By Paola Ceccarelli
During this quantity, Ceccarelli deals a historical past of the advance of letter writing in historic Greece from the archaic to the early Hellenistic interval. Highlighting the specificity of letter-writing, instead of other kinds of verbal exchange and writing, the quantity seems at documentary letters, but additionally strains the function of embedded letters within the texts of the traditional historians, in drama, and within the speeches of the orators.
While a letter is in itself the transcription of an oral message and, as such, should be both fair or deceitful, letters obtained detrimental connotations within the 5th century, specifically whilst used for transactions about the public and never the personal sphere. considered because the software of tyrants or close to jap kings, those unfavorable connotations have been obvious in particular in Athens the place comedy and tragedy testified to an underlying problem with epistolary communique. In different parts of the Greek international, equivalent to Sparta or Crete, the letter could have been obvious as an unproblematic device for coping with public rules, with inscriptions documenting the respectable use of letters not just by way of the Hellenistic kings, but in addition by way of a few poleis.
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Additional resources for Ancient Greek letter writing : a cultural history, 600 BC- 150 BC
Oxy iv 710, 1–4 (111 bc) mentions 44 bybliaphoroi in the Oxyrhynchite nome. The detailed discussion of the ofﬁcial ancient postal systems by Llewelyn 1994: 1–25, moves from the Persian empire to Ptolemaic Egypt, and then focuses on the Roman period. 46 ªæÆììÆôïçüæïıò appears twice in Phylarchus FGrH 81 F 55; but the fragment is preserved in Polybius (2. 61. 1–5), in a passage in which he criticizes Phylarchus, and the precise wording may well be Polybius’ own. See below, 168–70. 47 Strabo 5. 4.
Derives, one could say, from letters, or from the possibility of writing letters. People have hardly deceived me, but letters always . . The easy possibility of letter-writing must—seen merely theoretically—have brought into the world a terrible disintegration of souls. It is, in fact, an intercourse with ghosts, and not only with the ghost of the recipient but also with one’s own ghost which develops between the lines of the letter one is writing and even more so in a series of letters when one letter corroborates the other and can refer to it as a witness.
36 Ofﬁcial communication between poleis, or between magistrates and poleis, fared only marginally better. There were ¼ªªåºïØ (messengers) and ŒÞæıŒåò (public heralds);37 for longer distances that needed to be covered quickly, some cities had couriers, the so-called ìåæïäæüìïØ (day-runners) or äæïìïŒÞæıŒåò (couriers), such as the Athenian Pheidippides, who according to Herodotus covered in two days the distance from Athens to Sparta (Hdt. 6. 38 In time of war, a general would usually have at his disposal some particularly fast and trustworthy runners: Herodotus mentions the Argives sending a hemerodromos ‘after ﬁnding the best of their runners’ to warn Mardonius of the arrival of the Spartans with Pausanias (Hdt.