Oldest surviving manuscripts of Ancient Greece and Rome  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Apart from the charred papyrus fragments recovered in Herculaneum at the Villa of the Papyri and the Oxyrhynchus Papyri, not one single manuscript from Ancient Greece and Rome survived.

The main reason for this is Papyrus which has a life of at most a century or two in relatively moist Italian or Greek conditions; only those works copied onto parchment, usually after the general conversion to Christianity, have survived, and by no means all of those.

Cornelius Gallus is often cited as the oldest surviving manuscript of Latin poetry.

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