By Quintus Aurelius Symmachus, Michele Renee Salzman, Michael Roberts
This quantity supplies us the 1st ebook of the letters of Quintus Aurelius Symmachus, eloquent and lively facilitator of gentlemanly colloquy and preferment within the final 3 a long time of the fourth century. the 1st e-book is of especial curiosity since it is arguably—indeed, right here argued to be—the just one of the 10 surviving books of correspondence that Symmachus himself ready for e-book. Michele Salzman offers an creation of a few sixty pages devoted mostly to Symmachus’ biography, by means of briefer sections at the issues, ebook heritage, and relationship of person letters in publication 1. additional biographical fabric introduces all the 8 correspondents of their locations; and nearly each one of the 107 letters right here has its personal creation and notes. The letters themselves are released in either the Latin textual content (from Seeck’s MGH version, with corrections from Callu, regrettably nowhere itemized) and a felicitous English translation that earnings from the collaboration and oversight of Michael Roberts.
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Extra info for The Letters of Symmachus: Book 1
Symmachus’s letters reveal how personal influence was the sine qua non for success at all levels in late Roman society. Advancement was based on connections much more than on merit. The ability to advance the interests of clients augmented one’s own reputation, and certainly Symmachus’s name and career advanced in large part through his letter writing, especially his letters of recommendation. We can only wish that the letters of recommendation that others had written for Symmachus had survived; unfortunately, they do not.
8). Symmachus’s letters reveal how personal influence was the sine qua non for success at all levels in late Roman society. Advancement was based on connections much more than on merit. The ability to advance the interests of clients augmented one’s own reputation, and certainly Symmachus’s name and career advanced in large part through his letter writing, especially his letters of recommendation. We can only wish that the letters of recommendation that others had written for Symmachus had survived; unfortunately, they do not.
One measure of his reputation as a successful letter writer is the fact that his letters were copied and recopied, and they became models of style and etiquette. Indeed, Symmachus was keenly aware of the rules of epistolary conduct. So, for example, when Praetextatus wrote a single letter jointly to Symmachus and his father, Symmachus pointedly complains that this failure to write to them individually was a breach of epistolary propriety and 165. 2, and see 9 n. 9. 166 The length of each letter was also calibrated to suit the importance of the person and the issue at hand.
The Letters of Symmachus: Book 1 by Quintus Aurelius Symmachus, Michele Renee Salzman, Michael Roberts