Chairman’s statement to EES members
The following statement was provided to members of the EES during the Society's AGM on 16th November 2019:
Investigation of the Society’s collection of papyri from Oxyrhynchus, which is estimated to hold some half a million fragments, has to date identified around 120 pieces which appear to be missing, almost all from a limited number of folders; it is possible that a few more cases may emerge. So far 13 of the missing pieces have been located in the Museum of the Bible in Washington and another 6 in the collection of Mr Andrew Stimer in California, and both collections are returning these texts to the EES. The EES is working with the University of Oxford and the police to establish how the papyri located in these and any other collections came to be removed and sold. While the police investigation is in progress, the EES cannot comment further on these matters, but will report on developments as and when it is possible.
Meanwhile the editorial team is working as usual to prepare new volumes of The Oxyrhynchus Papyri for the Graeco-Roman Memoirs of the EES. Because the investigation has delayed editorial work, we regret that the forthcoming volume LXXXV, due in 2018/19, is now expected in early 2020. The EES is also working with Oxford University to enhance the current accommodation of the collection and to determine how best to ensure its care and publication into the next generation.