A History of the Histories: From Papyrus to Codex, From Codex to Today

This paper was originally written as a final research project for a third-year course in ancient Greek language and literature at North Carolina State University under Teaching Associate Professor Gary Mathews in the fall semester of 2014. The paper has been edited and revised in light of Dr. Mathews’ suggestions and adapted for online publication through A&P.

When historians discuss the reliability of ancient historical sources, often the focus is on the authors’ own methods of observation and data collection. However, discussions of reliability should also consider that the manuscripts available to modern scholars today have been passed down through a long process of manuscript copying and editing that stretches from ancient through medieval and renaissance times, and into the modern day. Since, as Jona Lendering writes, “it is impossible for humans to copy a long text without making errors,” the manuscripts available to us today are certainly imperfect replicas of the original ancient texts.[1] Textual criticism is the science of reconstructing ancient texts and their history of dissemination by analyzing the various later manuscripts. This paper will focus on the textual criticism and manuscript tradition of one of the most important texts for understanding ancient classical history—the Histories of Herodotus.

Textual Criticism

The science of textual criticism began in the fifteenth century CE* when Italian scholar Angelo Poliziano (1454-1494) hypothesized that earlier editions (as well as the lost originals of a manuscript) could be reconstructed through careful analysis of the existing manuscripts. Poliziano discovered in his own analysis of the various manuscripts of Valerius Flaccus’ Argonautica that each manuscript included the same error of certain pages appearing in the wrong sequence. From this, Poliziano concluded that the different manuscripts were all copied from the same earlier text. He hypothesized that by comparing the other different errors in each contemporary text, he could deduce the content of the earlier manuscript. From this, Poliziano reconstructed a postulated original text, or “archetype,” from which the manuscripts had been copied.[2]

*CE is a common alternative abbreviation for AD, meaning “Common Era” (in place of “Anno Domini”).

Herodotus, the “father of history”

The Herodotus Manuscripts

Since the fifteenth century, scholars have also attempted to reconstruct similar archetypes of many ancient texts, including Herodotus’ Histories (first written in the fifth century BCE). Today there are about forty-six known manuscripts, however only about ten of them are considered to be reliable by scholars. Most modern editions of Herodotus’ Histories combine readings from various manuscripts, pulling from the following list:

A (the Laurentianus manuscript), our oldest manuscript of Herodotus’ Histories, is a tenth-century CE manuscript from the Laurentian Library (no. 70. 3) in Florence, Italy, collated by Petrus Wesseling. It was written carefully by two scribes in succession and contains marginal summaries, remains of scholia copied from the exemplar, and later marginal notes (particularly in Book 1). R. A. McNeal writes that since this is “our oldest and best witness to the [original] text,” modern editions of Herodotus’s Histories should be based principally on this manuscript.[3]

B (also known as the “Codex Angelicanus”) is an eleventh-century CE manuscript in the Angelican Library (C. I. 6) in Rome, previously known as the Passioneus (in reference to the previous owner, Cardinal Passionei). This manuscript is closely related to A, containing many of the same summaries as A, however there are fewer in number. B contains a great deal of annotations from various hands from a variety of dates as well as some scholia. The first quaternion and much of the second were lost and later replaced during the fourteenth century CE. Like A, B was originally collated by P. Wesseling.[4]

C is an eleventh-century CE manuscript in the Laurentian Library (no. 207) in Florence, Italy. Like A and B, C was collated by P. Wesseling. According to R. Pearse, the manuscript appears to be written hastily, and folios 9 through 14 were written in a different hand probably during the fifteenth century CE.[5]

D (Vatican Graecus 2369) is an eleventh- or twelfth-century CE manuscript from the Library of Muret, written by a single scribe. The text is fragmentary, with many of the leaves missing and written carelessly in some places, particularly towards the end.[6]

K is a fragmentary twelfth-century manuscript that was collated by P. Wesseling and is kept in the Cambridge University Library.[7]

M (also called the Medicean manuscript) is a tenth-century manuscript in the Medicean Library at Florence, compiled by J. Gronovius.[8]

P is a thirteenth- or fourteenth-century manuscript in the National Library in Paris (BNF gr. no. 1633), collated by P. Wesseling. R. Pearse describes it as a “very beautiful manuscript,” containing notes and corrections by the original scribe in the margins and between the lines.[9]

