Prolegomena of the History of Religions (Classic Reprint)
This book is the reproduction, in a condensed form, of Lectures which I gave at the College de France during some months of the last spring and summer. I have not reproduced them literally, in extenso, because it seems to me that the same forms which are suitable to an oral lesson are not so suitable to a book. That which the Professor says in a lecture in order to be well and clearly understood by his audience, is apt to degenerate into redundancy and prolixity in a book. Reading allows of more reflection than hearing: it requires also more rapidity in development.
I do not claim to have exhausted in these chapters all that might come into a general Introduction to the History of Religions. There are subjects which those who are familiar with this kind of studies could easily point out which are not even approached, because it is only later that they could be usefully dealt with. At the beginning of a course in which his powers would fail the Professor long before the matter he has to treat of is exhausted, I have sought simply to bring together data and judgments which are most necessary for those who wish to follow it profitably. It is a digest to which I may from time to time be allowed to refer, in order not to lengthen the way by fatiguing repetitions or digressions.
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