Category Archives: Epigraphy

EpiDoc Workshop, London, April 20-24, 2015

We invite applications for a 5-day training workshop on digital editing of epigraphic and papyrological texts, to be held in the Institute of Classical Studies, University of London, April 20-24, 2015. The workshop will be taught by Gabriel Bodard (KCL), Simona Stoyanova (Leipzig) and Charlotte Tupman (KCL). There will be no charge for the workshop, but participants should arrange their own travel and accommodation.

EpiDoc ( is a community of practice and guidance for using TEI XML for the encoding of inscriptions, papyri and other ancient texts. It has been used to publish digital projects including Inscriptions of Aphrodisias, Vindolanda Tablets Online, Duke Databank of Documentary Papyri and Digital Corpus of Literary Papyri, and is also being used by Perseus Digital Library and EAGLE Europeana Project. The workshop will introduce participants to the basics of XML markup and give hands-on experience of tagging textual features and object descriptions in TEI, identifying and linking to external person and place authorities, and use of the tags-free Papyrological Editor (

No technical skills are required, but a working knowledge of Greek or Latin, epigraphy or papyrology, and the Leiden Conventions will be assumed. The workshop is open to participants of all levels, from graduate students to professors and professionals.

To apply for a place on this workshop please email with a brief description of your reason for interest and summarising your relevant background and experience, by Friday February 27th, 2015.

EpiDoc training workshop, Rome

Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

At the beginning of October I ran a pre-conference tutorial on EpiDoc markup and tools at the TEI members’ meeting in Rome, co-taught with Ryan Baumann of Duke University. (Tutorial abstract on conference site.) We were hosted in the brand spanking new Vetreria Sciarra building of La Sapienza, on Via dei Volsci.

The first day of the tutorial was focused on EpiDoc recommendations for TEI encoding of epigraphic and papyrological texts. Continue reading EpiDoc training workshop, Rome

Digital Epigraphy panel at BES AGM

I was just at the British Epigraphy Society‘s annual meeting and AGM in Senate House today, and I spoke in a short panel on “Virtual Epigraphy”. The three presentations were designed as short reports on digital projects, and were squeezed in just before the afternoon coffee break.

Dr Karen Radner (UCL) spoke about the State Archives of Assyria online, one of the core datasets of the the Open Richly Annotated Cuneiform Corpus (ORACC) database which aggregates some 20 collections of Cuneiform language inscriptions. Karen talked about the scale of the project, the value of aggregating multiple datasets in a single interface, and the power of search tools for mastering a very large corpus, especially lemmatized text search which enables the comparison of words across texts in different forms, dialects, etc. She also stressed the importance of established standards and open source technologies for building a corpus of this scale.

Professor Silvia Orlandi (La Sapienza, Rome) began with a bit of history of the EAGLE (Electronic Archive of Greek and Latin Epigraphy) federation, and then illustrated the value of a database that gives detailed contextual and supporting information as well as searchable text, using her database of inscription from Italia, EDR. She finished by talking about the next phase of work on EDR, which will involve harnessing the power of the Internet to create a massively collaborative community of Roman epigraphers (on the model of the for papyri) to contribute bibliography, photographs, improved readings, or even new texts.

I then spoke pretty briefly (I didn’t want to be the man standing between a room full of epigraphers and their hot coffee) about the planned Inscriptions of Libya platform that I’m helping to put together (with Hafed Walda and Charlotte Roueché here at King’s, and other colleagues in Bologna, Macerata and Paris). InsLib will bring together IRT, the forthcoming IRCyr, an in-progress IGCyr, and the Ostraka from Bu Ngem (available in XML at, in a single search and browse interface that will address issues of authority, versioning, surfacing old readings and apparatus criticus and (hopefully one day) an implementation of the SoSOL software for collaborative editing and improvement of these texts.