If, like me, when looking at astrological symbols you have trouble telling your Aries from Uranus, The Signs and Symbols Bible: The Definitive Guide to the World of Symbols in the Godsfield Bible series, is the kind of book that can help.
Books of magic, ancient monuments, ritual tools and religious art are full of symbols, but it can often be difficult to work out exactly what they mean if you don't already know.
The Signs and Symbols Bible, by Madonna Gauding, covers the ideas and concepts behind more than 500 magical and mystical symbols from around the world. It includes images from ancient civilizations such as Egypt, Mesopotamia and Greece; eastern religions; heraldry; esoteric and magical traditions; meanings attributed to things from the natural world such as animals, plants and minerals; symbols on amulets, charms and talismans; the significance of shapes and colours; and spiritual and magical alphabets and letters.
I was pleased to find the book includes Ogham, as I recently won a set of Ogham staves in a raffle, but until now didn't have anything explaining what the early Irish alphabet meant. Obviously any book with such a wide scope as this can't go into great depth in any single area, but it is a good starting point.
Each symbol is clearly represented and easy to find, so it is an ideal reference book, but the Signs and Symbols Bible is also interesting just to dip into to find out more how spiritual and magical ideas are communicated around the world.
The Signs and Symbols Bible: The Definitive Guide to the World of Symbols (Godsfield Bible) has a recommended retail price of £12.99. It goes on sale in August but is available to order through Amazon.