Was Cleopatra poor at spelling? ✍ ❌


About the research

"Aproved"* reads a Royal Decree that was possibly signed by Cleopatra (or at least by one of her ministers). But how did such a spelling error get into such an important document? Couldn't Cleopatra and her ministers spell? That's what classicist Geert De Mol (Ghent University) is looking into in his PhD.

* This document was of course not drafted in English, but the Greek spelling error 'ghinestoo' can be compared with writing 'aproved' with one 'p'.

Geert De Mol

Having a deep interest for Dutch spelling since your early education can have serious consequences. For Geert De Mol, the consequence was doing research on ancient Greek spelling in papyrus documents at Ghent University. He is interested in the possible link between social status, text type and spelling variation. This may change our image of the writers of the papyri, by avoiding to draw on modern-day assumptions that do not apply to antiquity.

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