Ausstellungsbereich im Papyrusmuseum: Schreiberutensilien und Papyruswurzel

Root of a papyrus shrub

ca. 1873, right bank of the Chobe, gift from Dr Emil Holub

This is the only papyrus root that Dr Holub could capture because he was not bothered by the crocodiles.

Papyrus was a versatile crop in Ancient Egypt and was used to make numerous everyday products. In addition to ropes, sandals and baskets, boats were also made from papyrus.

However, it is best known for being used to produce a light and stable writing medium from the pith of the plant, which over time developed into the most important writing material of antiquity and was in use from its beginnings - the oldest papyrus find is an uninscribed papyrus scroll from the 1st Dynasty (approx. 3000 BC) - until the early Arabic period of Egypt for around 4000 years.

This root was harvested by the African explorer Dr Emil Holub on the right bank of the Chobe around 1873. The rhizome was about half a metre below the water level. Obviously he harvest was dangerous, as crocodiles live in this area.

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