Five Roman and Greek Mythology Resources

Myths, legends and fairy tales are immensely fascinating to me. Especially the way certain tales echo each other when the original storytellers had no way of communicating with each other across distance, language barriers and time. Greek and Roman mythology is one segment of the larger whole that I have found phenomenal resources to help me explore deeper. Here are my personal favorite books that teach and entertain in that realm of mythology. I did not include individual stories, such as the Iliad or the Odyssey, only collections and reference materials.

Mythology by Edith Hamilton is a collection and review of Greek and Roman myths, with a few Norse myths thrown in for good measure. Hamilton tells the main stories and describes the characters as well.  She gives commentary on the stories and shares how different versions of the characters and stories compare. I currently own two copies of this book, which I have read and reread several times over the years. She also wrote The Greek Way and The Roman Way for more detailed understanding of each culture.

Bulfinch's Greek and Roman Mythology from Thomas Bulfinch is another fantastic resource for myth information. This book is full of vivid retellings of myths from the Roman; Greek and Norse cultures. The myths are enjoyable and easy reads, while the index of names makes looking up references to the characters made in other works a simple process. I find this book to be another invaluable addition to my personal library.

The Dictionary of Classical Mythology by John Edward Zimmerman has entries about the Greek and Roman myths that are clear and concise. The names have pronunciation guides and where they are mentioned, cross-references with related entries and information on authors. This book does a great job of balancing the needs of novices and fans in the field. 

The Greek Myths: Complete Edition
 from Robert Graves offers readers exactly what the title proclaims. Myths are told with commentary and supported heavily with illustrations. The myth retellings are wonderful; however, I often disagreed with his interpretations of individual myths, which is gratifying in its own way. I have yet to find a more extensive collection of Greek myths than that in this book. 

The Encyclopedia of Classic Mythology: The Ancient Greek, Roman, Celtic and Norse Legends
 from Arthur Cotterell is a comprehensive and useful reference source. You can read the book straight through and enjoy the stories or look up names and myths that interest you and learn more about their stories. It is a great addition to the personal library of anyone interested in learning more about mythology.
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