|1. Hebrew Bible, Genesis, 16 (9th cent. BCE - 3rd cent. BCE)
|2. Strabo, Geography, 13.1.54 (1st cent. BCE - 1st cent. BCE)
| 13.1.54. From Scepsis came the Socratic philosophers Erastus and Coriscus and Neleus the son of Coriscus, this last a man who not only was a pupil of Aristotle and Theophrastus, but also inherited the library of Theophrastus, which included that of Aristotle. At any rate, Aristotle bequeathed his own library to Theophrastus, to whom he also left his school; and he is the first man, so far as I know, to have collected books and to have taught the kings in Egypt how to arrange a library. Theophrastus bequeathed it to Neleus; and Neleus took it to Scepsis and bequeathed it to his heirs, ordinary people, who kept the books locked up and not even carefully stored. But when they heard bow zealously the Attalic kings to whom the city was subject were searching for books to build up the library in Pergamum, they hid their books underground in a kind of trench. But much later, when the books had been damaged by moisture and moths, their descendants sold them to Apellicon of Teos for a large sum of money, both the books of Aristotle and those of Theophrastus. But Apellicon was a bibliophile rather than a philosopher; and therefore, seeking a restoration of the parts that had been eaten through, he made new copies of the text, filling up the gaps incorrectly, and published the books full of errors. The result was that the earlier school of Peripatetics who came after Theophrastus had no books at all, with the exception of only a few, mostly exoteric works, and were therefore able to philosophize about nothing in a practical way, but only to talk bombast about commonplace propositions, whereas the later school, from the time the books in question appeared, though better able to philosophise and Aristotelise, were forced to call most of their statements probabilities, because of the large number of errors. Rome also contributed much to this; for, immediately after the death of Apellicon, Sulla, who had captured Athens, carried off Apellicon's library to Rome, where Tyrannion the grammarian, who was fond of Aristotle, got it in his hands by paying court to the librarian, as did also certain booksellers who used bad copyists and would not collate the texts — a thing that also takes place in the case of the other books that are copied for selling, both here and at Alexandria. However, this is enough about these men.
|3. Josephus Flavius, Jewish Antiquities, 12.11-12.16 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)
| 12.11. 1. When Alexander had reigned twelve years, and after him Ptolemy Soter forty years, Philadelphus then took the kingdom of Egypt, and held it forty years within one. He procured the law to be interpreted, and set free those that were come from Jerusalem into Egypt, and were in slavery there, who were a hundred and twenty thousand. The occasion was this: 12.11. 14. So the king rejoiced when he saw that his design of this nature was brought to perfection, to so great advantage; and he was chiefly delighted with hearing the Laws read to him; and was astonished at the deep meaning and wisdom of the legislator. And he began to discourse with Demetrius, “How it came to pass, that when this legislation was so wonderful, no one, either of the poets or of the historians, had made mention of it.” 12.12. Demetrius Phalerius, who was library keeper to the king, was now endeavoring, if it were possible, to gather together all the books that were in the habitable earth, and buying whatsoever was any where valuable, or agreeable to the king’s inclination, (who was very earnestly set upon collecting of books,) to which inclination of his Demetrius was zealously subservient. 12.12. an argument for which you have in this, that whereas the Jews do not make use of oil prepared by foreigners, they receive a certain sum of money from the proper officers belonging to their exercises as the value of that oil; which money, when the people of Antioch would have deprived them of, in the last war, Mucianus, who was then president of Syria, preserved it to them. 12.13. And when once Ptolemy asked him how many ten thousands of books he had collected, he replied, that he had already about twenty times ten thousand; but that, in a little time, he should have fifty times ten thousand. 12.13. for while he was at war with Ptolemy Philopater, and with his son, who was called Epiphanes, it fell out that these nations were equally sufferers, both when he was beaten, and when he beat the others: so that they were very like to a ship in a storm, which is tossed by the waves on both sides; and just thus were they in their situation in the middle between Antiochus’s prosperity and its change to adversity. 