[Paleopsych] Independent: Eureka! Extraordinary discovery unlocks secrets of the ancients

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Eureka! Extraordinary discovery unlocks secrets of the ancients

   By David Keys and Nicholas Pyke

    17 April 2005

    Thousands of previously illegible manuscripts containing work by some
    of the greats of classical literature are being read for the first
    time using technology which experts believe will unlock the secrets of
    the ancient world.

    Among treasures already discovered by a team from Oxford University
    are previously unseen writings by classical giants including
    Sophocles, Euripides and Hesiod. Invisible under ordinary light, the
    faded ink comes clearly into view when placed under infra-red light,
    using techniques developed from satellite imaging.

    The Oxford documents form part of the great papyrus hoard salvaged
    from an ancient rubbish dump in the Graeco-Egyptian town of
    Oxyrhynchus more than a century ago. The thousands of remaining
    documents, which will be analysed over the next decade, are expected
    to include works by Ovid and Aeschylus, plus a series of Christian
    gospels which have been lost for up to 2,000 years.

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