hieroglyphes

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James Basire, egyptian & greek script of the Rosetta Stone, 1810. Engraving. Society of Antiquaries of London. Via NYPL

The Rosetta stone is dated 196 BC, made in Memphis, Egypt. The stone was brought to England in 1802 during the Napoleonic Wars and has since then been on display in the British Museum. It shows three scripts with the same text: the code of the hieroglyphs could be cracked in 1822.

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Direct from her role in Romeo and Juliet on Broadway, Condola Rashad has joined Fox’s upcoming drama series HIEROGLYPH.

HIEROGLYPH is set in ancient Egypt and centers on a thief who is taken from prison to serve the Pharaoh, played by Reece Ritchie (who describes himself as “mixed”).
The 13 episode series combines fantasy and reality and involves sorcerers, the criminal underground, romantic scandals and more.

Rashad will play Nefertari, the Pharaoh’s beautiful half-sister.

The series was created by Travis Beacham. He will produce alongside Peter Chernin, Katherine Pope and Miguel Sapochnik, who is set to direct the pilot episode.

Read more about Condola Rashad and HIEROGLYPH  at www.broadwayworld.com

The Rosetta Stone

A valuable key to deciphering ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, the inscription on the Rosetta Stone is a decree passed by a council of priests. It is one of a series that affirm the royal cult of the 13-year-old Ptolemy V on the first anniversary of his coronation (in 196 BC).

In previous years the family of the Ptolemies had lost control of certain parts of the country. It had taken their armies some time to put down opposition in the Delta, and parts of southern Upper Egypt, particularly Thebes, were not yet back under the government’s control. Before the Ptolemaic era (before about 332 BC), decrees in hieroglyphs such as this were usually set up by the king. It shows how much things had changed from earlier times that the priests, the only people who had kept the knowledge of writing hieroglyphs, were now issuing such decrees. The list of good deeds done by the king for the temples hints at the way in which the support of the priests was ensured.

The decree is inscribed on the stone three times, in hieroglyphic (suitable for a priestly decree), demotic (the native script used for daily purposes), and Greek (the language of the administration). The importance of this to Egyptology is immense.

Soon after the end of the 4th century AD, when hieroglyphs had gone out of use, the knowledge of how to read and write them disappeared. In the early years of the 19th century, scholars were able to use the Greek inscription on this stone as the key to decipher them. Thomas Young (1773–1829), an English physicist, was the first to show that some of the hieroglyphs on the Rosetta Stone wrote the sounds of a royal name, that of Ptolemy.

The French scholar Jean-François Champollion (1790–1832) then realised that hieroglyphs recorded the sound of the Egyptian language and laid the foundations of our knowledge of ancient Egyptian language and culture. Champollion made a crucial step in understanding ancient Egyptian writing when he pieced together the alphabet of hieroglyphs that was used to write the names of non-Egyptian rulers. He announced his discovery, which had been based on analysis of the Rosetta Stone and other texts, in a paper at the Academie des Inscriptions et Belles Lettres at Paris on Friday 27 September 1822. The audience included his English rival Thomas Young, who was also trying to decipher Egyptian hieroglyphs. Champollion inscribed this copy of the published paper with alphabetic hieroglyphs meaning ‘à mon ami Dubois’ ('to my friend Dubois’). Champollion made a second crucial breakthrough in 1824, realising that the alphabetic signs were used not only for foreign names, but also for the Egyptian language and names. Together with his knowledge of the Coptic language, which derived from ancient Egyptian, this allowed him to begin reading hieroglyphic inscriptions fully.

Soldiers in Napoleon’s army discovered the Rosetta Stone in 1799 while digging the foundations of an addition to a fort near the town of el-Rashid (Rosetta). On Napoleon’s defeat, the stone became the property of the British under the terms of the Treaty of Alexandria (1801) along with other antiquities that the French had found.

The Rosetta Stone has been exhibited in the British Museum since 1802, with only one break. Towards the end of the First World War, in 1917, when the Museum was concerned about heavy bombing in London, they moved it to safety along with other, portable, 'important’ objects. The Rosetta Stone spent the next two years in a station on the Postal Tube Railway 50 feet below the ground at Holborn.

Find out more in this BBC podcast about the Rosetta Stone.

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The pyramid texts of Teti I’s pyramid.

Teti I (2345–2333 BCE) was the first king of Egypt’s 6th dynasty, and was buried at Saqqara. Preserved within his pyramid are some excellent examples of pyramid texts. Pyramid texts are ancient religious texts from Egypt’s Old Kingdom, and are possibly the oldest known religious texts in the world.

The spells (or “utterances”) written are primarily concerned with protecting the remains of the king, reanimating his body after death, and aiding him in ascending to the heavens.

The following is a translated section from the pyramid texts of Teti I’s pyramid (‘Utterance 373’ via: Miriam Lichtheim, Ancient Egyptian Literature, vol 1):

“Oho! Oho! Rise up, O Teti!

Take your head, collect your bones,

Gather your limbs, shake the earth from your flesh!

Take your bread that rots not, your beer that sours not,

Stand at the gates that bar the common people!

The gatekeeper comes out to you, he grasps your hand,

Takes you into heaven, to your father Geb.

He rejoices at your coming, gives you his hands,

Kisses you, caresses you,

Sets you before the spirits, the imperishable stars…”

Photos courtesy & taken by kairoinfo4u.

Ancient Egyptian works to be published together in English for first time

Ancient Egyptian texts written on rock faces and papyri are being brought together for the general reader for the first time after a Cambridge academic translated the hieroglyphic writings into modern English.

Until now few people beyond specialists have been able to read the texts, many of them inaccessible within tombs. While ancient Greek and Roman texts are widely accessible in modern editions, those from ancient Egypt have been largely overlooked, and the civilisation is most famous for its monuments.

The Great Pyramid and sphinx at Giza, the tombs in the Valley of the Kings and the rock-cut temples of Abu Simbel have shaped our image of the monumental pharaonic culture and its mysterious god-kings.

Toby Wilkinson said he had decided to begin work on the anthology because there was a missing dimension in how ancient Egypt was viewed: “The life of the mind, as expressed in the written word.” Read more.

so how about that confirmation of ancient egyptian miraculous heroes

i’m still really sore about ladybug being the sole focus of that episode, cats were worshipped in ancient egypt and yet chat noir was completely sidelined…