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Egyptian Book of the Dead fragments

Scope & content

A18076: Six (6) fragments on papyrus in large archaistic hieratic characters or cursive hieroglyphs arranged in vertical columns in black ink with yellow ochre and red border lines. The text is from Chapter 17 of the Book of the Dead. These pieces date from perhaps the Nineteenth Dynasty, 1295 BCE – 1186 BCE. The name of the deceased is not preserved in these fragments. The provenance of these fragments is unknown.

A18077: One (1) fragment on papyrus in hieratic characters in black and red ink with 2 incomplete lines of text from the beginning of Chapter 72 of the Book of the Dead. The date of the fragment is tentatively identified as from the Third Intermediate Period, 1069 BCE - 650 BCE. The name Khamhor is in line 1 of the fragment. The provenance of this fragment is unknown.

A18901(1): Three (3) fragments on mummy bandage inscribed with hieratic characters from the same mummy and created by the same scribe all in black ink. The name of the deceased was Pede-imhotep, and he was the son of a woman called Tahut. They date from perhaps the late Persian-Ptolemaic period, 330 BCE – 30 BCE. They were a gift from the estate of Rev. Lysander Dickerman in 1903 along with A18901(2). It is unknown how Dickerman acquired them.

The first fragment shows a scene along the top from Chapter 17 of the Book of the Dead below which is ten lines of text also from Chapter 17.

The second fragment contains the closing text of Chapter 108 and the beginning text of Chapter 109.

The third fragment contains 6 lines of text from the beginning of Chapter 85. On the left side is a drawing of a swallow perched on a mound which is the vignette of Chapter 86.

A18901(2): Two (2) fragments on mummy bandage inscribed in hieratic characters all in black ink. These two fragments are not from the same mummy. Both were a gift from the estate of Rev. Lysander Dickerman in 1903 along with A18901(1). It is unknown how Dickerman acquired them.

The first fragment has at the top right a vignette from Chapter 93. The text underneath is in 2 columns with a total of 13 lines which form a continous text for the beginning of Chapter 136A. The name of the deceased is not preserved but rather referred to only with the generic term “this Osiris.” This dates to probably the Ptolemaic period, 330 BCE – 30 BCE

The second fragment contains a scene along the top which is a vignette from Chapter 1. The text is 3 columns of 7 lines each and is a version of Chapter 1. The name of the deceased is Shameky. Based on the handwriting - it dates from roughly Ptolemaic-Roman times, 100 BCE to 200 CE.

Bibliography: Caminos, Richard A. "Fragments of the 'Book of the Dead' on Linen and Papyrus" The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology, Vol. 56 (Aug., 1970) pp. 117-131.