The aim of this study is to place the inscriptions found on Athenian vases in the context of the early development of writing in Athens from the time of the invention of the alphabet in the eighth century BC to the early fourth, when the local alphabet had been supplanted by the common Ionic script. Other sources include the inscriptions on stone, both public and private, scratched inscriptions on pottery, among them the political ostraca, and some inscriptions on
lead tablets; they are, however, insufficient to give a full picture of actual writing practices in a period from which we have no papyri. Although the vase inscriptions are brief, they number in the thousands, and being autographs of the period, they give a more accurate picture of the art of writing
and the state of literacy in the Classical period. This book presents a selection of inscriptions, with many illustrations, that will help students of ancient vase painting to properly appreciate the individuality, writing competence, and level of education of the members of the pottery workshops, and epigraphists to get a better feel for the different styles of the well-known stone inscriptions. Professor Immerwahr has been working for many years on a complete collection
of the inscriptions on Attic pottery, which he hopes will help contribute to a wide-ranging study of aspects of ancient life.
`Rarely may it be said of a work under review that it sets its subject on a new footing from which all subsequent studies in the field must proceed ... This is such a work. Its author deserves congratulation on his achievement in eliciting, from a mass of detailed and complex evidence, gratifying enlightenment in an area hitherto enveloped in a good deal of mist. A study to be acclaimed with gratitude and admiration'.
A. Geoffrey Woodhead, The Classical Review, vol XLI, no 2, 1991.
'It offers a more thorough survey of the development of letter forms painted or scratched on Athenian pottery than has been available to date, and will inevitably be the standard work of reference on this subject.'
Robin Osborne, Antiquaries Journal
'richly documented, generously illustrated, and fitted out with copious indexes...a manual or standard reference work for many years to come...sound and excellent account of the first three and a half centuries of Attic writing'
Ronald S Stroud, American Journal of Archaeology
List of illustrations; list of figures; abbreviations; chart of letter forms on Attic vases; introduction; PART I: A HISTORICAL SURVEY: Eighth-century Attic inscriptions; Inscriptions of the Proto-attic period, 700-620 BC; Characteristics of early Greek writing; The Corinthianizing period, 620-570 BC; The François Vase and its contemporaries; Developed black-figure writing, 550-500 BC; Red-figure and black-figure writing, 530-500 BC; The late
archaic period, 500-480 BC; Early classical: from the Persian wars to the mid-fifth century; Classical: from the mid-fifth century to the early fourth; PART II: A SURVEY OF LETTER-FORMS: Alpha-Sampi; punctuation; long consonants; some conclusions; Appendix 1. The Ionic alphabet in Attica; Appendix 2.
Panathenaic prize Amphorae.
Series: Oxford Monographs on Classical Archaeology
Number Of Pages: 228
Published: 10th May 1990
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 28.5 x 22.5
Weight (kg): 1.07