Get Social With Us



Artefact ID466
TM IDTM 59997
Findspot (DEChriM ID)-   ()
Writing mediumCodex
Text contentLiterary

Vigiliae Christianae 24 (1970): 34-39; KV35; P.Berol. inv. 5104

A papyrus fragment (9.7 x 3.2 cm) containing the Shepherd of Hermas Mandates IV 4.4 and V 1:2.3-4.

The fragment comprises the top half of a sheet form a papyrus codex. It preserves 10 (recto) and 11 (verso) lines, with approx. 11 lines lost between the recto and the verso. The verso contains a page number (62) above the text column, written in a different ink, and which was probably added later.

The text does not contain punctuation, and the inconsistencies in the nomina sacra give an impression of an inexperienced scribe: the ed. pr. notes especially the variation in the abbreviation of πνεύμα (l. 12 and 18, verso) as well as the unabbreviated ἄνθρωπος in l. 21. An enlarge space between l. 4 and 5 marks the beginning of the new chapter.

The script varies between slanting and upright, and gives the appearance of an inconsistent, untrained hand. This initially caused the the recto and verso to be classified as written by different hands, but this has since been retracted; see ed. pr. 

The textual variants often show an opposition to the MS A, and on this evidence, the ed. pr. suggests that the fragment comes from a private copy from a time when the "Shepherd" was already officially in disrepute.

Selection criteriaLiterary genre (Non-canonical), Nomina sacra
Date from350
Date to499
Dating criteria

Palaeography. Dated to the 5th c. by the, but has since received a date between 350 and 499 by the palaeographer Pasquale Orsini. 

Absolute/relative dateRelative date
Archaeological context

Acquired in Fayûm, Egypt in 1877–1881.

Findspot and provenance are unknown, although the Fayûm is suggested; see ed. pr.

Accession number

Berlin, SMPK Egyptian Museum, P. 5104.


Editio princeps:

∙ Treu, Kurt. 1970. "Ein Neuer Hermas-Papyrus". Vigiliae Christianae 24 (1): 34-39. 

Additional bibliography:

∙ Aland, Kurt. 1995. Repertorium der Griechischen Christlichen Papyri. II. Kirchenväter. Kirchenväter 35.

∙ van Haelst, Joseph. 1976. Catalogue des papyrus littéraires juifs et chrétiens. Paris. Description no. 658.

∙ Whittaker, Molly. 1967. Die apostolischen Väter 1: Der Hirt des Hermas. Berlin. 

Sofia Heim, 2021
Suggested citation
Sofia Heim, 2021, "Artefact ID 466", 4CARE database - Fourth-Century Christian Archaeological Record of Egypt,