12.14. But he said he had been informed that there were many books of laws among the Jews worthy of inquiring after, and worthy of the king’s library, but which, being written in characters and in a dialect of their own, will cause no small pains in getting them translated into the Greek tongue; 12.14. And, in the first place, we have determined, on account of their piety towards God, to bestow on them, as a pension, for their sacrifices of animals that are fit for sacrifice, for wine, and oil, and frankincense, the value of twenty thousand pieces of silver, and [six] sacred artabrae of fine flour, with one thousand four hundred and sixty medimni of wheat, and three hundred and seventy-five medimni of salt. 12.15. that the character in which they are written seems to be like to that which is the proper character of the Syrians, and that its sound, when pronounced, is like theirs also; and that this sound appears to be peculiar to themselves. Wherefore he said that nothing hindered why they might not get those books to be translated also; for while nothing is wanting that is necessary for that purpose, we may have their books also in this library. 12.15. for I am persuaded that they will be well-disposed guardians of our possessions, because of their piety towards God, and because I know that my predecessors have borne witness to them, that they are faithful, and with alacrity do what they are desired to do. I will, therefore, though it be a laborious work, that thou remove these Jews, under a promise, that they shall be permitted to use their own laws. 12.16. So the king thought that Demetrius was very zealous to procure him abundance of books, and that he suggested what was exceeding proper for him to do; and therefore he wrote to the Jewish high priest, that he should act accordingly. 12.16. 2. There was now one Joseph, young in age, but of great reputation among the people of Jerusalem, for gravity, prudence, and justice. His father’s name was Tobias; and his mother was the sister of Onias the high priest, who informed him of the coming of the ambassador; for he was then sojourning at a village named Phicol, where he was born.
|4. Lucan, Pharsalia, 10.488 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)
|5. Pliny The Elder, Natural History, 5.62 (1st cent. CE - 1st cent. CE)
|6. Plutarch, Julius Caesar, 49 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)
|7. Suetonius, Domitianus, 20 (1st cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)
|8. Cassius Dio, Roman History, 42.38.2 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)
| 42.38.2. After this many battles occurred between the two forces both by day and by night, and many places were set on fire, with the result that the docks and the storehouses of grain among other buildings were burned, and also the library, whose volumes, it is said, were of the greatest number and excellence. Achillas was in possession of the mainland, with the exception of what Caesar had walled off, and the latter of the sea except the harbour.
|9. Gellius, Attic Nights, 7.17.3 (2nd cent. CE - 2nd cent. CE)
|10. Tertullian, Apology, 18.8 (2nd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)
|11. Athanasius, Life of Anthony, 80, 72 (3rd cent. CE - 4th cent. CE)
|12. Diogenes Laertius, Lives of The Philosophers, 5.76, 5.78-5.79, 5.84-5.85 (3rd cent. CE - 3rd cent. CE)
| 5.76. For he was one of Conon's household servants, according to Favorinus in the first book of his Memorabilia; yet Lamia, with whom he lived, was a citizen of noble family, as Favorinus also states in his first book. Further, in his second book Favorinus alleges that he suffered violence from Cleon, while Didymus in his Table-talk relates how a certain courtesan nicknamed him Charito-Blepharos (having the eyelids of the Graces), and Lampito (of shining eyes). He is said to have lost his sight when in Alexandria and to have recovered it by the gift of Sarapis; whereupon he composed the paeans which are sung to this day.For all his popularity with the Athenians he nevertheless suffered eclipse through all-devouring envy. 5.78. And in the official list the year in which he was archon was styled the year of lawlessness, according to this same Favorinus.Hermippus tells us that upon the death of Casander, being in fear of Antigonus, he fled to Ptolemy Soter. There he spent a considerable time and advised Ptolemy, among other things, to invest with sovereign power his children by Eurydice. To this Ptolemy would not agree, but bestowed the diadem on his son by Berenice, who, after Ptolemy's death, thought fit to detain Demetrius as a prisoner in the country until some decision should be taken concerning him. There he lived in great dejection, and somehow, in his sleep, received an asp-bite on the hand which proved fatal. He is buried in the district of Busiris near Diospolis. 