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Artefact ID251
TM IDTM 61463
Findspot (DEChriM ID)28   (al-Bahnasā)
Writing mediumCodex
Text contentLiterary

P.Oxy. XIII 1600

Two fragments containing a homily by Melito of Sardes, On Easter (De Pascha) 57-63.

The text was originally thought to be an oratory piece, "Πρὸς Ἰουδαίους" by Hippolytus (see ed. pr.), but has since been identified as Melito's Peri Pascha; see Bonner 1936a: 108-116.

Melito's works are listed by Eusebius in Hist. eccl. 5.24.5, yet only a few texts have survived. The Easter sermon is quite interesting, considering that Melito was said to have been a Quartodeciman, one who celebrated Easter on the same day as Passover; see Blumell / Wayment 2015: 362. 

The largest of the fragments measures 17.3 x 8.7 cm with 17 lines on the recto and 28 lines on the verso. The smaller fragment contains the remnants of 2 lines. The text contains diaeresesdiastole and nomina sacra.

Selection criteriaNomina sacra
Date from350
Date to499
Dating criteria

Palaeography and archaeological context: Dated to the 5th c. by the ed. pr., but rather to the end of the 4th c. by Cavallo 1966: 67.

Absolute/relative dateRelative date
Archaeological context

The fragments were found in al-Bahnasā (Oxyrhynchos) during the excavations of Bernard Grenfell and Arthur S. Hunt.

Accession number

Oxford, Bodleian Library, MS. Gr. th. d. 4 (P).


Editio princeps:

∙ Hunt, Arthur S. and Bernard Grenfell. 1919. The Oxyrhynchus Papyri, part XIII. Published by the Egypt Exploration Society in Graeco-Roman Memoirs. London. 19-21, no. 1600.

Additional bibliography:

∙ Blumell, Lincoln H. and Thomas Wayment. 2015. Christian Oxyrynchus: Texts, Documents and Sources. Waco, Texas. Papyrus no. 102.

∙ Bonner, Campbell. 1936a. "The Homily on the Passion by Melito Bishop of Sardis". Annuaire de l'institut de philologie et d'histoire orientales et slaves 4. 108-116.

∙ ———. 1936b. "The Homily on the Passion by Melito Bishop of Sardis". Mélanges Franz Cumont. Brussels. 107-119.

∙ ———. 1937. "The New Homily of Melito and Its Place in Christian Literature". PapCongr. 5. 94-97.

∙ ———. 1938. "Two Problems in Melito's Homily on the Passion". HTR 31. 175-190.

∙ ———. 1940. The Homily on the Passion by Melito, Bishop of Sardis. Philadelphia. 60-61.

∙ ———. 1949. "The Text of Melito's Homily". VC 3. 184-185.

∙ Cavallo, Guglielmo. 1966. Ricerche sulla miuscola biblica. Florence.

∙ Cohick, Lynn H. 1998. "Melito of Sardis' 'Peri Pascha' and Its 'Israel'". HTR 91. 351-372.

∙ ———. 2000. The Peri Pascha Attributed to Melito of Sardis: Setting, Purpose, Sources. Brown Judaic Studies 327. Providence. 

∙ Hall, Stuart Georg. 1968. "The Melito papyri". The Journal of Theological Studies 19 (2). 476–508.

∙ ———. 1970. "Melito, Peri Pascha 1 and 2: Text and Interpretation". Kyriakon: Festschrift Johannes Quasten. Granfield, P. and J. A. Jungmann, eds. Münster. 236-248.

∙ ______, ed. 1979. Melito of Sardis: On Pascha and Fragments. Oxford.

∙ Perler, Othmar. 1966. Méliton de Sardes: Sur la Pâque et fragments. SC 123. Paris.

∙ van Haelst, Joseph. Catalogue des papyrus littéraires juifs et chrétiens. Paris, no. 679 descr.

∙ Wayment, Thomas A. 2013. The text of the New Testament apocrypha (100-400 CE).  London. 187-189.

∙ Wellesz, E. J. 1943. "Melito's Homily on the Passion: An Investigation into the Sources of Byzantine Hymnography". JTS 44. 41-52.

Sofia Heim, 2021
Suggested citation
Sofia Heim, 2021, "Artefact ID 251", 4CARE database - Fourth-Century Christian Archaeological Record of Egypt,
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