Mythology was an important field of inquiry for Greimas ever since he started his independent research activities. From modern works on mythology, he borrowed a number of principles for making descriptions of large units of signification. Once, he even asserted that his semiotic research had started with mythology, and not the other way around, for already in 1965 he had given a lecture on Lithuanian mythology at a convention of the Lithuanian expatriate organization “Santara-Šviesa”. Let us note, however, that on this particular occasion, Greimas had introduced the public to its own, modern myths… Nevertheless, shortly afterwards numerous articles on old Lithuanian mythology started appearing one after another.

Sitting from the left: Ona Greimienė, colonel Juozas Lanskoronskis, Mrs Lanskoronskienė, Karolis Drunga (Jurgis Valiulis), Mykolas Drunga; standing: A. J. Greimas, unidentified couple, Eglė Liutkutė, Janina Liutkienė, Ada Martinkaitė, Antanas Liutkus (junior), Brigitte Broquet (French friend of Eglė Liutkutė); standing in the second row: Antanas Liutkus (senior), Perkūnas Liutkus. Circa 1956, Villefranche. From the personal archive of Perkūnas Liutkus. We are grateful to Valdas Papievis and Darius Kuolys for the photo.
On a picnic. From the left: Jonas Aistis, V. Rocevičius, Aldona Dirmantaitė, Algirdas Julien Greimas. Grenoble, May 1, 1938. © Maironis Lithuanian Literature Museum.

Greimas reflected on theoretical problems of mythology and studied particular cases. Most of his theoretical considerations have been published in French, whereas almost all of his case studies are dedicated to the reconstruction of old Lithuanian mythology and have been published in Lithuanian. The outcomes of this reconstruction appeared mostly in Lithuanian expatriate press, and were eventually consolidated into books Of Gods and Men (1979) and In Search of National Memory (1990).