The longest hieratic papyrus known to date is now on display at the Egyptian Museum of Cairo, Tahrir Square.
The 16 m. long papyrus was found in Saqqara, in May 2022, inside the Ptolemaic-era coffin of a man called Ahmose. The coffin was revealed during the excavations of an Egyptian mission working under the direction of Dr. Mostafa Waziry, currently the Secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities. The papyrus contains 113 chapters from the Book of the Dead and various depictions such as a scene showing Ahmose worshiping the god of the netherworld Osiris in his shrine. In honor of Dr. Waziry, the papyrus has been named Papyrus Waziry 1.
The Book of the Dead is a collection of religious texts used in ancient Egypt as a guide for the deceased during their journey in the netherworld. Hieratic was ancient Egypt’s primary writing system. Hieratic signs represent a super-cursive form of hieroglyphs and were used to record everything apart from texts destined for some form of display.
Despite a major part of its collection being transferred to Egypt’s various new museums, especially the GEM and NMEC, the historic Egyptian Museum of Cairo in Tahrir Square continues to be a major cultural hub. Its permanent exhibition has been redesigned to display known but also hitherto hidden treasures that highlight Egypt’s most historically defining moments.