[First posted in AWOL 16 September 2009. Most recently updated 22 May 2013]
Trismegistos [TM], called after the famous epithet of Hermes - Thoth, the Egyptian god of wisdom and writing who also played a major role in Greek religion and philosophy, is a platform aiming to surmount barriers of language and discipline in the study of texts from the ancient world, particularly late period Egypt and the Nile valley (roughly BC 800 - 800 AD).
The core component of TM is Trismegistos Texts, currently counting 165893 entries. When the database was created in 2005, it focused on providing information (metadata) on published papyrological documents from Graeco-Roman Egypt. Chronological boundaries are always artificial, and the nature of the sources soon suggested that BC 800 and AD 800 were more suited. Since egyptology does not know a disciplinary boundary between papyri and inscriptions, TM also decided to expand by adding all epigraphic material as well. Papyrology on the other hand includes also writing tablets from outside Egypt, which led us to widen our geographical scope to the entire ancient world. Finally, since the distinction between published and unpublished is increasingly less productive in a digital environment, we now no longer discriminate in that respect either. In principle, however, we still provide only metadata.
This means that Trismegistos increasingly wants to be a platform where information can be found about all texts from antiquity, thus facilitating cross-cultural and cross-linguistic research. This will of course only be possible through cooperation with all players in the field, since our aim is to lead people to the partner websites, where more information, often including also photographs, transliterations and translations of the texts, can be found.
Several aspects of the Texts database have been elaborated in the course of successive projects (see History) and have become separate databases linked with the core Trismegistos Texts database.
- The Collections database, built on the Leuven Homepage of Papyrus Collections, is a set of currently 2530 modern institutional and private collections of texts and their 123,524 inventory numbers. It is searchable both separately and in the Texts database.
- The Archives database, built on the Leuven Homepage of Papyrus Archives, is a set of currently 464 collections of texts in antiquity, mainly in Egypt, and the 16,461 texts that are part of these archives. It is searchable separately, leading to the texts themselves.
- The People database, building on the Prosopographia Ptolemaica, is a complex set of prosopographical and onomastic databases. It currently contains 458,045 attestations of personal names of non-royal individuals living in Egypt between BC 800 and AD 800, including all languages and scripts and written on any surface.
- The Places database, expanding the geographic database of the Fayum project, is a set of currently 14,197 places in (and some outside) Egypt. It contains the currently 113,927 toponyms attested in texts from Egypt (BC 800 – AD 800), but is also linked to the provenance field in Trismegistos Texts.
- Finally, because abbreviations are often different in the various disciplines, we have also started creating a Bibliography which resolves many of the short references we use in Trismegistos. The other way round it also wants to facilitate the search for all texts in a specific publication. Its coverage is patchy except for the publications dealing with Demotic and Abnormal Hieratic, where the Demotistische Literaturübersicht provides a much higher standard of bibliographic information.
This series, edited by W. Clarysse (K.U.Leuven) / M. Depauw (K.U.Leuven) / H.J. Thissen (Universität zu Köln), aims to provide freely downloadable pdf-documents with scholarly tools based upon or providing links to the Trismegistos database.
Contributors can send in manuscripts in Word format to firstname.lastname@example.org. The editors will decide whether the manuscript fits in the series and can be accepted for reviewing. An anonymous version of the manuscript will then be sent to two or more peers for evaluation. On the basis of their report the editors will take a decision whether to publish it in the series or not. Authors will be given the anonymous notes of the reviewers and can be asked to implement changes to their manuscript.
TOP 1 (Click to download)
M. Depauw, C. Arlt, M. Elebaut, A. Georgila, S.A. Gülden, H. Knuf, J. Moje, F. Naether, H. Verreth, S. Bronischewski, B. Derichs, S. Eslah, M. Kromer
A Chronological Survey of Precisely Dated Demotic and Abnormal Hieratic Sources
Version 1.0 (February 2007), Köln / Leuven 2008, xiii, 232 pp.
TOP 2 (Click to download)
A survey of toponyms in Egypt in the Graeco-Roman period
Version 1.0 (September 2008), Köln / Leuven 2008, 893 pp. (7 Mb).
TOP 3 (Click to download)
The provenance of Egyptian documents from the 8th century BC till the 8th century AD
Version 1.0 (August 2009), Köln / Leuven 2009, 314 pp. (13.3 Mb).
TOP 4 (Click to download)
Rural Settlements of the Oxyrhynchite Nome. A Papyrological Survey
Version 2.0 (May 2012), Köln / Leuven 2012, 496 pp. (8.4 Mb).
(The old version 1.0, from October 2009, is still available as well: click here to download in pdf).
TOP 5 (Click to download)
Toponyms in Demotic and Abnormal Hieratic texts from the 8th century BC till the 5th century AD
Version 1.0 (August 2011), Köln / Leuven 2011, 719 pp. (9.6 Mb).
TOP 6 (Click to download)
A New Survey of Greek, Coptic, Demotic and Latin Tabulae Preserved from Classical Antiquity
Version 1.0 (February 2012), Leiden / Leuven 2012, 78 pp. (0.6 Mb).
TOP 7 (Click to download)
The Scholia Minora in Homerum. An Alphabetical List
Version 1.0 (November 2012), Köln / Leuven 2012, 250 pp. (2.0 Mb).
Double Names in Roman Egypt: A Prosopography
Version 1.0 (forthcoming 2013), Leuven 2013.
Further volumes are in preparation.
Out of the TOP series:
Theadelpheia and Euhemereia. Village History in Graeco-Roman Egypt
Leuven, 1999 (Click here; WARNING: large file 55 Mb !! ).
[Unpublished PhD thesis]
Egyptische geografische elementen in Griekse transcriptie
In Dutch - (English title for reference only: Egyptian geographical elements in Greek transcription)
Leuven, 1988 (Click here; ZIP-file; after decompressing, you will get a folder containing the text itself - which has been split up in 2 parts – and an index to the text. All files are searchable PDF's. WARNING: large file 95,8 Mb !! ).
[Unpublished Master thesis, in Dutch]
The northern Sinai from the 7th century BC till the 7th century AD. A guide to the sources
Leuven, 2006 (Click here).