Progress of Egyptology.
year is certainly taken by Part iii. of the Petrie Papyri.8 It is edited by
Prof. Mahaffy, who was solely responsible for the two earlier parts, and a
younger colleague, Prof. J. G-. Smyly; and, as Prof. Mahaffy states in the
preface, it is to Prof. Smyly that the bulk of the new work is due. All
the previously published texts have been revised ; the suggestions of other
scholars (among whom Wilcken's name appears most prominently) have
been considered and tested; in several instances entire documents have
been reprinted, when the alterations and additions to be made in them
were very extensive; and to all these have been added a large number
of new texts. Prof. Smyly has, in fact, worked through all the unpublished
fragments of papyrus disinterred from Prof. Petrie's mummy-cases, and has
brought many of them into combination with one another or with those
previously published ; and he has also applied himself with much success
to their interpretation. It is a work of immense labour and industry, and
Prof. Smyly deserves the greatest credit for its execution. Prof. Mahaffy
has co-operated in this work, and has further contributed a polemic
against M. Eevillout, being not unnaturally provoked thereto by the
unjustifiable language used by the latter in his Melanges, and by his
equally unjustifiable claim to have published more accurate texts of
several of the papyri. The new and revised texts contain a quantity of
data relating to the taxation of Ptolemaic Egypt, particularly, of course,
of the colonies of military settlers, to which these papyri mainly relate.
They also furnish many details with regard to the different classes of these
settlers, the weights and measures in use, the rate of exchange of copper
and silver, methods of dating, the styles of the kings, the existence of a
census, and many other matters. They are essentially a storehouse of
details, which must be ransacked by any one who undertakes to deal with
Ptolemaic history or economics. Nine photographic plates are included,
giving specimens of some of the more cursive and less legible hands in use
in the 3rd century b.c.
One of the previously published Petrie papyri (11. 8) has formed the
subject of a special study by M. P. Eoucart,8 who offers a reconstruction
of its text and a commentary on its contents; but this must be checked by
reference to the amended and extended text printed by Prof. Smyly.
The Ptolemaic age has come in for a good deal of illumination this
year ; for it is the main subject of the volume published by M. Theodore
Eeinach, with the assistance of M. Seymour de Eicci and Prof.
Spiegelberg.10 The papyri to which it relates were acquired by M. Eeinach
in Egypt, and internal evidence shows that they came from Hermopolis
(Ashmunein), or, more correctly, from a village named Acoris (Tehneh),