“Unfolding the Mysteries of Papyri: From Meaning to Significance” Festivity
04 April 2017
Due to the importance of papyri in the Ancient Egyptian civilization, it was also known as the Papyri Civilization. Was it not for papyri, Ancient Egyptian civilization would not have flourished. Papyri were used to build boats that helped Ancient Egyptians travel from one place to another. It was also used to fabricate everyday tools such as footwear, baskets, among others. Papyrus was also a basic component of Ancient Egyptian symbolism and religion. The Bibliotheca Alexandrina Antiquities Museum and Manuscript Museum in cooperation with the Egyptian Museum in Cairo are hosting a festivity entitled "Unfolding the Mysteries of Papyri: From Meaning to Significance". The Festivity celebrates the material that served the ancient civilizations and cultures.
The Festivity includes several events. On 4 April 2017,a seminar will be held where researchers would present their papers on the religious, social and political aspects that papyri communicated through different historical eras: Pharaonic, Greco−Roman, and Coptic. These aspects enriched the Egyptian, Hellenistic, and Roman civilizations. Along the seminar, a workshop on papyri fabrication will be held for children. Also, documentary films tackling papyri fabrication and uses, and featuring the most important ancient papyri and the symbolism of papyri in Ancient Egypt will be shown.
In addition, an exhibition will be held at the Bibliotheca Alexandrina Antiquities Museum and Manuscript Museum, 4 April − 4 May 2017. It will showcase paintings and illustrations explaining the role of papyri through different eras in Egypt. The Manuscripts Museum will showcase paintings that explain the restoration of Papyrus Boulaq, one of the rarest papyri discovered complete. Papyrus Boulaq dates to the Twenty-first Dynasty during the Third Intermediate Period. It will also shed light on the Wadi al-Jarf Papyrus found by the commission of the French Institute for Oriental Archeology. Wadi al-Jarf is located along the Red Sea coast, Suez. Wadi al-Jarf Papyrus is the oldest discovered papyrus until today. It goes back to Fourth Dynasty of the Ancient Kingdom of Egypt. The content of Wadi al-Jarf Papyrus makes it particularly important. It includes everyday life details, such as monthly reports on the numbers of port workers and different aspects of their lives. Also, it contains information about the system according to which supplies were given to the workers of the Great Pyramid project.
The Antiquities Museum will showcase many papyri that are exhibited for the first time, in addition to explanations of their contents covering different aspects of the society.
Last but not least, a field visit will be organized to Sharqia Governorate—particularly Abo Kebeer and Karamous—famous for papyri cultivation and fabrication.