Some newly recovered papyrus fragments may finally help solve a century-old puzzle, shedding new light on ancient Egyptian history. Found stored between two sheets of glass in the basement of the Museo Egizio in Turin, the fragments belong to a 3,000-year-old unique document, known as the Turin Kinglist.Like many ancient Egyptian documents, the Turin Kinglist iswritten on the stem of a papyrus plant. Believed to date from the long reign of Ramesses II, the papyrus contains an ancient list of Egyptian kings.Scholars from the British Museum were tipped off to the existence of the additional fragments after reviewing a 1959 analysis of the papyrus by a British archaeologist.
In his work, the archaeologist, Alan Gardiner, mentions fragments that were not included in the final reconstruction on display at the museum. After an extensive search, museum researchers found the pieces.
could help more accurately piece together what is considered to be a
key item for understanding ancient Egyptian history.
"This is one of the most
important documents to reconstruct the chronology of Egypt between the
1st and 17th Dynasty," Federico Bottigliengo,Egyptologist at the Turin
museum, told Discovery News.
"Unlike other lists of
kings, it enumerates all rulers, including the minor ones and those
considered usurpers. Moreover, it records the length of reigns in
years, and in some cases even in months and days."
Written in an ancient
Egyptian cursive writing system called hieratic, the papyrus was
purchased in Thebes by the Italian diplomat and explorer Bernardino
Drovetti in 1822. Placed in a box along with other papyri, the
parchment disintegrated into small fragments by the time it arrived in
Some 48 pieces of the
puzzle were first assembled by French Egyptologist Jean-Francois
Champollion (1790-1832). Later, some other hundred fragments were
pieced together by German and American archaeologist Gustavus Seyffarth
One of themost......
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