The History of a Word 02/07/20
We might know some of the names of the star constelletions we see in the sky, changing slightly from season to season - The Big Dipper and Orion's Belt, for instance. We might also have heard of The Milky Way and The Pleiades, but children may not be aware of the wealth of origin stories that exist in different cultures explaining why the stars are in their various shapes.
Egyptian legend tells the story of Ra, the mighty Sun god, and how he was banished to the sky by the clever goddess Isis; alternatively, a tale from the Cherokee Nation outlines how ingenious Grandmother Spider caught the sun in her woven silk bag and gave it to Buzzard to place high in the sky. Sumerian mythology tells the tale of the great king Gilgamesh and his battle with the Great Bull of Heaven (the constellation of Taurus).
Anita Ganeri's short retellings of these fascinating myths span the Americas, Asia, Africa, Greece and Australia, highlighting the wealth of wisdom that exists in world cultures and offering children access to other ways of seeing the world. Andy Wilx's stunning gold illustrations are full of epic majesty, and lend the book the grandeur it deserves.