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Books in Oxford Myths and Legends series

  • Tales from India

    J. E. B. Gray, Rosamund Fowler

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, March 22, 2001)
    Beautifully told retellings of classic stories from India. Full of richness and warmth, these tales of tender love, great heroism, acts of sacrifice, foolishness and friendship come vividly to life. There is an epic battle in which monkeys and bears help rescue the beautiful princess Sita from evil demons and a simple fable about a jackal who tries to become king. This tapestry of stories is as colourful and diverse as India itself. Sources in selecting the stories have been Sanskrit and Pali, the classical languages of the Brahmans and the Buddhists. Many of these tales existed centuries before the Christian era and were given a sophisticated form by the storytellers of classical times. (reissue of Indian Tales and Legends, ISBN 0-19-274138-1)
  • Tales from Japan

    Helen and William McAlpine, Rosamund Fowler

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, April 4, 2002)
    Full of magic and wonder, these are tales of wicked giants and fairy children, beautiful princesses and fearless warriors. This extraordinary collection of stories from Japan are lively retellings of legends and fairy tales that include the great story of the creation of the world and the tale of a magical coat that makes people invisible. Meet the Sea Spirit, the Moon God, the Emperor Kiyomori, Dragon Princess and many other magical characters. Here, too, are folktales of woodcutters and fisherman who enter strange, enchanted worlds. This delightful mix of stories joyfully evokes the beauty and culture of Japan: its people, its animals, and its landscape. (Reissue of Japanese Tales and Legends, 0-19-274140-3)
  • West Indian Folk-tales

    Philip M. Sherlock

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, June 30, 1988)
    As a child, Philip Sherlock loved to listen to folk tales. Since then he has made a significant contribution to Caribbean folklore by recording many of them in print for the first time. Here are fables of the birds and animals of the West Indies: jaguar, snake, crested curassow, wild pig, parrot, wise owl, and of Anansi--the spider who can assume human form. These twenty-one stories are a wonderful mixture of early tales from the Arawak and the Carib people, the original inhabitants of the Caribbean, and from the Ashanti people of West Africa. Read together they help to provide a background to the history of the West Indies. The stories are retold here in a warm, rich style--some tales gentle and philosophical, some humorous and full of action.
  • When the World Began: Stories Collected in Ethiopia

    Elizabeth Laird

    Hardcover (Oxford University Press, Aug. 17, 2000)
    The classic stories of our childhood--"Cinderella," "The Sleeping Beauty," Little Red Riding Hood"--exist only in books today, but they started their lives as oral tales told from one generation to the next. In Ethiopia, however, great treasuries of fairy tales still live in people's heads and have never been written down. Old people sit together in the evenings and tell each other stories that were already old a hundred years ago. Elizabeth Laird--a winner of the Reader's Choice award and the Children's Book award--spent two years traveling around Ethiopia and collecting the tales in this anthology. She was told stories by Muslims in the hot, dry deserts of the East; Christians from the cool, central Highlands; and people from even older religions from the warm, humid South. The different faiths and cultures are reflected in the stories, with their varying notions of God, heaven, and the spirit world. You will enjoy the funny stories with a twist, the exciting adventure stories of brave warriors and hunters, the clever stories of cunning and trickery, along with stories about ogres and kings and merchants and farmers and animals.
  • Welsh legends and folk-tales

    Gwyn Jones

    Hardcover (Oxford University Press, March 15, 1957)
    Original title Scandinavian Legends and Folk-Tales. A collection of familiar and less well-known stories from Scandinavia.
  • Tales from China

    Cyril Birch, Rosamund Fowler

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, Feb. 1, 2001)
    This collection of Chinese stories begins with the great legends of how Earth and Heaven came into being, and of how the archer Yi rid the Emperor Yao of the menace of the ten suns. Engrossing folk tales about ghosts and rainmakers, poor students and magicians, and the man who was nearly made into fishpaste flesh out Chinese culture, character, and customs. Throughout all these stories, the author has kept the subtle oriental flavour of the originals, bringing to life all the magic and mystery of China.
  • Native American Stories

