Ostraka and the Nile: our annual visit to Aswan

Last week (1-8 march) Amalia Zomeño and I spent a week of work at the warehouse of the Council of Antiquities in Aswan, Egypt, studying the ostraca excavated by the Swiss institute (our annual visit: we have already reported our activity in the pashere). To date, there are 1823 ostraca in almost all possible languages found in Egypt. A high percentage of them are unsurprisingly in Greek, mostly military and administrative documents from the Roman period, although there is a remarkably interesting group of Arabic texts (this year they almost hit the 200), that attest to the small economy of this city in the period around the 9th-10th cent. 

 

This year we brought with us an IR camera and photographed away as many ostraca we could. Even if it was not a very professional camera, and we are not experienced photographers, we managed to obtain very good results in many cases which will help reading some difficult texts. See the images below:

On the way back I had the fortune of admiring Alexandria from the sky. Absolutely wonderful!

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