“You also know that I’m mindful of you: why weren’t you mindful of us too, but forgetful?”. So an ancient Egyptian from Kellis wrote to his sister, in the early 4th century AD. Feelings and emotions rarely surface in the private letters on papyrus from Hellenistic and Roman Egypt, mainly because they could be easily read by third parties and did not grant sufficient privacy. Nevertheless, it is possible to glimpse some emotional aspects from the survived texts: love, fear, anger, distress, and so on, some of which have already been studied. However, memory is still unexplored topic: through the discussion of the extant sources, it will be shown that in several cases memory - in the perception of the ancient letter writers - was felt as a timeless and endless dimension, which connected the correspondents’ minds, thoughts, and souls, by means of the written word but at the same time overcoming it in an emotional impulse, which is perhaps the liveliest and most moving representation of ancient yet present feelings.

“Perché non ti ricordi di noi anche tu?” Aspetti emozionali della memoria nell’Egitto Greco-Romano nella testimonianza delle lettere private nei papiri Greci / Reggiani, Nicola. - In: MEDICINA NEI SECOLI. - ISSN 2531-7288. - 34:1(2022), pp. 77-96.

“Perché non ti ricordi di noi anche tu?” Aspetti emozionali della memoria nell’Egitto Greco-Romano nella testimonianza delle lettere private nei papiri Greci

Reggiani Nicola
2022-01-01

Abstract

“You also know that I’m mindful of you: why weren’t you mindful of us too, but forgetful?”. So an ancient Egyptian from Kellis wrote to his sister, in the early 4th century AD. Feelings and emotions rarely surface in the private letters on papyrus from Hellenistic and Roman Egypt, mainly because they could be easily read by third parties and did not grant sufficient privacy. Nevertheless, it is possible to glimpse some emotional aspects from the survived texts: love, fear, anger, distress, and so on, some of which have already been studied. However, memory is still unexplored topic: through the discussion of the extant sources, it will be shown that in several cases memory - in the perception of the ancient letter writers - was felt as a timeless and endless dimension, which connected the correspondents’ minds, thoughts, and souls, by means of the written word but at the same time overcoming it in an emotional impulse, which is perhaps the liveliest and most moving representation of ancient yet present feelings.
“Perché non ti ricordi di noi anche tu?” Aspetti emozionali della memoria nell’Egitto Greco-Romano nella testimonianza delle lettere private nei papiri Greci / Reggiani, Nicola. - In: MEDICINA NEI SECOLI. - ISSN 2531-7288. - 34:1(2022), pp. 77-96.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11381/2933084
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