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History of Papyrus Conservation

Conservator Dr. h.c. Hugo Ibscher, working in Germany, 1933

Originally papyrus manuscripts were preserved and cared for by the scholar who discovered the pieces. Fragments were often taped or otherwise manipulated at the actual archaeological site. We have examples of postage stamps and all kinds of odd materials used to piece together fragments. The most famous of the early papyrus conservators is Dr. h. c. Hugo Ibscher (1874-1943), a trained bookbinder, who worked on the restoration and mounting of papyrus manuscripts at the State Museum in Berlin, starting in 1891. For over forty years, he worked on papyrus manuscripts at the Egyptian Museum in Berlin and all over the world, including Turin, London, Oxford, Brussels, Paris, Prague, Copenhagen, Cairo, Rome, and many others. He’s considered the founder of papyrus conservation and his son Dr. Rolf Ibscher (1906-1967) followed in his footsteps, hiding important pieces during the war. Apart from the work in Berlin, a lot of “conservation” occurred first at the British Museum where papyrus manuscripts were then divided among members of a collecting consortium. The conservators who were in charge of papyrus generally had book and paper backgrounds, and this remains the case today. There are very few places that can afford to have a dedicated papyrus conservator.

At the University of Michigan, which holds the largest collection of papyrus in North America, conservation activities began in the late 1980s, when Professor Ludwig Koenen raised awareness of the need for conservation of the papyrus collection. He was a professor in the classics department for papyrology who taught from 1975 until 2001, when he retired. He remains active in the papyrological community today.

Conservator Leyla Lau-Lamb works with papyrologists Prof. Konen and the late Prof. Gagos at the University of Michigan

During Prof. Koenen’s years, Julia Miller was working as a conservator at the University of Michigan, and she spearheaded the research and development of protocol for the treatment and housing of papyrus manuscripts. She later retired from her conservation duties, and is now a highly regarded scholar in the history of bookbinding and lecturer on the subject of early codices, especially the Nag Hammadi codices, which are early bound structures with papyrus textblocks and cover boards. She has constructed collections of incredible models that can be studied in the University of Michigan's Special Collections Research Center.

In the early 1990s, the book and paper conservator Leyla Lau-Lamb took over papyrus conservation duties and was heavily involved in the Advanced Papyrological Information System (APIS), a “virtual library” that provides online access to Michigan's papyrological collection. Users are able to view digital images and detailed catalog records containing information on papyrus characteristics and corrections to published papyri. This digitization project involved a consortium of universities, including Columbia, Duke, Yale, and Michigan. Leyla was assigned the task of treating, rehousing, and inspecting 1,000s of fragments with the papyrologists working on the huge APIS project. Over two decades, Leyla developed and perfected treatment methods and standards, which she shared with people worldwide, and put Michigan on the map for being a source of knowledge for papyrus conservation. She also wrote the APIS conservation guidelines, which are highly referenced to this day. While the APIS project is no longer active, Michigan continues to digitize its collection, adding records to the database. The images and metadata from this project are still maintained by the universities in the consortium, and can be accessed through Papyri.info.

Conservator Bridget Leach working at the British Museum

There are several other highly influential papyrus conservators who have dedicated their careers to this specialty. Their articles and research have shaped everything we understand and practice currently. Bridget Leach is a retired papyrus conservator from the British Museum, where she worked from 1990. Her particular research interest focused on pigments used on illustrated papyri, which the British Museum is fortunate to have. She has written some very valuable resources, which are listed in the bibliography below.

Conservator Myriam Krutzsch removes tape from a fragment during a visit to U-M

Another highly influential papyrus conservator is Myriam Krutzsch, who has worked at the Egyptian Museum in Berlin since 1975. She was trained by Otto Werner Luke, who was trained by Dr. Rolf Ibscher. Myriam solely works on papyrus and has written many valuable resources, most of which are in German, which is one of the major languages in the papyrological discipline. Her particular research interest focuses on the complex folding techniques of ancient Egyptian texts and papyrus manufacture. Leyla studied with her early in her career, therefore much of what is established at the University of Michigan is informed by Myriam's procedures. She generously takes on students and conservators from all over the world for periods of study in Berlin, travels to other institutions for consultation and teaching, is an active consultant at archaeological sites in Egypt, and continues to publish and give talks at conferences to continuously add to and update our knowledge on papyrus manufacture and care.

Material and Structure

Creating a sheet of papyrus

Most of our knowledge about the use of papyrus for a writing surface comes from Pliny the Elder, who described the papyrus plant and its use in his Natural History from AD 70. He stated, “The nature of papyrus too is to be recounted, for on its use as rolls human civilization depends, at the most for its life, and certainly for its memory.”

Papyrus that was used for a writing material is generally identified as Cyperus papyrus, as tall flowering freshwater reed, which grows in Africa along the water’s edge, in particular the Nile River. The writing material is made from the core of the stem, and the particular variety used in the ancient world does not vary greatly from one sub-species to another, therefore it has not been specifically identified. Differences are observed depending on where the sub-species was growing.

The plant was used widely in everyday life, from sandal-making and basketry, to boats, sails, rope, and was even a food source. There are no ancient Egyptian representations or texts on the production of papyrus sheets and rolls, and no specific papyrus workshop has been uncovered.

The triangular stem of the papyrus would be cut or peeled in long strips. There has been longstanding speculation whether the core was cut into several strips or was peeled into a single thin layer, but it was likely a combination, and techniques likely varied throughout the years.