R (also called the Romanus mansucript) is a fourteenth-century composite manuscript in the Vatican Library (Vatican graecus no. 123). The first section contains the first two Dio Chrysostom treaties as well as some fragments of the Greek Anthology, after which is a nearly complete text of Herodotus’ Histories (however lacking Book 5). Summaries accompany the first sections of text in Books 1 and 2, becoming more sparse towards the end of the text.[10]

r (also referred to as manuscript “U,” or as the Urbinas manuscript) is a fourteenth-century manuscript held in the Vatican Library (no. 88).[11]

S (also known as the Sancroftianus manuscript, in reference to the former owner, Archbiship Sancroft) is held in the Library of Emmanuel College in Cambridge (no. 30). Its dating has been a matter of considerable debate among scholars. Early collators like T. Gale and T. Gaisford give no suggestions for dating. W. Blakesley assigned it to the twelfth century, however scholars today assign the S manuscript either in the fourteenth or fifteenth centuries.[12]

v (or Vindobonensis) is a fourteenth-century manuscript from Vienna that has “a remarkable agreement” with the S manuscript. It was collated by P. Wesseling.[13]

Proposed stemma of Herodotus' Histories (Jona Lendering, http://www.livius.org/theory/textual-criticism/)

Stemma of some major Herodotus’ manuscripts (Jona Lendering, http://www.livius.org/theory/textual-criticism/)

The Herodotus manuscripts have long been identified as falling into two major groups called the Florentine and Roman families (named for the location of the best manuscript within each group—e.g. A in the Laurentian Library in Florence, and manuscripts R and D in the Vatican Library in Rome). A third lesser family (including manuscripts C and P) “show[s] a mixture of readings from both families.”[14] The Florentine texts are generally older than the Roman texts, however the main differences between the two major families stem from a series of peculiarities in the Roman texts. First, the Roman family contains a series of seemingly accidental breaks in Books 2 through 9, most of which are relatively small (however two in particular, 6.105-6.106 and 8.76-8.84 “seriously interrupt the narrative”).[15] Second, the Roman texts also contain a series of abridgements of sections covering geography, votive offerings, and other various digressions in Book 1 (including the discussion on sacred prostitution practiced among the Babylonians). Third, the Roman texts contain some peculiarities in spelling and word-usage, including the omission of the iota subscript and adscript, variation in the spelling of common words (such as ἐνταῦθα as opposed to ἐνθαῦτα), proper names sometimes “disfigured,” and rare or ancient words sometimes replaced by more common ones. The differences marking the Roman class from the Florentine manuscripts have suggested to scholars that the Roman series were perhaps used in the schools of the Byzantine Empire.[16]

Division of manuscript classes (Evelyn Abbott, 1893)

Division of manuscript classes (Evelyn Abbott, 1893)

Other than these differences, McNeal writes that the texts themselves do not, however, neatly conform to the standard division into families. Both major families share the usage of “hyper-ionisms” and epic forms of words (however the Roman class seems to make somewhat more frequent usage of these forms). More importantly, however, much of the manuscripts of both families contain identical readings, which abruptly seem to change again and again from dissimilarity to conformity. This is perhaps because medieval editors themselves had access to an assortment of older manuscripts containing different varieties of the textual tradition, which they blended together to create their own newer editions. Many of these editions contain notes pointing out variations in the text, allowing the reader to decide what might be the proper forms for themselves, much in the same way that modern editors pick and choose from the codex manuscripts for modern editions.[17]

A History of the Histories

In addition to the manuscripts included in the list above, Herodotus’ Histories have also come down to us in the form of papyrus fragments (which are, however, too fragmentary to substantially contribute to any modern edition of the Histories; papyrus fragments will be discussed in further detail below). Through careful analysis of both the larger manuscripts and the papyrus fragments of Herodotus’ Histories, scholars have been able to reconstruct the history of the text from at least as far back as the first century BCE.

