A project by Leipzig University Library and the Förderverein Bibliotheca Albertina e. V. (Bibliotheca Albertina Friends Association), supported by Leipzig University

A unique legacy

The 3,500-year-old Ebers Papyrus preserved at Leipzig University Library is the world’s longest, only complete, and best-preserved papyrus scroll devoted to ancient Egyptian medicine. It was acquired in Luxor by Georg Ebers, an Egyptologist from Leipzig, who produced a printed facsimile of it for research purposes in 1875.

Leipzig University Library is currently applying for the Ebers Papyrus to be included in UNESCO’s Memory of the World Register.

More than 800 symptoms are described in the Ebers Papyrus along with their treatment – a kind of holistic medicine comprising religion, magic and science. The prescribed remedies take the form of ointments, plasters, suppositories, enemas and pills to be sniffed, inhaled, gargled, smoked and swallowed.

When it was found, the Ebers Papyrus was still a continuous papyrus scroll nearly 19 metres long. To facilitate its conservation, on arrival in Leipzig, it was cut into 29 pieces and preserved under glass. Since then, it has no longer been possible to display the papyrus to the public in one piece.

The planned showroom

In 2019, Leipzig University Library will produce a full-size replica of the Ebers Papyrus. Printed on Egyptian papyrus, this new facsimile will go on permanent display inside its own separate showroom in the foyer of Bibliotheca Albertina. The scroll will be placed inside a display case with a length of 11 metres alongside information about it for visitors. The Ebers Papyrus – an outstanding document of Egyptian high culture and one of the greatest treasures of Leipzig University Library – will thus be exhibited in its impressive full length for the very first time.

We need your help!

Leipzig University Library is determined to make its holdings as widely accessible to the public as possible. The Bibliotheca Albertina Friends Association is dedicated to supporting this aim. And we’re urgently seeking patrons and sponsors to help us build the showroom and display case for the Ebers Papyrus.

Or you can help us by:

Becoming a corporate sponsor

For information on individual corporate sponsoring packages, please contact the Department of University Communications, relationship management:

Joining the Bibliotheca Albertina Friends Association

To do so, please complete the membership form posted on Your annual membership dues (€50, €20 for students, €10 for senior citizens) will go towards the Ebers Papyrus showroom. Members’ benefits include exclusive advance tours of exhibitions and invitations to the restoration workshop.