4,000-year-old Ancient Egyptian manuscript measuring more than 8ft has been rediscovered in Cairo

4,000-year-old Ancient Egyptian manuscript measuring more than 8ft has been rediscovered in Cairo

The oldest known Egyptian leather manuscript, dating back some 4,000 years, has been rediscovered at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo after it was pulled from a dusty, old storage box, where it had been lost for around 70 years. The precious text contains fine quality depictions of supernatural beings which predate the famous drawings of the Egyptian Book of the Dead.

Discovery News reports that the manuscript measures 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) in length, making it the longest text ever found. It exceeds the next longest text by just 2 inches – an ancient pre-nuptial agreement between a couple due to be married, which sets out how the wife will be provided for, should the marriage fail.

“Taking into account that it was written on both sides, we have more than 5 meters (16.4 feet) of texts and drawings, making this the longest leather roll from ancient Egypt,” Wael Sherbiny, the Belgium-based independent scholar who made the finding, told Discovery News.

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The rediscovered leather manuscript in the longest Ancient Egyptian text ever found, exceeding the length of the next longest text, an 8-foot long prenuptial agreemeent (pictured), by just 2 inches. Credit: Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago .

The ancient text, which dates from the late Old Kingdom to the early Middle Kingdom (2300 – 2000 BC), is a religious manuscript, which contains spells that would most likely have been recited by a priest, and an illustrated composition of temple rituals that would have also been adapted for funerary use.

The manuscript is adorned with high-quality colorful drawings of divine and supernatural beings, illustrated around 1,000 years before similar drawings appeared in the world renowned Book of the Dead, an ancient Egyptian funerary text containing spells to aid a deceased person’s journey into the afterlife.

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Book of the Dead spell 17 from the Papyrus of Ani ( Wikipedia)

Sherbiny told Discovery News that the same illustrated composition that is found in the leather manuscript is also found on the base of Middle Kingdom sarcophagi retrieved from the necropolis of Hermopolis in Upper Egypt, dating to between 2055 and 1650 BC.

“Amazingly, the roll offers an even more detailed iconography than the Hermopolitan coffins in terms of texts and drawings,” Sherbiny said.

The composition in the manuscript predates the illustrations found at Hermopolis, suggesting that they may have had a long history of transmission before being used in the coffin decorations.

The same illustrated composition that is found in the leather manuscript is also found on the base of Middle Kingdom coffins retrieved from the necropolis of Hermopolis. Objects from the tomb of Djehutynakht, a nomarch during the Middle Kingdom era of Egypt, found in the necropolis of Hermopolis ( Wikipedia)

Ancient Egyptian leather manuscripts are extremely rare because leather quickly disintegrates over time, while papyri were well-preserved by the dry climate of Egypt. At the time, leather was considered the more prestigious writing material, and was used to record religious texts, as well as important historical events.

Wael Sherbiny had to piece together the leather roll, which was in tiny fragments. He is currently preparing the full publication of the contents of the ancient manuscript.

Image: The rediscovered leather manuscript has been compared to the Egyptian Book of the Dead (pictured). Book of the Dead papyrus of Pinedjem II, 21st dynasty, circa 990-969 BC. Originally from the Deir el-Bahri royal cache. ( Wikipedia)


Main keywords of the article below: "kemp, late, egypt", written, manipulated, period, intellectually, king, old, formal, know, divinity, egyptian, p31, promote, construction, lesko, 1999, historic, middle, egypt, state-approved, kingdom, religion, suggested, texts.

