18 April 2005


Big news in the world of classical literature. A collection of 400,000 document fragments from the trash-heaps of an ancient town in central Egypt can finally be translated. All of the source languages are known (Greek, Latin, Hebrew, Coptic, Syriac, Aramaic, Arabic, Nubian, and early Persian), but the papyri were unreadable from decay. Oxford University scientists have now used infra-red imaging to successfully reveal the text. Expect new material from Sophocles, Lucian, Euripides, Parthenios, Hesiod, and Archilochos. Holy crap.

Check out more info in Wikipedia's entry for the city of Oxyrhynchus (and marvel that it's already been updated with the news article).

And definitely spend a few hours or months combing through the wonderful resource of classical texts over at The Perseus Project. It was an invaluable complement to the Pharr book [Amazon] when I was learning (yet have now forgotten) Homeric Greek.

[ posted by sstrader on 18 April 2005 at 7:42:56 AM in Language & Literature ]