The Bell Beaker Transition in Europe

Full Title: The Bell Beaker Transition in Europe – Mobility and Local Evolution During the 3rd Millennium BC.

Editors: Maria Pilar Prieto Martínez and Laure Salanova

Publisher: Oxbow Books

Review: This text brings together 17 articles that were initially presented in the 15th International Bell Beaker Conference “From Atlantic to Ural”. It was organized in May 2011 in Spain. The theme for the conference was “Could the circulation of objects or ideas and the mobility of artisans explain the unprecedented uniformity of the material culture observed throughout the whole of Europe?” Continue reading…

Playing the Hero

Full Title: Playing the Hero – Reading the Irish Saga Táin Bó Cúailnge

Author: Ann Dooley

Review: I have never been utterly confused by a book as much as I have been confused by this one. I don’t know if it is because the author like to complicate things, or it is the subject matter, or it is just above my pay grade. Continue reading…

Tracing the Indo-Europeans

Full Title: Tracing the Indo-Europeans – New Evidence from Archaeology and Historical Linguistics.

Edited by: Brigit Anette Olsen, Thomas Olander, and Kristian Kristiansen

Synopsis: Recent developments in aDNA has reshaped our understanding of later European prehistory, and at the same time also opened up for more fruitful collaborations between archaeologists and historical linguists. Continue reading…

Some Advice For Former Christians About Unpacking Christian Baggage

I’ve never made any secret that I wasn’t raised Christian but rather grew up a secular agnostic, with all the fun of Santa and a magic chocolate delivering bunny. I actively got into paganism and witchcraft around the age of 11 or 12 and have been practicing since; I didn’t make an effort to learn about Christianity until I was in my 20’s. This gives me a different perspective on some things…

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The Otherworld Voyage

Full Title: The Otherworld Voyage In Early Irish Literature – An Anthology of Criticism

Editor: Jonathan M. Wooding

Review: The idea for this book came during a conference at Maynooth in 1995. The attendees noted the need for a guide to Hiberno-Latin and early Irish voyage literature. They wanted a work of reference for the subject, because this kind of work was not yet available. This text is a selection of past and present criticism concerning … Continue reading…

The Wisdom of the Outlaw

Title: The Wisdom of the Outlaw: The Boyhood Deeds of Finn in Gaelic Narrative Tradition.

Author: Joseph Falaky Nagy

Review: It took forever to get my hands on a copy of this book and even then it was lightly used. Still it was better than waiting for a new edition that never materialized. Continue reading…

Hospitality In Medieval Ireland

Title: Hospitality in Medieval Ireland 900 – 1500
Author: Catherine Marie O’Sullivan
Pages: 272 including Appendix, Bibliography, and Index.

Synopsis: Hospitality was one of the most important social institutions and cultural customs in medieval Ireland. The fundamental principles governing the provision of hospitality were rooted in both the secular and religious traditions of Irish culture, and were represented in both the public and private spheres of Irish life. Continue reading…

Ritual for the Heliacal Rising of the Pleiades

Continuing with our series of rituals for the cycle of the Pleiade we have arrived at the next one, the heliacal rising of the Pleiades after their conjunction with the sun. This marks the time when the stars are once again visible in the sky just before dawn and occurs now between June 18th and June 24th. I have roughed out a ritual that people can use if they’d like, in line with the others in…

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The Great Queens

Full Title: The Great Queens – Irish Goddesses from the Morrígan to Cathleen ní Houlihan
Series: Irish Literary Studies 34
Review: The Introduction discussed the background of the Irish language and the stories the author is talking about the rest of the book. Part One, which is made up of two chapters, discusses … Continue reading…