Structure of a papyrus sheet

After cutting and peeling, the papyrus was laid in two layers, one horizontal and one vertical, to form a single rectangular sheet, with no gaps between the strips. The sheet could be rolled easier if the vertical strips were on the outside, therefore the vertical side is referred to as the verso. The majority of writing was completed on the horizontal, recto, side.

No adhesive was used to join the layers. When the wet strips were placed together horizontally and vertically, it is speculated that they were pressed or hammered together, leading to the the physical bonding of the cell tissue of both layers. In order to form a roll, the edges of the sheets were adhered together with a starch paste, generally right over left on the recto, which does vary depending on the region and time period. There are also examples of fringes of horizontal strips used for joins, thus leading to a smoother three layers overlapping rather than four. Examples show anywhere from 7 sheets in length (Middle Kingdom) to 20 sheets in length (Roman Period, Early Islamic Period).

For a look at modern papyrus manufacture in action, check out Papyrus Making 101, an online exhibit from the University of Michigan Papyrus Collection, with a slide show showing the papyrus manufacture process.



Papyrus fragment housed between two sheets of glass.

When thinking about the housing of papyrus for safe handling, a familiar choice has traditionally been glass. Those responsible for collections that are smaller in scale will often place all of the papyrus fragments between panes of glass as a protective housing, a practice that has been supported for decades. While annealed soda-lime glass is most commonly used, conservators have gravitated toward new glass technology, such as Gorilla Glass, as well as borosilicate glass, which has proven its reliability in photo conservation, especially in the treatment of daguerreotypes.

Small paper anchor securing the papyrus fragment to its glass mount.

A common practice is to secure the fragment to the glass using tiny and discreetly placed strips of glassine or Japanese paper, coated with a water-soluble adhesive such as dextrin or wheat starch paste.

While polyester encapsulation, Stabiltex slings, and sheets of acrylic have been put into use in more recent years, glass has proven to be the most stable over time. It provides a smooth rigid support that does not bend or abrade the vulnerable and often frayed structure of the papyrus. As emphasized by the papyrus conservator Bridget Leach at the British Museum, glass is heavy and fragile, which encourages careful handling. When using glass, we avoid the risks associated with the static charge found in the polyester and acrylic substrates. Even the smallest amount of static can damage the papyri and the media it carries. As compared to acrylic glazing, glass is also virtually scratch proof, allowing for a clear view of both sides of the papyrus fragment for study.

Of course the housing needs of a particular collection ultimately depend on available space as well as the size and use of the collection. The weight and cost of glazing a collection of 18,000+ individual fragments such as the collection at the University of Michigan (U-M) is unrealistic, so through the years conservators at U-M adapted a folder system to safely house the majority of the collection. When pieces are exhibited, go out on loan, are used in extensive studies, or are in higher demand, they can be glazed as needed. Due to the size of the collection, only about one-fifth of the fragments have been published. There is still a large portion of the collection that is not regularly used and is in stable condition, so folders suffice.

Large papyrus fragment sitting in an open folder.

At U-M there are two standard sizes of folders that are then placed into standard size boxes, both cloth-covered clamshells and gray/white drop-front storage boxes made of buffered board (illustrations). The folders are made of 20-point lignin-free buffered folder stock, and are lined on one side with buffered blotting paper adhered with EVA adhesive, which is rolled out in an even coat with a small roller. The lightly textured surface of the blotting paper provides gentle friction to prevent the papyrus from sliding when the folder is handled. The folders are left to dry and off-gas thoroughly before they are put to use. The boxes and folders are kept horizontal at all times.

Small papyrus fragments held in tissue carriers within a larger folder.

When there are many different individual fragments under a single inventory number, each small fragment is placed in a lignin-free buffered tissue carrier, which is then placed in the larger folders. This way the many fragments can stay together until they are identified and reassigned as appropriate. Eventually a papyrologist may be able to place these tiny fragments into configurations that make sense, or translate the bits of text they can decipher.

Glazed papyrus fragments stored vertically in a metal cabinet. Cloth-covered clamshell boxes holding folders of papyrus fragments.

Boxes are housed in special shelving units designed to prevent over-stacking. These are kept in a locked vault with carefully controlled environmental conditions. For papyrus, the temperature is ideally maintained at 65 degrees F and 35% relative humidity. Most institutions do not have a dedicated vault for papyrus though, so a compromise was made at U-M to keep the relative humidity at 45% due to sharing a space with parchment.

Most glazed items are stored vertically, which prevents stress from the weight of stacked glass. The conservators inspect any fragments requested by researchers to assess whether it is safer to glaze the fragment prior to use or if handling in the folder will suffice. Due to limited conservation hours in the Papyrology department, this has been an efficient way to handle such a tremendous collection. For now the majority of the collection rests in boxes. The folder system allows for the most efficient storage when working with such a vast collection.

Imaging and Text Enhancement


History and Production

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Anderson, Glenn A. 1988. “The Emergence of the Book.” College and Research Libraries. 111-116.

Barber, Elizabeth Wayland. 1991. Prehistoric Textiles. The Development of Cloth in the Neolithic and Bronze Age with Special Reference to the Aegean. Princeton : Princeton University Press.

Basile, Corrado. 1972. “A method of making papyrus and fixing and preserving it by means of a chemical treatment." Conservation of paintings and the graphic arts: Preprints of contributions to the Lisbon Congress. London: International Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works. 901-05.

