Hermes: 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Hermes

1st Edition

By Arlene Allan

Routledge

214 pages | 21 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2018-06-11
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Description

Hermes redresses the gap in modern English scholarship on this fascinating and complex god, presenting its readers with an introduction to Hermes’ social, religious and political importance through discussions of his myths, iconography and worship. It also brings together in one place an integrated survey of his reception and interpretation in contemporaneous neighbouring cultures in antiquity as well as discussion of his reception in the post-classical periods up to the present day. This volume is an invaluable resource for anyone wanting to explore the many facets of Hermes’ myth, worship and reception.

Reviews

'Hermes, messenger of the gods, guide for the dead, deity of the marketplace, all-round trickster and protector of thieves, is hard to pin down. If there is one quality that defines him, though, it is his gentleness, his lightness of touch. Arlene Allan herself covers a lot of ground lightly, offering a svelte introduction to the ancient cults of Hermes, his role in myth, and his reception from antiquity to the present. I thoroughly recommend this book.'

Barbara Graziosi, Durham University, UK

Table of Contents

List of Figures

Series Foreword

Acknowledgements

Abbreviations and Conventions

Map of Greece

Genealogical table

Foreword: Why Hermes?

Introducing Hermes

Origins and Name

Image

Myth

Cult

Making Connections, Building Relationships

Overview

PART 1: KEY THEMES

Chapteer 1: Talents

Mêtis

Stealth

Creativity

Propriety

Overview

Chapter 2: Transmissions

Divine Messenger, Zeus’ Herald

Leader of Dreams

Hermeneus/Hermeneutês

Didaskalos

Rhêtor (Orator)

Overview

Chapter 3: Transitions

Divine Guide

Protector of Persons

Protector of Places

Protector of Property

Maturation

Overview

Chapter 4: Transactions

Dôtor Eaôn: ‘Giver of Good’

Hermes Agoraios

Hermes Phêlêtês

Overview

Chapter 5: Transgressions

The Thief

The Trickster

Verbal Deception

Visual Deception

Immodesty and Excess

Trickster Tricked

Gamer and Player

Overview

Chapter 6: Transcendence

Zeus’ Herma

Zeus’ Spokesman

Zeus’ Delighter

Zeus’ Networker

Zeus’ Humane Face

Overview

Chapter 7: Translations

Hermes goes West

Roman Mercury

Literary Mercury

Political Mercury

‘Interpretatio Romana’

Hermes goes East

Mesopotamian/Babylonian ‘Hermes’

Egyptian Hermes

Overview

PART 2: AFTERWARDS

Chapter 8: Transformations I: Other Mercurys

Allegorical Hermes/Mercury

Astrological Hermes/Mercury

Magical Hermes/Mercury

Alchemical Hermes/Mercury

Overview

Chapter 9: Transformations II: Popular Culture

Visualising Hermes

Comics and Animation

Stage and Screen

Poetry and Prose

Appropriations

Philosophy

Psychology

Etymology

Commerce

Emblems and Advertisers

Mass Communication

Further Reading

Bibliography

Index

About the Author

Arlene Allan is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Classics at the University of Otago, New Zealand. Her research and teaching interests include Ancient Greek socio-religious history, Athenian drama and the interface between Graeco-Roman religion and early Christianity. She is co-author, with Ian C. Storey, of A Guide to Ancient Greek Drama (2005, rev’d 2nd edn 2014) and sole author of several articles and book chapters in these subject areas.

About the Series

Gods and Heroes of the Ancient World

Routledge is pleased to present an exciting series, Gods and Heroes of the Ancient World. These figures from antiquity are embedded in our culture, many functioning as the source of creative inspiration for poets, novelists, artists, composers and filmmakers. Concerned with their multifaceted aspects within the world of ancient paganism and how and why these figures continue to fascinate, the books provide a route into understanding Greek and Roman polytheism in the 21st century.

These concise and comprehensive guides provide a thorough understanding of each figure, offering the latest in critical research from the leading scholars in the field in an accessible and approachable form, making them ideal for undergraduates in Classics and related disciplines.

Each volume includes illustrations, time charts, family trees and maps where appropriate.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
HIS002000
HISTORY / Ancient / General