James George Frazer

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Sir James George Frazer (1 January 1854 – 7 May 1941), was a Scottish social anthropologist influential in the early stages of the modern studies of mythology and comparative religion. He is often considered one of the founders of modern anthropology.

His most influential work, The Golden Bough (1890), documents and details the similarities among magical and religious beliefs across the globe. Frazer posited that human belief progressed through three stages: primitive magic, replaced by religion, in turn replaced by science.


  • Totemism, 1887.
  • Folk-lore in the Old Testament, 1918; 1919.
  • The Belief in Immortality and the Worship of the Dead, 3 vols, 1913–24.
  • The Golden Bough: a Study in Magic and Religion, 1890; 2nd ed., exp. to 6 vols., 1900; 3rd ed., 12 vols., 1906–15. [1]
  • Pausanias, and Other Greek Sketches, 1900.
  • Psyche's Task, 1909.
  • Totemism and Exogamy, 1910.