The Tale of John Barleycorn: Or from Barley to Beer (Hardcover)
John Barleycorn must die--so everyone agrees from the ploughmen to the tinker in this exquisitely illustrated edition of the old English ballad. But who will prove to be the strongest man at last?Hand-colored woodcuts by artist Mary Azarian bring the tale of John Barleycorn to a new and glorious life, just like old Sir John himself. There are exquisite details on every page from the ploughing, sowing, harrowing, scything, tying, and grinding--until, finally, the drinking and celebrating. This ballad of how barley becomes beer dates back to the 16th century though the underlying theme of nature's cycle dates back to pagan times. However old the story, the mystery and celebration of the earth's cycles at the core of the tale still resonants strongly today. And as befits the tradition of the ballad, a bathtub beer recipe is included as well. Mary Azarian is a renowned New England illustrator and printmaker. Of her A Farmer's Alphabet, School Library Journal said, "Azarian eschews the merely cute or quaint, creating a loving memorial to a way of life." That be said equally of this, her book for adults, The Tale of John Barleycorn: Or From Barley to Beer.