We know very little about the period between when Herodotus wrote his Histories in the fifth century BCE and the date of the earliest surviving papyri from the first century BCE. Copies of the Histories were apparently made on scrolls of papyrus, which during the Hellenistic and Imperial periods (mid-fourth century BCE to third century CE) made their way into Egypt and were probably compiled at the Museum in Alexandria.[18]

Herodotus Fragment Papyrus from Oxyrhynchus, Egypt (Oxyrh. 2099)

Herodotus Fragment Papyrus from Oxyrhynchus, Egypt (Oxyrh. 2099)

Papyrus fragments of Herodotus’s Histories have been found during excavations of several ancient sites both within and outside of Egypt. The site from which the largest number of papyri fragments of the Histories come is the Middle Egypt city of Oxyrhynchus, about 110 miles south-west of Cairo. This city was excavated between 1897 and 1907 by Bernard P. Grenfell and Arthur S. Hunt of the Queen’s College at Oxford. When digging ceased in 1907, 700 boxes of papyri containing about 500,000 fragments were transported back to Oxford, where Grenfell and Hunt launched the field of study that is today called papyrology. Oxyrhynchus fragments of Herodotus range in date between the first and third centuries CE.[19] Within the Greek papyrus collection of Baron William Amherst, scholars Bernard P. Grenfell and Arthur S. Hunt identified a fragment of Herodotus’ Histories (II, p. 3, no. 12) from the city of Ashmunein in Egypt . The fragment includes the last two columns of a commentary on the first book, which will be discussed in further detail below.[20] During the 1932-1933 season of excavations at the Syrian city of Dura-Europos, various fragments of parchment and papyrus texts were uncovered in the fill along the inner city wall. Among these fragments, L. A. Post identified a passage of Herodotus (5.113.2-5.114.2) dated to around 150 CE. Because the letters of the page are rather large, appearing in only 18 lines of text with wide intercolumniations and a broad lower margin, the excavators concluded that “the scribe of the Dura roll was clearly writing for a trade to which the price of papyrus was an unimportant item in the cost of a book. Otherwise its extravagance would have been impossible.” The text was likely brought to the city of Dura within the library of a Roman military official, or perhaps was “written for him by an imported scribe.”[21] In addition to these, many other papyrus fragments are housed in museums and private collections and are of unknown provenance (see chart below).[22]

P.Oxy. 18 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 3rd c. CE
P.Oxy. 19 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 2nd-3rd c. CE
P.Oxy. 695 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 3rd c. CE
P.Oxy. 1092 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 1244 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 1375 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 1st-2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 1619 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt End of 1st c. CE
P.Oxy. 2095 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 2096 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt End of 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 2097 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 2098 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt End of 2nd c. CE
P.Oxy. 2099 Oxyrhynchus, Egypt Start of 2nd c. CE
Dura Papyrus 83 Dura, Egypt 2nd c. CE
Archiv für Papyrusforschung vol. 1, p. 471 f. Unknown 1st-2nd c. CE
Catalogue of the greek papyri in the John Rylands library, vol. 1, p. 180 f. Unknown 2nd c. CE
British Library 1109 (Greek papyri in the British Museum III p.57 = Milne, Catalogue of the literary papyri in the British Museum no. 102) Unknown 1st or 2nd c. CE
Milne no. 103 (British Library) Unknown 4th c. CE
No. 15 of the Russian and Georgian collections published by Zeretelli (Pap. Ross. Georg. fasc. 1, pp.95-101) Unknown 3rd c. CE
Amherst papyri II, p. 3, no. 12. Ashmunein, Egypt 3rd c. CE
Oslo University Library, no. 1497 Unknown 2nd/3rd c. CE

On the whole, the Herodotus papyri are all fragments of a single page each, and almost none of the known fragments overlap in content (with the exception of Oxyrhynchus fragments, P.Oxy. 1244 and P.Oxy.18, which give identical readings).[23] In relationship to the larger manuscript tradition, as C. B. Welles writes, the Herodotus papyri all seem to support the Florentine family more than the Roman family, however “they support it by no means exclusively,” having readings entirely of their own, both “good and bad.”[24]

R. A. McNeal writes that the organization of the Histories into nine books was probably the work of an editor working with papyrus scrolls at the Museum in Alexandria in the third century CE. The above-mentioned Herodotus fragment in the Amherst papyrus collection (II, p. 3, no. 12) attests that an Alexandrian scholar named Aristarchus created a commentary of Herodotus’ Histories. Aristarchus’ commentary (or ὑπομνήματα, “notes”) is written on the verso of some second- or early third-century CE fragments of Herodotus, and the commentary itself has been dated to the third century CE. This same scholar has also been connected to a compiled edition of Homer’s epics at Alexandria, and McNeal proposes that he might have done the same service for Herodotus’s Histories in addition to providing a commentary.[25]

Aristarchus’ Commentary on Herodotus (Grenfell and Hunt, 1901) Plate III.

