The Derveni Papyrus

Unearthing Ancient Mysteries


The Derveni Papyrus: Unearthing Ancient Mysteries is devoted to this fascinating and challenging document, discovered in 1962 in a tomb in Derveni, near Thessaloniki, and dated c. 340-320 BCE. It contains a text probably written at the end of 5th c. BCE, which after some reflections on minor divinities and unusual cults, comments upon a poem attributed to Orpheus from an allegorical and philosophical perspective. This volume focuses on the restoration and conservation of the papyrus, the ideas of the anonymous author about Erinyes and daimons, the quoted Orphic poem in comparison with Hesiod’s Theogony and Parmenides’ poem, the exegetical approach of the commentator, his cosmogonic system, his attitude regarding mystery cults and his peculiar theology.

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Marco Antonio Santamaría, Ph. D. (2005), University of Salamanca, is Associate Professor of Greek Language and Literature at the University of Salamanca. He has published articles and books chapters on Orphic texts, Greek cosmogonies and afterlife conceptions.
"Overall, this book is well-conceived and nicely edited (...). It certainly represents a step forward in the challenging task of unearthing the many mysteries that surround the Derveni Papyrus." - Matthieu Réal, in: BMCR 2019.10.40

Marco Antonio Santamaría

Part 1: Conservation and Restoration

1 Problems Pertaining to the Restoration, Conservation, and Reproduction of the Derveni Papyrus
Roger T. Macfarlane and Gianluca Del Mastro

Part 2: Reconstruction and Interpretation of the First Six Columns

2 Some Textual Issues on Column III (ed. Piano)
Valeria Piano

3 Daimons in the Derveni Papyrus and in Early Stoicism
Carlos Megino Rodríguez

Part 3: The Orphic Poem

4 The Orphic Poem of the Derveni Papyrus and Hesiod’s Theogony
Marco Antonio Santamaría

5 Ζεὺς μοῦνος and Parmenides’ What-is
Chiara Ferella

Part 4: The Interpretation of the Poem: Exegesis and Cosmogony

6 Misleading and Unclear to the Many: Allegory in the Derveni Papyrus and the Orphic Theogony of Hieronymus
Radcliffe G. Edmonds III

7 The Sage Speaks in Riddles: Notes on Col. VII of the Derveni Papyrus
Sofia Ranzato

8 The Commentary of the Derveni Papyrus: Pre-Socratic Cosmogonies at Work
Alberto Bernabé

Part 5: The Last Columns

9 Rites and Officiants in Col. XX of the Derveni Papyrus
Ana Isabel Jiménez San Cristóbal

10 Aphrodite Urania and Uranus Euphronides in the Derveni Papyrus: A Semantic Genealogy
Marisa Tortorelli Ghidini

Bibliography of the Derveni Papyrus (1997–2018)

Index Locorum
 1 Derveni Papyrus
 2 Other Authors
Index Nominum et Rerum Notabiliorum
Index Verborum Graecorum
Anyone interested in Greek religious poetry, mystery cults, philosophy in the times of Socrates (with physical, linguistic and ethical concerns) and papyrology.