A collection of ancient legends which is primarily of interest to antiquarians, experts on folk-lore, archaeologists and so on. From recent diggings in the Near East, from painstaking deciphering of obscure hieroglyphics and writings of the ancient world, from what is virtually a process of detection and deduction and synthesis, these texts have been brought into form available to the scholars. For the layman, the interest lies in tracing the parallels in mythology of the world of antiquity, the Greek, the Norse, the Semitic peoples- oldest of them all. Here, from the Babylonians the Hittites, the Canaanites, come legends that have amazing vitality and variety. They range from great literary masterpieces (such as the epic of Gilgamesh) to religious and ceremonial pieces, animal lore, legends accounting for the shift of seasons, the mysteries of natural phenomena, adventure stories immortalizing the exploits of gods and men and heroes, dream symbols, and occasional bits of humor...Specialized.