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Blood of the ProvincesThe Roman Auxilia and the Making of Provincial Society from Augustus to the Severans$
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Ian Haynes

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199655342

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199655342.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 19 October 2021

The Written Word

The Written Word

(p.312) (p.313) Chapter 20 The Written Word
Blood of the Provinces

Ian Haynes

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the role of the written word in provincial society through the experience of the auxilia. It begins with a particularly dramatic case study, an after action report on the praesidium of Patkoua on the road between Coptos and Myos Hormos. Most of the examples offered are more mundane, albeit no less indicative of the importance of writing to the soldier and his world. While it is clear that Latin enjoyed a particular significance, it was not, as has often been argued, the official language of the Roman army. The chapter shows how the military offered extra incentives to use the written word, and how the soldiers may in turn have promoted use of the written word in wider society.

Keywords:   El-Mweih, literacy, literate modes of communication, pay receipts, leave permits, military documentation, personal dedications

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