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Thomas Bulfinch, in his day job, worked as a clerk in the Merchant's Bank of Boston, an undemanding position that allowed him ample leisure time in which to pursue his other interests. Bulfinch thoroughly researched the myths and legends and copiously cross-referenced them with literature and art. As such, the myths are an indispensable guide to the cultural values of the nineteenth century; however, it is the vigor of the stories themselves that returns generation after generation to Bulfinch.