A 2,000-Year-Old Mystery Papyrus Reveals Its Secrets

Historical |

The Discovery

The University of Basel in Switzerland contains an impressive collection of 65 papyri in five languages. Even though all of these documents are an important testament to the past, there's this singular papyrus that has stood out as an oddity. This very famous papyrus has been an enigma for several hundred years. It was first thought that this papyrus might have come from the art collection of Basilius Amerbach, the document is more ancient than the rest of scrolls. While the other parchments and pieces of papyrus were acquired by the university in 1900 for its classical studies curriculum, this particular papyrus dates back to the 16th century and "has puzzled generations of researchers," notes the academic institution. This papyrus that was written in Greek, had mirror text on both sides, with the letters going in the opposite direction than they should.