Archaeology & History
Dictionary translates ancient Egyptian texts
By T.K. Randall
September 19, 2012 · 4 comments
Image Credit: stockxpert
University of Chicago scholars have completed a 2000 page dictionary based on over 40 years of research.
The dictionary more than doubles the number of known words in the ancient Egyptian Demotic vocabulary, a language that was typically used in place of Hieroglyphics ( which were reserved for use by the elite ) by the everyday people of ancient Egypt. Egyptologist Janet H. Johnson described the achievement as "an indispensable tool for reconstructing the social, political and cultural life of ancient Egypt during a fascinating period."
Even though Demotic was believed to have been abandoned over 1,500 years ago, traces of it can still be found in modern words such as "adobe" which is based on the Demotic word for "brick".
A workshop for specialists in Demotic research was held at the university last month as the dictionary section for the letter S, the last of 25 chapters to be finished, is being posted on the Oriental Institute’s Web site, where the dictionary is available free.
Source: New York Times
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