There’s a certain beauty that only old things can bring. Think about antique pieces of jewelry or furniture; the awe and nostalgia they bring are enough to make you speechless.
It is somehow the same when reading about history. The feeling you get while learning about what happened years or even centuries before you were born is simply incredible.
You know what will make it more amazing? It’s reading history about ancient manuscripts just like these:
1. The Gospel Of Judas
We all know that Judas is the traitor who turned Jesus to authorities in exchange for 30 pieces of silver, right? For years, this is what we thought we knew because it’s what the Bible says. But during the 1970s, a leather-bound papyrus document surfaced near Beni, Mazar, Egypt.
Upon further inspection, experts came to a conclusion that it was the actual Gospel of Judas. What’s surprising is not that it was written by Judas himself, but the revelation that was written at all.
As it turns out, Judas was not really the traitor. Jesus actually asked him to turn him in so that he could ascend to heaven, making him the most trusted apostle. Judas’ reward was not 30 pieces of silver, but his ascension to heaven.
2. The Egyptian Handbook of Ritual Power
In 1981, a 20-page long ancient manuscript was sold to Macquarie University in Australia by an antique dealer. The scholars were unsure when or where it was exactly found, but further studies say that it was written sometime around 700 CE by someone in the pre-Islamic Upper Egypt.
At that time, Egypt was mostly populated by Christians. Thus, there were a number of invocations that were referring to Jesus. On the other hand, a good number of summons and spells within the manuscript seem to be about the Sethians. These were a group of Christians that thought highly of Seth, the third son of Adam and Eve.
3. Gospel of the Lots of Mary
In the 1980s Charles Dikran Kelekian, a trader of Coptic antiquities, was deemed “dean of antiquities” among the art dealers in New York. When he passed, his widow, Beatrice Kelekian, gave a 1,500-year-old book to Harvard University.
It is a little booklet that has a collection of 37 vaguely written oracles. It is just 3 inches by 2.7 inches. During that time, the church leaders were against divination, which explains the size, so the users can keep the book hidden but still have it easily accessible when needed.
4. The Eight-Foot Long Leather Manuscript
Over 4,000 years, this unique and probably biggest manuscript that was in Cairo for years disappeared. After about 70 years, in 2015, it was rediscovered in a cramped, old drawer in the back of a museum.
It is made of leather and stands 8.2 feet. The writing is beautiful with colored drawings with incredible detail and quality. It is considered a real miracle how the leather withstood the test of time for 4,000 years and still maintain the quality it has.
5. The Copper Scroll
The most common material used for manuscripts is papyrus, like most of the scripts discovered in eleven caves in the Eastern Judean Desert. However, one scroll found in 1952 was different. From all the Dead Sea Scrolls, it was the only one made of copper. It was made up of two scrolls, but given that it was made of copper, it was difficult for the scientists to unfold it the traditional way. They cut it into 23 thin strips and placed them back together.
Amazing, right? Aren’t these scrolls giving you the itch to travel and get to read it for real?
Featured Image via Pixabay