Published at the occasion of the 7th International Congress of Coptic Studies, Leiden, August 27 - September 2, 2000,accompanying an exhibition in Leiden University Library

Compiled by Nico Kruit and Jan Just Witkam

Coptic texts in the Papyrological Institute Leiden
by Nico Kruit

Coptic manuscripts in Leiden University Library
by Jan Just Witkam



The Papyrological Institute Leiden houses a small collection of papyri, ostraca, wax tablets and parchment, written in Hieratic, Demotic, Greek, Latin and Coptic. The Coptic material is for the most part unpublished and consists of papyri and ostraca. These were acquired in Egypt by B.A. van Groningen in 1938-1939 (Inv. 62, 198, 238-240, 242) or purchased from the Dutch publisher Hakkert in 1971 (all other items). Recently, the Institute has acquired some new fragments of papyri, some of which are Coptic. These have provisionary numbers for the moment and will be catalogued properly in the near future. They include lists, letters, and a school exercise.


H x W = 5.5 x 14.5 cm. Content: magical text (?).

H x W =4.5 x 9.6 cm. Content: four lines of writing, the second line being a Greek date: Tybi 16 of the 10th indiction; traces of one line on the V.

Three fragments, H x W = 19.6 x 9.7; 6.3 x 6.5; 4.5 x 3.1 cm. Provenance: probably al-Fayyum.
Content: 25 + 9 lines of writing, letter mentioning personal details, among others a birthday.

Two fragments, H x W = 6.6 x 8; 6.6 x 5 cm
Content: beginning of a letter, four lines on the R, two on the V.

H x W = 10.6 x 11.3 cm
Content: nine lines on the R, eight on the V.

H x W = 7.4 x 12 cm. Provenance: Hermopolis
Content: five lines, mentioning in l. 1 the son of Phib, in l. 2 Schmoun (= Hermopolis) and in l. 3 Apa Paule and an amount of wheat.

H x W = 8.3 x 11.9 cm. Content: four lines of a legal document, three lines of coptic subscriptions, one in greek, bearing the date: Hathyr 11 of the 7th indiction; V blank.

H x W =5.5 x 9 cm. Content: subscriptions to a legal document, three lines on R, V blank.

P.Leid.Inv.702 + 707
H x W = 14 x 14 cm.
Content: nine lines on the R, one on the V; payment for poll-tax.

H x W = 5.1 x 9.5 cm. Content: beginning of four lines of writing, top, left and bottom complete.

H x W = 6.3 x 9.5 cm. Content: four lines of writing, top, left and bottom complete; account of Stephanos.

H x W = 15.7 x 4.4 cm.
Content: ends of fourteen lines on the R and beginnings of nine lines with various names on the V; top and bottom complete.

H x W = 4 x 10.5 cm. Content: ends of four lines, V blank.


H x W = 4 x 9.5 cm. Content: end of a letter; three lines of writing, bottom complete, the V being blank. Attached to this text was a small clay seal, V.Leid.Inv. 33.

H x W = 3.5 x 4 cm. Content: literary fragment; remains of two columns, three lines on R and four lines on V, written in a large hand.

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