Basile, Corrado. 1977. "Metodo usato dagli antichi Egizi per la fabbricazione e la preservazione della carta-papiro (Method used by the ancient Egyptians for the manufacture and preservation of papyrus paper)." Aegyptus 57(1): 190-199.

Bell, Lillian A. 1993. Papyrus, Tapa Amate and Rice Paper: Paper Making in Africa and S.E. Asia. McMinnville, Oregon : Liliaceae Press.

Bierbrier, Morris L. 1986. “Papyrus : Structure and Usage.” Occasional Paper 60. London : British Museum.

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Boak, Arthur E. R. 1959. “From Egypt To Ann Arbor: The Building of the Papyrus Collection.” The Michigan Alumnus Quarterly Review 66 (10): 35-41. Accessed October 24, 2019.

Bogensperger, Ines. 2015. “Copy & paste: Falschungen von spatantiken Textilien (Copy & Paste: Forgeries of Textiles from Late Antiquity).” Rezeption, Zeitgeist, Fälschung--Umgang mit Antike(n): Akten des Internationalen Kolloquiums am 31. Januar und 1. Februar 2014 in Tübingen. London : Institute of Conservation Paintings Group. 167-177. Accessed October 24, 2019.

Buschle-Diller, Gisela, and Achim Unger. 1996. "Schreib- und Malmittel auf Papyrus. Naturwissenschaftliche Untersuchung zur Farbpalette altägyptischer Papyri in Berlin (Writing and painting on papyrus. Scientific study on the color palette of ancient Egyptian papyri in Berlin).“ Restauro 102(2): 108-114.

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Caminos, Ricardo Augusto. 1986. "Some comments on the reuse of papyrus." Papyrus: Structure and usage. Occasional Paper 60. London : British Museum. 43-61.

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Baker, Cathleen A. 1982. "Methylcellulose and Sodium Carboxymethylcellulose: Uses in Paper Conservation." Book and Paper Group Annual 1: 16-19. Accessed November 8, 2019.

Banik, Gerhard, and Krist, Gabriela. 1984. Lösungsmittel in der Restaurierung (Solvents in restoration). Wien : Verlag Der Apfel.

Beny, Ana. 2014. “Persevering After a 1,000 Years and a Blast.” Poster presented at the 10th Islamic Manuscript Association Conference, Cambridge. Thesaurus Islamicus Foundation & Dar Al Kutub Manuscript Project.

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Caminos, Ricardo Augusto. 1986. “Some Comments on the Reuse of Papyrus.” Papyrus: Structure and Usage. Occasional Paper 60, Ed. by M.L. Bierbrier. British Museum. 43-61.

Ciatti, Marco, Susanna Conti, Maria Cristina Guidotti and Guia Rossignoli. 2005. “Tecnica e conservazione di manufatti archeologici in fibre vegetali del Museo Egizio di Firenze. (Techniques and Conservation of Archaeological Plant-fiber Artifacts in the Egyptian Museum in Florence).” OPD Restauro 17: 285-303.

Cockle, Walter E. H. 1983. “Restoring and Conserving Papyri.” Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies of the University of London 30: 147-165.

Dabre, Florence. 2008. "The Papyrus Codex Tchacos: Its Authentication, Conservation, and Future." Papier Restaurierung 9(4): 19-25.

Dawson, Julie. 2006. "Conserving Ancient Egypt in Cambridge." ICON News: The Magazine of the Institute of Conservation 7: 30-34.

Donnithorne, Alan. 1986. “The Conservation of Papyrus in the British Museum.” Papyrus: Structure and Usage. Occasional Paper 60, Ed. by M.L. Bierbrier. British Museum. 1-23.

Elliot, Frances. and Eric Harding. 1987. "A Modern Approach to Papyrus Conservation; Materials and Techniques as Applied at The British Museum." The Paper Conservator 11(1): 63-68.

Elnaggar, Abdelrazek, Paul Fitzsimmons, Austin Nevin, Kenneth Watkins, and Matija Strlic. 2015. “Viability of Laser Cleaning of Papyrus: Conservation and Scientific Assessment.” Studies in Conservation 60(S1): S73-S81.

Evans, Debra, Doris Hamburg, and Meredith Mickelson. 1980. "A Papyrus Treatment: Bringing the Book of the Dead to Life." Papers Presented at the Art Conservation Training Programs Conference. University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation : Winterthur, Delaware. 109-126.

Evans, Debra. 1984. Funori: A Short Description, Recipe, and Source." The Book and Paper Group Annual 3. Accessed November 19, 2019.

Doyle, Beth. 2013. "Tip: A Papyrus Rehousing Project at Duke University Libraries." In Book and Paper Group Tips Session 2013: Contemporary Treatment - Tips and Techniques.” The Book and Paper Group Annual 32: 81-82.

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Fackelmann, Michael. 1985. “Restaurierung von Papyrus und Anderen Schriftträgern aus Ägypten (Restoration of Papyrus and Other Writing Supports from Egypt).” Studia Amstelodamensia ad epigraphicam, ius antiquum et papyrologicam pertinentia 24. Zutphen, Holland : Terra Publishing Co.

Fackelmann, Anton. 1970. “The Restoration of the Herculaneum Papyri and Other Recent Finds.” Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies 17: 144-147.

