Monday, January 19, 2015
A Sampling of Egyptian Texts from the Leiden Papyrological Institute
From the website:
Most texts from
the collection of the Leiden Papyrological Institute are in Greek, but
some are written in Egyptian (Hieratic, Demotic, Coptic) and in Latin.
Take a look at examples of non-Greek writing.
pottery, but also limestone shards) formed a cheap alternative for
papyrus. Pots were found in every household. Pots also break easily. The
shards were then recycled as writing material. Tax receipts are
generally written on ostraca.
Written proof of a
loan has always been important. Take a look at examples of loans of
grain, wine, and money, and a loan on mortgage.
documents are official. Examples of a registration of birth, an
arrangement for overdue instalments and a receipt for payment in money
The meaning of
many letters escapes us, when the context is lacking, as is the case in
these two private letters on papyrus, from the third and sixth centuries
consisted of desert. Wood was a relatively rare and expensive commodity.
Wooden mummy labels were often shaped like tomb stones and hung around
the neck of a mummy with rope. They mostly mention the name and age of
people loved to read the authors we now call classic. Texts were copied
on demand. The handwriting of literary papyri is neater and more regular
than documentary writing. Some of our literary texts on papyrus: Homer,
Hesiod, Plato, Euripides and a fable.
Wax tablets are
little planks hollowed out on two sides, and then filled with wax. A
pointed stilus was used to write letters in the wax surface. The flat
back end of the stilus was then applied to erase the text, rendering
wax tablets the ideal notebook for children at school.
All papyri, each
in their own way, provide information on aspects of life in antiquity.
For example the complaint of a private individual about the theft of
dresses, and another text on a visit of Emperor Hadrian.
and superstition were closely related in Antiquity. In this section we
combined a drawing of a temple, a list of gods, magic, horoscopes,
amulets and Christian texts.
Posted by Charles L. Echols at 11:18 AM