About the Book
From Preface Modern researches into the early history of man, conducted on different lines, have converged with almost irresistible force on the conclusion, that all civilized races have at some period or other emerged from a state of savagery resembling more or less closely the state in which many backward races have continued to the present time; and that, long after the majority of men in a ...
James G. Frazer ---
British anthropologist, historian of religion and classical scholar, whose best-known study The Golden Bough: A Study in Comparative Religion traced the evolution of human behavior, ancient and primitive myth, magic, religion, ritual, and taboo. Frazer did much to popularize anthropology and made its agnostic tendencies acceptable, although his conclusions are now outdated.
James Frazer was born in Glaskow, Scotland, into a pious middle-class family, as the eldest of four children of Daniel K. Frazer, a pharmacist, and Katherine (Brown) Frazer. He was educated at Larchfield Academy, Helensburgh, and University of Glaskow and then at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he became a classics fellow from 1871 until his death. Except for one year, 1907-08, spent at the University of Liverpool as professor of social anthropology, Frazer remained from 1908 most of his life in Cambridge.
Frazer also studied law because of his father`s wishes. He was called to the English Bar in 1879, but he never practiced. His wife, Elisabeth Grove Frazier, whom he married in 1896, devoted herself into guarding his peace of writing and research. Frazer was knighted in 1914. Aside from occasional trips to Greece and the Continent, he and Lady Frazer rarely left Cambridge. In 1931 he went blind but continued his work with the aid of secretaries and amanuenses. Frazer died in Cambridge on May 7, 1941.