The mysterious ancient Greek document (University of Basel)
Scientists have finally unlocked the secrets of a mysterious 2,000-year-old papyrus document.
The strange artifact, which mirror to write on both sides, has baffled experts for centuries. Written in ancient Greek, the papyrus is in the possession of the University of Basel in Switzerland since the 16th century.
Scientists have used ultraviolet and infrared technology for the deciphering of the papyrus, discover that it is not a papyrus, but several layers of papyrus glued together, according to the University of Basel. A specialist papyrus restorer, also came in to separate the sheets.
15TH-CENTURY MANUSCRIPT WITH ‘FOREIGN’ CHARACTERS FINALLY DECODED
“This is a sensational discovery,” said Sabine Huebner, professor of ancient history at the University of Basel, in a statement. “The majority of the papyri are documents such as letters, contracts and receipts. This is a literary text, though, and they are tremendously valuable.”
Scientists at the University of Basel have deciphered of the 2000-year-old papyrus (University of Basel)
Specifically, the papyrus contains an ancient medical text that describes “hysterical apnea,” according to Huebner, who says that the text by the Roman physician Galen, or unknown comments on his work.
The researchers were able to compare the papyrus in the Ravenna papyri, historical documents from the Archdiocese of Ravenna in Italy. These include ancient manuscripts of Galen, written about and used in the middle ages. “The Basel papyrus would be a similar case of medieval recycling, it consists of several sheets pasted together, and was probably used as a book binding,” explained the University of Basel, in his statement.
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Other historic texts are also in the news recently. Scientists in Denmark, for example, recently found that high levels of arsenic in three of the books from the 16th and 17th century. Experts from the University of Southern Denmark made the startling discovery as they were studying fragments of medieval manuscripts that were used for the binding of the books.
An expert works on the old papyrus (University of Basel)
Earlier this year, secret 500-year-old letters sent by King Ferdinand II of Aragon, on one of his military commanders were finally deciphered by experts in Spain. The land Army Museum called in experts from the Spanish intelligence service, the Centro Nacional de Inteligencia (CNI), to assist in the deciphering of the mysterious documents. The letters, which use a combination of 237 letter codes and 88 symbols, had baffled historians.
Ferdinand sent the letters to Gonzalo Fernández de Córdoba known as the Great Captain, during a military campaign in Italy in the beginning of the 16th century.
SPAIN CRACKS SECRET CODE TO KING FERDINAND THE MYSTERIOUS 500-YEAR-OLD MILITARY LETTERS
Researchers in Canada, also said that they had used artificial intelligence to decode a mysterious 15th-century manuscript. Discovered In the 19th century, the Voynich manuscript makes use of “strange” characters long puzzled cryptographers and historians.
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