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"Indian Myth and Legend" (1913)


Illustrated by Warwick Goble



"Indian Myth and Legend" (1913) is an illustrated introduction to the mythology of India prepared by Donald A Mackenzie.


The topics dealt with in the text being summarised by the following chapter titles: 'Indra, King of the Gods'; 'The Great Vedic Deities'; 'Yama,

the First Man, and King of the Dead'; 'Demons and Giants and Fairies'; 'Social and Regligious Developments of the Vedic Age'; 'Mysteries

of Creation, the World's Ages, and Soul Wandering'; 'New Faiths: Vishnu Religion, Buddhism, and Jainism'; 'Divinities of the Epic Period';

'Royal Rivals: The Pandavas and Kauravas'; 'The Tournament'; 'First Exile of the Pandavas'; 'The Choice of Draupadi'; 'Triumph of the

Pandavas'; 'The Great Gambling Match'; 'Second Exile of the Pandavas'; 'Defiance of Duryodhana'; 'The Battle of Eighteen Days';

'Atonement and the Ascent to Heaven'; 'Nala and Damayanti'; 'Wanderings in the Forest'; 'Nala in Exile'; 'The Homecoming of the King';

'Story of Rama: How Sita was Won'; 'The Rape of Sita'; and 'Rama's Mission Fulfilled'.


The Introduction written by Mackenzie provides some further insight into the themes explored throughout his work.


Goble's contributions to "Indian Myth and Legend" are further examples of his superb interpretation of Eastern themes and as

contemporary critiques noted, those illustrations are favourably compared with the artwork of Rackham and Dulac.


To provides some indication of the reception experienced by "Indian Myth and Legend" illustrated by Warwick Goble, we show one review -

that published in "The Saturday Review of Politics, Literature, Science and Art" (Vol. 116: 1913) as follows:


Mr Mackenzie is a wizard of the East whose magic conjures up for us all of those gods and kings,

warriors and women of what the Indians call "the Adyodhya or forgotten, half-heroic age". And some

of Mr Warwick Goble's coloured illustrations have caught the fantasy of Arthur Rackham and

Edmond Dulac. They add glamour to a book which ranges in subject from strange monstrous

deities who suggest the divinities and sphinxes of Egypt in their masked immobility, to the Brahm

new-sprung from that mystical chalice of the Orient, the Lotus, and Buddha the Gautama behind

whose peaceful form looms the Wheel of Death and Birth, that symbol of the eternal human struggle

against the meshes of myth or illusion which mocks and belies the calmness of his austere face.



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Cover for ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913), illustrated by Warwick Goble

To the left, we show a rare copy of "Indian Myth and Legend" - illustrated by Goble

and published by The Gresham Publishing Company (London) in 1913.


This First Edition example retains the original decoratively black- and gilt-stamped

green cloth cover.








Title Page for ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913), illustrated by Warwick Goble  

On the right, we show the Title Page

from the First Edition.




Our Greeting Cards and Fine Art Posters showing the artwork

of Warwick Goble from "Indian Myth and Legend" (1913)



Greeting Card sample showing a Warwick Goble illustration from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913)


Front of Greeting Card

(with envelope)

For connoisseurs of Goble's work, we have prepared sets of 8 Greeting Cards (approximately 7x5" on

premium acid-free card stock) displaying each of his colour images for the First Edition of "Indian Myth

and Legend" and on the left and right, we show an example of how these Greeting Cards appear.





Code: WG IML CS(8)
Price: US$40.00

Greeting Card sample showing the tipped-on information to the rear regarding the profiled illustration, ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) and Warwick Goble


Rear of Greeting Card

(with envelope)




When presented on Greeting Cards, these images are prepared as tipped-on plates - in 'hommage' to the hand-crafted approach

typical of prestige illustrated publications produced in the early decades of the 20th Century. Each card is hand-finished and the

images are presented on Ivory card stock with an accompanying envelope. The rear of each card carries information about

Warwick Goble, this wonderful suite and the profiled illustration - we have left the interior of the cards blank so that you may write

your own personal message.


Should you wish to order a reproduction print of one or more of these images, we have provided some options below. Each of our

Fine Art Posters is prepared with archival quality papers and inks - and also accompanied by information about Warwick Goble,

this suite and the profiled illustration.


To purchase, simply click on the appropriate "Add to Cart" button and you will be taken through to our Shopping Cart secured through

PayPal. Multiple purchases will be consolidated by that feature and shipping and handling costs to any destination in the world are

accommodated by our flat-rate fee of US$20 for every US$200 worth of purchases.


