Book of the Dead of the Priest of Horus, Imhotep (Imuthes), ca. 332-200 B.C.
From the poetry of Sappho to the New Testament, texts written on papyrus have been preserved for millennia by arid conditions in Egypt, excavated, and collected in archives. This timely colloquium examines the legal and ethical problems surrounding these papyrological archives. Roberta Mazza will tell the story of how ancient papyri of unknown provenance were acquired by the Museum of the Bible and are now at the center of a scandal and police investigation. Anna Uhlig will discuss how Egyptian mummies have been destroyed in the quest to “recover” ancient texts and how we can use the Tebtunis archive at UC Berkeley to honor the “missing mummies” lost to us in the name of scholarship.
Roberta Mazza is Lecturer in Greco-Roman Material Culture at the University of Manchester (UK); this Fall she holds the Tipton Distinguished Visiting Professorship in the Department of Religious Studies at UCSB.
Anna Uhlig is Associate Professor of Classics at UC Davis.
The symposium will be moderated by Cavan Concannon, who is Associate Professor of Religion at USC.
The Tipton Lecture is made possible by the J.E. and Lillian Byrne Tipton Endowment in Catholic Studies, UCSB’s Department of Religious Studies, and UCSB’s Ancient Borderlands Research Focus Group.