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Les archives bilingues de Totoès et de Tatéhathyris

Abstract : In a house in ruins near the Ptolemaic temple of Deir al-Medina, on the Theban West Bank, the Italian Archaeological Mission (MAI), leaded by Ernesto Schiaparelli, discovered in February 1905 two sealed jars, containing 33 rolls. They revealed 44 papyri in Demotic writing, 8 in Greek and 4 bilinguals; among the linen bands wrapping them, 5 were inscribed. Altogether, these 61 documents formed the family archive of a priest attached to this temple, named Totoes son of Zmanres, and of his wife Tatehathyris. The whole was sent to the Egyptian Museum in Turin, of which Schiaparelli was the director. The Greek texts were published in 1929, whereas the edition of the Demotic papyri appeared only in 1967. Later, six of them were republished between 1978 and 1985, while four were re-examined in 1997 in a study on field leasing in the Ptolemaic period. Most of these documents are legal acts and can be dated with the help of their protocols, which name several sovereigns ruling Upper Egypt during the 2nd century BCE. The oldest one, dated 194, is counted among the rare attestations of the rebel pharaoh Chaonnophris; the three most recent ones, between 101 and 100, are the only ones giving evidence of a coregency between Ptolemy X Alexander I, his wife Cleopatra Berenice III and the heir Alexander II, the future Ptolemy XI. Moreover, they are the first evidences concerning the death of Cleopatra III. The contracts are of different types. Most of them deal with the sale or the rent of days of liturgical service in many temples on the Theban West Bank, and of their related salaries. They were an important part of the capital of these priests: a deed of covenant from this archive shows that they could have been transferred from father to son. Other legal acts concern field leasing, real estate purchases, wheat or money loans: in particular, two documents relate to a form of lease not easy to understand, another one to an exchange of animals. Family law is represented by five marriage contracts and one divorce; one last text deals with funeral expenses. The dissertation focuses on the new edition of all the documents, including the jars containing them. Direct access to the originals in Turin, as well as to archival records concerning their discovery and publication, have allowed the identification of two unpublished fragments and of the inventory numbers of the Greek papyri, the reconstruction of the exact circumstances of the finding and the assignation of the most part of the texts to their rolls of origin. The philological study has established connections between Demotic and Greek for a lot of personal and place names, has improved readings and has led to new interpretations for some texts. Notably, two legal acts and two temple oaths have revealed the transfer of the duties as agent of the goddess Hathor from a father to his three sons, with the consent of the temple clergy of Deir al-Medina. Moreover, the way of sharing their father's inheritance between Tatehathyris and her brother Pikos, with the action of Totoes as intermediary, is now better understandable. The attention paid to the scribes from a palaeographical point of view permitted to ascribe for the first time or to assign some papyri to their author and to unveil the arbitrary scribal practice of cutting protocols. Finally, the analysis of the prosopographical and topographical data has led to a family tree over many generations of the family of Totoes and Tatehathyris, as well as to a more precise picture on the one hand of the local community, and on the other hand of some religious and civilian buildings and fields in the village of Djeme, called Memnoneia in Greek.
Document type :
Complete list of metadatas
Contributor : Abes Star :  Contact
Submitted on : Tuesday, September 10, 2019 - 3:37:06 PM
Last modification on : Thursday, October 29, 2020 - 3:01:53 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Saturday, February 8, 2020 - 12:14:12 AM


Version validated by the jury (STAR)


  • HAL Id : tel-02283192, version 1



Lorenzo Uggetti. Les archives bilingues de Totoès et de Tatéhathyris. Histoire. Université Paris sciences et lettres, 2018. Français. ⟨NNT : 2018PSLEP008⟩. ⟨tel-02283192⟩



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