The Digital Restoration of Herculaneum Papyri: Data Post-Processing

Grants and Contracts Details


This grant will support the continued digital restoration, electronic representation and restoration, and computer-based open-source dissemination of the collection of Herculaneum Papyri currently held by four institutions: the Biblioteca Nazionali di Napoli, the Institut de France, the Bodleian Library and the University of Oxford, and the British Library. As the only Classical library from antiquity to have survived and been found in situ, the Herculaneum papyrus scrolls hold much interest for both scholars and the public worldwide. The damage they incurred due to the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius in AD 79, however, left them carbonized, unopenable, and unreadable. This project’s final outcomes are twofold: first, creating an open-access, metadata-enhanced, digital representation of all opened Herculaneum Papyri from all four institutions; second, digitally restoring and reading the hidden layers and unopened Herculaneum papyrus rolls using authentic materials from the Biblioteca Nazionale in Naples and the Institut de France in Paris. We are in current talks to also include the closed scrolls owned by the British Library in London.
Effective start/end date8/1/237/31/24


  • Andrew W Mellon Foundation: $400,000.00


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