About this object

Papyrus Mayer K was destroyed in the Second World War. It was 2.22 m in length glued on linen and inscribed with 138 columns of large hieroglyphs in black ink with rubrics in red ink: vignettes above inscription. Chapters from the Book of the Dead in the following order according to Percy Newberry: 54, 5, 96, 97, 117, 17, 18, 102, 136, 136b, 126 and 149. The name of the owner has been washed out in every place where it occurred. Good technique. Torn in many places and carelessly glued to the linen: the lower edge torn off. Probably 18th or 19th Dynasty. Mayer Papyri C, D, E, F and G (nos. M11193-7) belong to the same document.

There is a letter from Samuel Birch in the archives (Mayer Stock Book I p. 166) about this sheet but he calls it Papyrus Mayer L. Birch names the owner Ahmes and says that no. 9933 in the British Museum (chapter 149) joins with it at the end. He lists the following spells and vignettes from the Book of the Dead that appear in Mayer L: vignette of 68; 88 and vignette; 56 and vignette; 5 and vignette, 96 and 97; 117 and 118; 17 lines 68 to 79; 18 and vignettes; 119; 102; 7; 136; unpublished chapters generally preceding to 124 lines 1 to 2; 149 a & b.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    New Kingdom
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date made
    1550 BC - 1186 BC about
  • Materials
  • Location
    Item not currently on display
  • Acquisition
    Gift of Joseph Mayer
  • Collector
    Joseph Mayer
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt
  • Date collected
    1855 before
  • Measurements
    329 mm x 2222 mm
  • Note
    Destroyed in the Second World War. No photographs of the papyrus have been found in the archives.
  • Related people
    Joseph Mayer ( Collector, previous owner)

Explore related


  • Catalogue of the Mayer Collection Part 1. The Egyptian, Babylonian and Assyrian Antiquities. Second and Revised Edition

    Gatty, Charles

    Author: Gatty, Charles
    Publisher: The Committee of the Liverpool Free Public Library, Museum and Gallery of Art
    Date: 1879
    Description: 83 page illustrated catalogue of Joseph Mayer's Egyptian and Near Eastern collection that was on display. It also includes a small number of other collections, such as those given by Mr William Crosfield in 1861, some by Mr Charles Stoess in 1869, and others by Mr J. A. Tinne in 1870. Occasionally reference will be made to the provenance of objects, in particular if they are from the Joseph Sams or Lord Valentia collections. The woodcut illustrations were produced by the noted Victorian illustrator and engraver, Llewellynn Frederick William Jewitt FSA. Compared to Mayer's 1852 catalogue there are more detailed descriptions for inscribed objects such as stelae, giving names and titles and the character of the text. Much of this information was provided by Samuel Birch of the British Museum who visited the collections in March 1877.

  • Das aegyptische Todtenbuch der XVIII bis XX Dynastie

    Naville, Edouard

    Author: Naville, Edouard
    Publisher: Asher
    Date: 1886
    Description: Available online https://archive.org/details/dasaegyptischeto00naviuoft

  • Notes from unpublished papyri in Zeitschrift für Ägyptische Sprache und Altertumskunde vol. 11 (1873)

    Goodwin, Charles W

    Author: Goodwin, Charles W
    Publisher: Deutsche Morgenländische Gesellschaft
    Date: 1873
    Description: Available online https://archive.org/details/zeitschriftfr11brug

  • Untersuchungen zu den Totenbuch-Papyri der 18 Dynastie

    Munro, Irmtraut

    Author: Munro, Irmtraut
    Publisher: Kegan Paul International
    Date: 1988


Previous owners

  • Joseph Mayer

    Owned from: Unknown or unrecorded
    How acquired: Purchased
    Owned until: 1867
    Disposal method: Donation
Object view = Humanities
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