    Michael J. Caduto, Joseph Bruchac, John Hakionhes Fadden, N. Scott Momaday

    Paperback (Fulcrum Publishing, March 1, 1991)
    Here is a collection of myths drawn from the native cultures of North America--from the Inuit in the north to the Zuni, Hopi, and Cherokee in the south.
  • The Adventures of Young Krishna, The Blue God of India

    Diksha Dalal-Clayton, Marilyn Heeger

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, Dec. 31, 1992)
    In this dramatic, new collection, Diksha Dalal-Clayton retells the stories which enchanted her as a youngster--stories told to her by her grandmother, stories passed down through the generations. For centuries, the adventures of the young Krishna, the god who was always getting into trouble because of his boyish pranks, have delighted Indian boys and girls. Because he embodies both the human and the divine, the child-like and the god-like, Krishna is a favorite with both the young and the young at heart. Stories of the young Krishna's adventures with gods and kings, his battles with demons, his flirtations with the girls of his village, are all retold with charm, grace and wit. Richly detailed illustrations enhance the text and rouse the imagination. These classic tales from Hindu mythology will open your child's eyes to the richness and splendor of ancient Indian civilization.
  • Irish Myths & Legends

    Ita Daly, Bea Willey

    Hardcover (Oxford University Press, May 10, 2001)
    Ita Daly, the popular Irish novelist, collects myths and legends from his native land in this beautifully illustrated collection. Many of these stories were told to him as a child by his mother, who learned them from her mother. The oldest myths retold here belong to the Mythological Cycle; they were copied by monks in the 11th and 12th centuries from earlier manuscripts. This cycle features the Tuatha De Danann, a handsome race descended from a goddess and endowed with many godlike qualities. The second group of stories, the Ulster Cycle, deal with the ancient Ulster king Conchubhar Mac Nessa and his bravest warrior, Cuchulainn. The Fianna Cycle dates back to about 300 AD and recount the heroics of the warrior Fionn Mac Cumhaill and his band of fighting men, the Fianna. This collection includes other stories as well, all enchantingly retold in clear prose that convincingly recaptures the beauty of language and times past.
  • Tales from Africa

    Kathleen Arnott

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, July 20, 2000)
    Drawn from all parts of Africa, these stories convey the fierce sense of justice inherent in African peoples, their powers of patience and endurance, and their supreme ability as storytellers. A greedy spider, an evil shark, flying horses, a cruel baboon, a scheming tortoise, and a cunning hare are among the many animal characters in this riveting collection. Yet even though animals feature prominently in most of the stories, humans are not neglected either. Meet blacksmiths, kings, chiefs, peasants, and even an African Superman. There are also answers to such important questions as why the crab has no head, why the sun and moon live in the sky, and why flies buzz. The tales are collected from all across the continent--from Nigeria to Congo to South Africa--and translated from over a dozen languages like Swahili, Bantu, Fulani, Zulu, and Yoruba.
  • Russian Tales and Legends

    Charles Downing, Joan Kiddell Monroe

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, April 26, 1990)
    From a land of dark forests and wide rivers come heroic tales of the legendary Russian heroes and traditional tales of every kind from villages and towns all across Russia. Here are stories of princes and princesses, of merchants, boyars, cossacks, angels, robbers and minstrels, of mountains of gold, and of the Water of Life and Death. Some of the stories are familiar, like the tale of the Firebird, but many are new to Western culture.
  • Ukrainian Folk-tales

    Christina Oparenko

    Paperback (Oxford University Press, Aug. 15, 1996)
    This book celebrates the heritage of the Ukraine, as that country regains its identity as an individual nation. Here you will find tales of the cat who saved the rooster from the clutches of the vixen, the runaway bun who wouldn't be eaten, Mr Kotsky, the fiercest animal in the forest, and many more.