NATIONAL BESTSELLER • The author of the runaway bestseller How the Irish Saved Civilization takes us on another "captivating...persuasive as well as entertaining" journey into history (The New York Times), recreating a time when the actions of a small band of people had repercussions that are still felt today.
The Gifts of the Jews reveals the critical change that made western civilization possible. Within the matrix of ancient religions and philosophies, life was seen as part of an endless cycle of birth and death; time was like a wheel, spinning ceaselessly. Yet somehow, the ancient Jews began to see time differently. For them, time had a beginning and an end; it was a narrative, whose triumphant conclusion would come in the future. From this insight came a new conception of men and women as individuals with unique destinies--a conception that would inform the Declaration of Independence--and our hopeful belief in progress and the sense that tomorrow can be better than today. As Thomas Cahill narrates this momentous shift, he also explains the real significance of such Biblical figures as Abraham and Sarah, Moses and the Pharaoh, Joshua, Isaiah, and Jeremiah.
Full of compelling stories, insights and humor, The Gifts of the Jews is an irresistible exploration of history as fascinating and fun as How the Irish Saved Civilization.
About the Author
THOMAS CAHILL’s appealing approach to distant history won the attention of millions of readers in North America and beyond. Cahill is the author of six volumes in the Hinges of History series: How the Irish Saved Civilization, The Gifts of the Jews, Desire of the Everlasting Hills, Sailing the Wine-Dark Sea, Mysteries of the Middle Ages, and Heretics and Heroes. They have been bestsellers not only in the United States but also in countries ranging from Italy to Brazil. He is also the author of A Saint on Death Row. He died in 2022.
"Captivating...persuasive as well as entertaining...Mr. Cahill's book is a gift." —Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, The New York Times
"An outstanding and very readable book...highly recommended." —Library Journal
"A very good read, a dramatically effective, often compelling retelling of the Hebrew Bible." —Chicago Sun Times
"This is a valuable book, of interest to everyone, religious or not." —Washington Times
"A highly readable, entrancing journey." —San Francisco Chronicle