The project of the papyri of Halle

The papyrus collection of the Seminar of Classical Studies "Robertinum" at the Martin-Luther-University in Halle with its approximately 250 papyri, wax- and lead-tablets belongs to the smaller papyrus collections in Germany. Besides few but important literary texts ( Sappho , Dionysius Thrax ) the collection possesses documentary papyri of different kind, mostly from Ptolemaic and Byzantine-Arabic times. Without doubt the most important and most famous pieces of the papyrus collection in Halle are the Dikaiomata , a collection of royal laws and decrees and excerpts of the city law of Alexandria from the 3rd century BC, and some Hieratic fragments of an unique mythological lexicon . Like many other German papyrus collections the collection in Halle was founded before World War I. Most of the objects, which were acquired then, came from the Deutsches Papyruskartell and were purchased by the Seminar of Classics of the University at Halle between 1907 and 1913. Some pieces came from the private collections of the Halle classicist Friedrich Blaß and the Halle philologist Friedrich Bechtel. Much later the Institute of Classics gained the private collection of the Berlin pastor Julius Kurth, which was donated to the Institute by his descendants. Part of this donation were also the handwritten and richly illustrated catalogues, which Kurth made for his collection.

Important Publications

  • Graeca Halensis (Hg.): Dikaiomata. Auszüge aus den alexandrinischen Gesetzen und Verordnungen in einem Papyrus des Philologischen Seminars der Universität Halle (Pap. Hal. 1), mit einem Anhang weiterer Papyri derselben Sammlung, Berlin 1913. (P.Hal.)
  • Arthur Mentz: Ein Schülerheft mit altgriechischer Kurzschrift. Neun Wachstafeln des Instituts für Altertumswissenschaften Robertinum zu Halle (Saale) (= Quellen zur Geschichte der Kurzschrift, Bd. 1), Bayreuth 1940.



The Papyrus Project Halle-Jena-Leipzig

During the joint project with Jena and, which was generously funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft, following persons participated in the cataloguing:


  • Prof. Dr. Burkhard Meißner (2003 to 2004)
  • Seminar für Klassische Altertumswissenschaften
  • Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

  • Prof. Dr. Andreas Mehl (2004 to 2005)
  • Seminar für Klassische Altertumswissenschaften
  • Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg

Responsible for the scientific treatment

  • Marius Gerhardt, M.A.
  • Research Assistant (DFG, August 2003 to July 2005)
  • Seminar für Klassische Altertumswissenschaften
  • Martin-Luther-Universität Halle-Wittenberg