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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 turned a unique literary style. Letters have been incorporated within the works of historians yet in addition they shaped the root of works of fiction, and the formal substructure for lots of forms of poem. Patricia Rosenmeyer, an expert at the heritage of the Greek letter, assembles during this booklet a consultant choice of such 'literary letters', from Aelian and Alciphron to Philostrartus and the intended letters of Themistocles. The e-book should be invaluable for all scholars of Greek literature specifically these learning Greek (and Latin) letter.

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Extra resources for Ancient Greek Literary Letters: Selections in Translation (Routledge Classical Translations)

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9 I, Rufinus, send cheerful greetings to my sweetest Elpis, if she can be cheerful when I’m not there. I swear an oath on your eyes that I can’t bear it anymore, this loneliness, the separation, my solitary bed. When I visit Coressus’ hill and great Artemis’ shrine, I’m always dripping with tears. But tomorrow I’m coming home. I’ll fly to your eyes, calling down a thousand blessings on you. 44 Dear Piso, your friend who is loved by the Muses, who honors Epicurus’ birthday every year on the twentieth day, invites you to his humble home tomorrow, after the ninth hour strikes.

So we had two options: to stop sharing and let them utterly hate us, or to give all our property away and immediately become completely impoverished, one of the needy ourselves. At dinner, poor people didn’t bother so much about filling up and satisfying their hunger, but when they’d had a bit too much to drink, they’d grab the hand of a pretty slave boy who was trying to give them back their wine cup, or they’d try to seduce your mistress or your wife. Then they’d vomit all over the dining room and come back the next day to insult us, claiming that they were dying of thirst 37 LETTERS OF THE SECOND SOPHISTIC 1111 2 3 4 5111 6 7 8 9 10111 11 2 3111 4 5 6 7 8 9 20111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 30111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 40111 1 21111 folio and starvation.

And by Zeus, I almost forgot, about those dinner parties where they dine with you—they also wanted me to include this issue in my letter. As it is, you dine extravagantly behind closed doors, and if every now and then you’re willing to invite one of them in, the party brings more misery than good fun, and you try hard to find 35 LETTERS OF THE SECOND SOPHISTIC 1111 2 3 4 5111 6 7 8 9 10111 11 2 3111 4 5 6 7 8 9 20111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 30111 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 40111 1 21111 folio ways to insult them.

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