Cover image for The werewolf in lore and legend
Title:
The werewolf in lore and legend
Author:
Summers, Montague, 1880-1948.
Uniform Title:
Werewolf
Publication Information:
Mineola, N.Y. : Dover Publications, 2003.
Physical Description:
xiv, 307 pages : illustrations ; 22 cm
General Note:
Originally published: The werewolf. London : K. Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1933.
Language:
English
Subject Term:
ISBN:
9780486430904
Format :
Book

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GR830.W5 S8 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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GR830.W5 S8 2003 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
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Summary

Summary

Written by a venerable author of occult studies, The Werewolf in Lore and Legend is the first definitive book on werewolfery and the remarkable successor to Montague Summers's popular work, The Vampire. Unsurpassed in its sheer scope and depth, it employs an extensive range of historical documentation and folklore from throughout Europe to powerfully portray the horror associated with belief in werewolves.
Summers adopts a comprehensive theological and philosophical approach, cataloging a series of literary connections between witch and wolf. Drawing upon the work of anthropologists, totemists, and rationalists, he examines the supernatural practice of shapeshifting, notes the finer distinctions between werewolfery and lycanthropy, and explores the differences of opinion on exactly how ordinary humans are transformed into creatures of "unbridled cruelty, bestial ferocity, and ravening hunger."
The author's Gothic style, rich in fascinating examples and anecdotes, offers compelling fare for lovers of esoteric lore. Even the most skeptical of readers can appreciate the evocative ways in which The Werewolf in Lore and Legend conveys the dread of those for whom these monsters were not mere superstition but terrifying reality.


Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

Forget Lon Chaney and all that full moon nonsense. Summers's 1933 volume takes a hard look at werewolf legends throughout history. His research covers the differences between werewolfery and lycanthropy, supernatural shapeshifting, and the influences of witchcraft in turning a human into a snarling beast. The May release of the horror-action film Van Helsing may spur some increased interest in the subject. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.