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Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology



Joukowsky Institute for Archaeology & the Ancient World
Brown University
Box 1837 / 60 George Street
Providence, RI 02912
Telephone: (401) 863-3188
Fax: (401) 863-9423
[email protected]

The Nag Hammadi library, located in Upper Egypt, was discovered in 1945. The library itself belonged to a nearby Pachomian monastery, though it is not known whether the texts were produced there or imported from elsewhere. The collection consists of a group of Gnostic Christian texts, written sometime during the fourth century, which were contained in an earthenware jar. The most notable text found in this collection is the Gospel of Thomas, which was considered heretical; the texts were hidden underground to prevent their destruction. Although the works are written in Coptic, it is suspected that some are actually translations from Greek codices written as early as the first century.

Posted at Nov 30/2010 04:03PM:
ian: A good example of the kinds of sectarian communities that were operating in Egypt in this period.