Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

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(710 words)

Today the couriers of the early modern period are frequently confused with post riders (Mail) or messengers. All three – couriers, post riders, and messengers – had to overcome distances and bring news under the dictates of speed (Quickness)

The literature on the history of communication makes a clear distinction between mail and the courier system [6]. A courier was not an employee of a messenger service or a postal organization, but was instead “a person dispatched to distant places to convey complex oral or written news regarding important matters” [1], in other words a…

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Behringer, Wolfgang, “Courier”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 01 October 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_022957>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20170206

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