Dave Nielsen


manuscript, Egypt, Didymus Papyri


In 1984 BYU acquired its most prized manuscript holding, the Didymus Papyri. This original acquisition consisted of a full quire or gathering of 10 papyrus bifolia (20 pages) from a cache of manuscripts re-discovered in an ancient stone quarry in 1941 outside of Cairo, Egypt. Regretfully, in the almost 25 years since BYU's acquiring these amazing texts, little to nothing has been done with them. They have not been published and so the world at large has not been able to benefit from the knowledge contained in them, not about their source, Didymus of Alexandria, nor Egyptian Christianity of the fourth century. Indeed, the scholarly world at large does not even know we have them. In addition, hardly anything is known of how and why these texts were preserved, yet forgotten to history. This paper attempts to fill the latter lacuna, and will explain the reason why these texts came to rest where they have, thus allowing us to complete part of the puzzle of BYU's most little-known gem, the Didymus Papyri.


The Library Student Research Grant program encourages outstanding student achievement in research, fosters information literacy, and stimulates original scholarship.

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Harold B. Lee Library