Farke, Heidemarie. 1986. "Archäologische Fasern, Geflechte, Gewebe. Bestimmung und Konservierung (Archaeological fibers, braids, tissues : identification and conservation).“ Restaurierung und Museumstechnik 7. Weimar : Museum für Ur- und Frühgeschichte Thüringens.

Fischer, Anton. 1958. "Die Wiederinstandsetzung des Codex traditionum ecclesiae Ravennatis der Bayerischen Staatsbibliothek München (The restoration of the Codex traditionum ecclesiae Ravennatis of the Bavarian State Library in Munich)." Zeitschrift für Bibliothekswesen und Bibliographie 5: 291-305.

Flood, Per R. and Øystein Wendelbo. 1975. "The Enzymatic Extraction of Papyri from Cartonnage: A Control Study by Light- and Scanning Electron Microscopy." Restaurator 2(2): 53-59.

Fosse, Brynjhulf, Fredrik C. Störmer, and Knut Kleve. 1981. “An Easy and Cheap Method of Removing Papyrus from Gesso Cartonnage.” Symbolae Osloeness 56: 171-179.

Fuchs, Robert. 2012. “Unrolling a Papyrus: Investigations into an Extraordinary 3500-year Book of the Dead.” Care and Conservation of Manuscripts: Proceedings of the Thirteenth International Seminar Held at the University of Copenhagen, 13th-15th April 2011 13: 215-234.

Galinsky, Eva, Gerhard Banik, and Wolfgang Wächter. 2001. "Kunststoff-Folien in der Papierrestaurierung 1950-1970. Schwerpunkt Deutschland (Plastic films in paper restoration 1950-1970. Focus on Germany).“ Leipzig : Zentrum für Bucherhaltung.

Gilberg, Mark. 1988. “Antonio Piaggio and the Conservation of the Herculaneum Papyri.” Early Advances in Conservation. Occasional Paper 65: 1-6.

Graf, Jörg. 2004. "Ein Papyruskonvolut wird lesbar: Kiste A der Papyrussammlung der Universitätsbibliothek Leipzig. (A Convolute of Papyri is Made Legible: Box A of the Papyrus Collection of the University Library)." Restauro 110 (8): 527-531.

Graf, Jörg. 2008. Kapillarreinigung, eine schonende Methode in der Restaurierung (Capillary cleaning, a gentle method in the restoration)?“ Ägypten lesbar machen- die klassische Konservierung/Restaurierung von Papyri und neure Verfahren: Gesammelte Beiträge des 1. Internationalen Workshops der Papyrusrestauratoren Leipzig, 7-9.09.2006. Berlin : Walter de Gruyter. 23-27.

Graf, Jörg. 2012. "Papyrusrestaurierung an der Universitätsbibliothek (Papyrus restoration at the university library).“ Das Buch in Antike, Mittelalter und Neuzeit, Sonderbestände der Universitätsbibliothek Leipzig. Wiesbaden : Harrassowitz Verlag.

Hanley, Victoria. 2017. "Reed All About It: Conservation, Framing & Glazing of Papyri at National Museums Scotland." Tru Vue.

Harrauer, Hermann. 1985. Bericht über das 1. Wiener Symposium für Papyrusrestaurierung (Report on the 1st Vienna Symposium for Papyrus Restoration) 4.-8.06.1984. Wien : Holzhausen.

Hedrick, C. W. 1976. “Techniques in the Placement of Papyrus Fibres.” The Bulletin of the American Society of Papyrologists 13: 143-155.

Hunt, Arthur Surridge. 1983. “The Damping out and Flattening of Papyri.” The Oxyrhynchas Papyri 50. The British Academy by the Egypt Exploration Society.

Ibscher, Hugo. 1941. "Über die Wiederherstellung und Konservierung der Vendidad Handschrift K 1. (On the restoration and preservation of the Vendidad manuscript)" The Avesta Codices K 3a, K 3b and K 1. Bd. 1. Kopenhagen. 13-17.

Ibscher, Rolf. 1959. "Die Wiederherstellung des Berliner Proverbienkodex. Der Weg zu einer neuen Konservierungsmethode für Papyri (The restoration of the Berlin Proverbien Codex. The path to a new method of preserving papyri)." Zentralblatt für Bibliothekswesen Heft 73: 362-371.

Ibscher, Rolf. 1964. “Wandlungen in der Praxis der Papyruskonservation (Changes in the practice of papyrus conservation).” Actes du Xe Congres Int.de Papyrologues, Wrocklaw-Krakau. 249-257.

Iskander, Nasry. 1996. "The Conservation and Preservation of Islamic Books, Papers, Manuscripts, Papyri, and Parchments." The Conservation and Preservation of Islamic Manuscripts: Proceedings of the Third Conference of al-Furqan Islamic Heritage Foundation: 18th-19th November 1995. London: al-Furqan Islamic Heritage Foundation. 119-130.

Janis, K. 1997. "Die Bearbeitung eines ptolemäischen Mumienpektorales im Interessenkonflikt zwischen Papyrologie und Restaurator (The Treatment of a Ptolemaic Mummy Trapping: A Conflict of Interest Between Papyrology and Conservation)." Göttinger Miszellen: Beiträge zur ägyptologischen Diskussion 161. 87-95.

Kamrin, Janice. 2016. "Scrolling through Imhotep's Book of the Dead." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Blogs : Now at the Met. Accessed November 19, 2019.

