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Scribal Repertoires in Egypt from the New Kingdom to the Early Islamic Period$
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Jennifer Cromwell and Eitan Grossman

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780198768104

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198768104.001.0001

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A Scribe, His Bag of Tricks, What It Was For, and Where He Got It

A Scribe, His Bag of Tricks, What It Was For, and Where He Got It

Scribal Registers and Techniques in Bodl.Mss.Copt.(P) a.2 & 3

Chapter:
(p.296) 14 A Scribe, His Bag of Tricks, What It Was For, and Where He Got It
Source:
Scribal Repertoires in Egypt from the New Kingdom to the Early Islamic Period
Author(s):

Tonio Sebastian Richter

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780198768104.003.0014

In this chapter, two tenth-century CE Coptic alchemical papyri will be scrutinized palaeographically and analysed in their capacity as artefacts. The analysis aims at understanding the ways and means through which two alchemical texts were embodied in manuscripts by one individual scribe, presumably an alchemical practitioner himself, and it reveals a striking multitude of different scripts and codes applied by him. Attempts will be made to account for the regularities by which his choice of each of those codes was triggered. Comparing single components of this scribe’s repertoire with diachronic and synchronic parallels, an overall picture of his intellectual setting and educational background will be outlined.

Keywords:   Coptic palaeography, manuscript materiality, cryptography, Coptic alchemy, papyri

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