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The Duplicate Texts
of the
Tale of Sinuhe


A The Amherst fragments (m-q)
Five small fragments originally forming part of B below and containing parts of the first lines of the Story of Sinuhe. The writing is hieratic of the Middle Kingdom (12th-13th Dyn.). These fragments once formed part of the first (missing) 16 lines of Pap. Berlin 3022, the last fragment (m) almost joins the B papyrus.
For more detail see Newberry: The Amherst Papyri, p.18-19.
B Pap. Berlin 3022
This papyrus dates from the 12th Dyn. In its present state, it lacks the beginning of the story and contains a total of 311 lines.
For more detail see Gardiner: Die Erzählung des Sinuhe, p.5
R The Ramesside Papyrus, Pap. Berlin 10499
This papyrus dates to the Middle Kingdom. It contains the beginning of the story and comprises a total of 203 lines.
For more detail see Gardiner: Die Erzählung des Sinuhe, p.3-4
G M. Golenischeff's Pap. (P. Moscow 4657)
A much torn and fragmented papyrus; five additional small fragments identified by Posener and Caminos. The current fragments identify four columns of horizontal hieratic text, equating to R1-47(B22) (column 1 and 2), R81-90=B56-66 (column 3), only 2 signs exist of column 4.
For more detail see Gardiner: Die Erzählung des Sinuhe, p.5
For more detail see Caminos: Literary Fragments in the Hieratic Script, p.51-52, pl.24-25.
H Papyrus Hagareh 1, UC 32773
A late Middle Kingdom papyrus fragment (10 cm. in width by 15 cm. in height), found in a cemetery of that period at Harageh, at the mouth of the Fayum, and preserves part of the central portion of the tale (B103-110). It is not recorded in the publication exactly where it was found.
Now resides in the Petrie Museum, London.
PBA Papyrus Bueno Aires
Discovered in the Museum of Natural History in Bueno Aires, no information is available regarding the place of its origin in Egypt. The writing is clear and in vertical columns, reproducing part of Sinuhe B251-6. The dimensions are approximately 18 cm. in width by 10 cm. in height, the first and last columns being almost totally obliterated. The fact of its being written in vertical columns is sufficient demonstration of it date (the second half of the 12th Dyn. or the 13th Dyn.).
For more detail see Rosenvasser : JEA 20, p.47-50.
OAshm Ashmolean Ost.
A large limestone ostracon in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, which gives 130, partly incomplete lines. It is, however, an inferior copy, dating from the 19th Dyn.
The details of its original discovery are unknown, but it can be safely assumed that it came from Deir el-Medina. It measures 31.5 cm. in width by 88.5 cm. in height. The upper part of the recto is perfectly smooth and the writing, which resembles that of other Ramesside ostraca of the story, small, neat and regular. Lower down the surface is rougher, and the writing becomes larger and less careful; the deterioration is even more marked on the lower half of the verso, where irregularities of the surface have made the scribes task very difficult. When the story breaks off in mid-sentence (at a place corresponding with B280) the writing is a course scrawl; the impression of careless haste which it conveys is heightened by a number of tiny blots. The preservation of the surface is on the whole good except for a patch in the lower half of the verso where most of the ink has disappeared.
For more detail see Barns : Ashmolean Ostracon of Sinuhe .
OB1 Berlin Ost. P.12341
A potsherd ostracon of the Hyksos period. The verso has a few words from the much-disputed passage R58-60=B34-36.
OB2 Berlin Ost. P.12379
A piece of limestone bearing, in bold 19th Dyn. hieratic, a duplicate of parts of B273-79.
OB3 Berlin Ost. P.12623
A large piece of inscribed limestone found by Dr. Möller near the tomb of Sennedjem (TT1) at Deir el-Medina (Spring 1913). The writing is not unlike that of C, and belongs to a 19th or 20th Dyn. hand. The recto contains the greater portion of R1-19, and the verso a more damaged duplicate of R49-68=B25-44.
OB4 Berlin Ost. P.12624
A smaller limestone fragment discovered at the same time and place as OB3 above, which it resembles in its handwriting. Duplicate of R38-51=B13-27.