Kaye, Marieka. 2017. “Exploring New Glass Technology for the Glazing of Papyri.” The Book and Paper Group Annual 36: 150-157.

Kaye, Marieka. 2016. "Exploring New Glass Technology for the Glazing of Papyri." Proceedings of the 28th Congress of Papyrology: Barcelona 1-6 August 2016.

Kaye, Marieka. 2015. "Housing Papyrus at the University of Michigan Library." Archival Products 19(1): 1-3. Accessed November 19, 2019.

Krutzsch, Myriam, and Jörg Graf. 2008. "Ägypten lesbar machen- die klassische Konservierung/ Restaurierung von Papyri und neuere Verfahren (Make Egypt readable - the classic preservation / restoration of papyri and newer processes)." Gesammelte Beiträge des 1. Internationalen Workshops der Papyrusrestauratoren, Leipzig 7.-9. September 2006 (Archiv für Papyrusforschung, Beih. 24), hrsg. v. Jörg Graf und Myriam Krutzsch. Walter de Gruyter. 28-33.

Krutzsch, Myriam. 1999. "Ein Papyrusfund aus dem Alten Reich: wie ist er gewickelt, wie kann man ihn entfalten? (Old Kingdom papyrus findings: how was it rolled up? How to unfold, unroll it?)." Restauro Forum 6: 460-463.

Krutzsch, Myriam, and Jörg Graf. 2006. "Falttechniken an altägyptischen Handschriften (Folding techniques on ancient Egyptian manuscripts)." Ägypten lesbar machen – die klassische Konservierung/Restaurierung von Papyri und neuere Verfahren (Making Egypt readable - the classic preservation / restoration of papyri and newer processes), eds. J. Graf and M. Krutzsch. Berlin : Walter de Gruyter. 71-83.

Krutzsch, Myriam. 2009. "Geduld Will Beim Dem Werke Sein. (Conservation Research in the Berlin Papyrus Collection)." Research in Book and Paper Conservation in Europe: A State of the Art, Ed. P. Engel. Austria : Ferdinand Berger. 43-50.

Krutzsch, Myriam. 1994. "Geduld Will Beim Werke Sein. Zur Erinnerung an Hugo Ibschers Aufnahme in der Berliner Papyrussammlung 1894 (Patience wants to be at work. In memory of Hugo Ibscher's recording in the Berlin papyrus collection in 1894)." Archiv für Papyrusforschung und verwandte Gebiete 40(2): 165-166.

Krutzsch, Myriam. 2015. "Materialtechnische Beobachtungen während der Restaurierung (Material engineering observations during restoration)." Magika Hieratika in Berlin, Hannover, Heidelberg und München (Ägyptische und Orientalische Papyri und Handschriften des Ägyptischen Museums und Papyrussammlung Berlin, Band 2). Berlin : De Gruyter. 1-74.

Krutzsch, Myriam. 2016. “Mounting of Papyrus Codex Sheets.” Journal of Paper Conservation 17(2): 67-69.

Kulneff-Eriksson, Karin. 2009. "The Papyrus Collection in Lund." Care and Conservation of Manuscripts 11: Proceedings of the 11th International Seminar Held at the University of Copenhagen 24-25 April 2008. Copenhagen: Museum Tusculanum Press, University of Copenhagen. 91-103.

Lau-Lamb, Leyla. 2010. "Advanced Papyrological Information System Guidelines for Conservation of Papyrus." University of Michigan Library.

Lau-Lamb, Leyla. 2007. "A New Material for the Conservation of Papyrus." The Book and Paper Group Annual 26: 187-188.

Leach, B.: Papyrus. 2003. Conservation DistList. http://palimpsest.stanford.edu/byform/mailinglists/cdl/2003/0911.html (accessed April 5, 2008).

Leach, Bridget. 2006. “A Conservation History of the Ramesseum Papyri.” The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 92: 225 - 240.

Leach, Bridget. 1999. "Conservation of Papyrus." Report on The Tomb of Senneferi, Theban Tomb 99.

Leach, Bridget. 2005. "Mounting Papyri at the British Museum." Art on Paper: Mounting and Housing, Eds. J. Rayner, J. M. Kosek, and B. Christensen. London : Archetype Publications. 193-198.

Leach, Bridget. 1995. "Papyrus conservation at the British Museum." II rotolo librario.fabbricazione, restauro, organizzazione interna: Papyrologica Lupiensia. Lecce : Universita degli Studi di Lecce. 137-161.

Leach, Bridget and Lorna Green. 1995. "Removal of Unsuitable Linings from Illustrated Papyri: An Investigation into Suitable Consolidants and Facings." Conservation in Ancient Egyptian Collections: papers given at the conference organized by the United Kingdom Institute for Conservation, Archaeology Section, and International Academic Projects, held at London, 20-21 July 1995, Eds. C. E. Brown, F. Macalister, and M. M. Wright. London: Archetype Publications. 29-35.

Lewis, Nicola. 2005. “East Meets West: Solutions for Housing Papyri and Thangkas.” Art on Paper: Mounting and Housing, Eds. J. Rayner, J.M. Kosek, and B. Christensen. London: Archetype Publications. 187-192.

Maehler, Herwig. 1980. “A New Method of Dismounting Papyrus Cartonnage.” Bulletin of the Institute of Classical Studies 27: 120-122.

Maggen, Michael. 1997. "The Conservation of Papyri Documents Dated to the 4th Century BCE." Restaurator18(3): 153-61.

