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A: Athina, Greece

The Beginnings of the Book Trade in Greece

Circa 450 BCE

Herma portraying Eupolis recovered in 1988 (National Archaeological Museum, Athens)

"It is not until the middle of the fifth century or a little later that a book trade can be said to have existed in Greece: we find references to a part of the Athenian market where books can be bought  (Eupolis fr. 327 K.-A.) and Socrates is represented by Plato as saying in his Apology 26D that anyone can buy Anaxagorus' works for a drachma in the orchestra. All details of the trade, however, remain unknown" (Reynolds & Wilson, Scribes and Scholars, 3rd. ed. [1991] 2).

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