KEY TOPICS
"Kemp has suggested that Egyptian religion, as we know it from the formal, state-approved written texts, is an intellectually manipulated construction of the historic period, most likely of the middle or late Old Kingdom (. ) to promote the divinity of the king of Egypt." - Lesko, 1999, p.31. [1] "The Pyramid Texts reflect not only an Egyptian vision of the afterlife but also the entire background of Old Kingdom religious and social structures, and they incorporate an ancient worldview much different from that of more familiar cultures." - Allen, 2005, p.13. [1] In architecture (cf. Giza pyramids), religion (cf. the Pyramid Texts ) and wisdom-teaching, to name but a few areas of interest, these Old Kingdom rules became sanctosanct. ► the henotheist religion of Re As Papyrus Westcar puts into evidence, the beginning of the Vth Dynasty saw major changes in Egyptian religion. [1] Written in Old Egyptian, the pyramid texts were carved on the walls and sarcophagi of the pyramids at Saqqara during the 5th and 6th Dynasties of the Old Kingdom. [2]

Egyptian Literature develops during the period of the Old Kingdom. [3]

This is also the best preserved body of text representing a complete set, providing the standard approach to the theology of the Old Kingdom, dominated by Re-Atum of Heliopolis (Pepi II has the most complete surviving texts of the later pyramids, but suffering damage) [1] Osing (1986) & Allen (1988) compared the location of the texts within the tomb of Unas with other Old Kingdom pyramids and the tomb of Senwosret-Ankh at Lisht. [1] Although writing first appeared during the very late 4th millennium BC, it was only used to convey short names and labels connected strings of text did not appear until about 2600 BC, at the beginning of the Old Kingdom. [4] Authors of the Middle Kingdom could set fictional wisdom texts in the golden age of the Old Kingdom (e.g. Kagemni, Ptahhotep, and the prologue of Neferti ), or they could write fictional accounts placed in a chaotic age resembling more the problematic life of the First Intermediate Period (e.g. Merykare and The Eloquent Peasant ). [4] The Unas text, carved and filled with blue pigment, contains, in 228 of the 759 ( Faulkner, 1969) known "utterances", the first historical account of the (Heliopolitan) religion of the Old Kingdom, in particular its royal cult. [1] Utterances 273 and 274 are sometimes known as the "cannibal hymn", because it describes the king hunting and eating parts of the gods: They represent a discrete episode (Utterances 273-274) in the anthology of ritual texts that make up the Pyramid Texts of the Old Kingdom period. [2] Beginning with the Pyramid Texts of the Old Kingdom, works of funerary literature written on tomb walls, and later on coffins, and papyri placed within tombs, were designed to protect and nurture souls in their afterlife. [4] By the Old Kingdom (26th century BC to 22nd century BC), literary works included funerary texts, epistles and letters, hymns and poems, and commemorative autobiographical texts recounting the careers of prominent administrative officials. [4] Old Kingdom texts served mainly to maintain the divine cults, preserve souls in the afterlife, and document accounts for practical uses in daily life. [4] During the Old Kingdom (2886 B.C.- 2181 B.C.), pyramid texts could be found in the pyramids of kings as well as a three queens named Wedjebten, Neith, and Iput. [2] From the Offering List came the Prayer for Offerings, a standard literary work which would replace the Offering List, and from the autobiographies grew the Pyramid Texts which were accounts of a king's reign and his successful journey to the afterlife both these developments took place during the period of the Old Kingdom (c. 2613-c.2181 BCE). [3] Wisdom Literature, the Pyramid Texts, and the autobiographical inscriptions developed significantly during the Old Kingdom and became the foundation for the literature of the Middle Kingdom. [3] The spells, or "utterances", (short fragmented sentences) of the pyramid texts are primarily concerned with protecting the pharaoh's remains, reanimating his body after death, and helping him ascend to the heavens, which are the emphasis of the afterlife during the Old Kingdom. [2]

These developments in architecture, politics, and also in religious practices - all a departure from the past - made it clear to Egyptologists that the Third Dynasty was the beginning of a new period in Egypt's history and should be included in the Old Kingdom rather than the Early Dynastic Period. [5] Although it would continue to be used throughout the entire Ancient Egyptian history, it lost its importance to the prenomen en nomen from the end of the Old Kingdom on. [1]

