Oxford Professor Allegedly Sold Stolen Ancient Manuscripts To Hobby Lobby. Now They Are Suing Him For $7 Million

Oxford Professor Allegedly Sold Stolen Ancient Manuscripts To Hobby Lobby. Now They Are Suing Him For $7 Million


Hobby Lobby sued an Oxford professor for $7 million after he allegedly sold them ancient biblical manuscript fragments that he stole from the university.

The retail company alleges that Dirk Obbink, a 64-year-old former professor of papyrology at Oxford University, sold them troves of ancient papyrus and artifacts worth more than $7 million between 2010 and 2013, according to The Christian Post.

What Obbink sold to them, however, was allegedly taken from the Oxyrhynchus collection in the Sackler Library. The professor was suspended amid such allegations and was arrested in March 2020 before being released pending further investigation.

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“Some of the fragments were stolen by Obbink from the Egyptian Exploration Society, the custodian of the largest collection of ancient papyri in the world,” Hobby Lobby claimed in the lawsuit.

The Oxyrhynchus Papyri is a trove of ancient manuscripts that was found at Oxyrhynchus, an archaeological site that lies approximately 100 miles south-southwest of Cairo, Egypt. The group of documents — which contains 500,000 fragments of

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