Druids

Druids

A Very Short Introduction

Book - 2010
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In this Very Short Introduction, one of the leading authorities on British archaeology, Barry Cunliffe, takes the reader on a fast-paced look at the ever-fascinating story of the Druids, as seen in the context of the times and places in which they practiced. Sifting through the evidence, Cunliffe offers an expert's best guess as to what can be said and what can't be said about the Druids, discussing the origins of the Druids and the evidence for their beliefs and practices, why the nature of the druid caste changed quite dramatically over time, and how successive generations have seen them in very different ways.-book jacket.
Publisher: Oxford ;, New York :, Oxford University Press,, 2010.
ISBN: 9780199539406
0199539405
Branch Call Number: 299.16 Cunliffe
Characteristics: xiv, 145 pages :,illustrations ;,18 cm.

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mantatail
Jul 25, 2016

Overall, this book is what it looks like: A very short introduction to the druids, who they were, and how they evolved over time. I have seen a few complaints about this book not getting into the details quite enough, but the author provides a further reading list. After all, this is only an introduction.
The style carries well and is fairly readable for long periods of time. The author doesn't try to cram too much information into a single chapter, meaning you can stop whenever you want and come back still remembering what you had read before.
The only complaint I would have is the lack of maps in the book itself. Cunliffe references several places that no longer exist on modern day maps (Gaul, for instance) and the logistics can get rather confusing without a visual aid.
Overall, this book was immensely helpful. Not only does it give a good starting overview of druids and how they have changed over time, but Cunliffe does his best to explain how he uses his sources and the careful consideration that goes into selecting them. This is a wonderful book for people who are interested in the process of deciphering history while exploring a topic of their choice.

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