Scott Carroll’s Classical Papyri

carroll menander papyrus smallSo, I think I may be starting to alleviate some of my confusion about Scott Carroll and the Green Collection papyri. One part of all this that was unclear to me was the status of several manuscripts acquired or “discovered” by Scott Carroll that were not immediately related to the Museum of the Bible project. What happened to these pieces? What had escaped me what the possibility that Scott Carroll was not just a broker of manuscript purchases for others but also a purchaser and owner of manuscripts himself.

This point is clarified in a video (apparently recorded in a home in California) with an upload date of 21 April 2015. It was filmed some time after Carroll had parted ways with the Greens and the Museum of the Bible enterprise and had started his own business ventures. It would thus be odd if Carroll still had Green Collection papyri in his possession at the time of the video. But Carroll does display several actual manuscripts in this video and seems to confirm that he is the owner of these pieces (the presentation was put online in three separate files; my references will be to part number and time marker). So, in part 2 at about the 35 second mark, just before passing out the first of several artifacts to the audience, he encourages them to be careful, and in reference to himself and his wife says:

“These things are under our ownership.”

Here are the papyrus pieces that Carroll displayed with his identifications below (all from part 2 of the film, time points given at the bottom of the images): Continue reading

Posted in Antiquities Dealers and Collectors, Antiquities Market, Green Collection, Mummies, Mummy cartonnage, Scott Carroll | 4 Comments

More Early Christian Greek and Coptic Papyri in the Green Collection?

carroll and torah scroll

In earlier posts I’ve discussed a number of early Christian manuscripts associated with the Green Collection (papyri of Genesis, Exodus and Hebrews, Matthew, Romans, and 1 Corinthians). Most of these pieces were featured at different points in the “Passages” speakers series and other media outlets in 2011 and 2012, when Scott Carroll was still working with the Green family to build their personal collection.

After he parted ways with the Green family, Carroll continued to publicly discuss and display images of manuscripts he had acquired while working with the Greens. One such occasion was a talk that seems to have been given in January of 2016. Carroll was speaking to a church audience and mentioned several “newly discovered” manuscripts. Continue reading

Posted in First Century Mark, Green Collection, Green Collection Greek Genesis, Green Collection Hebrews, Passages Speakers Series, Scott Carroll, Uncategorized | 9 Comments

Two More Greek Papyri in the Green Collection: Exodus and Hebrews

In my last post, I highlighted a papyrus of Genesis mentioned by Scott Carroll in his 2011 lecture in the “Passages” speakers series. Later in that same talk, Carroll singled out two other pieces in the collection, a papyrus leaf from a codex of Exodus in Greek and a fragment of a papyrus copy of Hebrews.

carroll hebrews exodus 2011

Here is some of what Carroll had to say about these pieces: Continue reading

Posted in Green Collection, Green Collection Hebrews, Passages Speakers Series, Scott Carroll | 6 Comments

A Green Collection Papyrus of Genesis in Greek

I continue to work through the “Passages” speakers series videos. During his talk in the 2011 sequence of lectures, Scott Carroll mentioned a number of literary papyri that the Green Collection had acquired.

carroll passages 2011 papyri

In the course of explaining the differences between literary papyri and documents, Carroll mentioned some of the Green Collection’s holdings: Continue reading

Posted in Antiquities Market, Green Collection, Green Collection Greek Genesis, Passages Speakers Series, Scott Carroll | 8 Comments

P.Bodmer 1, A Land List Reused for Books 5 and 6 of the Iliad

2018 was an important year for the study of the Bodmer Papyri, with the launch of the “Papyri” cluster of the Bodmer Lab website, which made available digital images of the papyrus and parchment manuscripts from Egypt in the collection.

2019 is now off to a good start with the announcement that the publication of P.Bodmer 1 (recto) is now available to freely download:

Tomasz Derda, P. Bodmer I Recto: A Land List from the Panopolite Nome in Upper Egypt (after AD 216/7), Journal of Juristic Papyrology Supplement 14 (Warsaw: Journal of Juristic Papyrology; Oxford: Oxbow, 2010).

P.Bodmer 1 is a land list from the Panopolite nome that was turned over and upside down to be reused to copy books 5 and 6 of the Iliad. It was acquired by Martin Bodmer in the early 1950s, and the reused side of the roll (the Iliad) was published already in 1954 by Victor Martin as P.Bodmer I. The document on the front of the roll, however, has remained unpublished until now.

pbodmer 1 before conservation

P.Bodmer 1 before conservation; image source: Victor Martin, Papyrus Bodmer I (Bibliotheca Bodmeriana, 1954)

Continue reading

Posted in Bodmer Papyri | 3 Comments

Ancient Manuscripts: Some Ethics Questions

1970_logo_wsIn an earlier post, I mentioned some of my concern about the tendency to orient provenance discussions in relation to the year 1970, the date of the UNESCO Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property. Specifically, I described my own problems and hesitations in working with materials that were acquired before 1970. In that context, I commented, that “the 1970 date is a legal marker, not an ethical one.”

I’d like to expand a little bit on that point and offer an example. Continue reading

Posted in Antiquities Dealers and Collectors, Antiquities Market, British Library Aristotle, British Museum, E. A. Wallis Budge | 1 Comment

The Papyrus of Aristotle’s Constitution of the Athenians: Provenance Questions

I recently wanted to quickly refresh myself on what can be known about the provenance of the famous papyrus containing nearly the entire text of Aristotle’s Constitution of the Athenians (British Library Pap. 131, LDAB 391).

BL Pap 131 Aristotle whole

As usual, this turned out more complicated than I expected. The artifact itself is also somewhat complicated. Continue reading

Posted in Antiquities Dealers and Collectors, Antiquities Market, Archaeological context, British Library Aristotle, E. A. Wallis Budge, Find Stories, Frederic Kenyon | 7 Comments