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Ancient Lives

Main Project Information
Presented By University of Oxford
Goal Help scientists learn more about Greco-Romans in ancient Egypt.
Task Transcribe ancient papyri texts from Greco-Roman Egypt
Where Online only

Ancient Lives allows citizen scientists to help transcribe ancient papyri texts from Greco-Roman Egypt. The data gathered will help scholars reveal new knowledge of the literature, culture, and lives of Greco-Romans in ancient Egypt.

The 1,000 year old transcripts were originally found by researchers in 1896 in the city of Oxrhynchus, often called the ‘City of the Sharp-Nosed Fish’. Over the next decade, over 500,000 fragments of papyri were uncovered and the collections stands today as largely unstudied. That is why Ancient Lives needs your help to measure fragments and transcribe Ancient Greek characters.

The project is a collaboration between researchers at Oxford University and several other international groups.

How to Join

Get started with a great interactive tutorial here:

Then, make a profile and join the conversation at, and be sure to follow the Twitter feed @ancientlives for news and updated projects.

Social Media
Ideal Age Group Elementary school (6 - 10 years), Middle school (11 - 13 years), High school (14 - 17 years), College, Graduate students, Adults, Families
Spend the Time indoors
Type of Activity Exclusively online
Class Materials
Media Mentions
and Publications
Tags history, transcribe, transcribing, transcription, words, zooniverse
Project Updated 05/23/2018