, and the action riveting. The downfall of the hero teaches a tough lesson about arrogance and irresponsibility. The language in Rouse’s tale is elevated, and the plot engaging. The story takes place in various places including dungeons, on high seas and even Hades, making the story very intriguing. This version of Thesues is more detailed than other versions of the same tale thus giving the young adult reader a greater perspective into the characteristics of traditional heroes.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Christopher

    I read this in high school and as I will say for most things Classics related. If you are really interested in anything Greek or Roman, get it from the primary sources themselves, not from the people interpreting them. The amazing thing is that these writings still exist and in every single case, the translations, even literal ones, are a far superior experience. Read the metamorphoses or the Iliad. I would say if you have 0 experience with the classics, this could be a valuable introduction, bu I read this in high school and as I will say for most things Classics related. If you are really interested in anything Greek or Roman, get it from the primary sources themselves, not from the people interpreting them. The amazing thing is that these writings still exist and in every single case, the translations, even literal ones, are a far superior experience. Read the metamorphoses or the Iliad. I would say if you have 0 experience with the classics, this could be a valuable introduction, but if anything I think it's more a small stepping stone that you skim through to get to the good stuff, the actual texts.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Stephen

    Totally delightful read. Told in the style of a teacher walking into a classroom to charm you with some of the interesting myths told as they might be in ancient days. None too long, much cut out, but it's more for someone already having a fair familiarity with at least some of the stories as Rouse cuts to the chase and tell the stories in a quick, whimsical and often brutal sort of way, while giving the important points as well as quite a few of the lesser points that end up seeming just as imp Totally delightful read. Told in the style of a teacher walking into a classroom to charm you with some of the interesting myths told as they might be in ancient days. None too long, much cut out, but it's more for someone already having a fair familiarity with at least some of the stories as Rouse cuts to the chase and tell the stories in a quick, whimsical and often brutal sort of way, while giving the important points as well as quite a few of the lesser points that end up seeming just as important in the way only a master story teller can. I had started this in the hospital but lost it when I got back home. Only recently finding it again to finish and glad I had the chance.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Allie A

    I could not finish this book because it was just too uninteresting to me. I will give it some educational value, I wanted a book on Greek mythology and it is definitely a book of Greek mythology. With that being said, it was written by some old white guy in the 1930s and the writing style reflects that. Most of the stories have bad endings, but I guess this is not the author's fault. I guess it just was not my cup of tea. Maybe if the stories had more of a connecting flow I would have enjoyed mor I could not finish this book because it was just too uninteresting to me. I will give it some educational value, I wanted a book on Greek mythology and it is definitely a book of Greek mythology. With that being said, it was written by some old white guy in the 1930s and the writing style reflects that. Most of the stories have bad endings, but I guess this is not the author's fault. I guess it just was not my cup of tea. Maybe if the stories had more of a connecting flow I would have enjoyed more. I will be looking for a more contemporary book of Greek mythology in the future.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sashi

    I hold a deep-seated dislike of this book, probably because there exist much better books that recount Greek mythology. Anybody wishing for a well-written collection should read Edith Hamilton's Mythology. I hold a deep-seated dislike of this book, probably because there exist much better books that recount Greek mythology. Anybody wishing for a well-written collection should read Edith Hamilton's Mythology.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Arkajit Dey

    Quick recap of the main stories in Greek mythology. Was fun to remember some of them again and learn a few new ones.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Clara

    Nos lo hemos leído pa clase y la verdad es que las historias son interesantes pero eso es básicamente porque me gusta la mitología pero el libro es un peñazo

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    Not the worst myth book I’ve read for a class, but not the best either. I wish that there was more detail in some of the myths, because I think some of the meanings and nuances were lost in this one

  12. 5 out of 5

    MyWolfs_Booktaste

    Title: "Gods, Heroes, and Men Of Ancient Greece" by W.H.D Rouse Rating: 4-4.2/5 Stars ~ I LOVE Greek myth! My favorite type of mythology. I've read different type even roman but I always go back to Greek. That being said I liked the read. I had to read for my college class but I'm not complaining....much. My only thing is I wanted more. More detail, more history. It always in a way got cut off early and I've read other books w/more depth, but I do believe for people who are barely getting into myt Title: "Gods, Heroes, and Men Of Ancient Greece" by W.H.D Rouse Rating: 4-4.2/5 Stars ~ I LOVE Greek myth! My favorite type of mythology. I've read different type even roman but I always go back to Greek. That being said I liked the read. I had to read for my college class but I'm not complaining....much. My only thing is I wanted more. More detail, more history. It always in a way got cut off early and I've read other books w/more depth, but I do believe for people who are barely getting into mythology this would be a good read. Not much into an over load of detail for them so I recommend for myth beginners. Over all good read.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Chuck