Makar, Ragai. 1984. “Conservation of Special Materials in the University of Utah Middle East Library.” MELA Notes 31 (Winter): 17 - 24.

Menei, Eve. 2017. "Use of East Asian materials and techniques on papyrus: Inspiration and adaptation ." Adapt & Evolve 2015: East Asian Materials and Techniques in Western Conservation. Proceedings from the International Conference of the Icon Book & Paper Group, London 8-10 April, 2015. London: The Institute of Conservation. 118-127.

Menei, Eve. and Laurence Caylux. 2016. “Study of Inlay Mounting of Prints and Drawings at the Louvre Museum: The Results of Several Decades of Experience.” Journal of Paper Conservation 17(1): 20-27.

Menei, Eve. and Laurence Caylux. 2013. ”Strategy in the Case of a Wrecked Papyrus: Is an Intervention Appropriate?” Paper Conservation: Decisions & Compromises, ICOM-CC Graphic Documents Working Group Interim Meeting, Vienna 17-19 April 2013. 135-138.

Menei, Eve. 2012. “Montage de Papyri Recto/Verso: Bilan, Réalisations et Recherches.” Support Tracé 12: 48-54.

Menei, Eve. 2008. "Fifteen Years of Papyri Conservation at the Louvre: The Influence of Japanese Techniques." Archiv für Papyrusforschung und verwandte Gebiete - Beihefte 24. 62-67.

Noack, Gisela. 1986. "Conservation of Yale's Papyrus Collection." The Book and Paper Group Annual 4: 61-73.

Novak, Vanessa. 2016. “Wiedergeburt eines vergessenen Papyrus: zur Konservierung und Restaurierung einer Papyrusrolle der Ägyptisch-Orientalischen Sammlung (Rebirth of a Forgotten Papyrus: The Preservation and Restoration of a Papyrus Scroll from the Egyptian and Near Eastern Collection)." Technologische Studien: Konservierung, Restaurierung, Forschung, Technologie 12: 96-123.

Owen, Antoinette, and Rachel Danzing. 1993. "The History and Treatment of the Papyrus Collection at The Brooklyn Museum." The Book and Paper Group Annual 12. Accessed November 21, 2019.

Pack, Susanne P., and Nathan Stolow. 1978. “A Microclimate for a Fayum Painting.” Studies in Conservation 23: 47-56.

Peterman, Glen. 1994. “Conservation of the Petra Papyri.” The Biblical Archaeologist 57(4): 242-243.

Pintaudi, Rosario. 1976/77. “Il Restauro dei Papiri: Note, Proposte, Esemplificazioni (The Restoration of Papyri: Notes, Proposals, Case Studies).” Bolletino dell’Istituto Centrale per la Patologia del Libro “Alfonso Gallo” 34: 3-33.

Plenderleith, Harold James and Alfred Emil Anthony Werner. 1971. The Conservation of Antiquities and Works of Art: Treatment, Repair, and Restoration. London : Oxford University Press. 44-69.

Ragab, Hasan. 1984. “Establishment of an International Papyrus Restoration Centre.” Spirit of Enterprise: The 1984 Rolex Awards. London : Aurum Press Ltd.. 298-301.

Ragab, Hasan. 1982. “Une Nouvelle Methode Pour la Restauration Integrate du Papyrus Avarie (A New Method for the Complete Restoration of Damaged Papyrus)." La Conservazione delle Carte Antiche 3: 11-18.

Rathgen, Friedrich. 1905. The Preservation of Antiquities. Cambridge: The Cambridge University Press. Accessed November 21, 2019.

Regulski, Ilona. 2016. "“Fill my hand with a papyrus sheet so that I can tell you a lot!” A papyrus bundle for Bridget Leach ." British Museum Studies in Ancient Egypt and Sudan 23: 1-5.

Salz, Karl and Ladislav Skrivanek. 1972. "Application of Copolymers for Polyvinyl Acetals as a Means for Protection, Preservation, Restoration, Stabilization, Hydrophobization of Papyrus, Papers, Books and/or Manuscripts." U.S. Patent No. 3,698,925. Washington, DC : US Patent Office.

Shaheen, A. Moeiz. 1981. Scientific Basis of Treatment and Conservation of Parchment and Papyrus. Cairo: General Organization for Government Printing Offices.

Shepherd, W. H.. 2008. "The Preservation and Conservation of Papyri." MLIS 7710 Archival Theory and Issues Spring 2008.

Smith, L. Herman. 1938. “Manuscript Repair in European Archives: II the Continent.” The American Archivist 1(2): 51-77.

Smith, Richard Daniel. 1972. Treatment of Cellulosic Materials. U.S. Patent No. 3,676,182. Washington, DC : US Patent Office.

Stanley, Ted. 2005. "On the Road to Cairo: Conducting Papyrus Conservation Courses in Egypt." The Book & Paper Group Annual 24: 65-69.

Stanley, Ted. 1994. "Papyrus Storage at Princeton University." The Book and Paper Group Annual 13: 49-55.

Steinman, Arnold. 1997. "Static Control Technology Preserves Ancient Egyptian Artifacts." Electrical Overstress/Electrostatic Discharge Symposium Proceedings, September 23-25, 1997. 298-302. Accessed November 21, 2019.

