- Museum number
- Series: Papyrus Chester Beatty 3
recto, columns 8-11: Hieratic dream book
verso, columns 4-5: Hieratic literary text written by Qenherkhepshef
- Production date
- 1220BC (circa)
Height: 39.80 centimetres (frame)
Height: 33.50 centimetres (papyrus only)
Thickness: 0.20 centimetres (papyrus only - estimate)
Width: 70.20 centimetres (frame)
Width: 60.70 centimetres (papyrus only)
Depth: 0.70 centimetres (frame)
- Curator's comments
The papyrus Chester Beatty 3 is divided over four frames and contains a manual for interpreting dreams on the recto and literary texts on the verso. The dream book on the recto is written in a fine literary hand of an unknown scribe. On the verso, the famous scribe Qenherkhepshef's copied a poem about the Battle of Kadesh, which took place in the reign of Ramesses II (1279-1213 BC) and added a copy of a letter he had written to the vizier. His bold and highly cursive handwriting is instantly recognizable.
The manuscript was later owned by his young wife's second husband Khaemnun, and then his son Amennakht, both of whom added their names to the recto in handwriting that is less neat than that of the original copyist of the Dream book, but much less cursive than Qenherkhepshef's (under column 10).
The standard publication with full translation is A.H. Gardiner, 'Hieratic Papyri in the British Museum, 3rd Series: Chester Beatty Gift' I (London, 1935), 9-27, pls. 5-12; this frame: 'Hieratic Papyri in the British Museum, 3rd Series: Chester Beatty Gift' II (London, 1935), Plates 7 & 7A, Recto 7-9; Plates 8 & 8A, Recto 10 & 11 (only half of col. 11); Plates 11 & 11A, Verso 4-5; Plates 12 & 12A, Verso 5.
On the provenance see P. W. Pestman, `Who Were the Owners, in the "Community of Workmen", of the Chester Beatty Papyri?', in R. J. Demarée and J. J. Janssen (ed.) Gleanings from Deir el-Medïna (Leiden, 1982), 155- 72.
'Les artistes de Pharaon : Deir el-Médineh et la Vallée des Rois', (Paris, 2002), p.135 ;
G. Andreu and A. Roveri [eds.], 'Gli artisti del Faraone' (Turin, 2003), p.125 .
G. Pinch, Magic in Ancient Egypt (London 1994), fig.32.
Kasia Szpakowska, Behind closed eyes : dreams and nightmares in ancient Egypt (Classical Press of Wales, 2003).
This frame published in:
Regulski, I. (ed.), 2022. Hieroglyphs: unlocking ancient Egypt, p. 218
See K. Szpakowska, 'Dream Interpretation in the Ramesside Age', in M. Collier and S. Snape (ed.), Ramesside Studies in Honour of K. A. Kitchen (Bolton 2011), 509-17.
- On display (G30/dc51)
- Exhibition history
2015, 19th June - 5th Sept. Wrexham County Borough Museum. Egyptian Written Culture.
2016 12 Mar-8 May, Carlisle, Tullie House, Writing for Eternity
2016 20 May-4 Sept, The Salisbury Museum, Writing for Eternity
2016 16 Sept-10 Jan 2017, Abergavenny Museum, Writing for Eternity
2017 21 Jan-21 May, Museum of Hartlepool, Writing for Eternity
2022-2023 13 Oct-19 Feb, London, BM, Hieroglyphs: unlocking ancient Egypt
- Papyrus Survey:
Papyrus: fractured, fragmentary, loss
Displayed in Room 62 until 1997
Displayed in Room 61 from 2000 to 2007
Edges insert: microchamber paper
Binding: self adhesive tape
Object Priority: A
Mount Priority: A
Overall Condition: B
Curatorial condition comment:
- Associated events
- Named in Inscription: Battle of Qadesh
- Associated titles
Associated Title: P. Chester Beatty III
- Acquisition date
- Egypt and Sudan
- BM/Big number
- Registration number
- Additional IDs
Miscellaneous number: Frame.3