Three fragments of papyrus inscribed in black ink on one side with parts of two letters in Coptic.
- Found/Acquired: Egypt
- Height: 9.9 centimetres (top piece)
- Width: 15.6 centimetres
- Height: 8.3 centimetres (lower piece)
- Width: 14.2 centimetres
Inscription CommentFirst letter of 11 lines and second, fragmentary, of 10 lines. Both concerned with complaint against a monk. Perhaps from archive of Pesenthius, bishop of Coptos in c. 598 AD
20 February 2013
Remove from unsuitable frames. Repair and remount between glass.
The fragments are mounted between Perspex® and held in place with modern stamp hinges on the verso. The frame is unsuitable for handling and conservation. The poor quality wood frame is bound in Kraft® paper tape. The papyrus fragments are mounted on brown, short-fibred card: the verso of the papyrus fragments is therefore non-visible.The papyrus fragments are brittle, fractured, abraded and weakened by the Perspex electrostaticity. There are several turnovers and twisted fibres. The fragments contain writing on the verso, hidden by the backing card. The bottom fragment is actually made of two separate fragments joined together by a stamp hinge.
Documentation consisting in photographs at different stages of the treatment (before, during and after) and tracing of the fragment outline was undertaken. Observation under Mantis microscope (x10) was done several times through the treatment to check the state of the fragments. Documentation about collection history was researched and gathered.The inks were tested for solubility in water and in water and IMS (50-50). Lightly soluble in water, but less in 50-50 water-IMS.The fragments were then removed from their frame and backing using scalpel and micro-spatula. The stamp hinges were removed after light damping using water to dissolve the water-sensitive adhesive. The residual adhesives were cleaned using slightly moist cotton swabs.The surface of the papyri fragments was then cleaned with a soft brush, except for the weakest parts, that could have suffered from such a treatment. The fragments were humidified over damp blotters and Gore-Tex in a chamber until they could be realigned and repaired using pre-toned Japanese paper tabs and wheat starch paste. Twisted fibres and turnovers were laid down and pressed dry. Consolidation patches made of the thinnest Japanese paper possible were attached to the weakest areas to support them. The two bottom fragments were detached one from the other and not reattached together as no fibre match was visible. The fragments have then been pressed dry under lightest weights. Remounted between glass sealed with Filmoplast® tape and buffered with Micro-chambers paper strips along the edges.
Ancient Egypt & Sudan
- O.CrumST 175
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Object reference number: YCA72100
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