Egypt Exploration Fund [Hrsg.]
Archaeological report: comprising the work of the Egypt Exploration Fund and the progress of egyptology during the year ... — 1903-1904

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1 cm
Graeco-Boman Branch.


to the immediate south of the temple area. These, which had been dug
with little success in 1897, did not prove to be more productive at the
second attempt, papyri being scarce and ill-preserved. We next moved
the work to two low mounds adjoining the temple area on the north.
The richest parts of these had been exhausted in 1897, when many fine
third and fourth century rolls were unearthed, but the process of finishing
the clearance led to some good finds of second and third century docu-
ments. Proceeding further northwards, we devoted a month to clearing-
down to the damp-level one of the most extensive series of the earlier
mounds, which had been partly dug in 1897, when it yielded a rich
harvest. The second excavation was also attended with good fortune,
Greek papyri of the first four centuries being plentiful, besides a few
demotic documents. The western portion of the series was poor in
literary pieces but particularly productive of first century documents,
while in the eastern part there was no first century layer, but classical
fragments were more frequent. South of this group lies another large
mound which in 1897 was remarkable for its composite character : in a
small area near the summit the papyri from the upper levels dated from
the first half of the first century, and those underneath, so far from being
Ptolemaic, belonged to the reigns of late emperors, while throughout the
rest of the mound the papyri were early Byzantine. The Boman part
yielded little more; but the Byzantine portion, which had not been much
dug previously, was fairly rich in late fourth and fifth century documents
with occasional theological fragments and a few Coptic papyri. In the
last fortnight of the excavations, which terminated on February 25th, we
began the clearance of the mounds on the extreme north-west of the site.
Here the papyri ranged from the first to the fourth century, and the
occurrence of literary fragments was fairly frequent. Generally at Oxy-
rhynchus the layers of afoh, iu which papyrus is found, disappear within
four metres of the surface, but iu some of the mounds on the extreme north
it is necessary to dig as deep as seven metres before the damp-level is reached.
Hence the progress of the trenches was slow, and much remains to be done
next winter in that part of the site. The papyri have, as usual, all been
sent to Oxford for publication.

Amongst inscribed objects other than papyri we found a set of six third
century wax tablets (Cairo Museum), three leaden tablets, each rolled up
round a wisp of hair and inscribed with imprecations which chiefly consist
of magical formulas (one at Cairo), a few wooden tablets and stamps, an
inscribed piece of glass (Cairo), and numerous clay jar-stoppers and
fragments of amphorae with inscriptions similar to those described on
loading ...