Around the 4th century CE Christianity rose to prominence in Egypt and the Christian Egyptians (known as Copts) developed their own script, a kind of hybrid of demotic Egyptian and Greek, and the old texts of hieroglyphic and hieratic script were forgotten. [3] Probably the best-known piece of literature from New Kingdom texts, however, is The Book of Coming Forth by Day, commonly known as The Egyptian Book of the Dead. [3] Scribes of the New Kingdom canonized and copied many literary texts written in Middle Egyptian, which remained the language used for oral readings of sacred hieroglyphic texts. [4] Although the concepts and spells in The Egyptian Book of the Dead originated in the Early Dynastic Period and the book took form in the Middle Kingdom, it became extremely popular in the New Kingdom and the best preserved texts we have of the work date to that time. [3] These same themes had been touched on or fully dealt with during the Middle Kingdom but the New Kingdom texts show an awareness of other cultures, other values, outside of the Egyptian paradigm. [3]

Put aside the obvious difficulties encountered when trying to translate texts 4300 years old, a more subtle problem is posed by the mentality of the Egyptians themselves. [1] In the Old Egyptian of the Pyramid Texts, the composition between semantic groups is loose. [1]

The use and occurrence of pyramid texts changed between the Old, Middle and New Kingdoms of Ancient Egypt. [2]

The Old Kingdom of Egypt (c. 2613-2181 BCE) is also known as the 'Age of the Pyramids ' or 'Age of the Pyramid Builders' as it includes the great 4th Dynasty when King Sneferu perfected the art of pyramid building and the pyramids of Giza were constructed under the kings Khufu, Khafre, and Menkaure. [5] Recent scholarship, however, rejects that view as the construction of Djoser's pyramid is more in keeping with the Early Dynastic Period in Egypt (c. 3150-2613 BCE) than the Old Kingdom as are cultural practices and observances. [5] Although the Osiris cult would not become popular until the period of the Middle Kingdom of Egypt (2040-1782 BCE), evidence strongly suggests that this former agricultural deity was already associated with death and resurrection during the Old Kingdom. [5]

The last king of the Third Dynasty, Huni (c. 2630-2613 BCE), was long thought to have initiated the massive building projects of the Old Kingdom in constructing the pyramid at Meidum, but credit for the Meidum pyramid goes to the first king of the 4th Dynasty, Sneferu (c. 2613-2589 BCE) who may have been Huni's son by one of his minor queens. [5] Reign of King Netjerkare, last ruler of the Old Kingdom of Egypt. [5] The royal autobiographies and Offering Lists of the Old Kingdom, only available to kings and nobles, were made use of in the First Intermediate Period by anyone who could afford to build a tomb, royal and non-royal alike. [3]

Old Egyptian remained a spoken language until about 2100 BC, when, during the beginning of the Middle Kingdom, it evolved into Middle Egyptian. [4] For these reasons and others, the Old Kingdom is now thought to begin with the 4th Dynasty of Egypt, although, it should be noted, this claim is not at all universally accepted among scholars. [5] Stories from the 1st millennium BC written in Demotic include the story of the Famine Stela (set in the Old Kingdom, although written during the Ptolemaic dynasty ) and short story cycles of the Ptolemaic and Roman periods that transform well-known historical figures such as Khaemweset ( Nineteenth Dynasty ) and Inaros ( First Persian Period ) into fictional, legendary heroes. [4] While letters to the dead had been written since the Old Kingdom, the writing of petition letters in epistolary form to deities began in the Ramesside Period, becoming very popular during the Persian and Ptolemaic periods. [4] It is known that some oral poetry was preserved in later writing for example, litter-bearers' songs were preserved as written verses in tomb inscriptions of the Old Kingdom. [4] Excluding the pyramids of Djedefre at Abu Roash and Sneferu at Meidum as outliers, the 21 major Old Kingdom pyramids stand like sentinels in a 20-km (12-mile) stretch west of the capital the 'White Walls', later known as Memphis, clustering at Giza, Zawiyet el-Aryan, Abusir, Saqqara and Dahshur." - Lehner, 2001, pp.14-15. [1] Later, in the Old Kingdom (ca. 2670 - 2205 BCE), the divine king or "nesut" was deemed the son of Re, i.e. the sole divine being abiding on Earth (the Akhu or deities remained in the sky and only sent their Kas -doubles- and Bas -souls-, not their spirit). [1] This new standard, so-called Meidum-type arrangement, was amplified by the gigantic Giza complex of King Khufu (ca. 2571 - 2548 BCE), and remained unchanged throughout the Old Kingdom. [1] From the IIIth Dynasty (ca. 2670 BCE), initiating the Old Kingdom (ca. 2670 - 2205 BCE), the royal ritual issued a new emphasis on the single, Solar creator-god Re, replacing the traditional balance between Horus and Seth. [1]

