April 22, 2005


It's reported that, using IR imaging technology and photenhancement, a great quantity of previously-illegible pieces of the Oxyrhynchus Papyri can now be read. Researchers have already found most of a lost Sophocles play, Epigonoi.

This could be really, really big. The Oxyrhyncus papyri have long been a treasure trove -- essentially a big, preserved rubbish bin. A substantial improvement in our ability to read these scraps would likely be the biggest advance in Greek and Roman history in this generation. Thanks to Michael Druzinsky for telling me.