Aristarchus’ Commentary on Herodotus (Grenfell and Hunt, 1901) Plate III.

With the turn of the third to fourth century CE came a major shift in the way manuscripts were produced—the parchment codex replaced papyrus scrolls as the principal format for books. The advantages of the codex over papyrus scrolls were that text could be written on both sides of a single sheet, and a specific section could be found very quickly by earmarking the text. The codex was particularly useful among traveling professionals (such as physicians, grammarians, and apostles). Herodotus’s Histories were among a plethora of ancient texts copied from papyrus scrolls into codex format by scholars in various centers of the Byzantine Empire. In combining the various earlier papyrus editions of the Histories, the creators of the codices made composite texts incorporating bits and fragments of the various papyrus versions that were available. None of the surviving codices created at this time appear to be incomplete. If the division of the Histories into nine books had not already occurred in earlier centuries, then it may be that during this period of transition from scroll to codex in the third to fourth centuries CE that the Histories acquired their present division into the nine books named after the Muses.[26]

As mentioned above, much of the work of creating and copying the Herodotus codex manuscripts was done by scholars living in the cultural centers of the Byzantine Empire. Interest in classical Greek literature among Byzantine scholars had its roots in the Second Sophistic movement, beginning in the first and second centuries CE when the eastern portion of the Roman empire was still connected with the west. During this time, as Greece became absorbed into the Roman empire, Greek rhetoric, philosophy, and literature experienced a renaissance among the elites of the Roman Empire. This revitalized affection for Greek heritage was particularly felt among elites living in the eastern half of the Empire. As Rakesh Mittal writes, “with such renewed emphasis on Hellenic culture, the intellectual and artistic center of the Empire naturally shifted from Rome to the Hellenistic world, and…such cities as Alexandria, Antioch, and Pergamum became cultural capitals.”[27] Towards the fifth century CE, the Western Empire went into decline as the East became more autonomous.[28] During this time, the creation and copying of codex manuscripts for ancient texts—particularly of Christian literature—continued through the fifth century in various centers of what was now the Byzantine Empire.

During the sixth and seventh centuries CE however, as N. Gaul writes, “this flourishing world of Greco-Roman late antiquity came to an end.”[29] At this time, the Byzantine Empire was dramatically reduced to two-thirds of its former territory through nearly constant warfare with the Sassanid Empire as well as by the Muslim expansion of the seventh century CE. Following this great reduction in territory, only one significant center of culture remained for the Byzantine Empire in the capital of Constantinople. Here, the concern for research in the distant past became superseded by more pressing intellectual matters among the Byzantine elite, who concerned themselves with the establishment of a new religious and political orthodoxy of iconoclasm. During this tumultuous period, the study and production of manuscripts for ancient texts produced by pagan Greek authors (such as Herodotus’ Histories) stagnated within Constantinople, however the surviving centers of ancient Greek learning which had come under Muslim rule continued at least into the eighth century CE. It was not until the ninth century CE that ancient learning (or paideia) was once again revived within the surviving remnants of the Byzantine Empire.[30]

During the ninth century, the Histories (along with other ancient texts) underwent yet another great change—the shift from majuscule to miniscule script in manuscript writing. Miniscule, or quadrilinear, script was “a faster and less space-consuming variant” of Greek writing that developed over centuries across the eastern Mediterranean, mostly in the context of imperial administration. In its early stages, the script was known as syrmaiographein, “the stringing together of letters.” The script allowed codices to contain more text in a smaller amount of space, and was especially suited for frequently consulted books, such as medical manuals.[31] At this time, a scholar in Constantinople consolidated the two or three volumes of the Histories in majuscule (or capital) writing into miniscule script. The creation of more compact versions would have “cause[d] the rapid disappearance of all the remaining old majuscule codices,” as perhaps happened earlier when the text transitioned from papyrus scrolls to codex format in the third and fourth centuries CE. In addition to the new script, punctuation seems to have been added to the manuscripts at this time.[32]

