Ancient Letters: Classical and Late Antique Epistolography by Ruth Morello, A. D. Morrison

By Ruth Morello, A. D. Morrison

The surviving physique of historical letters bargains the reader a gorgeous number of fabric, starting from the standard letters preserved one of the Oxyrhynchus papyri to imperial rescripts, New testomony Epistles, fictional or pseudepigraphical letters and a wealth of missives on nearly each a possibility topic. they give us a different perception into historical practices within the fields of politics, literature, philosophy, drugs and lots of different parts. This assortment offers a sequence of case reports in old letters, asking how every one letter author manipulates the epistolary culture, why he selected the letter shape over the other, and what impression the booklet of volumes of accumulated letters may have had upon a reader's engagement with epistolary works. This quantity is the 1st of its type on historic letters in any language, and it brings jointly either well-established and promising younger students at present operating within the fields of old literature, historical past, philosophy and drugs to have interaction in a shared debate approximately this such a lot adaptable and 'interdisciplinary' of genres.

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Ad; Christian); father’s admonition, POxy. 9–11 (cf. Ebbeler below on some aspects of fathers and sons in letters). Down among the Documents 25 father does not actually need to be placated on the goings-on (cf. 3–4). This shows shrewd rhetorical calculation. More calculation, and support for (c), is suggested by the delay of a reply on the report, presumably from Heraclas, that the sons are looking squalid (37–8 appear to imply the father’s knowledge). This is turned into a common device in letters whereby neglect of one’s self proves grief.

Inciderit, 21, si quod inuenisset, 23; ‘nearly’: nihil ei restabat praeter . . , 1, cum . . iam . . ‘. . when who should walk into the room but . ) All a question . . of epistolary misinformation, conniving, projection, and countertransference. It all gets out of hand. Letters are no autonomous singletons; they are a culture—fungal teletechnology. By his end, the author is less than happy with this fortnight’s desultory collage. He is bound to be. By the end, any end, the ageing paging of this albumtross is long past its send-by date.

It would follow that the son has not previously given the father an account of the theatrical incident. This is conWrmed by the elaborate narrative of the search for a teacher. 11–12 and 16–17 talk of earlier communication in both directions; but the account implies that the father has not yet been informed of Philoxenus’ reaction to his views or of the mediocre Didymus. All this will hardly postdate the evidently recent events in the theatre and the Xight of Heraclas (it would be strange not to mention the loss of income earlier if it preceded and hence aVected the search with Philoxenus).

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