Handshifts in Letters

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Abstract

The term ‘handshifts’ refers to the changes of handwriting that occur in texts, and they are found in all types of texts on papyrus or other materials. This paper examines instances of handshifts in letters, focusing especially on the farewell greeting, which reveals important information about scribal activity in letters. It argues that authors’ subscriptions below dictated letters was a custom that was introduced to the Greek world in the Roman period, probably influenced by elite practices in Rome. The number of dictated letters seems to be significantly lower than usually assumed, which may suggest that a number of people wrote their letters personally.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 27th International Congress of Papyrology Warsaw, 29 July – 3 August 2013
EditorsTomasz Derda, Adam Lajtar, Jakub Urbanik
Place of PublicationWarsaw
Pages797–819
Volume2
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameTHE JOURNAL OF JURISTIC PAPYROLOGY, Supplements
Volume28

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