David Armstrong

in The Oxford Handbook of Hellenic Studies

Published in print August 2009 | ISBN: 9780199286140
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Classics and Ancient History


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  • Classical Studies
  • Greek and Roman Papyrology
  • Historical Archaeology



This article argues that manuscript studies is similar to papyrology. However, people are dealing with the more direct, and to that extent more ‘original’, sources, whose study expands the body of textual evidence for ancient Greece today – notably the papyri scraps of Oxyrhynchus, and the bookrolls of Herculaneum. It is true that new imaging techniques constantly improve the quantity and quality of the texts people can recover. However, upon reflection working with the Herculaneum papyri, it remains the case that, whether people are considering a medieval manuscript or a first-century papyrus, the evidence these provide is determined by their reception.

Keywords: manuscript studies; Oxyrhynchus papyri; Herculaneum papyri; reception studies; ancient Greece; textual evidence

Article.  4948 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Greek and Roman Papyrology ; Historical Archaeology

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