Friday, November 03, 2006

Egyptian papyri arrive on campus
Ancient papyri from an Egyptian excavation conducted for the University of California, Berkeley, more than a century ago have arrived on campus after a circuitous journey worthy of a mystery novel, campus officials announced at a news conference today (Wednesday, Nov. 1).

Following their discovery in Egypt, the papyri were sent to a German conservator, hidden in Berlin during World War II, concealed from East Germans intent on seizing them, smuggled to West Berlin and stashed in a shop, and stored in Switzerland. One roll was shipped to Boston in the 1930s, but the others remained hidden until the 1960s, when they, too, were shipped to Boston. They remained there until just a few weeks ago.

It's a good article, but it doesn't exactly say whether they've already been translated and published yet. If not, it's a significant. . . .discovery? Anything from the Middle Kingdom and earlier is significant especially if it deals with non-royal matters.