Wondering if anyone has copied any Ancient Egyptian texts such as this into Unicode Hieroglyphs or something similar, rather than English translations. Or if not, if there are photographs of the original Egyptian hieroglyphic texts.


Here is a compilation of various resources to learn ancient classical Egyptian (aka Middle Egyptian) and a selection of various corpus to read. NB: The texts and resources I am quoting here and purely in hieroglyphics, you will not find here hieratic (the "cursive form" of hieroglyphs) or demotic. Also, notice you can learn with them Classical Egyptian, with tackling a little bit from your side, old Kingdom stuff, but Ptolemaic writing will be barely accessible, the one in hieroglyphics, I mean here.

Reading manuals:

Friendly warning: While they are still widely used by internauts, FORGET Wallis Budge books... Forget them. They are WAY too old. Way way way. Any of Wallis Budge's books, his one on hieroglyphs or his old translations. Forget them.

Now concerning texts:

  • The Pyramid text online That is the tomb of Unis (they spelled Unas due to the Egyptian i which is often spelled a), with plenty of photos, and English translation. All the tomb is clearly photographed
  • Projet Rosette, a French site, but you do not care, it is written in English with plenty of texts.
  • Annoting Egyptian texts Very nice resource with photos and the text in font translation (easier to read)
  • Saint Andrew Corpus the text in hieroglyphs with the transliteration and the traduction, best way to learn

As you can see, resources are PLENTY. Egyptian is a tough language, very tough, its writing system a pain. But there are tons of excellent resources to study it.
And forget anything written by Wallis Budge. I told it, mentioned it. I am repeating it. They even made fun of the fact Wallis Budge's books are still in print in the old movie Stargate!!!

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  • That last link is great! Thanks. Unfortunately it doesn't have a copyright license so it probably defaults to private use only. – Lance Pollard Oct 22 '18 at 8:04
  • @LancePollard The Saint Andrew corpus is nice yes. Add that generally speaking it is easy to find books (JP Allen did it for the pyramid texts... it is huge, and i am not talking about its translation, no ancientworldonline.blogspot.com/2013/07/…). You will have the same phenomenon with cuneiform. You find easily transliterations. You can find drawings of tablets (cuneiform is not easy to read on photos). You have a huge part of the Sumerian corpus, and all the usual Akkadian texts. Amateurs loving the ancient world are full of resources!!! – Gibet Oct 22 '18 at 12:24
  • Wonder if you know of anything else that is open source / open data / without copyright restrictions. And as a bonus, is in text format. – Lance Pollard Oct 22 '18 at 16:19
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    @LancePollard Protip: most of the Egyptologists, or on that regard, Assyriologists or Mesoamericanists are quite approachable. They rarely dispatch an amateur with good intentions. From my understanding, I have heard the same of Latinists and Hellenists. See directly with Dr Nederhof. – Gibet Oct 24 '18 at 7:18
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    @LancePollard No. Or I would have signaled it. Hence my suggestion. Your demand is quite unusual! For copyright issue, you can go to the old 19xx publications. There are plenty of German sources with hieroglyphic texts. You can poke around Wallis Budge, not its translations or grammars, but I do remind he published the originals as well. Should be on copyleft.. There are tons of resources, but it never occurs to me to check the copy issues... – Gibet Oct 24 '18 at 8:25

The largest collection I know of is the Digitized Collections of Ancient Egyptian Source Texts

There's also Hieroglyphic texts from Egyptian stelae, etc

and the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae

As for transcribed texts, consider that there were mainly two word processors used in the last decades to transcribe hieroglyphs: JSesh and Winglyph (the latter seems to be discontinued).

The reason I'm mentioning this: Unicode transcription is fairly recent, and most transcribed texts will still be in JSesh (.gly) format, which uses a classification notation system called Manuel De Codage (MDC). The classication is used in dictionaries such as Middle Egyptian Dictionary.

For example, the text on the Stargate Cover Stone is:

enter image description here

In JSesh, we would write this as:




If you open this notation in JSesh, it looks like this:

enter image description here

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  • Nice to add a transliteration of the text:: rnptw 100 010, r qbhw pw ra m itn m xtm n=f qrs=f djt r nhh sbA=n sbAw=f. The text is, I think obviously in a wanky language (Ra should not be written with the seated man!!), but here is: For 100 010 years Ra is into the sky (it is written into the sky is Ra), who is Aten (itn The solar disk), he is sealed and buried for ever and eternity (djt r nhh), our gate to his star (there is a pun between sbA=n door and sbAw=f star, which is a delight) – Gibet Nov 2 '18 at 11:04
  • oh, I probably should have mentioned that's just my own rendering from freezing the video and trying to figure out the glyphs and entering them in JSesh. It's a hobby :) – Codosaur Nov 2 '18 at 11:07
  • on a more entertaining note, you can have loads of fun taking the tour mode of Assassin's Creed Origins and just climb the buildings, the obelisks, etc. and see what's written on them. – Codosaur Nov 2 '18 at 11:17
  • Speaking of that... In the presentation they did back in the day, there is this text: static.gamespot.com/uploads/original/1539/15391776/… The last sentence on the right is: bAkwt (you (pl, not thou, you all) work) jm (from) kmh (dark) n (to) gnh (serve) sshp (light) = you all work from the darkness to serve the light... The text is really less wanky than the one in stargate (in fact it is good)!! the text start at the 4th glyph, the kind of bird (bA) and finish at the ray of the sun (sshp) – Gibet Nov 2 '18 at 13:11

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