Quantifying degradation of collagen in ancient manuscripts: the case of the Dead Sea Temple Scroll†
Since their discovery in the late 1940s, the Dead Sea Scrolls, some 900 ancient Jewish texts, have never stopped attracting the attention of scholars and the broad public alike, because they were created towards the end of the Second Temple period and the “time of Christ”. Most of the work on them has been dedicated to the information contained in the scrolls' text, leaving physical aspects of the writing materials unexamined. They are, however, crucial for both historical insight and preservation of the scrolls. Although scientific analysis requires handling, it is essential to establish the state of degradation of these valued documents.
- This article is part of the themed collection: Molecular Analysis for Art, Archaeometry and Conservation