Researchers used some very clever imaging systems to recover the original text, at which point they not only discovered a lost ancient book, but they also discovered that Archimedes had been well on the way to discovering calculus, one thousand eight hundred years(!) before Newton and Leibniz got it.
Two days ago a correction appeared in the comments of that post I wrote. I'd said that the monk who covered over the text was unknown. Someone named Roger Easton, a newcomer to the blog, wrote to say that the name of the monk was indeed known, and that he's credited with (inadvertently) saving the book.
I get random comments on older posts all the time, so I didn't give it a lot of thought.
Then the next day it suddenly hit me...the name of the imaging guru who recovered the Archimedes Palimpsest was none other than... Professor Roger Easton.
I think we can take this comment as coming ex cathedra. Here's what Professor Easton had to say:
The comment that we do not know the name of the monk who erased the original Archimedes text is incorrect -- it is Ioannes Myronas, as discovered in 2006 when the manuscript was imaged using X-ray fluorescence. Dr. William Noel, Director of the Archimedes Palimpsest project, has said that he believes that Myronas may be credited with SAVING the writings rather than destroying them, since he provided a camouflage that actually preserved them.