Amheida I

Ostraka from Trimithis, Volume 1

Giovanni R. Ruffini
Roger S. Bagnall

NYU Press (publisher)

This volume presents 455 inscribed pottery fragments, or ostraka, found during NYU’s excavations at Amheida in the western desert of Egypt. The majority date to the Late Roman period (3rd to 4th century AD), a time of rapid social change in Egypt and the ancient Mediterranean generally. Amheida was a small administrative center, and the full publication of these brief texts illuminates the role of writing in the daily lives of its inhabitants. The subjects covered by the Amheida ostraka include the distribution of food, the administration of wells, the commercial lives of inhabitants, their education, and other aspects of life neglected in literary sources. The authors provide a full introduction to the technical aspects of terminology and chronology, while also situating this important evidence in its historical, social and regional context.

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