Steve has published three books on various aspects of Classical antiquity, and also edited a dictionary of Classical mythology.


Pierre Grimal (Author), Stephen Kershaw (Editor)

Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1990

"The Concise Dictionary of Classical Mythology" is a distillation into brief form of the single source dictionary of ancient Greek and Roman myths and legends. In keeping with Grimal's original dictionary, first published in 1951 in France the concise version covers virtually all major characters, and eight genaeological tables present the principal complex relationships between gods and men. The entries concentrate on principal versions of each legend, and only the most significant variations are covered, in order to focus on the common core of classical literature. Brief definitions are cross referenced to short accounts of the main legends.

This volume is published in hardback. There is also a paperback version published by Penguin:


Pierre Grimal. Editor - Stephen Kershaw. Translator - A. R. Maxwell-Hyslop

London: Penguin, 1991

A good understanding of mythology can greatly enhance our appreciation of ancient art and literature, not to mention the work of many later painters and writers. Drawing on every stage of classical mythology - from Achilles and Aphrodite to Jupiter and Juno - this acclaimed dictionary is ideal for both quick reference and more in-depth reading, and will delight anyone who loves dipping into the marvellous stories of the ancient world.

• Contains the standard versions (and significant variants) of the myths about the heroes and heroines of Homer's Odyssey and Iliad and other Greek classical works, placing them within their literary context

• Describes the Olympian gods and goddesses (in their Greek and Roman guises), their adventures, disputes and erotic entanglements

• Covers the Roman legends and foundation stories which haunted Virgil's imagination: Dido, Aeneas, Rhea Silvia, Romulus and Remus

• Includes comprehensive cross-referencing and geneaological tables which show the complex links between different characters and myths.

Brilliantly distils and captures the essence of Greek and Roman mythology. It is the ideal reference tool for anyone with an interest in the Classics or those seeking to explore the many allusions to its mythology that abound in later literature.,,9780140512359,00.html#


London: Robinson, 2007

A uniquely authoritative yet lightly handled examination of the key tales in the corpus of Greek mythology.
The book leads the reader through these vibrant stories, from the origins of the gods through to the homecomings of the Trojan heroes. All the familiar narratives are here, along with some less familiar characters and motifs. In addition to the tales, the book explains key issues arising from the narratives, and discusses the myths and their wider relevance.

This long-overdue book crystallises three key areas of interest: the nature of the tales; the stories themselves; and how they have and might be interpreted. For the first time, it brings together aspects of Greek mythology only usually available in disparate forms namely childrens books and academic works. There will be much here that is interesting, surprising, and strange as well as familiar. Experts and non-experts, adults, students and schoolchildren alike will gain entertainment and insight from this fascinating and important volume.

'Eminently sane, highly informative, and reasonably priced' (Paul Cartledge, BBC History Magazine)

In 2010 A Brief Guide to the Greek Myths was published in Russian translation:


London: Robinson, 2010

An accessible and comprehensive introduction to Classical history, myth and the ancient world.

A general introduction to the classical world from its origins to the fall of the Roman Empire.

The book focuses on questions of how we know about Classical civilization from archaeology and history; deals with the Mycenaean era and the world of Myth and Epic in Homer's Iliad &; Odyssey; gives an outline of Greek history in the 5th &; 4th Centuries BC; looks at Greek social life and the alternative model of Sparta, and considers the achievements of the Greeks in their art and architecture, tragedy and comedy.

Turning to Rome, it engages with Roman history, the Roman Epic tradition, the fascinating features of Roman social life, analyses Roman satire, explores the urban environment in Pompeii and Herculaneum, and concludes with the End of Rome. 

Publishers' sales points:

Action-packed, reader-friendly history of the Greeks and Romans without the boring bits. Explains how the Greeks and Romans set out the foundations of our contemporary world from science and architecture to the writing on the dollar bill. Stephen Kershaw is the author of A Brief Guide to the Greek Myths which has sold [well over] 5,000 copies. Strong cross-market appeal to student and general-interest readership, especially travellers/tourists.


London: Robinson, 2013. ISBN: 9781780330488. £9.99

The epic story of the rise and fall of the greatest empire the world has ever known.

This concise yet compelling narrative history of the Rom,an Empire covers 500 years, from its rise in 27 BC to the barbarian incursions and the fall of Rome in AD 476. It draws on a wide range of primary sources, from contemporary writers to recent archaeological finds, which often reveal day-to-day life in fascinating detail.

Classics scholar Stephen P. Kershaw identifies the seismic events in Rome's rise and fall and provides wonderful portraits of its larger-than-life personalities - gladiators and charioteers, senators and slaves, wise and supremely dysfunctional emperors, fascinating women. He puts in context the might of Rome's armies and detail the bizarre sexual practices and grotesque brutalities that were the trademarks of this extraordinary empire.