'Oldest' papyrus is finally decoded

Jun 01, 2006

Greek scientists using modern technology say they have decoded the text of the world's oldest literary papyrus.

The Derveni Papyrus has been in the Archaeological Museum of Thessaloniki since its charred fragments were found in the remains of a funeral pyre in 1962, ekathimerini.com reported Thursday.

Researchers have described the papyrus as a "philosophical treatise based on a poem in the Orphic tradition and dating to the second half of the 5th century B.C."

"It is particularly important to us as it is the oldest (papyrus) bearing Greek text," Apostolos Pierris, director of the Patras Institute of Philosophical Research, said.

Institute experts, along with scientists from Britain's Oxford University and Brigham Young University in the United States, plan to reassemble the papyrus. The researchers told ekathimerini.com it is an invaluable document for the study of ancient Greek religion, philosophy and literary criticism.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: New hadrosaur noses into spotlight

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA HS3 instrument views two dimensions of clouds

47 minutes ago

NASA's Cloud Physics Lidar (CPL) instrument, flying aboard an unmanned Global Hawk aircraft in this summer's Hurricane and Severe Storm Sentinel, or HS3, mission, is studying the changing profile of the atmosphere ...

Recommended for you

New hadrosaur noses into spotlight

Sep 19, 2014

Call it the Jimmy Durante of dinosaurs – a newly discovered hadrosaur with a truly distinctive nasal profile. The new dinosaur, named Rhinorex condrupus by paleontologists from North Carolina State Univer ...

Militants threaten ancient sites in Iraq, Syria

Sep 19, 2014

For more than 5,000 years, numerous civilizations have left their mark on upper Mesopotamia—from Assyrians and Akkadians to Babylonians and Romans. Their ancient, buried cities, palaces and temples packed ...

New branch added to European family tree

Sep 17, 2014

The setting: Europe, about 7,500 years ago. Agriculture was sweeping in from the Near East, bringing early farmers into contact with hunter-gatherers who had already been living in Europe for tens of thousands ...

User comments : 0