Google To Put Dead Sea Scrolls Online

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Dead Sea Scroll 11Q14, from 20-50 CE

Donald Nausbaum

Now when the Biblical prophet Ezekiel Googles himself, he’ll totally be the number one result!

Think of all the great things the Internet has given us: Free(ish) music! Instant access to news around the globe! Limitless knowledge of internet memes! And now, it’s given us a way to read the ancient Dead Sea Scrolls without breaking them.

The Israel Antiquities Authority announced yesterday that it would be collaborating with Internet company Google to scan the ancient Dead Sea Scrolls to preserve them for future generations of scholars. Digitizing the scrolls, the authority says, will save the actual documents from being harmed by air and light every time someone wants to read them.

The Dead Sea Scrolls are a collection of parchment and papyrus documents that contain the earliest known versions of many ancient Judaic and Christian texts. They were discovered in caves near Israel’s Dead Sea in between 1947 and 1956.

The authority says the first scrolls may be digitized within six months, which is awesome news. Now all we need is a collaborative Google-Docs version of The Book of Revelations! (via The New York Times)