    Excellent source for getting the general stories that make up so much of the background in Greek myth. For a while I was concerned with trying to find translations of the oldest versions of some of these tales but I quickly realized that's not nearly as important as having a great author like Rouse give the frameworks of the tales - especially since oftentimes the details of each story vary from place to place and time between Homer, Hesiod and the later Greek playwrights. My only criticism is th Excellent source for getting the general stories that make up so much of the background in Greek myth. For a while I was concerned with trying to find translations of the oldest versions of some of these tales but I quickly realized that's not nearly as important as having a great author like Rouse give the frameworks of the tales - especially since oftentimes the details of each story vary from place to place and time between Homer, Hesiod and the later Greek playwrights. My only criticism is that I wish Rouse somewhere (either in the tales, in notes at chapters' end or in an index etc.) would provide some of the ancient sources he drew on to tell these stories. Probably most of them are from "Pseudo-Apollodorus" (author of the Bibliotheca) but in the beginning much of the origin of the Gods I recognized from a translation of Hesiod's Works & Days, so I suspect there is a variety of ancient sources even beyond the Bibliotheca. It would help immensely for someone like me who wishes to delve more into any of the legends. Diving into translations of the ancient works themselves could be frustrating without someone like Rouse to give such good context between the tales. Definitely should be required reading in middle or high-schools, the work has been made 'family-friendly' for modern taste without taking away much - Rouse does hint at the darker, original portions of the stories. Some people undoubtedly take issue with the last chapter in which Rouse "ends" the reign of the Greek gods with the rise of the Christian god in a mythologically consistent way. Some people inevitably rage at any mention of Christianity anywhere but from a more thoughtful perspective what Rouse does is relegate Christianity into the same fanciful realm of story-telling, morality and tradition -- depending on how hardcore religious you want to be this could be good or bad to your faith but I prefer to relish in it. The gods are real if we choose to make them so and they themselves battled against older deities and cosmic revolutions that can make the reality we live in more exciting than the cosmology of most modern fantasy epics.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Dan Darragh

    Not a book you want to pick up and read for fun, but if you're looking for an uncomplicated explanation of the Greek Gods and folks like Odyssus, Achilles and Jason this is the book for you. The author taught at a private boys school in England that was heavy into teaching Greek civilization and understanding the mythological gods and heroes of this era is really helpful in understanding how the civilization evolved. Rouse tells the stories as if he were talking to classroom of eighth- or ninth- Not a book you want to pick up and read for fun, but if you're looking for an uncomplicated explanation of the Greek Gods and folks like Odyssus, Achilles and Jason this is the book for you. The author taught at a private boys school in England that was heavy into teaching Greek civilization and understanding the mythological gods and heroes of this era is really helpful in understanding how the civilization evolved. Rouse tells the stories as if he were talking to classroom of eighth- or ninth-graders. It's a little reminiscent of Joel Chandler's Uncle Remus tales. Read it back in high school and started re-reading it before I went to Greece last fall.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Meghan

    This is a collection of mythological stories. It is similar to Edith Hamilton's book, but it is written more like someone telling a story. There are references to the Bible and other events in history to give context to places or times the mythological stories happen. There are also details to some of the same stories, but with different details than what Edith Hamilton provides. It is especially rich in the origin of the Gods and how each of the main Gods makes his or her way to Olympus. I read This is a collection of mythological stories. It is similar to Edith Hamilton's book, but it is written more like someone telling a story. There are references to the Bible and other events in history to give context to places or times the mythological stories happen. There are also details to some of the same stories, but with different details than what Edith Hamilton provides. It is especially rich in the origin of the Gods and how each of the main Gods makes his or her way to Olympus. I read some of these to my kids (age 5 and 3) and they liked them.

  16. 5 out of 5

    LilDaddy

    This book is OK it is almost like another.Book i read which is called heroes,gods,monsters, and greek myths. Except this is less intereting.Than the other one,but it is alright like the other.This book is very interesting and adventurous to.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Valerie

    This is the mythology most often assigned in schools. It is also one of the most boring collections. It has no zip or zing. I think people assign it just because they had to read it. I also feel that way about Edith Hamilton.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jonathan

    A very old sensibility informs this anthology, but it is a sensibility equally born of reverence for the other and pride in one's own. Let a young person read it first and fix a sense of myth's sweep before tackling its smaller parts. A very old sensibility informs this anthology, but it is a sensibility equally born of reverence for the other and pride in one's own. Let a young person read it first and fix a sense of myth's sweep before tackling its smaller parts.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    this was not my favorite book of greek myths which I read and reread.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Shaunda

    i read this sometime between 5th and 8th grade, and i still pick it up from time to time to read certain tales...

  21. 5 out of 5

    Tim Johnston

    The gods are very weird

  22. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    I fully enjoy Greek mythology, this book was a good assistant in an introduction of the mythologies yet does not always go into depth.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Erik Graff

    This was the first book I ever read about Greek mythology.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mario Hernandez

  25. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sam

  27. 5 out of 5

    Rachel

  28. 4 out of 5

    Suzie

  29. 5 out of 5

    Bradley

  30. 5 out of 5

    Camille

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