The Middle Kingdom scribes, however, looked back on the time of the First Intermediate Period and saw in it a clear departure from the glory of the Old Kingdom. [3] Parkinson and Morenz also speculate that written works of the Middle Kingdom were transcriptions of the oral literature of the Old Kingdom. [4] The artistic achievements of the Old Kingdom were never afterwards surpassed either in technique or naturalism the grandeur of its architectural triumphs is emphasized by the enduring Pyramids, and especially Khufu's great tomb with its finely wrought stonework, which remains unequalled to the present day. [6] Menkaure's pyramid and complex is smaller than the other two and this signifies an important development in the history of the Old Kingdom and one of the reasons why it would collapse. [5] Like most Old Kingdom pyramids, the complex of Unas included a pyramid-complex, a causeway and a valley temple below, adjacent to a canal. [1] Naydler, 2005, p.162. ► the eternalization of the divine kings In the Old Kingdom, temples for the cult of the deities were usually made out of brick, a perishable material. [1] His pyramid at Saqqara, called "Perfect are the Placed of Unas", is at the South-western corner of Djoser's enclosure and the smallest of all known Old Kingdom pyramids. [1] "The Step Pyramid of Djoser heralded the classic pyramid age, the 4th to 6th dynasties, also known as the Old Kingdom. [1]

The language of these compositions, which has the style of the "records" of the Old Kingdom, is often additive and offers little self-reflection (which starts with the literature of the First Intermediate Period). [1] The 4th Dynasty of the Old Kingdom was a time of progress and a strong centralized government which could command the kind of respect necessary for such building projects. [5] The Old Kingdom ended with the 6th Dynasty as no strong ruler came to the throne to lead the people. [5] During the Early Dynastic Period and the early Old Kingdom, it was the king’s official name. [1] Came to an end the Old Kingdom, which had existed for about 1700 years from the time of Mena. [6] Surviving hymns and songs from the Old Kingdom include the morning greeting hymns to the gods in their respective temples. [4]

A variety of textual traditions evolved from the original Pyramid Texts: the Coffin Texts of the Middle Kingdom, the so-called Book of the Dead, Litany of Ra, and Amduat written on papyri from the New Kingdom until the end of ancient Egyptian civilization. [4] Egyptian prophetic literature underwent a revival during the Greek Ptolemaic dynasty and Roman period of Egypt with works such as the Demotic Chronicle, Oracle of the Lamb, Oracle of the Potter, and two prophetic texts that focus on Nectanebo II (r. 360-343 BC) as a protagonist. [4] Tait asserts that during the Classical Period of Egypt, "Egyptian scribes constructed their own view of the history of the role of scribes and of the 'authorship' of texts", but during the Late Period, this role was instead maintained by the religious elite attached to the temples. [4]

The work is not an "ancient Egyptian Bible ", as some have claimed, nor is it a "magical text of spells". [3] His claims have been discredited through Egyptian texts, which praise Khufu's reign, and physical evidence, which suggests the workers on the Great Pyramid were well cared for and performed their duties as part of a community service, as paid laborers, or during the time the Nile's flood made farming impossible. [5] Many of the texts include accomplishments of the Pharaoh as well as the things they did for the Egyptian people during the time of their rule. [2] In funerary texts beginning in and following the Twelfth dynasty, the Egyptians believed that disfiguring, and even omitting certain hieroglyphs, brought consequences, either good or bad, for a deceased tomb occupant whose spirit relied on the texts as a source of nourishment in the afterlife. [4] It is possible, however, that Egyptian texts inspired or at least lent certain aspects to biblical narratives which were then borrowed by later writers in their works. [3] Menkaure (known as Mykerinos by the Greeks) is viewed favorably by both the Greeks and the Egyptian texts. [5] There is scant but solid evidence in Egyptian literature and art for the practice of oral reading of texts to audiences. [4] The Egyptians called their hieroglyphs "words of god" and reserved their use for exalted purposes, such as communicating with divinities and spirits of the dead through funerary texts. [4]

