ABOUT THIS BOOK
More than three hundred letters written in Greek and Egyptian by women in Egypt in the millennium from Alexander the Great to the Arab conquest survive on papyrus and pottery. Written by women from various walks of life, they shed light on critical social aspects of life in Egypt after the pharaohs. Roger S. Bagnall and Raffaella Cribiore collect the best preserved letters in translation and set them in their paleographic, linguistic, social, and economic contexts. The authors' analysis suggests that women's habits, interests, and means of expression were a product more of their social and economic standing than of specifically gender-related concerns or behavior. They present theoretical discussions about the handwriting and language of the letters, the education and culture of the writers' everyday concerns and occupations. Numerous illustrations display the varieties of handwriting.