Of course, should you wish to discuss some customised options, we welcome your contact by email on any matter through



In the meantime, enjoy perusing these wonderful images from Warwick Goble.

Fine Art Poster sample showing a Warwick Goble image from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913)


An example of one of our Fine Art Posters

in a superb 10x18" format



Warwick Goble - the colour illustrations for "Indian Myth and Legend" (1913)



Warwick Goble - 'Sita finds Rama among the Lotus blooms' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) Warwick Goble - 'Shantanu meets the Goddess Ganga' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) Warwick Goble - 'Arjuna and the River Nymph' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) Warwick Goble - 'The Ordeal of Queen Draupadi' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913)    



Sita finds Rama among

the Lotus blooms



Prelude to the Great Baharata War


Shantanu meets the

Goddess Ganga



Triumph of the Pandavas


Arjuna and the River Nymph

The Great Gambling Match


The Ordeal of Queen Draupadi


Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C1 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C2 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C3 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C4 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Warwick Goble - 'The Return of the Heroes slain in Battle' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913)  Warwick Goble - 'Damayanti and the Swan' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) Warwick Goble - 'Damayanti choosing a Husband' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913) Warwick Goble - 'Rama spurns the Demon Lover' from ''Indian Myth and Legend'' (1913)    

Atonement and the Ascent to Heaven


The Return of the Heroes slain in Battle


Nala and Damayanti


Damayanti and the Swan


Nala and Damayanti


Damayanti choosing a Husband

The Rape of Sita


Rama spurns the Demon Lover




Fine Art Poster (14x11'')

Code: WG IML C5 14x11
Price: US$55.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C6 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C7 10x18
Price: US$60.00




Fine Art Poster (10x18'')

Code: WG IML C8 10x18
Price: US$60.00





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Mackenzie's Introduction to "Indian Myth and Legend"


This volume deals with the myths and legends of India, which survive to us in the rich and abundant storehouse of Sanskrit literature, and with the rise and growth of

Brahmanism, Buddhism, Jainism and other religions. The reader is introduced to the various sacred works of the Hindus, including the ancient invocatory hymns of the

four Vedas, the later speculative and expository "Forest Books" in which "the Absolute is grasped and proclaimed", and those great epic poems the "Rąmąyana", which

is three times longer than the "Iliad", and the "Mąhąbharanta", which is four times longer than the "Rąmąyana". In no other country have the national poets given fuller and

finer expression tot he beliefs and ideals and traditions of a people, or achieved as a result wider and more enduring fame. At the present day over two hundred million

Hindus are familiar in varying degrees with the legendary themes and traditional beliefs which the ancient forest sages and poets of India invested with much beautiful

symbolism, and used as mediums for speculative thought and profound spiritual teachings. The sacred books of India are to the Hindus what the Bible is to Christians.

Those who read them, or hear them read, are believed to be assured of prosperity in this world and of salvation in the next. To students of history, of ethnology, and of

comparative religion they present features of peculiar interest, for they contain an elaborate sociology of the ancient Aryo-Indians, their political organizations, their

codes of laws, their high ethical code, and above all their conceptions of God, the soul, and the Universe. Some knowledge of them is necessary for those who desire to

approach with sympathy the investigation of the religious beliefs of our Hindu fellow men and to understand their outlook upon life and the world.


The Introduction deals with various aspects of the study of these ancient myths and legends which have been the inspiration of a national literature infused with much

grandeur and sublimity. The historic Aryan controversy, of which the science of comparative mythology is a by-product, is passed under review, and it is shown to what

extent philological theories regarding race problems have been modified during recent years as a result of the adoption of broader and more exact methods of ethnic

and archęological research and the ever-extending study of comparative mythology. There has also been condensed much important data dealing with the early phases

of Aryo-Indian civilization accumulated for historical purposes by industrious and painstaking Sanskrit scholars who have been engaged in investigating and systematizing

the internal evidence of the various religious poems and treatises. It will be found that no general agreement has yet been reached regarding Aryo-Indian chronology, but it

now appears to be well established that although there were early cultural as well as racial "drifts", fresh invasions, which had far-reaching results in the social and religious

life of northern India, occurred at a late period in what is known as the Vedic Age. In consequence, the problem presented by this ancient civilization tends rather to grow

more complex than to become simplified. Its origin is still wrapped in obscurity. At the very dawn of history Aryo-Indian culture had attained a comparatively high state of

development, and a considerable period must be allowed for its growth. Even some of the ancient Vedic hymns, addressed by priests to the deities, are styled "new songs",

which suggests the existence of an older collection. Many of them also afford indications that immemorial beliefs were in process of change and fusion. The sublime deities,