5.79. Here are my lines upon him:A venomous asp was the death of the wise Demetrius, an asp withal of sticky venom, darting, not light from its eyes, but black death.Heraclides in his epitome of Sotion's Successions of Philosophers says that Ptolemy himself wished to transmit the kingdom to Philadelphus, but that Demetrius tried to dissuade him, saying, If you give it to another, you will not have it yourself. At the time when he was being continually attacked in Athens, Meder, the Comic poet, as I have also learnt, was very nearly brought to trial for no other cause than that he was a friend of Demetrius. However, Telesphorus, the nephew of Demetrius, begged him off.In the number of his works and their total length in lines he has surpassed almost all contemporary Peripatetics. For in learning and versatility he ha 5.84. (8) the sophist who lived at Alexandria, author of handbooks of rhetoric; (9) a grammarian of Adramyttium, surnamed Ixion because he was thought to be unjust to Hera; (10) a grammarian of Cyrene, surnamed Wine-jar, an eminent man; (11) a native of Scepsis, a man of wealth and good birth, ardently devoted to learning; he was also the means of bringing his countryman Metrodorus into prominence; (12) a grammarian of Erythrae enrolled as a citizen of Lemnos; (13) a Bithynian, son of Diphilus the Stoic and pupil of Panaetius of Rhodes; 5.85. (14) a rhetorician of Smyrna. The foregoing were prose authors. of poets bearing this name the first belonged to the Old Comedy; the second was an epic poet whose lines to the envious alone survive:While he lives they scorn the man whom they regret when he is gone; yet, some day, for the honour of his tomb and lifeless image, contention seizes cities and the people set up strife;the third of Tarsus, writer of satires; the fourth, a writer of lampoons, in a bitter style; the fifth, a sculptor mentioned by Polemo; the sixth, of Erythrae, a versatile man, who also wrote historical and rhetorical works.
|13. Ammianus Marcellinus, History, 22.12, 22.16.15, 22.16.17-22.16.19 (4th cent. CE - 4th cent. CE)
| 22.16.15. But Alexandria herself, not gradually (like other cities), but at her very origin, attained her wide extent; and for a long time she was greviously troubled by internal dissensions, until at last, many years later under the rule of Aurelian, In A.D. 272. the quarrels of the citizens turned into deadly strife; then her by Caesar has been greatly exaggerated. Strabo, who visited Alexandria twenty-three years later, found the Museum intact. The Bruchion library was destroyed A.D. 272; the Serapeum in A.D. 391. 400,000 volumes were destroyed in the Alexandrine war. See especially J. W. White, The Scholia on the Aves of Aristophanes, Introd. walls were destroyed and she lost the greater part of the district called Bruchion, This included at least a fourth part of the city, and con- tained the royal palace. which had long been the abode of distinguished men. 22.16.17. And although very many writers flourished in early times as well as these whom I have mentioned, nevertheless not even to-day is learning of various kinds silent in that same city; for the teachers of the arts show signs of life, and the geometrical measuring-rod brings to light whatever is concealed, the stream of music is not yet wholly dried up among them, harmony is not reduced to silence, the consideration of the motion of the universe and of the stars is still kept warm with some, few though they be, and there are others who are skilled in numbers; and a few besides are versed in the knowledge which reveals the course of the fates. 22.16.18. Moreover, studies in the art of healing, whose help is often required in this life of ours, which is neither frugal nor sober, are so enriched from day to day, that although a physician’s work itself indicates it, yet in place of every testimony it is enough to commend his knowledge of the art, if he has said that he was trained at Alexandria. 22.16.19. But enough on this point. If one wishes to investigate with attentive mind the many publications on the knowledge of the divine, and the origin of divination, he will find that learning of this kind has been spread abroad from Egypt through the whole world
|14. Orosius Paulus, Historiae Adversum Paganos, 6.15.31 (4th cent. CE - 5th cent. CE)