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By John Muir

From the 1st ‘deadly signs’ scratched on a wood capsule teaching the recipient to kill the one that added it, to the letters of St Paul to the early Church, this publication examines the diversity of letter writing within the old Greek global. Containing vast translated examples from either existence and fiction, it offers a glimpse into the lives of either traditional humans and political lifestyles. This accomplished learn appears to be like at own and personal letters, letters utilized in management and govt, letters used as cars for the dissemination of philosophy and faith, and letters which performed a component within the improvement of numerous literary genres. the way letters have been written and with what fabrics, how they have been added, and the way it's that, for definite constrained sessions and destinations, such a lot of of them have survived and the way they have been re-discovered. through putting those letters of their social, political and highbrow contexts, lifestyles and Letters within the old Greek global attracts awareness to either normal subject matters, reminiscent of younger infantrymen writing domestic from simple education and the alternative of vegetation for a marriage, and extra alien occasions, resembling taking away child women and offhand attitudes to bereavement. this primary consultant in English to supply observation on the sort of extensive variety of letters, should be crucial interpreting for somebody attracted to the traditional Greek global.

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Extra info for Life and Letters in the Ancient Greek World (Routledge Monographs in Classical Studies)

Sample text

I have placed my slave, Chairammon, with you with a view to learning the signs which your son Dionysios knows. This is for a period of two years from the present month, Phamenoth, in the eighteenth year of Lord Caesar Antoninus. The due fee agreed between us is 120 silver drachmas (feast-days excepted) of which you have had the first 40 drachmas and will get the second of 40 drachmas when the slave has mastered the manual; the third – the remaining 40 drachmas – you will get at the end of the period, when the boy can write and read from any kind of prose with no mistakes.

60 Maximus wrote on an unusually large piece of broken pot (173 Â 155 mm), and his letter shares a peculiarity with many of the other letters in the two collections mentioned in that it is written in Greek by someone with a straight Roman name. The correspondents may be Greeks who had joined the Roman armed forces and had therefore had to take Roman names. The military contexts may be the reason for the use of ostraca; perhaps soldiers could not or would not afford to buy papyrus. 61 15 G R E E K L E T T E R S : A N I N T RO D U C T I O N Nearly all the letters in this book were originally written on papyrus, even if some were later transcribed on to stone.

The eight toys as presents for him had been given to Alexandros’ sister, who was not only the 29 P E R S O N A L A N D FA M I LY L E T T E R S deliverer of the toys but also the channel of greetings from Alexander to ‘the lady’. It is a pity that the rest of the letter is lost. Diogenis to her brother Alexandros, greetings. Following your instructions to Taamois about a house for us to move to, we have found the one we gave up before moving in next to Agathinos. This house is near the precinct of Isis, close to the house of Claudianus … We move there in Phamenoth.

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