The tenth century ushered in great shifts in Byzantine society, which ultimately led to changes in the composition of the Byzantine scholarly class which concerned itself with the studying and copying of ancient literature. The interest and number of students of ancient learning among the middle class grew throughout the eleventh and twelfth centuries CE, which “increased competition and ensured that ancient texts were being copied.”[33] The earliest known manuscripts of many ancient authors including Homer, Aristophanes, Xenophon, Thucydides, and of course, Herodotus, were written at this time. The oldest known manuscript of Herodotus’ Histories—the Laurentianus Manuscript, or “A”— comes from this period of scholarship, as do Manuscripts B, C, D, and M (see the list in the above section).[34]

This cultural flourishing continued into the eleventh and twelfth centuries CE, however coming to a grinding halt once again with the political turmoil of the early thirteenth century CE. The fires that devastated the city of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade “destroyed more manuscripts than the Turkish conquest in 1453, or any other event for that matter.”[35] When Michael VIII Palaiologos (r. 1259-82) took the imperial throne after recapturing Constantinople from the Latins in 1261, he invested a great deal in the revival of paideia, just as he invested in the rebuilding and fortification of the damaged city.[36] Scholarship in ancient learning was once again revitalized, as texts continued to be copied and studied in the remnants of the Byzantine Empire.

However the Empire was approaching the end of its position of prominence in ancient studies. Towards the end of the fourteenth century CE, Greek studies spread with travelling scholars from Constantinople to Italy and elsewhere in Europe, sparking large-scale interest in the classical world, and thus began the European Renaissance. As ancient learning rose in prominence, wealthy individuals and scholars collected Greek texts to add to their libraries. In order to meet the increased demand, new manuscripts of ancient texts were made and distributed across Europe. Many of the manuscripts of Herodotus’ Histories available today come to us from this period (most notably manuscripts R, r, s, and v). In addition to producing new manuscripts, renaissance scholarship also set the theoretical foundations that continue to lie at the base of modern classical studies.[37]

Fifteenth-century Latin translation of Herodotus’ Histories by Lorenzo Valla. Copied by Johannes Monasteriensis. Frontispiece decorated by Andrea da Firenze, Dedicated to Pope Pius II (Chig. I. VIII 275 fol. 2 recto human22 JH.15).

Today, the medieval and renaissance manuscripts surviving in the libraries and collections of wealthy individuals, institutions, and states form the foundation for modern editions of Herodotus’ Histories. However modern editors just as often refer to earlier collated editions to form the basis of their publications. McNeal points to this as a problem leading to misreadings, as editors perpetuate the mistakes of earlier editors while also adding their own. For this reason (as mentioned above), McNeal argues that modern editions should base themselves primarily on the best and oldest manuscripts (for example, A).[38]

However I argue that this is but a small step to take towards accurately understanding and presenting Herodotus’ original text. We must remember that even the best and oldest of our codex manuscripts is itself a collation of older editions in papyrus scrolls, which were themselves collated from various versions circulating around the Mediterranean for the nearly five hundred years after the original text was written. This is not to argue that modern editions should not work towards creating editions as close to the original as possible by using the oldest and most complete evidence available, however it is to point out that we may never quite “get it right” in our representations of Herodotus’ text. What we have are the string ends of a long game of telephone stretching over the span of over two thousand years.

Nevertheless, as McNeal asserts, there does seem to be a remarkable conformity in the content of the texts available to us in both the codex manuscripts and papyrus fragments. McNeal writes that the differences between the available manuscripts and fragments is less in the content of the narrative than in what might be called “cosmetic” aspects of the texts (word choice, spelling, punctuation, etc.). In fact, despite their differences, the various families in the text tradition do seem to derive essentially from the same essential root narrative, and for this reason many scholars have argued that all our manuscripts are derived from the same original.[39] However there is no empirical evidence with which to analyze how the narrative might have changed at any point earlier to the first century CE at the earliest.


