Pagan Britain (Paperback)

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Description


Britain's pagan past, with its mysterious monuments, atmospheric sites, enigmatic artifacts, bloodthirsty legends, and cryptic inscriptions, is both enthralling and perplexing to a resident of the twenty-first century. In this ambitious and thoroughly up-to-date book, Ronald Hutton reveals the long development, rapid suppression, and enduring cultural significance of paganism, from the Paleolithic era to the coming of Christianity. He draws on an array of recently discovered evidence and shows how new findings have radically transformed understandings of belief and ritual in Britain before the arrival of organized religion.
 
Setting forth a chronological narrative, along the way Hutton makes side visits to explore specific locations of ancient pagan activity. He includes the well-known sacred sites—Stonehenge, Avebury, Seahenge, Maiden Castle, Anglesey—as well as more obscure locations across the mainland and coastal islands. In tireless pursuit of the elusive “why” of pagan behavior, Hutton astonishes with the breadth of his understanding of Britain’s deep past and inspires with the originality of his insights.

About the Author


Ronald Hutton is professor of history at Bristol University and a leading authority on the British Isles in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, on ancient and medieval paganism and magic, and on the global context of witchcraft beliefs. He is the author of eighteen books.

Praise For…


Shortlisted for the 2015 Hessell-Tilman Prize

'At last, a balanced, well-written and original review of Britain's pre-Christian religions that treats the complex and enduring legacy of prehistory with due respect. It is also full of unexpected insights. A delight.' - Francis Pryor, author of Britain BC: Life in Britain and Ireland Before the Romans

"A well-written and thoroughly researched study of a most important subject. The book is informed, fair minded and extremely readable. Nothing like this has been done before.'"—Richard Bradley, author of The Prehistory of Britain and Ireland



Product Details
ISBN: 9780300268348
ISBN-10: 0300268343
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication Date: October 25th, 2022
Pages: 496
Language: English