Streri, A. 2012. "Mounting Papyri: Example of Mounting a Papyrus Collection of the Islamic Art Department in the Louvre Museum." Journal of Paper Conservation: IADA Reports 13(3): 32-35.

Sutter, Hans-Peter. 2002. Holzschädlinge an Kulturgütern erkennen und bekämpfen. Handbuch für Denkmalpfleger, Restauratoren, Konservatoren, Architekten und Holzfachleute (Recognize and combat wood pests on cultural goods. Handbook for monument conservationists, restorers, conservators, architects and wood specialists). Bern : Haupt Verlag.

Taylor, John, Bridget Leach, and Helen Sharp. 2001. "The history and conservation of the papyrus of Tuy." The British Museum Technical Research Bulletin 5: 95-104. Accessed November 21, 2019.

Walker, Anne. 1988. “The Use of a Facing Technique in the Treatment of Fragile Papyri.” Conservation of Ancient Egyptian Materials: Preprints of the Conference of the United Kingdom Institute for Conservation, Archaeology Section, Bristol, December 15-18, 1988. 51-53.

Wallert, Arie. 1989. "The reconstruction of papyrus manufacture: A preliminary investigation." Studies in Conservation 34(1): 1-8.

Watteeuw, Lieve and Christa Hofmann, eds., 2013. "Paper Conservation: Decisions & Compromises." Extended Abstracts presented at the ICOM-CC Graphic Document Working Group - Interim Meeting. Vienna: International Council of Museums.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1974. “Extraction of Papyri from Gesso Cartonnage: A New Method Based on an Enzymatic Approach.” Proceedings of the XIV International Congress of Papyrologists. Oxford. 337-340.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1977. “The Enzymatic Scalpel - on the Use of Proteolytic Enzymes in Restoration of Paper and Papyrus.” Research in Norway Ed. by M.S. Morlensen. Oslo: Norwegian Council for Science and the Humanities. 9-15.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1975. “The Freeing of Papyri from Cartonnage.” Restaurator 2(2): 41-52.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1975. “The Removal of Papyrus from Gesso Cartonnage with Some Remarks on the Separation of Glued Papyri.” Symbolae Osloenses 50: 155-157.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1974. “The Use of Enzymes for Restoration Purposes.” Archives et Bibliothèques de Belgique 12.

Wendelbo, Oystein. 1976. The Use of Proteolytic Enzymes in the Restoration of Paper and Papyrus : a Contribution to Interdisciplinary Applied Research. Bergen, Norway : University Library of Bergen, Division of the Faculty of Medicine.

Wright, Margot M. 1983. “A Method of Extracting Papyri from Cartonnage.” Studies in Conservation 28(3): 1983: 122-126.

Wunderlich, Christian-Heinrich. 1994. Zur Zuverlässigkeit des Korrosionsschutzverfahrens mit Tannin (On the reliability of a corrosion protection procedure using tannin)." Arbeitsblätter für Restauratoren 1: 280-286.

Photography and Imaging

Alexopoulou, Athina, Agathi-Anthoula Kaminari, Athanasios Panagopoulos, and Egert Pöhlmann. 2013. “Multispectral Documentation and Image Processing Analysis of the Papyrus of Tomb II at Daphne, Greece.” Journal of Archaeological Science 40(2): 1242-1249.

Andorlini, Isabella et. al. 1993. “Use of CCD Cameras and Red-extended Photographic Film for Inspection and Recording of Dark Papyri.” Science and Technology for Cultural Heritage 2: 115-122.

Bay, Stephen, Roger Macfarlane, Thomas Wayment and Gregory Bearman. 2010. “Multi-Spectral Imaging vs. Monospectral Infrared Imaging.” Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik Bd. 173: 211 - 217.

Bearman, Gregory. H. and Sheila I. Spiro. 1996. “Archaeological Applications of Advanced Imaging Techniques.” The Biblical Archaeologist 59(1): 56-66.

Bridgman, Clarence F. 1973. "The Radiography of Museum Objects." Expedition Magazine 15(3): 2-14.

Bulow-Jacobsen, Adam. 1979. "Some Considerations on the Quality of Microfilms of Manuscripts." Cahiers de l’Institut du Moyen Âge Grec et Latin 30: 91-104.

Cockle, Walter E. H. 1974. “Taking Photographs of Papyri.” Akten des XIII. Internationalen Papyrologenkongressess, Marburg/Lahn, 2-6 August 1971, Eds. Von E. Kiebling and H.A. Rupprecht. Munich. 83-88.

Coles, Revel. 1978. “International Papyrological Photographic Archive: Report of the Cairo Mission, February/March 1978.” Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 32: 223 - 231.

Helgerson, L. 1987. “Scanners Present Maze of Options.” Mini-Micro Systems 20(1): 71-81.

Kovalchuk, A. “Multispectral imaging of papyri: area segregation by evaluation of their spectral signature correlation.” Proc. SPIE 7388 Ninth International Conference on Correlation Optics December 2009. DOI 10.1117/12.852977.

Labaune, Julien, et. al. 2010. “Papyrus Imaging with Terahertz Time Domain Spectroscopy.” Applied Physics A: Materials Science & Processing 100(3): 607-612.

Wall, E. W. 1981. “Small-Format Photography of Carbonized Papyri.” Proceedings of the XVI International Congress of Papyrology. Chico, California. 677-680.

Enhancement of Script

Allegra, Dario, et al.. 2016. “X-ray Computed Tomography for Virtually Unrolling Damaged Papyri.” Applied Physics A: Materials Science and Processing 122(3): 1-7.