As historians work with these texts to analyze various aspects of ancient history and society, we must acknowledge that what we have to work with are problematic artifacts, which have a history of their own. At best, we can hope that the narratives and the contents of the Histories have essentially stayed the same for the over two thousand years of their existence. However, great care must be taken in considering the reliability of Herodotus (and other ancient texts) as primary evidence for historical arguments, both in terms of the author’s own methods of observation and analysis as well as in terms of the surviving copies’ faithfulness to the original text.


Abbott, Evelyn, ed. Herodotus, books V and VI: Terpsichore and Erato. Clarendon Press, 1893. Accessed November 10, 2014. <http://books.google.com/books?id=lig9AAAAYAAJ&pg=PR16&lpg=PR16&dq=Florence,+Laurentian+70,+3&source=bl&ots=Xwo6aCWWyU&sig=fZzSWam2VawKJh_O8pUbqvaisQA&hl=en&sa=X&ei=TjJhVO-yIYakgwS9t4II&ved=0CB4Q6AEwAA#v=onepage&q=Florence%2C%20Laurentian%2070%2C%203&f=false>.

Ancient Lives.org. Accessed November 15, 2014. <http://www.ancientlives.org/story>.

Blakesley, Joseph Williams. “Introduction.” Herodotus, Volume I. xlvii-xlviii. London: Whittaker and Co., 1854. Accessed November 11, 2014. <http://books.google.com/books?id=rjA9AAAAYAAJ&pg=PA102&lpg=PA102&dq=herodotus+manuscript+v&source=bl&ots=Dl6B733i58&sig=vnigNi0ompWnZAwmOZJmA6qCv4M&hl=en&sa=X&ei=LjNiVKv2OoacNv_HgeAE&ved=0CEQQ6AEwBQ#v=onepage&q&f=false>.

Constantinides, C. N. Higher Education in Byzantium in the Thirteenth and Early Fourteenth Centuries, 1204-ca. 1310. Nicosia, 1982.

Cortassa, G. “Συρμαιογραφεῖν e l’antica minuscola libraria greca.” Medioevo greco 3 (2003): 73-95.

Fonkič, B. L. “Aux origins de la miniscule stoudite.” I manoscritti greci tra riflessione e debattito. Edited by G. Prato, 169-186. Florence: 2000.

Gaisford, Thomas, ed. Herodoti Musae. London, In Bibliopolio Hahniano, 1834.

Gale, Thomas, ed. Herodoti Historiarum Libri IX. London: 1679.

Gaul, Niels. “The Manuscript Tradition.” Companion to the Ancient Greek Language. Edited by

Egbert J. Bakker, 69-81. Wiley-Blackwell, 2010. Accessed Online November 11, 2014. <http://site.ebrary.com.prox.lib.ncsu.edu/lib/ncsu/reader.action?docID=10369770&ppg=7>.

Grenfell, Bernard P. and Arthur S. Hunt. The Amherst Papyri: Being an Account of the Greek Papyri in the Collection of the Right Hon. Lord Amherst of Hackney, F.S.A. at Didlington Hall, Norfolk. London: Henry Frowde, 1901. Accessed November 13, 2014. <http://books.google.com/books?id=3FUPAQAAMAAJ&printsec=frontcover&source=gbs_ge_summary_r&cad=0#v=onepage&q&f=false>.

Gronovius, J. Herodoti Halicarnassei Historiarum Libri IX. Lugdunum Batavorum, 1715.

Imaging Papyri Project. Oxyrhynchus: A City and its Texts, Virtual Exhibition. University of Oxford. Accessed November 11, 2014 2006. <http://www.papyrology.ox.ac.uk/POxy/VExhibition/exhib_welcome.html>.

Laiou A. and C. Morrison, The Byzantine Economy. Cambridge: 2007.

Lendering, Jona. “Textual criticism.” Livius.org. March 2, 2014. Accessed November 2, 2014.<http://www.livius.org/theory/textual-criticism/>.

Luzzatto, J. M. “Grammata e syrmata. Scrittura greca e produzione libraria tra VII e IX secolo.” Analecta Papyrologica 14-15 (2002-3): 1-85.

