Complete Letters, Paperback
5 out of 5 (1 rating)


'Gaius Pliny sends greetings to his friend Septicius Clarus...' In these letters to his friends and relations, Pliny provides a fascinating insight into Roman life in the period 97 to 112 AD. Part autobiography, part social history, they document the career and interests of a senator and leading imperial official whose friends include the historians Tacitus and Suetonius.

Pliny's letters cover a wide range of topics, from the contemporary political scene to domestic affairs, the educational system, the rituals and conduct of Roman religion, the treatment of slaves, and the phenomena of nature.

He describes in vivid detail the eruption of Vesuvius which killed his uncle, and the daily routines of a well-to-do Roman in the courts, and at leisure, enjoying rural pursuits at his country estates.

In the introduction to his lively and sympathetic new translation, P.G.

Walsh examines the background to these often intimate and enthralling letters.

ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432 pages, one map; one house plan
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Literary essays
  • ISBN: 9780199538942



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Pliny saw himself as a writer and you can see that in his carefully thought-out pleasing phrases and sentences. This was a delightful read, with much that is quotalbe. You have to wait until the end of the book to see the breezy Roman way he makes the decision to execute a couple of Christian women. Kind of makes you cringe. Interestingly, Pliny pleads his ignorance about Christians but that doesn't stop him from executing them. Maybe with our bigoted Press and world opinion turning negative toward Christians it could happen today.

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