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Love letter
(891 words)

The text genre of the love letter (Latin littera amatoria, German Liebesbrief, French lettre d'amour or billet doux; the latter also entering German and English as a loanword from the 18th century) has existed as both an everyday text and a literary genre since Greco-Roman antiquity. The most famous literary work, Ovid's collection of fictional love letters by renowned heroines of Greek mythology (Latin Heroides) was a lasting influence on the European tradition of the artistic love letter [4]. Some medieval manuscripts contain rhymed love letters as an artistic form [15]. In 17t…

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Gestrich, Andreas, “Love letter”, 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 April 2023 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_023405>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20190801

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