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Elephantine Ostraca, early 5th century BCE

Elephantine Ostraca 1Two hundred and fifty ostraca were recovered during French excavations between 1906 and 1908 at Elephantine, an island in the Nile near the First Cataract. The ostraca date to about the early fifth century B.C.E. and are written in ancient Aramaic. They were originally to have been published by the great French scholar Charles Clermont-Ganneau. When he failed to publish them, they were reassigned to André Dupont-Sommer, who published ten of them, including the well-known “Sabbath” ostraca.

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