Varuna and Mitra (Mithra), for instance, were already declining in splendour. Yet they must have been closely associated with Indra, king of the gods, in the unknown Aryan

homeland, as is made evident by and inscription recently deciphered at Boghaz Köi, in Asia Minor, which refers to them as deities of the mysterious Mitanni people who

were of Aryan speech like the settlers in the Punjab. There is no evidence, however, that the Mitanni rulers gave recognition to the fire god Agni, who in India was exalted as

the twin brother of Indra. The problem involved may not be devoid of ethnic significance, although the identity of the Agni-worshipping section of the early raiders remains



During the early Vedic Age in India prominence was given to the gods: the social organization was of patriarchal character; the goddesses remained shadowy and vague,

some being, indeed, little more than figures of speech. A great change took place, however, after the invasions of the Bharata and other tribes who are now referred to as

"late comers". Profound and speculative thinkers attained to the pantheistic conception of the world soul; new doctrines, which are not referred to in the Vedic hymns,

regarding the ages of the universe and transmigration of souls, received wide acceptance as the result of missionary efforts: the Vedic gods were reduced to the position

of minor deities and new goddesses rose into prominence, one indeed being Bharati, throw much light on the significance of the immemorial practice. White and black

horses were alternately favoured, and it is evident that the practice was not only associated with solar worship, but was also intended to secure fertility - crops, and therefore

rain in the first place, increase of flocks, hers, human offspring and the like - as is undoubtedly the case among the modern-day Buriats. In India the horse was also offered

up as a sin offering, a late conception, evidently. A prominent feature of this sacrifice in most countries was the decapitation of the sacrificial victim. Recent evidence from

Egypt suggests that the sacrifice of the ass may have preceded the sacrifice of the horse. Professor Flinders Petrie has found in a triple tomb in the early dynastic Tarkhan

cemetery the skeletons of three asses with the heads cut off and placed beside them. He suggests that the animals were killed to accompany their owner to the other world.

The Buriats still sacrifice horses at graves, professedly for the same reason. As this custom was not prevalent throughout Ancient Egypt, it may have been an importation,

connected, perhaps, with the myth about the sun-ass which gallops round a hill-surrounded world followed by the pursuing night serpent. An isolated reference is also made

to the sacrifice of the ass in a Twelfth Dynasty story about a Naga-like demigod, a fact which emphasizes the historical importance of the material embedded in folk tales

and mythologies. In this connection it may be noted that certain developed myths suggest there may have been either a cultural contact of Ancient Egypt with India, through

an unidentified medium, or an infusion of religious ideas into both countries from a common source. In an Indian creation myth Prajįpati weeps creative tears like the

Egyptian sun-god Ra, whose rays are tears from which all things spring, as Maspero shows.


In India the juice of the soma plant was identified with the vital principle, and the demons were the poisoners of crops and plants; in Egypt honey-flowers and sacred trees

sprang from the fertilizing tears of deities, while the tears of demons produced poisonous plants, diseases and the like. Like the Egyptian Horus, the Indian Prajįpati, or

Bahma, sprang from a lotus bloom floating on the primordial waters. The chaos-egg myth is also common to both mythological systems. Brahma issues from a golden egg

like Ra, and a similar myth is connected with the Egyptian Ptah and Khnumu, and with the Chinese P'an Ku, while the egg figures in Eur-Asian folk tales which contain the

germs of the various mythologies. All mythologies have animistic bases; they were, to being with, systematized folk beliefs which were carried hither and thither in various

stages of development by migrating and trading peoples. Each separate system bears undoubted traces of racial or local influences; each reflects the civilization in which it

flourished, the habits of thought and habits of life of the people, and the religious, ethical, and political ideals of their rulers and teachers. When well-developed myths of

similar character are found in widely separated districts, an ethnic or cultural contact is suggested. Such myths may be regarded as evidence of remote racial movements,

which, although unsupported by record or tradition, are also indicated by ethnological data. It is hoped that the reader will find much suggestive material in this connection in

their study of the myths and legends of India. They will also find that many of the tales retold in this volume have qualities which make universal appeals, and that some are

among the most beautiful which survive from the civilizations of the ancient world.


Not a few, we are assured, will follow with interest, the development from primitive myths of great and ennobling ideas which have exercised a culturing influence in India

through many long centuries, and as still potent factors in the domestic, social, and religious life of many millions of Hindus.


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