Erman contributes a brief sketch of Egyptian Literature to Die Oriental-
ischcn Literaturen in the series Die KuUur der Gegenwart.
During the winter of 1895-6 Mr. Quibell found in a tomb at the
Kamesseum a mass of hieratic rolls of the Middle Kingdom in an
advanced stage of decay. Their condition appeared almost hopeless until
Mr. Gardiner placed them in the skilled hands of Herr Ibscher, of the
Berlin Museum. A certain quantity of legible fragments was gradually
obtained from them; but a few months ago a small roll in better
preservation proved to have the well-known texts of the Eloquent Peasant
on the recto and the Story of Sinuhe on the verso, and in each case the
beginning was well preserved, whereas hitherto the opening part of the
Sinuhe story was known only from late and very faulty copies, and that
of the Eloquent Peasant was missing. The papyri belong to Prof. Petrie.
Gardiner now gives the beginning of the Story of Sinuhe and some
important readings from other parts of it. He shows that the hero was
probably of low origin, not a member of the royal family as has often been
supposed. Sinuhe appears to have reached Byblus in his flight and to
have dwelt in Syria and Palestine, much further north than had been
suspected. Sitzb. Berlin Alcacl. 1907, 142.
The walls of Grseco-Boman temples are not generally supposed to be a
hunting ground for literature ; but Junker has found amongst the acres
of inscriptions hymns of a pleasing simplicity, free from wearisome
alliteration and other artificialities, but metrical and divided into strophes.
He publishes a number of examples from Dendera, A.Z. xliii. 101. The
same scholar points out a case in which a hymn occurring at Edfu in
honour of Horus was re-employed at Dendera, being adapted for Hathor ;
but a passage in it was left with the masculine article unaltered, and the
orthography seems to show that the later copyist did not understand it.
Moret and Boulard, discussing legal texts, write an elaborate
commentary on the inscriptions of Methen and various inscriptions
concerning the endowments of tombs under the Old Kingdom. Bee. de
Trav. xxix. 57.
Max Muller interprets a fragmentary inscription at Karnak of the
XXIst Dynasty as the ordeal of a priest before Amnion, Egyptological
Bcscarches, p. 55.