Cover image for Encyclopedia of prophecy
Encyclopedia of prophecy
Ashe, Geoffrey.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Santa Barbara, Calif : ABC-CLIO, [2001]

Physical Description:
ix, 291 pages : illustrations ; 26 cm

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BF1786 .A84 2001 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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A definitive, factual, A-Z reference guide offering a global perspective on the role of prophecy in world history, religion, folklore, and literature.

* More than 100 entries on prophets and prophecies from the Antichrist to Yevgeny Zamyatin, the Russian author whose writings influenced Aldous Huxley's Brave New World and George Orwell's 1984

* Extensive illustrations with drawings and diagrams including engravings from William Blake's so-called prophetic books and depictions of the ten incarnations of Vishnu

* Numerous photographs of writers such as D. H. Lawrence, H. G. Wells, and E. M. Forster; spiritual leaders such as Madame Blavatsky, founder of Theosophy; and Theodor Herzl, founder of Zionism

* A bibliography as a guide for extended research

Author Notes

Geoffrey Ashe is an author, lecturer, and independent scholar.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

According to this volume's preface, the term prophecy has two meanings. One is "inspired utterances" --an unseen being, usually a god or goddess, speaking through a mortal. The other meaning refers to predicting future events. In light of the interest in New Age phenomena such as crystals and astrology, an encyclopedic study of prophecy is timely. This work brings together information on prophets, psychics, symbols, methods, and even a study of theories of prophecy. Some 134 entries are arranged alphabetically and cover people (Cassandra; Cayce, Edgar; Elijah; Nostradamus), places (Delphi, Glastonbury), techniques, and symbols of prophecy. Many of the articles are accompanied by an illustration, portrait, or photograph. Most entries end with see references to other articles and a list of titles for further reading. Well-known prophecies such as the sinking of the Titanic are covered in several articles as well as in an individual entry under Titanic. The volume concludes with a bibliography of approximately 130 sources and an index. Some individuals are included (Saint Augustine, for example), not necessarily because they made prophetic statements but because of their views on prophecy. Although the volume does not specifically cover science fiction, some writers who present a compelling view of the future, such as Aldous Huxley and George Orwell, were selected for inclusion. One obvious omission is the psychic the Amazing Criswell, who was a popular figure on late-night television and noted for his outlandish predictions. Much of the information included in this work can be found in other reference works dealing with the paranormal, psychic phenomena, astrology, and even religion, but no work pulls together all the different facets of prophecy in one volume. Recommended for public, school, and academic libraries with collections in these areas or where patron demand is anticipated.

Library Journal Review

Worldwide in scope and dating from biblical times, though its thrust is by no means exclusively religious, this encyclopedia ranges widely in its A-to-Z listing of entries. Among them are "apocalypse," "Edgar Cayce," "end of the world," "Napoleon," "premonitions," "sphinx," and "Wandering Jew." The eminently readable text can be perused at leisure or easily used to locate points of interest; the more than 100 entries generally include cross references and a list of further reading. A well-known authority on British legend and a pioneer of Arthurian studies (e.g., The Discovery of King Arthur, 1987), Ashe handles the material expertly, giving historical context where necessary. Even if the predictions themselves are obsolete, their placement here prompts the reader to appreciate the influence of a given prophecy. The global perspective makes this a timely and lasting title for public libraries. Leroy Hommerding, Fort Myers Beach P.L., FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

For Ashe, a prophecy is any prediction regardless of the source of its inspiration or its accuracy. Inspired by this broad interpretation, topics in his 133-entry encyclopedia range widely to include notable inaccurate prognosticators, visions of the future by popular science fiction authors, prophecies by Christian saints, popular methods of divination, and premonitions about the fall of the USSR. Entries are comprehensive, clearly written, entertaining, appropriate for young readers, well indexed, and often include a brief list of further readings. The author's eminence as a scholar of British myth and history is evident in the exceptional quality of entries treating Atlantis, Arthurian legend, and the British Isles. This work is most notable, however, for the topics it omits. In general, entries are Anglocentric: fewer than eight percent of the entries even mention non-European cultures. Islamic, Native American, and Indian prophets are covered in an abbreviated manner, and Oceanic, African, and East Asian prophets and prophecies are skipped entirely. Thus, although this book is highly recommended, it should not supplant more substantial works that are more culturally diverse. General and academic readers. L. A. Beinhoff Pennsylvania State University, DuBois

