The Google Cultural Institute and the Israel Museum, Jerusalem collaborated to bring five complete Dead Sea Scrolls online. The new digital library (released Tuesday, December 18), allows users to study and discover the the most ancient biblical manuscripts on earth:
The website gives searchable, fast-loading, high-resolution images of the scrolls, as well as short explanatory videos and background information on the texts and their history. The scroll text is also discoverable via web search. If you search for a phrase from the scrolls, a link to that text within the scroll may surface in your search results. For example, try searching on Google for [And the wolf shall dwell with the lamb Dead Sea Scroll].
English translations of the manuscripts are also available. The Google Cultural Institute is also responsible for the Art Project as well as other digital humanities projects, including Versailles 3D and La France en relief. For the Dead Sea Scrolls project, they used imaging technology originally developed for NASA. The scrolls weren’t discovered until 1947, and they had been in the Qumran caves for two thousand years. ArtDaily reports:
The parchment and papyrus scrolls contain Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic script, and include several of the earliest-known texts from the Bible, including the oldest surviving copy of the Ten Commandments. The oldest of the documents dates to the third century BC and the most recent to about 70 AD, when Roman troops destroyed the Second Jewish Temple in Jerusalem. The artefacts are housed at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem, where the larger pieces are shown at the dimly lit Shrine of the Book on a rotational basis in order to minimise damage from exposure. When not on show, they are kept in a dark, climate-controlled storeroom in conditions similar to those in the Qumran caves, where the humidity, temperature and darkness preserved the scrolls for two millennia.
For more information, visit the Digital Dead Sea Scrolls.
Rome Reborn is an international initiative whose goal is the creation of 3D digital models illustrating the urban development of ancient Rome from the first settlement in the late Bronze Age (ca. 1000 B.C.) to the depopulation of the city in the early Middle Ages (ca. A.D. 550)…
The primary purpose of this phase of the project was to spatialize and present information and theories about how the city looked at this moment in time, which was more or less the height of its development as the capital of the Roman Empire. A secondary, but important, goal was to create the cyberinfrastructure whereby the model could be updated, corrected, and augmented.
Medium-resolution images from the gallery are available for download. Click here for more information.
The Nicholar Artamonoff Collection at Dumbarton Oaks, an archive of historical photographs of Byzantine Turkey, is available online.
The Nicholas V. Artamonoff Collection includes 543 photographs taken in Istanbul and five archaeological sites in Western Turkey (Ephesus, Hierapolis, Laodicea on the Lycus, Pergamum, Priene) from 1935 to 1945. The high quality photographs are of great value as they show buildings, sites, and objects that no longer exist or are in a better state of preservation than today.
Photographs may be browsed by tag (keyword), site name, and geography. Each photograph also includes a correlating Google Map, allowing visitors to see historical
The Dead Sea Scrolls, so ancient and fragile that direct light cannot shine on them, are now available to search and read online in a project launched today by the Israel Museum and Google Inc.
Via Bloomberg. See the scrolls online here.
Last week CLAROS launched its first public web-based search interface, allowing users to discover digital resources from multiple collections of international art at once. Emphasis is placed on the art of Ancient Greece and Rome.
Based at the e-Research Centre in Oxford, CLAROS is an international research collaboration to enable simultaneous searching of major collections of digital material about archaeology and art in university research institutes and museums. It contains material from a wide range of data partners, including the Beazley Archive, various digital archives in the Ashmolean Museum, the Arachne archive, the Lexicon of Greek Personal Names, and the Lexicon Iconographicum Mythologiae Classicae, recording over 2 million objects, places, photographs, and people.
CLAROS provides keyword searching as well as browsing based on category, place, period, text and collection. It also performs reverse image searches of pottery and sculpture. This means users can upload an image or point to an image on the web and CLAROS will try to match it with those in the collections.
Via CLAROS: The World of Art on the Semantic Web
Reed College has made available online a comprehensive guide to the Ara Pacis Augustae.
The Ara Pacis Augustae is a complex masterpiece, with elaborate reliefs including more than a hundred figures and voluminous vegetation filled with the details of nature. It is also a much damaged and reconstructed monument, making it important to distinguish original from later portions and more recent changes. This web site attempts to provide in-depth visual documentation in support of the in-depth scholarly publications that have so enriched our understanding of Augustan art and society.
Information on the website includes models, diagrams and photographs of the Augustan altar, maps and aerial views of the original site, published images, and photographs of the contemporary museum location.
The Oriental Institute Museum exhibition Visible Language: Inventions of Writing in the Middle East is on view through Sunday March 6th.
Exhibit curator Christopher Woods, Associate Professor at the Oriental Institute, said, “In the eyes of many, writing represents a defining quality of civilization. There are four instances and places in human history when writing was invented from scratch — in Mesopotamia, Egypt, China and Mesoamerica — without previous exposure to or knowledge of writing. It appears likely that all other writing systems evolved from the four systems we have in our exhibition.”
For museum hours, click here.
Iraq’s National Museum is expected to reopen in March, for the first time since Saddam Hussein’s rule. Although the Assyrian and Islamic displays were reinstalled in two main rooms in 2008, they have only been accessible to VIPs and invited groups. “It will be the answer to my dreams when we can finally reopen to the public,” said Amira Edan, the museum’s director.
Discussion of an international tour of Iraqi antiquities is also underway. Chicago’s Field Museum is mentioned in the above article as a potential host for the tour.
ARTstor and the University of Michigan will digitize slides from the archive associated with Asian Art Photographic Distribution, which focuses on the art of East Asia. Areas strongly represented in the archive include Chinese painting, sculpture, bronzes and ceramics, Central Asian Art, and Japanese painting. Many of the objects represented in the archive are richly documented with details.
ARTstor has just added 301 images of Greek, Hellenistic and Roman sculptures from the Collection of Classical Antiquities at the Berlin State Museums.