Madden, T. F. “The Fires of the Fourth Crusade in Constantinople, 1203-1204: A Damage Assessment.” Byzantinische Zeitschrift 84, no. 5 (1992): 72-93.

Mango, C. “Greek Culture in Palestine after the Arab Conquest.” Scritture, libri e testi nelle avec provinciali di Bisanzio. Edited by G. Cavallo, G. de Gregorio, and M. Maniaci, 149-160. Spoleto: 1991.

Maravela-Solbakk, Anastasia. “Fragments of Literary Papyri from the Collection of the Oslo University Library, I: Herodotus 9.74-75.” Sybolae Osloenses 79 (2004): 102-108.

Markopoulos, A., ed. Anonymi professoris epistulae. Berlin and New York: 2000.

McNeal, R. A. “On Editing Herodotus.” L’antiquité classique 52 (1983): 110-129.

Messadié, Gerald. “Manuscripts on the move.” The Unesco Courier 6 (June 1997): 10-13.

Mittal, Rakesh. “Hellenism and the Shaping of the Byzantine Empire,” Jablonowski Award (Best Undergraduate Research Paper, History). Marquette University, 2010. Accessed November 11, 2014. <http://epublications.marquette.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1001&context=jablonowski_award>.

Norwich, John Julius. A Short History of Byzantium. New York: Vintage Books, 1999.

Pearse, Roger. Some manuscript traditions of the Greek classics. June 20, 2008. Accessed November 10, 2014. <http://www.tertullian.org/rpearse/manuscripts/greek_classics.htm#Herodotus>.

Powell, J. Enoch. “The Manuscript S of Herodotus.” The Classical Review 51, no. 4 (September 1937): 118-119.

Skeat, T. C. “Papyri from Oxyrhynchus.” The British Museum Quarterly 27, no. 1/2 (Autumn, 1963): 1-2.

Turner, E. G. Greek Manuscripts of the Ancient World. Oxford: 1971.

Welles, C. Bradford. “Fragments of Herodotus and Appian from Dura.” Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association 70 (1939): 203-212.

Wesseling, Petrus, ed. Dissertatio Herodotea ad Ti. Hemsterhusium. Gisp. Tim. a Paddenburg et Abrahamum a Paddenburg, 1758.

Wilson, N. G. From Byzantium to Italy. London: 1992.


            [1] Jona Lendering, “Textual criticism.” Livius.org. Accessed 11-2-14 http://www.livius.org/theory/textual-criticism/; De klad in de klassieken (Athenaeum-Polak & Van Gennep, 2012).

            [2] J. Lendering, “Textual criticism”; De klad in de klassieken.

            [3] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions; R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 111; Petrus Wesseling, Dissertatio Herodotea ad Ti. Hemsterhusium (Gisp. Tim. a Paddenburg et Abrahamum a Paddenburg, 1758).

            [4] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions; J. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii; P. Wesseling, Dissertatio Herodotea.

            [5] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions; P. Wesseling, Dissertatio Herodotea.

            [6] “Herodotus,” Some manuscript traditions.

            [7] J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii.

            [8] J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii; R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 111; J. Gronovius, Herodoti Halicarnassei Historiarum Libri IX (Lugdunum Batavorum, 1715).

            [9] Petrus Wesseling, Dissertatio Herodotea ad Ti. Hemsterhusium (Gisp. Tim. a Paddenburg et Abrahamum a Paddenburg, 1758); J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions.

            [10] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions.

            [11] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI.; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions.

            [12] E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions; Thomas Gale, ed., Herodoti Historiarum Libri IX (London: 1679); J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii; J. E. Powell, “The Manuscript S of Herodotus,” 118; P. Wesseling, Dissertatio Herodotea; Thomas Gaisford, Herodoti Musae (London, In Bibliopolio Hahniano, 1834).

            [13] J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii.

            [14] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 120.

            [15] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 120.

            [16] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 120-121; E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI.

            [17] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 121-122.

            [18] Ibid.

            [19] T. C. Skeat, “Papyri from Oxyrhynchus,” The British Museum Quarterly 27, no. 1/2 (Autumn, 1963): 1-2; “Oxyrhynchus Story,” Ancient Lives.org (Accessed November 15, 2014) <http://www.ancientlives.org/story>.