Table of Contents

Prefacep. vii
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Adams, Evangelinep. 1
Angelic Popep. 1
Antichristp. 2
Apocalypsep. 5
Apollop. 7
Aquarius, Age ofp. 7
Armageddonp. 8
Arthur, Kingp. 9
Astrologyp. 13
Atlantisp. 16
Augustine, Saintp. 18
Bacon, Francisp. 21
Bahaisp. 23
Barton, Elizabethp. 24
Bellamy, Edwardp. 25
Benson, Robert Hughp. 26
Besant, Anniep. 27
Biblical Prophecy (1)--Israelite and Jewishp. 28
Biblical Prophecy (2)--Christianp. 31
Blake, Williamp. 34
Brahan Seer, Thep. 36
British-Israel Theoryp. 37
Camisardsp. 39
Cassandrap. 41
Cathbadp. 42
Cayce, Edgarp. 43
Cazotte, Jacquesp. 45
Channelingp. 47
Cheirop. 48
Chesterton, Gilbert Keithp. 49
Danielp. 53
Dante Alighierip. 55
Day of the Lordp. 60
Delphip. 61
Divinationp. 63
Dixon, Jeanep. 65
Dreamsp. 66
Dunne, J. W.p. 68
Elijahp. 73
Eliot, Georgep. 76
End of the Worldp. 76
Ezekielp. 81
Fatimap. 83
Fifth Monarchy Menp. 86
Forster, E. M.p. 86
Frederick Barbarossap. 90
Garnett, Mayn Clewp. 93
Glastonbury (Somerset, England)p. 93
Guglielma of Milanp. 96
Hanussen, Erik Janp. 99
Harbou, Thea vonp. 100
Herzl, Theodorp. 101
Hildegard of Bingen, Saintp. 103
Huxley, Aldousp. 104
Isaiahp. 107
Jeremiahp. 111
Jesus Christp. 113
Joachim of Fiorep. 116
Johanson, Antonp. 119
John, Saintp. 119
John the Baptistp. 121
Jonahp. 121
Kalkip. 125
Krafft, Karl Ernstp. 125
Lawrence, D. H.p. 129
Lemuriap. 129
Lilly, Williamp. 131
Macbethp. 133
Mahdip. 134
Maitreyap. 135
Malachy, Saintp. 135
Mayap. 138
Mercier, Louis-Sebastienp. 139
Merlinp. 143
Messiahp. 147
Micahp. 150
Milton, Johnp. 151
Monmouth, James, Duke ofp. 156
Moore, Francisp. 157
Morris, Williamp. 157
Muhammadp. 159
Napoleonp. 161
Nazi Germanyp. 161
Newspaper Astrologyp. 165
Newton, Isaacp. 165
Nixon, Robertp. 167
Nostradamusp. 168
Oraclesp. 177
Orwell, Georgep. 178
Palmistryp. 181
Parapsychologyp. 182
Partridge, Johnp. 182
Peden, Alexanderp. 183
Premonitionsp. 185
Promised Landp. 186
Prophecy, Theories ofp. 188
Psychicsp. 195
Pyramidologyp. 196
Quetzalcoatlp. 199
Revelationp. 201
Robertson, Morganp. 208
Sabbatai Zevip. 211
Savonarola, Girolamop. 213
Scryingp. 214
Second Charlemagnep. 216
Second Isaiahp. 218
Seneca, Lucius Annaeusp. 221
Shamanismp. 221
Shambhalap. 222
Shaw, George Bernardp. 226
Shipton, Motherp. 228
"Sibyl" (Norse)p. 230
Sibyls and Sibylline Textsp. 231
Simeon and Annap. 233
Smith, Josephp. 233
Solovyev, Vladimirp. 235
Southcott, Joannap. 237
Sphinxp. 238
Spurinnap. 239
Stapledon, Olafp. 240
Stead, W. T.p. 243
Tarotp. 245
Tecumsehp. 249
Tennyson, Alfredp. 250
Thaxter, Celiap. 250
Theosophyp. 251
Thomas Aquinas, Saintp. 253
Thomas the Rhymerp. 254
Titanicp. 255
Virgilp. 257
Wandering Jewp. 259
Wells, H. G.p. 260
Witchcraftp. 265
Zamyatin, Yevgenyp. 269
Bibliographyp. 271
Indexp. 275
About the Authorp. 291