Friendship in the Classical World / Edition 1

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This book is a history of friendship in Greece and Rome, from the warrior society of the Homeric epics to the time of the Christian Roman Empire. It demonstrates how ancient friendship resembles modern conceptions, and how it evolves in different social contexts. The book sheds new light on such questions as friendship and democracy, the importance of friends in government and in philosophic communities, women's friendships, and the transformation of friendship under the influence of Christian ideas of brotherhood.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"...this is a valuable study of interest to such diverse groups as the ancient historian, the moral theologian or the philosopher with an interest in the virtues." Alicia Batten, Toronto Journal of Theology

"Konstan's account will serve well anyone who wants to learn more about the classical thinkers who gave us our language and our understanding of friendship, or who wants to contemplate what we have made of that inheritance." Gilbert Meilaender, First Things

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521459983
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 3/28/2005
  • Series: Key Themes in Ancient History Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,155,185
  • Product dimensions: 5.98 (w) x 8.98 (h) x 0.51 (d)

Table of Contents

List of abbreviations
Introduction 1
1 Archaic Greece 24
The world of Homer 24
Philos 28
Hetairos 31
Xenos 33
Eros 37
Therapon 40
Patroclus and Achilles 41
The world of Hesiod 42
Lyric poetry and the symposium 44
Sappho and women's friendships 47
Iambic and elegiac poetry 48
Theognis: friendship and class conflict 49
2 The classical city 53
The Greek word for "friend" 53
Helping friends 56
Friendship and politics 60
Aristotle on the kinds of philia 67
Aristotle on the grounds of friendship 72
Friends and finance 78
Allies and foreign friends 83
Public and private 87
Women as friends 90
Friendship in the polis 91
3 The Hellenistic world 93
Unequal friends 93
Friends at court 95
Friends and flatterers 98
Frankness and free speech 103
Friends and rulers 105
Philosophical friendship: Epicureanism 108
Friendship and Stoic perfection 113
Pythagoreanism and the cult of friendship 114
Parables of friendship 115
Friendship in the "Great World" 120
4 Rome 122
Roman friendship 122
Cicero and his friends 124
Friendship in politics 128
Cicero on friendship 130
Friends vs. country 131
Status and the question of patronage 135
The dinner-party scene 137
Great friends 140
Patrons and poets 143
Friendship between men and women 146
Friendship in imperial society 147
5 Christian and pagan 149
Self-disclosure and Christian friendship 149
Hypocrisy and friendship 153
Friendship vs. brotherly love 156
Friendship and virtue 158
Some Christian views 161
Gregory of Nazianzus on friendship 163
John Cassian and monastic friendship 165
Friendship with God 167
Friendship in late antiquity 170
Bibliographical essay 174
Bibliography 177
Index 199
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