Libraries in the Ancient World

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Yale University Press, 2001 - History - 177 pages
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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 organising 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 eduction 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 differnt types of users (royalty, scholars, religious figures) and different kinds of 'books' (tablets, scrolls, co

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Libraries in the ancient world

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

To find an English-language work comparable to this one in content, size, and scope, one has to go all the way back to James Westfall Thompson's 1940 Ancient Libraries (Univ. of California. o.p ... Read full review

Review: Libraries in the Ancient World

User Review  - Nick - Goodreads

Nice little book. Should cover China/Asia too, but does a great job at succinctly outlining the development and makeup of libraries in the ancient world. The author includes a bit of back-story-history, some humour, and technical details where available. Grand. Read full review

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About the author (2001)

Lionel Casson, professor emeritus of classics at New York University has written many books on ancient maritime history and ancient travel.

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