The Rosetta Stone and the Rebirth of Ancient Egypt

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Harvard University Press, 2007 - History - 199 pages
9 Reviews

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The Rosetta Stone is one of the world's great wonders, attracting awed pilgrims by the tens of thousands each year. This book tells the Stone's story, from its discovery by Napoleon's expedition to Egypt to its current--and controversial-- status as the single most visited object on display in the British Museum.

A pharaoh's forgotten decree, cut in granite in three scripts--Egyptian hieroglyphs, Egyptian demotic, and ancient Greek--the Rosetta Stone promised to unlock the door to the language of ancient Egypt and its 3,000 years of civilization, if only it could be deciphered. Capturing the drama of the race to decode this key to the ancient past, John Ray traces the paths pursued by the British polymath Thomas Young and Jean-Francois Champollion, the "father of Egyptology" ultimately credited with deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphs. He shows how Champollion "broke the code" and explains more generally how such deciphering is done, as well as its critical role in the history of Egyptology. Concluding with a chapter on the political and cultural controversy surrounding the Stone, the book also includes an appendix with a full translation of the Stone's text.

Rich in anecdote and curious lore, The Rosetta Stone and the Rebirth of Ancient Egypt is a brilliant and frequently amusing guide to one of history's great mysteries and marvels.

  

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Review: The Rosetta Stone and the Rebirth of Ancient Egypt (Wonders of the World)

User Review  - Library Linsey - Goodreads

Interesting even if the prose was a bit stuffy Read full review

Review: The Rosetta Stone and the Rebirth of Ancient Egypt (Wonders of the World)

User Review  - NaomiRuth - Goodreads

The first few chapters dragged for me... Maybe I've just heard the information one too many times. But as I had already read a linguistics point of view, a mythological point og view, and a ... Read full review

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Contents

Introduction
1
The Fading of the Light
9
The Pot and the Kettle
25
CHAPTER3 The Man of Science
38
The Man of Art
56
CHAPTERS To Make Them Live Again
80
The Return of the Light
96
The Heirs of JeanFrancois
132
Whose Loot is it Anyway?
145
The text of the stone
164
Further reading
171
List of illustrations
186
Copyright

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About the author (2007)

John Ray is Herbert Thompson Professor of Egyptology at Cambridge University, and is also a Fellow of Selwyn College.

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