This ostracon was 'lost' during the war (WW2).
OBdt Borchardt's Ost.
Limestone. 14.5 cm. height, 9.0 cm. width. Ten and a half lines beginnings in black hieratic script with red verse points, of the 19th or 20th Dyn.
Duplicate of R1-10.
For more detail see Borchardt, ZÄS 66 (1931), p.14-15.
C Cairo Ost. 25216
Limestone. 1 m. 6.0 cm. long, 22.0 cm. height. A long stone broken in two, having eight and a half lines of a good hieratic writing from the beginning of the tale. The writing is very neat, although faint in parts. Discovered in 1896 at Deir el-Medina at the tomb of Sennedjem. and dated about the 19th Dyn.
Duplicate of R1-51(B27).
For more detail see Gardiner: Die Erzählung des Sinuhe, p.5
For more detail see Daressy, Ostraca (Catalogue général des Antiquities Égyptiennes de Musée de Caire); Cairo: 1901, pl.41.
OCl Clère Ost.
Limestone. 15.5 cm. height, 19.0 cm. width, presenting one almost smooth face (recto) and one irregular face in which a flint nodule is flush with the surface (verso). The two faces are inscribed with a hieratic text in horizontal lines: on the recto are 8 lines in black ink with punctuation in red; on the verso are 6 lines, the first of which consists almost entirely of a rubric terminated by a red verse-point, all the rest being in black. The ostracon is incomplete: it is broken on the left (very recent breakage to judge from the absence of patina), and the ends of the lines are lacking on both recto and verso. The restoration of the text from the other Sinuhe sorces shows that there remains little more than two-fifths of the original length of the lines. Only the first line of the verso belongs to the tale of Sinuhe.
Almost certainly came from Deir el-Medina and is Ramesside in date.
Duplicate of R51-66=B26-43.
For more detail see Clère, JEA 25, p.16-29.
OCy Cerný Ost.
Limestone. 5.5 cm. height, 11.5 cm. width, presenting one smooth and one irregular face; the smooth face is the only one inscribed. The text consists of 3 lines of hieratic writing in black ink, with punctuation in red. The ostracon is incomplete: both the beginnings and the ends of the 3 lines are missing, and it is moreover fairly certain that several lines are lost before line 1 (the break at the top is fairly recent). The reconstruction, from the parallel texts, of the lost parts between lines 1-2 and 2-3 shows the present length of the lines to be hardly half their original length. At the bottom the break is old but certainly posterior to the writing, the end of 1ine 3 having been taken away by this breakage. In view of these facts one cannot affirm that line 3, in spite of the rather high blank space under it, was the last of the text.
Almost certainly came from Deir el-Medina and is Ramesside in date, probably the second half of the 19th Dyn.
Duplicate of R54-57=B30-34.
For more detail see Clère, JEA 25.
DM1 OIFAO 1011 (Deir el-Medina) [aka. OCP2]
Limestone. 13.0 cm. height, 8.0 cm. width. Incomplete on all sides, except in the beginning of the lines 5-6. Text is written on the two faces of the ostracon; recto has eleven lines of black ink; completely faded on the verso (remains of some traces)
Recto = B108-114.
DM2 OIFAO 1045 (recto) (Deir el-Medina) [aka. OCP1]
Limestone. 17.5 cm. height, 11.0 cm width. Only the left side seems to be complete. Written text is in black ink on the two faces; recto - eleven lines; verso - four lines drawn in a hand different to the one of the recto.
Recto = B38-90.
DM3 OIFAO 1174 (Deir el-Medina)
Limestone. 15.0 cm. height, 17.5 cm. width. Large missing bursts on the periphery. Seven lines have black ink with punctuation in black.
= B7-13.
DM4 OIFAO 1437 (Deir el-Medina)
Limestone. 8.0 cm. height, 10.0 cm. width. Complete at the top and at the beginning of the three first lines. Six written lines have black ink with punctuation in black.
= R67-73.
