It seems at first to be an imposing miscellany of odd facts and bizarre truths on a subject that has a tenuous but unbreakable grip on all stages and ages of men. Nevertheless, the organization is there and subtle enough so that it never obtrudes into the conversational flow of the author's introduction to the place of magic in various societies at various periods in history. The author explains the explainable but does not deny the power of the mysterious prophecies or coincidences to intrigue even the sophisticated intelligence. This is not a blatant expedition into debunking, but by briefly investigating the relationship between fear and hope which has given superstition its threshold in everyone, the author both informs and compliments the intelligence of his young readers. He defines the differences between the diverse forms magic ritual has taken: totemism, omen watching, dancing, palm reading, shamanism, alchemy, etc.
1st edition; published 1966
Vintage, pre-owned book in very good condition. No writing no tears; no dust-jacket.