            [20] Bernard P. Grenfell and Arthur S. Hunt, The Amherst Papyri: Being an Account of the Greek Papyri in the Collection of the Right Hon. Lord Amherst of Hackney, F.S.A. at Didlington Hall, Norfolk (London: Henry Frowde, 1901), 3

            [21] C. Bradford Welles, “Fragments of Herodotus and Appian from Dura,” Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association 70 (1939): 203-212.

            [22] C. B. Welles, “Fragments of Herodotus and Appian from Dura”; Bernard P. Grenfell and Arthur S. Hunt, The Amherst Papyri: Being an Account of the Greek Papyri in the Collection of the Right Hon. Lord Amherst of Hackney, F.S.A. at Didlington Hall, Norfolk (London: Henry Frowde, 1901), 3; Anastasia Maravela-Solbakk, “Fragments of Literary Papyri from the Collection of the Oslo University Library, I: Herodotus 9.74-75,” Sybolae Osloenses 79 (2004): 102-108.

            [23] R. Pearse, Some manuscript traditions.

[24] C. B. Welles, “Fragments of Herodotus and Appian from Dura,” 208.

            [25] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 125-127.

            [26] N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 72; R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 127-128.

            [27] Rakesh Mittal, “Hellenism and the Shaping of the Byzantine Empire,” Jablonowski Award (Best Undergraduate Research Paper, History) (Marquette University, 2010), 6. Accessed 11 November 2014. <http://epublications.marquette.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1001&context=jablonowski_award>.

            [28] R. Mittal, “Hellenism and the Shaping of the Byzantine Empire”; John Julius Norwich, A Short History of Byzantium (New York: Vintage Books, 1999), 12.

            [29] N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 72.

            [30] C. Mango, “Greek Culture in Palestine after the Arab Conquest,” Scritture, libri e testi nelle avec provinciali di Bisanzio, eds. G. Cavallo, G. de Gregorio, and M. Maniaci (Spoleto: 1991), 149-160; N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 72.

            [31] G. Cortassa, “Συρμαιογραφεῖν e l’antica minuscola libraria greca,” Medioevo greco 3 (2003): 73-95; B. L. Fonkič, “Aux origins de la miniscule stoudite,” I manoscritti greci tra riflessione e debattito, ed. G. Prato (Florence: 2000), 169-186; J. M. Luzzatto, “Grammata e syrmata. Scrittura greca e produzione libraria tra VII e IX secolo,” Analecta Papyrologica 14-15 (2002-3): 1-85; N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 73-74.

            [32] E. G. Turner, Greek Manuscripts of the Ancient World (Oxford: 1971), 11-12; R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 128.

            [33] N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 77.

            [34] A. Laiou and C. Morrison, The Byzantine Economy (Cambridge: 2007), 43-165; A. Markopoulos, ed. Anonymi professoris epistulae (Berlin and New York: 2000); N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 77-78

            [35] T. F. Madden, “The Fires of the Fourth Crusade in Constantinople, 1203-1204: A Damage Assessment,” BZ 84, no. 5 (1992): 72-93; N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 79.

            [36] C. N. Constantinides, Higher Education in Byzantium in the Thirteenth and Early Fourteenth Centuries, 1204-ca. 1310 (Nicosia, 1982); N. G. Wilson, From Byzantium to Italy (London: 1992); N. Gaul, “The Manuscript Tradition,” 80-81.

            [37] J. W. Blakesley, “Introduction,” xlvii; J. Enoch Powell, “The Manuscript S of Herodotus,” The Classical Review 51, no. 4 (Sep., 1937), 118; E. Abbott, Herodotus, books V and VI; R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 128.

            [38] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 115-116.

            [39] R. A. McNeal, “On Editing Herodotus,” 120.

2 comments on “A History of the Histories: From Papyrus to Codex, From Codex to Today
  1. Well done. I was looking for something on the the history of The Histories and I’m glad I came across this paper. Could it be said that the history of The History of the Peloponnesian War might have a similar story?

    • Hi Thomas, thanks for commenting! I know that there is some discussion regarding how the history of the Peloponnesian War was modified, but I’m afraid I’m not very up on recent scholarship in the matter. Definitely worth looking into! Thanks for visiting!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>