Alciphron. Epistolae. 1715.


Alciphron, who lived in the second century A.D., was an Athenian rhetorician believed to have been a contemporary and imitator of the sophist and satirist Lucian. He authored a collection of fictitious letters of which 124 survive, with 6 in fragmentary form. They are written in Attic dialect and are considered models of style. The imaginary writers are presented as ordinary residents of Athens: country people, fishermen, courtesans, and craftsmen, who express their sentiments and opinions on familiar subjects in elegant language. Some contain valuable information that Alciphron apparently derived from writers of the Greek New Comedy, such as Menander. [EB]

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