Mixed Inks in Two Coptic Documents from the Hermopolite Region Relating to Lease Business


In this article, we present two Coptic papyri, P 11934 and P 11935 from the Berlin collection excavated in Ashmunein (ancient Hermopolis) by Otto Rubensohn in 1906. We employ a multi-disciplinary approach that takes into account both their materiality – writing support as well as ink – and their content, as has become ‘best practice’. Material aspects of written documents have traditionally been the purview of papyrologists. Recently developed methods of scientific analysis generate sets of archaeometric data with the potential to improve understanding of the materiality of ancient document production, as well as to yield new evidence for genuine papyrological research questions. To achieve this, a large corpus of comparative data needs to be built. Our contribution offers a first step in this direction. We aim at presenting the papyri, which were selected because of the ink corrosion during conservation work at the Berlin collection, in a format that is exhaustive both for material and textual aspects. The inks from both papyri were analysed using a combination of techniques, contributing to our better understanding of the development of ink technology in Late Antiquity.

The research for this article was partly funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG, German Research Foundation) under Germany's Excellence Strategy – EXC 2176 'Understanding Written Artefacts: Material, Interaction and Transmission in Manuscript Cultures', project no. 390893796. The research was conducted within the scope of the Centre for the Study of Manuscript Cultures (CSMC) at Universität Hamburg in collaboration with the Bundesanstalt für Materialforschung und -prüfung (BAM).

DOI https://doi.org/10.48631/pylon.2023.3.98234
Metadata Access https://www.fdr.uni-hamburg.de/oai2d?verb=GetRecord&metadataPrefix=oai_datacite&identifier=oai:fdr.uni-hamburg.de:13096
Creator Berkes, Lajos ORCID logo; Nehring, Grzegorz; Bonnerot, Olivier ORCID logo; Krutzsch, Myriam; Rabin, Ira ORCID logo; Richter, Tonio Sebastian
Publisher Universität Hamburg
Publication Year 2023
Rights Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International; Open Access; https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/legalcode; info:eu-repo/semantics/openAccess
OpenAccess true
Language English
Resource Type Journal article; Text
Discipline Humanities