This fragmentary text was written over 1,900 years ago and dates to the very beginning of the second century. Although many of the line endings are lost, it contains a notification of death addressed to the royal scribe of the division of Heracleides in the Arsinoite district (Fayum). Such documents were submitted by a close relative of the deceased to notify the authorities of the death of a person liable to taxes, who would then be added to a list of the dead.
In this papyrus, a woman by the name of Thatres (Thatreis), daughter of Sarapion, of the village of Karanis, writes to report the death of a certain Mersios (Mersis). Who this man was to her is not known due to the loss of text, but he must have been someone closely related to her. A second hand added an order addressed to the village scribe, who is to update the records if Mersios is dead. The date follows.
- Article by:
- Matthew Nicholls
- Papyri, Scholarship, The makers of Greek manuscripts
How were books stored and accessed in the ancient world? Matthew Nicholls explores what the surviving evidence of ancient books can tell us about libraries in antiquity.