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Greek Papyrology


Admission requirements

Regular MA admission; sufficient knowledge of ancient Greek (if in doubt, contact the instructor).


Greek papyri form an important source for the history of Greek, Roman and Byzantine Egypt. Students will read varied, mainly documentary, papyri from their editions and will study some original papyri from photos, learning to place them in their historical and cultural context.

Course objectives

Students will:

  • have a basic knowledge of Greek papyrology and its apparatus;

  • be able to decipher easier documentary papyri;

  • be able to situate them in their historical and cultural context;

  • have acquired some basic editorial skills.


Timetable to be arranged between student(s) and instructor.

Mode of instruction

Seminar, self-study and written assignments

Course Load

Total course load is 10 EC (= 280 hours):

  • attending seminars: 14 hours

  • preparing for seminars: 56 hours

  • reading literature and writing assignments: 170 hours

  • preparing oral exam: 40 hours

Assessment method

Active presence in class (5%);
Written assignments during the course (20%);
Oral exam at the end (25%);
Paper (50%).

In case the final mark is unsatisfactory, a student can take an oral exam.


Yes, Blackboard

Reading list

R.S. Bagnall (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Papyrology (2009).
P.W. Pestman, The New Papyrological Primer. Second Edition, Revised (1994).
More literature announced during class.


Students are required to register for this course via uSis, the course registration system of Leiden University.
Exchange and Study Abroad students, please see the Study in Leiden website for information on how to apply.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

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Dr. F.A.J. Hoogendijk “”