Bruce F. Harris
The Chester Beatty Papyri
Chester Beatty Papyri is the name of a group of biblical
manuscripts acquired mainly in 1930 by A. Chester Beatty, an
American collector. The had been discovered at
Aphroditopolis, N. of Memphis in Egypt, probably originating
from the library of a Christian church.
The manuscripts are substantial portions of papyrus codices:
(1) seven from the OT, including large parts of Genesis,
Numbers, Deuteronomy, Isaiah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Esther, and
Ecclesiastes; (2) three from the NT, containing the Gospels
with Acts, the Pauline Epistles, and Revelation; (3) one
with part of the pseudepigraphical Book of Enoch and a
second century homily of the passion.
The number of surviving leaves in these codices varies
greatly, the most remarkable being P46 (Pauline Epistles and
Hebrews) with 86 nearly complete leaves out of a total of
104. After Beatty acquired the original 10, the University
of Michigan acquired another 30, and Beatty another 46, all
from the same codex. This collection of papyri, dated to the
second and third centuries A.D., provides important textual
evidence for OT and especially NT prior to the great vellum
codices of the fourth century and later."
Harris, Contributor "Dictionary of Biblical Archaeology"
(Grand Rapids, Michigan: Zondervan 1983) p. 127