Graeco-Coptica

A large percentage of Coptic literature consists of translations from the Greek, beginning with the Septuagint and the New Testament, and continuing through “gnostic,” apocryphal, and patristic texts.  Walter Ewing Crum’s A Coptic Dictionary (Oxford, 1939), a major accomplishment in the field, reflects this connection by listing Greek equivalents for Coptic words in biblical and patristic texts (though not exhaustively; see “Preface,” viii).  However, Crum did not include Greek loan words in the dictionary, which are numerous. Continue reading

Apocrypha/Ascetica/Magica/Manichaica at Heidelberg

The Heidelberger Papyrussammlung has made a number of color photos (in both 72 and 150 DPI) of very important Coptic papyri available on their website, including: the Acta Pauli, ed. Carl Schmidt (Hildesheim, 1905; P. Heid. Inv. Kopt. 300-301), important as a witness to both the text and the Lycopolitan dialect; selections of P. Nepheros, ed. Bärbel Kramer and John Shelton (Mainz, 1987; mostly Greek papyri), an important fourth-century monastic archive from the Heracleopolite nome; Continue reading

Photoshop Manual for Scholars

This site is part of the West Semitic Research Project at the University of Southern California, founded by Bruce and Kenneth Zuckerman, who are famous for their photography of ancient manuscripts, including the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Coptic Manichaean codices from Medinet Madi.  They have provided some basic guidance for scholars using Adobe Photoshop to work with digital images of ancient texts; Continue reading

Traditions of Magic in Late Antiquity

This site, from the (relatively) early days of the web, is the result of an exhibit at the Kelsey Museum of the University of Michigan, curated in 1996 by Gideon Bohak, who has recently published Ancient Jewish Magic: A History (Cambridge, 2008).  Included are “Recipe books,” papyri with instructions for assembling various ingredients as part of the spell; a particularly rich collection of papyri amulets and gems, mostly from Campbell Bonner’s Studies in Magical Amulets: Chiefly Graeco-Egyptian (Ann Arbor, 1950), including the famous cock-headed anguiped “IAO;” Continue reading

“Rome Wasn’t Digitized in a Day”

This open-access book by Alison Babeu, Digital Librarian and research coordinator of the venerable Perseus Project, is available for download as a searchable pdf from the website of the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR). Continue reading

Database of Medieval Nubian Texts (DMNT)

This site is a database of published documents (currently comprising 733 texts) from Medieval Nubia that use any form of chronological system; it is administered at the University of Warsaw by Grzegorz Ochała, who used this data in his recently published book Chronological Systems of Christian Nubia (Warsaw, 2011).  The texts are in the three primary written languages of medieval Nubia: Greek, Coptic, and Old Nubian. Continue reading

Nag Hammadi Archive

This important collection of photos documents the editing of the Nag Hammadi Library and related activities, in Egypt, during the mid-70s.  They include photographs of the editors working at the Coptic Museum in Cairo; from the archaeological work done around the spot of the find; and finally, a series of negatives of the manuscripts themselves, taken in 1973, distinct from the facsimile edition of the codices later published by Brill. Continue reading

Banque de données des textes coptes documentaires

This site is a comprehensive, periodically updated database of Coptic documentary texts, administered by Alain Delattre of the Université Libre de Bruxelles.  Although users cannot browse it, there are a number of useful search options, including sigla (i.e., abbreviation for the collection in which it is published), inventory number (of the collection in which the text is located); material; dialect; origin; date; and a variety of content tags in French.  This data, when it exists, has been entered for each published papyrus; the Coptic text is not yet available. Continue reading

Medieval Nubia

A central resource for the developing field of Old Nubian studies, administered by Giovanni Ruffini of Fairfield University.  A highlight of the site is the series of important overview articles by William Adams, who has over forty years of experience as an excavator of medieval Nubian sites. Continue reading