Andorlini, Isabella, et al.. 1993. "Use of CCD Cameras and Red-extended Photographic film for Inspection and Recording of Dark Papyri." Science and Technology for Cultural Heritage 2: 115-122.

Baum, Daniel, et al.. 2017. "Revealing hidden text in rolled and folded papyri." Applied Physics 123(171). Accessed November 21, 2019.

Bertani, Duilio et al. 2008. "High Resolution Digital Recording of Papyri in the Visible and Near Infrared." 17th International Meeting on Heritage Conservation: 20-22 November, Castellón, Vila-Real, Burriana, 2008: Preprints of the Papers to the Congress. Fundación de la Comunidad Valenciana La Llum de les Imatges, Valencia, Spain. 135-138.

Brun, Emmanuel, Marine Cotte, Jon P. Wright, and Marie Ruat. 2016. “Revealing Metallic Ink in Herculaneum Papyri.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" 113(14): 3751-3754.

Coughlin, Ellen K. 1987. “Cameras, Computers Help to Decipher Ancient Texts.” The Chronicle of Higher Education 34(11): A6-A9.

Delattre, Daniel and Emmanuel Brun. 2015. "Lire le contenu des rouleaux carbonisés d'Herculanum sans les ouvrir (Reading the contents of charred Herculaneum rolled papyri without opening them)." Support Tracé 15: 9-16.

Elmer-DeWitt, Philip. 1988. “When the Dead are Revived.” Time. 80-81.

Engel, Patricia. 2014. “Deletions in Manuscripts: Historical Sources and Physical Traces.” Care and Conservation of Manuscripts 14: 109-135.

Fackelmann, Michael. 1971. "Ein neuer Weg zur Wiederherstellung von Papyrus- Kodizes: Die Restaurierung des Wiener Hilarius (A new way to restore papyrus codes: the restoration of Vienna's Hilarius)." Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik 13: 187-194.

Gargano, Marco, et. al. 2015. "A perceptual approach to the fusion of visible and NIR images in the examination of ancient documents.” Journal of Cultural Heritage 16(4): 518-525.

Gibson, Adam, et. al. 2018. "An Assessment of Multimodal Imaging of Subsurface Text in Mummy Cartonnage Using Surrogate Papyrus Phantoms." Heritage Science 6(7): 1-13.

Kwiatkowski, Kazimierz. 1950. ”Zastosowanie lamp analitycznych do odczytywania papirusów (The Use of Analytical Lamps for Reading Papyri).” Meander 5(8): 469-478.

Mochella, Vito, Emmanuel Brun, Claudio Ferrero, and Daniel Delattre. 2015. "Revealing Letters in Rolled Herculaneum Papyri by X-ray Phase-contrast Imaging." Nature Communications 6: 1-6.

Mrusek, Ralf, Fuchs, Robert, and Oltrogge, Doris. 1995. "Spektrale Fenster der Vergangenheit Ein neues Reflektographieverfahren zur Untersuchung von Buchmalerei und historischem Schriftgut (Spectral windows on the past: A new reflectography method for investigating book illumination and historical documents)." Naturwissenschaften 82: 68-79.

Oates, J.F. 1999. “Reading Invisible Ink: Digital Imaging of P.Duk.Inv 716.” Zeitschrift fur Papyrologie und Epigraphik. Bd 127 : 127 - 130.

Oltrogge, D. 2006. "Zerfallen – nicht lesbar – nicht sichtbar. Die Bandpaßfilter-Reflektographie als Hilfsmittel der Handschriftenkunde (Decay - not readable - not visible. Bandpass filter reflectography as an aid to handwriting)." Totenbuch-Forschungen. Gesammelte Beiträge des 2. Internationalen Totenbuch-Symposiums 2005. Hrsg. von Burkhard Backes et al. Wiesbaden. 273-282.

Seales, W. Brent, James Griffioen, and Ryan Baumann. 2011. "Analysis of Herculaneum Papyri With X-ray Computer Tomography." Art 2011: 10th International Conference on Non-destructive Investigations and Microanalysis For the Diagnostics and Conservation of Cultural and Environmental Heritage. Florence, Italy.

Stege, Heike, Hahn, Oliver, and Müller, Jörn. 2004. "Die mobile Mikro-Röntgenfluoreszenzanalyse. Neue Möglichkeiten der In-situ-Untersuchung (Mobile micro X-ray fluorescent analysis: new possibilities for in-situ examination)." Restauro: Forum für Restauratoren, Konservatoren und Denkmalpfleger 6: 385-389.

Terras, Melissa. 2017. “Mummy Mask Cartonnage Imaging Program.” University College London, Arcadia Grant 3733 Project Report. 1-38.

Toth, Michael. 2018. "Integrating Optical Imaging of Mummy Mask Cartonnage." Proceedings of the Society for Imaging Science and Technology Archiving 2018 Conference. Washington D.C.

Tournie, A., K. Fleischer, I. Bukreeva, F. Palermo, M. Perino, A. Cedola, C. Andraud, G. Ranoccia. 2019. “Ancient Greek text concealed on the back of unrolled papyrus revealed through shortwave-infrared hyperspectral imaging.” Sci.Adv. 5; eaav 8936. DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aav8936

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This page was created in October 2018 by Alexander Bero using material contributed by Marieka Kaye and Theresa Smith.

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