Object of the Month

Here, another special text from the collection will be introduced every month.

Oracular Question

SB XVIII 14043 (P. 21712) Help in the marriage crisis? In ancient Egypt this could be sought in ancient Egypt from the gods who were asked for help with oracular questions. A beautiful and almost complete example of such a… Read More

Heroes turned human – the Ninus-Novel

P. 6926 R Acts of a love story – these two papyrus fragments allow us to gain an insight into two different scenes of an ancient Greek novel, the oldest survivor of its genre. It is not possible anymore to… Read More

Administrative Book of the Temple of Soknopaios

BGU I 1 + 337 = Chrest.Wilck. 92 = P.Louvre I 4 Kol. I-II (P. 6826 + 7412) Anyone annoyed today about the troubles of accounting can be reassured, because in antiquity, it was also necessary to keep a detailed… Read More

Marriage Contract

BGU III 717 (P. 7976) “Money or Love?” – Even in ancient times, the act of marriage was one of the most important events in human life. Sometimes the conditions of a marriage were regulated by a marriage contract. A… Read More

Release of a Convict

P. 11532 (SB I 4639) In some ways it may be surprising that this document of the Greco-Roman period is one of the most discussed papyri in Berlin. The content of this piece, bought by Friedrich Zucker in Giza 1909,… Read More

Tax Receipt for a Sacrificial Calf

BGU III 718 (P. 7882) „Small but nice“ – that could probably be said about this papyrus. Because this small and unimpressive tax receipt has to offer some special surprises that only catch the eye when you look closely. The… Read More

Mummy label of a very old woman

SB I 1194 (ÄM 11846) This small, rectangular wooden tablet is the mummy label of a 96-year-old woman named Senpetermuthes, who lived in Egypt in the 3rd century AD. The mummy label contains the same text in Greek language on… Read More

Note of Debt

P. 8977 (SPP III2.2 129) The exhibit gives an example, how surviving textual witnesses refer to daily and common procedures and nonetheless include peculiarities which bring up questions unsolved. Its provenance, the Nubian Gebelên, was guaranteed by the notation of… Read More

Mathematical Tasks

P. 11529 V The calculation of surface areas, diagonals and volumes did not only cause problems at school today, because mathematics was an important part of teaching even in ancient times. Therefore, tasks with accompanying solutions were always welcome. For… Read More

Speeches of the Emperor Claudius

BGU II 611 (P. 8507) Watching an emperor at work: On this papyrus there is a copy of two senatorial speeches of the Roman Emperor Claudius, which deal with reforms of the Roman law courts. Claudius, who was born on… Read More