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Libraries in the Ancient World
     

Libraries in the Ancient World

by Lionel Casson
 

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ISBN-10: 0300097212

ISBN-13: 9780300097214

Pub. Date: 08/28/2002

Publisher: Yale University Press

This delightful book tells the story of ancient libraries from their very beginnings, when “books” were clay tablets and writing was a new phenomenon. Renowned classicist Lionel Casson takes us on a lively tour, from the royal libraries of the most ancient Near East, through the private and public libraries of Greece and Rome, down to the first

Overview

This delightful book tells the story of ancient libraries from their very beginnings, when “books” were clay tablets and writing was a new phenomenon. Renowned classicist Lionel Casson takes us on a lively tour, from the royal libraries of the most ancient Near East, through the private and public libraries of Greece and Rome, down to the first Christian monastic libraries. To the founders of the first public libraries of the Greek world goes the credit for creating the prototype of today’s library buildings and the science of organizing books in them.

Casson recounts the development of ancient library buildings, systems, holdings, and patrons, addressing questions on a wide variety of topics, such as:

• What was the connection between the rise in education and literacy and the growth of libraries?

• Who contributed to the early development of public libraries, especially the great library at Alexandria?

• What did ancient libraries include in their holdings?

• How did ancient libraries acquire books?

• What was the nature of publishing in the Greek and Roman world?

• How did different types of users (royalty, scholars, religious figures) and different kinds of “books” (tablets, scrolls, codices) affect library arrangements?

• How did Christianity transform the nature of library holdings?

Just as a library yields unexpected treasures to a meandering browser, this entertaining book offers to its perusers the surprising history of the rise and development of ancient libraries—a fascinating story never told before.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780300097214
Publisher:
Yale University Press
Publication date:
08/28/2002
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
192
Sales rank:
748,488
Product dimensions:
5.00(w) x 7.75(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Prefaceix
Mapsxi
1.The Beginnings: The Ancient Near East1
2.The Beginnings: Greece17
3.The Library of Alexandria31
4.The Growth of Libraries48
5.The Beginnings: Rome61
6.Libraries of the Roman Empire: The City of Rome80
7.Libraries of the Roman Empire: Outside the City of Rome109
8.From Roll to Codex124
9.Toward the Middle Ages136
Abbreviations147
Notes149
List of Illustrations167
Index171

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