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Bacchus: A Biography
by Andrew Dalby
ISBN 0892367423 / 9780892367429 / 0-89236-742-3
Publisher J. Paul Getty Museum
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This is the life story of the wine god Bacchus-seducer, magician, and merrymaker-as never told before. Tales of his bizarre birth from a womb fashioned in his father Zeus's thigh led to even stranger stories, passed down through generations of dramatists, poets, storytellers, and historians. Bacchus is best remembered, however, for his gift of wine to humanity. With it he brought not only pleasure but also savagery and death. Pentheus, for example, was torn apart at the hands of his own mother and her fellow Maenads in the midst of a Bacchic frenzy.
In this highly enjoyable biography, Andrew Dalby weaves together these and other intriguing episodes from Bacchus's life-from his youth spent on Mount Nysa among nymphs and satyrs to his relentless pursuit by the goddess Hera to Bacchus's many amorous exploits-bringing the wild and powerful wine god to life. [via]