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Oxyrhynchus: A City and its Texts, Virtual Exhibition: Scribes and Scholars

Scribes Practicing Various Styles: Late second or third century AD

One of the ancient scribes of Oxyrhynchus in the process of demonstrating his talents. The same line is written in various styles. A fictitious pseudo-epic line is used for copying practice because it contains every letter of the alphabet. (Similar lines are discussed by Clement of Alexandria, Strom. v 8.46-9; see also D. Hagedorn, ZPE 2 (1968) 65-9, to whose examples may be added P.Köln IV no. 175). The first line is written in cramped, tall upright letters of the ‘chancery’ type. The second line is in a similar style, but larger. The third attempt is the same pseudo-epic line in large, round uncial letters, decorated with serifs, of a much more archaic type.

The Oxyrhynchus Papyri vol. XXXI no. 2604

© E.E.S. In preparation for publication