Ancient books Greece

The next place, where he also began to use papyrus for records and creation of ancient books, steel ancient Greece and Ancient Rome. It is believed that the writing, and the papyrus as the prototype of the future of paper, about X or IX century BC in Greece brought the Phoenicians. This fact Herodotus writes galikarnassky (484-425, BC), the Greek historian, author of the first comprehensive historical treatise – “History”. The writings of Herodotus was of great importance for ancient culture, Cicero generally called him the “father of history”. To the Phoenicians, the Greeks and the Romans used for records of tree bark and other materials. Herodotus said that the Greek term for papyrus as material for records was “Biblion”, and for the book – “Byblos”, which comes from the name of the Phoenician port town Byblos, through which papyrus was exported from Egypt to Greece.

Before Greece got papyrus, there was used a variety of materials for writing. The most common and cheap was a piece of crock – ostracon. On ostrakons were mostly economic record, as, for example, Greek literary texts found on them only occasionally. Used for writing the Greeks and palm leaves.

Pliny mentions among other writing materials, common at that time in Greece, “plumbea volumina” – lead rolls. And on the island of Rhodes archaeologists had found such a roll. Thickness of the lead sheet was only a third of a millimeter, so he folded easily enough. The lead was recorded prayers and incantations, is lowered into the grave with the dead person. The longest known texts written in the lead – epic poem Hesiod “Works and days”. As on palm leaf, and the lead, the letters drew a sharp metal instrument, occasionally eating and ink.

The main material for writing in ancient times served as papyrus, parchment, and wooden sticks. Wood has been used for letters Egyptians and Greeks took it from the Phoenicians along with the alphabet. Laws salt (VI century BC) were recorded on the cypress boards. The German word buch and English book suggests that the books once wrote on beech planks. And in Rome tablets – tabulae, tabellae cerae – were used very widely. Their painted in white color (by the way, the word “album” – “Album” and originally meant: “white Board”) or plastered thin layer, so it was easier to write, read, and rinse well written. However, the most common way was waxing boards: so that the wax does not erase text, the middle was viscerale and poured yellow or black wax that was protsarapyvaniem text. On a black background, he stood out clearly. Metal tool for scratching called style – hence the modern word “style”, “stylus”. One end of the style was pointed, and the other was a likeness of a spatula, which overwrote unnecessary.

Waxed tablets used for school exercises, business records, drafts, letters. After reading written, easy to erase and then write a reply message. If one signs were for entire text is too low, the plates of the same format was drilled holes and tied the plates into the book – code (caudex means the tree). The code consists of two boards, the Greeks called diptycha, and the Romans duplices; from three tablets – triptycha and triplices; from more – poliptycha. When compiling code Vasili only the inner side of extreme boards. Could something like a modern cover. The outer side was decorated with gold and ivory inlay, while poorer people just take their names.

With the invention of the code ancient book for the first time received a form similar to the present. And when the codes have to be of parchment sheets, and emerged just such a book, what we used to see.

Despite the fact that the Egyptians long maintained a monopoly of the manufacture of papyrus, the Romans eventually started his own papyrus factory. Generally, it should be noted that in Ancient Rome and Ancient Greece book publishing was delivered perfectly: there was a lot of public libraries, emperors and noble patricians had a private library, numbering up to 20-30 thousand volumes. Bookstores met even in the most remote provincial towns. When large shops worked many scribes, with the help of which any man might make his work and even (rarely though) to receive a fee.

In Greece writing on papyrus started a few decades later than in Ancient Rome only in the Tenth century BC. Moreover, in schools, accounting and for all kinds of annotations usually used wax tablets. They had the advantage of multiple use: the wax was melted and to put the new text. In addition, production of papyrus in Greece was not comparable to the Roman, so papyrus for the Greeks was still expensive. Linking these clay tablets with printed texts can also be considered a fact of the birth of the first ancient books of Hellas.

In ancient times book significantly changed its appearance. According to several sources, book scrolls (according to the Egyptian sample) in Greece rolled up already in the fifth century BC, but until our time has remained little more recent, Dating from IV century BC.

In 1902, as we have noted earlier, in the Egyptian Abusive, on an ancient cemetery near the mummies of deceased Greek, was found in the form of a scroll fragment of a poem Timotheus “Persians”. This ancient Greek book refers to the period 450-360 years BC. This scroll is the oldest extant Greek books. Its external appearance is still very archaic and primitive. Finally, the elements of ancient Greek book scrolls were formed in the Hellenistic age – to the IV-III centuries BC.

The ancient Greeks called the roll of glued sheets of papyrus “tomos”Scroll of glued sheets of papyrus (usually not more than twenty) in Greek called “tomos” (this is familiar to us the word “volume”)and the Latin for “scapus”. If the text does not fit in one volume, it was otkleivanii a few pages further on. However, the antique scrolls did not reach excessive in length and rarely exceeded 10 meters. Scroll normal size collapsed was a cylinder with diameter of 5-6 inches, so keep it in his hand was quite convenient. The height of the scroll was usually 20-30 centimeters. However, the known scroll height 37 cm (it is, in particular, about the instance of the tragedies of Euripides).

There were miniature edition – for example, related to the II century BC the collection of epigrams the female gender. The height of this scroll is only 5 centimeters. Roman statesman and orator mark Cicero Cicero claimed to have seen the text of all twenty-four of the songs of “the Iliad”, rewritten in such a thin parchment that whole scroll allegedly captured in a nut shell.

The text wrote columns, the height of which was taken from 2/3 to 5/6 height of the scroll (apparently, was thrust ancient calligraphers to the “Golden section”). The title was placed not at the beginning and at the end of the scroll to protect from Erasure when reading (because mostly wore out the beginning of the scroll). Of course, for the reader it was not too comfortable, so the scroll attached another parchment tape with a reduced header (“titulus”), or wrote out the title on the back side of the scroll.

Ancient books in the form of scrolls of papyrus – material is fragile and fragile is kept short, in rare cases and under the most careful supervision is not more than two hundred years. High humidity, direct sunlight, insects are rapidly destroyed early Greek books. To extend the life of the scroll, it smeared cedar oil and kept in parchment case (…paenula” or “membrana”). The rich and wealthy Greeks bibliophiles painted cases purple and used special boxes (“scrinium” or “capsa”), in which were laid by 5, 10 or 15 scrolls.

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