The White Goddess: A Historical Grammar of Poetic Myth
An enormously versatile and prolific writer, translator, and critic, Robert Graves considered himself primarily a poet. Nevertheless, he became best known for his unorthadox historical novels about Rome and for his studies of the mythological and psychological sources of poetry. "The White Goddess" is perhaps his finest and the most popular of these works. In this book Graves explores the stories behind the earliest of European deities, the White Goddess of Birth, Love, and Death, who was worshipped under countless titles. She was beautiful, fickle, wise, and implacable, and in one of her later forms he is known as the Ninefold Muse, patroness of the white magic of poetry. In this brilliant tapestry of poetic and religious scholarship, Graves uncovers the obscure and mysterious power of "pure poetry" and its peculiar, mythic language.