News

Stanford acquires valuable Egyptology library

Stanford University has acquired one of the most valuable libraries on Egyptian history in private hands, documenting more than 1,500 years of Egyptian history from about 650 B.C. to about 1000 A.D.

The library is the collection of Wolja Erichsen (1890-1966), a professor at the University of Copenhagen.

After his death, his heirs disagreed where the library should go, and it stayed in Copenhagen until Stanford acquired it.

"The Erichsen library is one of the most significant and perhaps the last great Egyptology library in private hands," said Joe Manning, Stanford associate professor of classics. "It is difficult to overestimate the importance of acquiring this collection. Stanford's acquisition adds great momentum to our research and strengthens our profile as one of the very best places in the world to study ancient Mediterranean civilizations."

Erichsen was an expert in demotic Egyptian and Coptic, two ancient Egyptian languages.

"The breadth of text editions and studies of demotic and Coptic text editions in this library is unmatched," Manning said.

The purchase of the library was partially funded by a donation made by Stanford alumna Chele Chiavacci, the granddaughter of Edna Kumpe, who had a lifelong interest in Egypt and the Bible. The Classics Department and provost's office provided the other funds for the acquisition.

-- Don Kazak

Comments

Posted by Public-Access-Is-Good, a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 30, 2007 at 1:38 pm

> "The Erichsen library is one of the most significant
> and perhaps the last great Egyptology library in
> private hands,

Stanford is a private institution, so the collection is still in "private hands". It would be nice if the University would digitize as much of the collection as possible and make the digital collection accessible to the public.


Posted by k, a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 31, 2007 at 5:40 pm

I agree with you, Public Access is good.


If you were a member and logged in you could track comments from this story.

Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Indian street food and ... bitcoins?
By Elena Kadvany | 4 comments | 2,895 views

"The Galapagos Affair: Satan Came to Eden"
By Anita Felicelli | 0 comments | 1,016 views

I Spy
By Cheryl Bac | 4 comments | 875 views

Dear Chandrama, Everywhere I turn . . .
By Chandrama Anderson | 2 comments | 795 views

The Cinderella ride
By Sally Torbey | 10 comments | 711 views