Question: What are the Kirtland Egyptian Papers?

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Question: What are the Kirtland Egyptian Papers?

The Kirtland Egyptian Papers (KEP) are a collection of documents written by various individuals constituting some sort of study documents relating to the Joseph Smith Papyri

The Kirtland Egyptian Papers (KEP) are a collection of documents written by various individuals, mostly dating to the Kirtland period of Church history (early- to mid-1830s), constituting some sort of study documents relating to the Joseph Smith Egyptian Papyri.

The KEP comprise 16 documents encompassing a total of about 120 pages. They are typically divided into two categories:

  • so-called Egyptian alphabet and grammar documents (KEPE), and
  • Book of Abraham manuscript documents (KEPA).

The following table[1] gives a basic description of the KEP:

Number Date Size Handwriting Title and Contents
KEPE 1 1836 (?) 1 volume, 31x20 cm W.W. Phelps & Warren Parrish "Grammar & aphabet [sic] of the Egyptian language"
KEPE 2 1836 (?) 2 leaves, 33x20 cm W.W. Phelps "Egyptian counting"
KEPE 3 1 October 1835 (?) 4 leaves, 32x20 cm W.W. Phelps "Egyptian alphabet"
KEPE 4 1 October 1835 (?) 9 leaves, 32x20 cm Joseph Smith & Oliver Cowdery "Egyptian alphabet"
KEPE 5 1 October 1835 (?) 4 leaves, various sizes Oliver Cowdery [title lost, "Egyptian alphabet" (?)]
KEPE 6 26 Nov. 1835 (?) 1 volume, 20x13 cm Oliver Cowdery "Valuable discovery of hiden [sic] records"
KEPE 7 1837 (?) 1 volume, 20x16 cm Oliver Cowdery "F.G.W." and "William"
KEPE 8 26 Nov. 1835 (?) 1 leaf, 32x40 cm ? [no title]
KEPE 9 26 Nov. 1835 (?) 1 leaf, 39x19 cm ? [no title]
KEPE 10 Mounted Feb. 1836 (?) 1 leaf, 33x20 cm [no title] = Joseph Smith Papyrus (JSP) IX
KEPA 1 1836 (?) 10 leaves, 32x20 cm W.W. Phelps & Warren Parrish [no title] Abraham 1:1–2:18
KEPA 2 1836 (?) 4 leaves, 33x19 cm Frederick G. Williams[2]} [no title] Abraham 1:4–2:6
KEPA 3 1836 (?) 6 leaves, 32x19 cm Warren Parrish [no title] Abraham 1:4–2:2
KEPA 4 Feb. 1842 (?) 18 leaves, 29x20 cm Willard Richards [no title] Abraham 1:1–3:26 (pages containing 2:19 - 3:17 missing)
KEPA 5 March 1842 (?) 4 leaves, various sizes Willard Richards [no title] Facsimile 2
KEPA 6 1842 Broadside 32x19 cm [back has a letter to Clyde Williams & Co., signed by Joseph Smith and W.W. Phelps]

The most extensive of these documents is KEPE 1, which is an intact bound book, containing 34 nonconsecutive pages of writing and 186 blank pages (an average of three written pages being followed by 18 to 20 blank pages).

Notes

  1. John Gee, "Eyewitness, Hearsay, and Physical Evidence of the Joseph Smith Papyri," The Disciple As Witness: Essays on Latter-day Saint History and Doctrine in Honor of Richard Lloyd Anderson, eds., Stephen D. Ricks, Donald W. Parry, and Andrew H. Hedges (Provo: FARMS, 2000), 196.
  2. Until recently this was believed to be W.W. Phelps' handwriting.