-A A +A
Writing on paper is essential to civilization, as Pliny the Elder remarks in his Natural History, when he describes the various types of papyri, the method of manufacturing them, and all that concerns writing materials in the mid-first century AD. For this reason, a rigorous scientific study of writing is of fundamental importance for the historical understanding of ancient societies. We show that metallic ink was used several centuries earlier than previously thought. In particular, we found strong evidence that lead was intentionally used in the ink of Herculaneum papyri and discuss the possible existence of ruled lines traced on the papyrus texture. In addition, the metallic concentrations found in these fragments deliver important information in view of optimizing future computed tomography (CT) experiments on still-unrolled Herculaneum scrolls to improve the readability of texts in the only surviving ancient Greco-Roman …
National Academy of Sciences
Publication date: 
5 Apr 2016

Emmanuel Brun, Marine Cotte, Jonathan Wright, Marie Ruat, Pieter Tack, Laszlo Vincze, Claudio Ferrero, Daniel Delattre, Vito Mocella

Biblio References: 
Volume: 113 Issue: 14 Pages: 3751-3754
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences