Ancient Greek Literary Letters: Selections in Translation by Patricia A. Rosenmeyer

By Patricia A. Rosenmeyer

The 1st referenece to letter writing happens within the first textual content of western literature, Homer's Iliad. From the very starting, Greeks have been enthusiastic letter writers, and letter writing grew to become a special literary style. Letters have been integrated within the works of historians yet in addition they shaped the root of works of fiction, and the formal substructure for plenty of different types of poem.
Patricia Rosenmeyer, an expert at the historical past of the Greek letter, assembles during this e-book a consultant number of such 'literary letters', from Aelian and Alciphron to Philostrartus and the meant letters of Themistocles.
The ebook could be necessary for all scholars of Greek literature in particular these learning Greek (and Latin) letter.

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Sample text

At war in Egypt, Chaereas defeats Artaxerxes in battle and wins back Callirhoe. ] Chaereas also wrote this letter to the king: You were about to judge the case, but I’ve already won in the eyes of the best judge: war can best distinguish between the stronger and the weaker. War has returned to me not just my wife [Callirhoe] but yours too [Statira]. I haven’t delayed as you did; instead, without your asking, I’m returning Statira right away. She’s unharmed, and was treated as a queen even in captivity.

I haven’t delayed as you did; instead, without your asking, I’m returning Statira right away. She’s unharmed, and was treated as a queen even in captivity. You should know that Callirhoe is responsible for this gift, not I. We’re asking a favor in return: give amnesty to the Egyptians. It suits a king to be charitable above all else. That way you’ll have good soldiers who love you, since they chose to work for you rather than to follow me as friends. That’s what Chaereas wrote. But Callirhoe also thought she should write a thank-you letter to Dionysius.

The poor people just wrote to me complaining that you don’t share your wealth with them, and they asked me quite simply to distribute the good things equally to all people and let each person have his share. They said it was only fair to establish equal privileges, and not for one man to have more and another less of the good stuff. So I answered that Zeus would be the appropriate one to take care of that request, but my responsibility was to arbitrate their immediate concerns, in particular the injustices they thought they were suffering at my festival, and I promised to write to you on this subject.

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