Our latest update to the Kyprianos Database of Ancient Ritual Texts and Objects has just gone live. As well as correcting some minor errors in manuscript and text entries, we have added:
- A whole new Archives table. This table provides information on collections of manuscripts. At present, the online version of Kyprianos contains 10 entries, and we will continue to add more with future updates
- Among the first archive entries to be put online are the famous Theban Magical Libary (A1), the important archive of texts found in area A House 3 in Kellis (A6), and the Berlin Library (A14), containing over twenty Coptic magical manuscripts with everything from lists of saints to use as amulets to a love spell invoking the Devil.
- 24 new manuscript entries, bringing the total number to 748.
- The database now includes entries for all of the manuscripts of Meyer and Smith’s Ancient Christian Magic, in particular the manuscripts which we classify as non-magical and which were therefore excluded in previous updates.
- These include Vatican Coptic Papyrus 1 (M170), one of the earliest Coptic manuscripts to be published in Europe, containing a sortition oracle, beautiful images of which are available on the Vatican Digital Library, as well as the Old Coptic Schmidt papyrus (M524), one of the earliest surviving Coptic texts, written as a petition to the god Osiris for a woman named Esrmpe.
- 5 new texts, bringing the total to 22.
Among the most interesting new additions are:
- P. Berlin 5565 (T179), another charm featuring the gods Isis, Horus, and Nephthys, intended to make someone fall asleep.
- P. CtYBR inv. 1800 qua (T483), A very interesting curse which forbids the angel who guards a church altar to visit heaven until he has struck the curse’s victim down with disease.
Many thanks to those readers who contacted us with additional information and corrections.