Saturday, August 10, 2019

Louden, Greek Myth and the Bible

BRYN MAYR CLASSICAL REVIEW: Bruce Louden, Greek Myth and the Bible. Routledge monographs in classical studies. London; New York: Routledge, 2018. Pp. viii, 241. ISBN 9781138328587. $140.00. Reviewed by James J. Clauss, University of Washington (
Bruce Louden makes his position on the relationship between Greek Myth and the Bible loud and clear, and it will doubtless take many by surprise: “Israel’s oral traditions and scribal culture were not only acquainted with but also influenced and shaped by ancient Greek culture” (p. 2). I will state up front that I am not ready to go as far as Louden wants to take us, but readers will see first-hand that behind the Biblical passages discussed lurk traditional tales from polytheistic cultures. And the connections he points out are many and truly astonishing.

Some of what this review reports of the book sounds like parallelomania to me. But I haven't read the book, so I shall try to keep an open mind. Perhaps I would find the full arguments more convincing.

Visit PaleoJudaica daily for the latest news on ancient Judaism and the biblical world.