This "abridged" edition is huge -- the equivalent of 10 books the size of Tom Sawyer. The first edition, published 1890, was 2 volumes. The second, published in 1900, was 3 volumes. The third edition, published 1906-1915, was 12 volumes. This edition was published in 1922. According to Wikipedia: "The Golden Bough: A Study in Magic and Religion is a wide-ranging, comparative study of mythology and religion, written by Scottish anthropologist James George Frazer (1854–1941). It first was published in two volumes in 1890; the third edition, published 1906–15, comprised twelve volumes. It was aimed at a broad literate audience raised on tales as told in such publications as Thomas Bulfinch's The Age of Fable, or Stories of Gods and Heroes (1855). It offered a modernist approach to discussing religion, treating it dispassionately as a cultural phenomenon rather than from a theological perspective. The impact of The Golden Bough on contemporary European literature was substantial."