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Pocket Dictionary of Saints: Revised Edition [Paperback]

By John Delaney (Author)
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Item Number 158251  
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Item description for Pocket Dictionary of Saints: Revised Edition by John Delaney...

The saints: a fascinating company. . . This specially abridged edition of the popular-and weighty-DICTIONARY OF SAINTS features some 1,500 entries, of varying lengths, on every saint or blessed that we would like to know about. John J. Delaney has carefully selected from his original master tome of 5,000 biographies stories of those eternal pillars of faith whose lives and accomplishments have transformed the world. This pocket edition, arranged alphabetically with appropriate cross-references, is a readable and detailed compendium of facts and fables, legends and lore, surrounding the lives (and deaths) of the most popular and appealing saints and beati-from every time and every race-venerated by the universal church. An appendix to the volume lists saints as Patrons and Intercessors," as "Patrons of Countries and Places," and "Their Symbols of Art." All in all, this is a portable work for easy reference, private reading/meditation, or sharing with family and friends.

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Item Specifications...

Format: Abridged
Studio: Image
Pages   528
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 7.02" Width: 4.26" Height: 1.14"
Weight:   0.59 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Mar 31, 1983
Publisher   Image
ISBN  0385182740  
ISBN13  9780385182744  
UPC  071009010956  

Availability  0 units.

More About John Delaney

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! JOHN J. DELANEY, the former director of Doubleday Religious Publishing and founder of Image Books, was an active figure in the world of religious publishing for more than forty years. He also authored A Woman Clothed with the Sun, and translated The Practice of the Presence of God. ARTHUR JONES is currently an editor at large at the National Catholic Reporter, and has previously worked at Forbes and the Financial Times (London). He is the author of several books, including the forthcoming Pierre Toussaint.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Reference
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > General
3Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Catholicism > Saints
5Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality > General
6Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Spirituality

Christian Product Categories
Books > Church & Ministry > Church Life > Roman Catholic

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Reviews - What do customers think about Pocket Dictionary of Saints: Revised Edition?

Good Springboard for Further Study  Mar 17, 2004
Before joining the Catholic Church through RCIA in 2000, I had quite the hunger to learn all things Catholic, so I scooped up a number of books to learn as much as I could. The "Pocket Dictionary of Saints(Abridged Edition)" by John J. Delaney, was one of the first books that I purchased. The stories of the saints have always intrigued me, even as a child growing up Protestant. This book is a brilliant reference for anyone, Catholic, Protestant or otherwise who is interested in the lives of the saints. It includes a brief history of about 1,500 saints, as well as lists of saints as intercessors, patrons, and their symbols found in art.

Though it is sometimes too brief on certain saints, this book is the perfect starting point for someone to begin studying with. It introduced me to St. Athanasius, and lead me to investigate his life in more detail. It also helped me deepen the understanding of my newfound faith, since I came to appreciate these wonderful saints even more.

Overall, a good beginning to studying the saints. Read about all of them briefly in this book, and then seek out more information on the lives, legend and faith of these great people.

Abridgement is A Misleading Term  Nov 16, 2000
Delaney's Pocket Dictionary of Saints has no fewer saints than the rival Penguin Dictionary of Saints or the Oxford Dictionary of Saints: it is a shorter version of a massive 5000 entry long dictionary and comes out to about the same length as the other two popular sources for hagiography.

Delaney's work includes many saints who are not mentioned in the other works such as St. Christina the Astonishing. He also includes many individuals who have achieved only the designation of "Blessed". Where the Penguin and Oxford Dictionaries focus on those saints of importance to residents of the British isles, Delaney consciously selects (from his larger work) those who he feels have something to teach us by their lives (which is, after all, the primary reason for recognizing them as saints). He includes a few saints of the Orthodox tradition and some popular saints, too. (He is careful to debunk the legend of "Little Saint Hugh".)

Delaney's faults include articles which are often too short and incomplete. The entry for St. Francis Solano, for example, fails to recount the story of the missionary's arrival in the New World (he, alone, of a party of Europeans remained with eighty African slaves on a sinking ship and helped them to safety). He often becomes too dry and this undermines his purpose of providing us with lives that will inspire. You should also know that this volume was last revised in 1983, which means that a small number of recent saints are not included.

The strongest points in favor of Delaney are his appendices of patron saints and their symbols, which are the most complete of the three which I have mentioned in this article. I would not say that if you could only have a single dictionary of saints that this should be the one: I would, instead, advise owning it along with the Penguin and Oxford Dictionaries of Saints, to help add to the picture of those who the Christian Church has chosen to revere.


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