In the past, young runners who could run fast were chosen to become messengers. In ancient Greece, these runners were called Hemerodromes. They were often able to cover long distances in relatively short time. The most famous of these Hemerodromes was perhaps the Greek messenger called Marathon. As most people know, he was the one who covered the distance to Athens in such a short time that he collapsed shortly after delivering his message.
Ever since the written word was used as a form of communication, these messengers were relied upon to carry both good news and bad news. These messengers were in fact the forebearers of the modern postman though one will probably think of them as atheletes and postman rolled into one! They often bore light arms with only bare essentials for survival. Many of them also had to overcome hardships and dangers along the way. These messengers paved the way for the birth of the postal service that we know of today.