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Off to Michigan to meet the beautiful Sixty!!!

November 3, 2011

Will fly to Michigan next week, to conduct autopsy on the 60 pages of P46 under the safekeeping of the University of Michigan (UoM). As is widely known among textual critics, there was a professional rivalry of sort between UoM (led by Prof Henry Sanders et al) and Mr the Chester Beatty (as well as Sir Frederic Kenyon), in terms of acquiring papyrus manuscripts from Egyptian antiquities dealers in Cairo in the 1930’s. The first twenty pages (10 leaves) were acquired by Beatty but the UoM acquired the next 60 pages (30 leaves). But after Sanders published an expanded transcription of P46 (Kenyon earlier published a transcription of the ten Beatty leaves), Kenyon, in a book review, announced that Mr Beatty acquired 92 pages (46 leaves)  more and eventually published the most complete transcription (perhaps making this the official editio princeps). And as they say, the rest is history.

My trip aims to personally look more closely at the “materiality” of this very important manuscript, and not only its text. During my Dublin trip last year, I found some very interesting details previously undocumented; I hope to find some more in this trip (but of course, I’m crossing my fingers). I might find some more variants caused by the texture, and a few more stuffs.

At any rate, I am generally excited about the prospects of finding more about this manuscript that has captured my attention for the last seven years!

From → Research Trips

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