DM5 OIFAO 1438 (Deir el-Medina)
Limestone. 7.5 cm. height, 3.5 cm. width. Complete at the top. Surface scraped. Fragment of a very big ostracon. Four written lines have black ink with punctuation in red.
= R9-18.
DM6 OIFAO 1439 (Deir el-Medina) [aka. Opos]
Limestone. 10.5 cm. height, 17.5 cm. width, in four fragments. Partially complete on the right. Eight written lines in black ink with punctuation in red. On the verso are four lines of the red ink, the two last illegible.
Recto = B147-160.
DM7 OIFAO 1440 (Deir el-Medina)
Limestone. 6.5 cm. height, 10 cm. width. Incomplete on all sides. Five written lines in black ink with punctuation in red.
= B188-199.
DM8 OIFAO 1609 (Deir el-Medina)
Limestone. 8.0 cm. height, 5.7 cm. width. Partially complete at the top and on the right. Five written lines to the black ink.
= R1-4.
OGard Gardiner Ost. 354
Limestone. 19.5 cm. height, 19.5 cm. width. Inscribed on one side only with five lines of large writing in black ink with red verse points. Incomplete except on the right. Line 2 shows signs of correction.
= B126-30.
L London Ost. 5629
Limestone. 17.0 cm. height, 29.5 cm. width, 5.2 cm. thickness. The eight lines of hieratic on one side only are written in black ink with red verse points. It is also inscribed with the colophon, the indication that the end of the text has been reached.
About the same date as C above, 19th Dyn.
= B300-end.
For more detail see Gardiner: Die Erzählung des Sinuhe, p.5
OP1 Petrie Ost. 58 [UC 31996]
A small fragment of limestone (7.0 cm. width by 7.0 cm. height) with a few words from the passage R47-50=B22-25. Date about 19th-20th Dyn.
Now resides in the Petrie Museum, London.
OP2 Petrie Ost. 12 [UC 34322]
A small fragment of limestone (9.0 cm. width by 9.0 cm. height); soil-stained and faint in places. The writing is of the 19th or 20th Dyn. The recto contains portions of B236-245, the verso portions of B248-253.
Now resides in the Petrie Museum, London.
OP3 Petrie Ost. 59 [UC 31997]
A small chip of limestone (6.0 cm. width by 8.0 cm. height) with some words from B250-256. Probably 19th or 20th Dyn.
Now resides in the Petrie Museum, London.
OP4 Petrie Ost. 66 [UC 34323]
A small and fragmentary limestone chip (10.0 cm. width by 7.0 cm. height) inscribed in the same hand as OP2 above. Contains fragments of the widely divergent text of B142-151.
Now resides in the Petrie Museum, London.
OS Senenmut Ost. 149 [aka. OH]
Limestone. 26.0 cm. height, 38.0 cm. width, 4.5 cm. thick. Inscribed on both sides, only the recto contains the story of Sinuhe, consisting of six lines entirely in black ink. Incomplete, beginning and end of the first five rows missing, only the beginning of the last row is missing. Found in the rubble below the tomb of Senenmut (TT71) at Thebes and dated to the 18th Dyn..
Duplicate of R1-12.
For more detail see Hayes, Ostraka and Name Stones from the Tom of Sen-mut, intro.
OV Varille Ost.
Limestone. 11.5 cm. height, 18.0 cm. width, presenting one smooth face (recto) and one irregular face (verso). The two faces are inscribed with a hieratic text in horizontal lines: recto has 5 lines in black ink (except some red signs at the beginning of line 4), with punctuation in red; verso has 6 lines in black with punctuation in red. Only the recto contains the story of Sinuhe. The ostracon is incomplete: it is broken on the right (old breakage), and the beginnings of the lines are missing on both rt. and vs. The reconstruction of the Sinuhe text from the other sources shows that about three-fifths of the length of the lines is missing.
Almost certainly came from Deir el-Medina and is Ramesside in date, probably the second half of the 19th Dyn.
Duplicate of R51-60=B27-36.
For more detail see Clère, JEA 25, p.16-29.