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Artefact ID540
TM IDTM 59453
Findspot (DEChriM ID)34   (Ǧabal al-Ṭārif)
Writing mediumCodex
Text contentLiterary, Subliterary
LanguageGreek, Latin

Barcelona-Montserrat “miscellaneous” codex

Miniature codex of an almost square format (11.4 cm wide and 12.3 cm high) composed of a single papyrus quire originally consisting of at least 28 sheets = 56 fol. of which the first four are lost. Partly Greek, partly Latin, it contains a rare mix of classical and Christian material with a drawing (Herakles or Perseus) and a dedication to one Dorotheus, whose name is written twice in a tabula ansata. The codex is considered as the result of the work of one copyist, adopting an informal majuscule for the Greek part and a half-uncial hand for the Latin part. 


p. 5-47: Cicero, In Catilinam: 01 6-9, 13-33  (Latin)
p. 48-56: Acrostic hymn to the Virgin Mary: Psalmus responsorius (Latin)
p. 57: Drawing, Herakles or Perseus with Medusa’s head
p. 58-64: Euchologium including anaphora and Thanksgiving prayer (Greek)
p. 65-71: Hexameters on Alcestis (Latin)
p. 72: blank page
p. 73-80: Romance about the emperor Hadrian (Latin);
p. 81-106: Tachygraphy / shorthand manual: lists of words in 3 columns (Greek)

Christian symbols:

  • Three chrisms, one next to the extra textum sentence preceding the anaphora (P.Monts.Roca inv. 154b), and two chrisms, one of which is upside-down, in the colophon that follows the prayer of the exorcism of the oil of the sick (P. Monts.Roca inv. 156b) – see Carlig 2020: 275.
  • Cruces ansatae in the colophons (P.Monts.Roca inv. 149b; P.Monts.Roca inv. 156b; P.Monts.Roca inv. 157b; P.Monts.Roca inv. 165a) – see Carlig 2020: 276.

The codex was part of the "Bodmer Library" and the Dorotheus to whom the codex was dedicated is possibly the same as the one from the Vision of Dorotheos in the codex P.Bodmer XXX-XXXVII, see Fournet 2015: 10 and Nongbri 2018: 206.

Selection criteriaSubliterary genre (Liturgical), Christian symbols/gestures/isopsephy, Nomina sacra, Biblical quote or paraphrase
Date from350
Date to399
Dating criteria

Palaeography and dossier connexions. Possibly the same hand as the Bodmer Menander Codex (TM 61594 / LDAB 2743) according to Orsini 2015: 65.

Absolute/relative dateRelative date
Archaeological context

The codex is part of the "Bodmer Library". Most of the codex was indeed purchased by Ramón Roca-Puig in 1955, while David M. Robinson (University of Mississippi) acquired a small fragment of the codex (inv. 129) in Cairo in 1955. Bodmer also bought inv. 134-135 and exchanged them with Barcelona in 1973. About the possible origins of the codex, see Fournet 2015 and Nongbri 2018.

Accession number

Montserrat, Abadia Roca inv. 126-178 + Roca 292 + Roca 338 (previously Fundació Sant Lluc Evangelista, Barcelona) + Durham (NC), Duke University P.Duke inv. 798.

Berg, Tatiana. 2018. Papyrologica Leodiensia VIII. L'Hadrianus de Montserrat (P.Monts.Roca III, inv. 162-165). Liège.
• Gil, Juan and Torallas Tovar, Sofía. 2010. Hadrianvs. P.Monts.Roca III. Barcelona.
• Nocchi Macedo, Gabriel. 2014. Papyrologica Leodiensia III, L'Alceste de Barcelone (P. Monts. Roca inv. 158-161): edition, traduction et analyse contextuelle d'un poeme latin conserve sur papyrus. Liège.
• Roca-Puig, Ramon. 1994-1999. Anàfora de Barcelona i altres pregàries (2nd and identical 3rd ed.). Barcelona.
• Roca-Puig, Ramon. 1989. “Dibuix d’argument mitològic. Papir de Barcelona, inventari núm. 154a." In Ramon Roca-Puig i la ciència dels papirs (Ajuntament d'Algerri). Barcelona, 167-169.
• Roca-Puig, Ramon. 1982. Alcestis. Hexàmetres latins. Barcelona.
• Roca-Puig, Ramon. 1977. Ciceró. Catilinàries (I et II in Cat.): Papyri Barcinonenses. Barcelona.
• Roca-Puig, Ramon. 1965. Himne a la Verge Maria. Barcelona.
• Torallas Tovar, Sofía and Klaas A. Worp. 2006. To the Origins of Greek Stenography: P.Monts.Roca I. Barcelona.

Additional bibliography
• Carlig, Nathan. 2020. "Les symboles chrétiens dans les papyrus littéraires et documentaires grecs". In Signes dans les textes Continuités et ruptures des pratiques scribales en Égypte pharaonique, gréco-romaine et byzantine, ed. N. Carlig, G. Lescuyer,  A. Motte and N. Sojic. Liège, 271- 281.
• Fournet, J.-L. 2015. "L'anatomie d'une bibliothèque antique". Adamantius 21: 8-40.
• Ghigo, Tea and Torallas Tovar, Sofía. 2020. Between Literary and Documentary Practices: The Montserrat Codex Miscellaneus (Inv. Nos. 126‐178, 292, 338) and the Material Investigation of Its Inks
• Nongbri, Brent. 2018. God's Library. New Haven and London: Yale University Press, p. 195-215.
• Orsini, Pasquale. 2015. “I papiri Bodmer: scritture e libri”, Adamantius 21, 60-78.
• Robinson J.M. 1990-1991. "The Pachomian Monastic Library at the Chester Beatty Library and the Bibliothèque Bodmer." In Manuscripts of the Middle East 5, 26-40.
• Torallas Tovar, Sofía. 2015. "El códice misceláneo." In La mano del escriba: Recorrido por los tesoros manuscritos de la Abadía de Montserrat, coord. S. Torallas Tovar. Scripta Orientalia 2. Barcelona, 69-75.
• Torallas Tovar, Sofía. 2016. "Cat. 47. Miscellaneous Codex." In Pharaoh's Reeds. A papyrus journey up the Nile, Barcelona, 108-109.
• Zheltov, Michael. 2008."The Anaphora and the Thanksgiving Prayer from the Barcelona Papyrus: An Underestimated Testimony to the Anaphoral History in the Fourth Century", Vigiliae Christianae 62/5: 467-504.
Valérie Schram, 2021
Suggested citation
Valérie Schram, 2021, "Artefact ID 540", 4CARE database - Fourth-Century Christian Archaeological Record of Egypt,