He based his order of the text on (a) the sequencing found in the tomb of Senwosret-Ankh and (b) his conjectured order of the royal funerary ritual as portrayed in the later Middle and New Kingdom private tombs. [1] In Late Egyptian literature, "tales and stories" comprise the majority of surviving literary works dated from the Ramesside Period of the New Kingdom into the Late Period. [4] Late Egyptian possibly appeared as a vernacular language as early as 1600 BC, but was not used as a written language until c. 1300 BC during the Amarna Period of the New Kingdom. [4] No Egyptian love song has been dated from before the New Kingdom, these being written in Late Egyptian, although it is speculated that they existed in previous times. [4]

The Middle Kingdom declined during this dynasty in all aspects, finally to the point of allowing a foreign people to gain power in lower Egypt: The Hyksos and their period of control, just like the First Intermediate Period, would be vilified by later Egyptian scribes who would again write of a time of chaos and darkness. [3] Middle Kingdom literature written in Middle Egyptian was also rewritten in hieratic during later periods. [4] However, the Hyksos would provide valuable contributions to Egyptian culture even though these were ignored in the later literature of the New Kingdom. [3] The Egyptian love poem of the New Kingdom is remarkably similar on many levels to the biblical Song of Solomon and the much later compositions of the troubadors of 12th century CE France in their evocation of a beloved who is beyond compare and worthy of all devotion and sacrifice. [3]

Middle Egyptian, the spoken language of the Middle Kingdom, became a classical language during the New Kingdom (16th century BC to 11th century BC), when the vernacular language known as Late Egyptian first appeared in writing. [4] Hieratic was used alongside hieroglyphs for writing in Old and Middle Egyptian, becoming the dominant form of writing in Late Egyptian. [4] This development marked the beginning of the first known phase of the Egyptian language : Old Egyptian. [4]

This is practically unknown in the Pyramid Texts. (. ) But the fact that both Re and Osiris appear as supreme king of the hereafter cannot be reconciled, and such mutually irreconcilable beliefs caused the Egyptian no more discomfort than was felt by any early civilization in the maintenance of a group of religious teachings side by side with others involving varying and totally inconsistent suppositions. [1] Recently, Naydler (2005), by suspending the funerary interpretation, evidenced that the Pyramid Texts in general and the Unas texts in particular, reveal an experiential dimension, and so also represent this-life initiatic experiences consciously sought by the divine king (cf. Egyptian initiation ). [1] Comparisons with the architectural language of the period, makes it likely that under Pharaoh Djoser, the Egyptians had the conceptual framework of the Pyramid Texts at their disposal. [1]

According to these authors, sustaining the Hellenistic approach of contemporary Egyptology regarding religious experience in Ancient Egypt, the initiatic, this-life experiences of the king, of his priests and of his worshippers, found in the religious text and on the monuments of Egypt, do not reflect direct spiritual experiences, but are imaginal constructions and wishful thinking about the afterlife, the dogma being : Ancient Egyptian religion is funerary & mortuary. [1]

The Middle Kingdom genre of " prophetic texts ", also known as " laments ", " discourses ", " dialogues ", and "apocalyptic literature", include such works as the Admonitions of Ipuwer, Prophecy of Neferti, and Dispute between a man and his Ba. [4] The Coffin Texts from the interior of coffins, belong to the Middle Kingdom (2250-1580 BCE) and indicate 'democratization' of the ancient funerary ritual - each soul now hoped to achieve a ritual assimilation to the god. [7] Wisdom texts of the " teaching " genre represent the majority of pedagogical texts written on ostraca during the Middle Kingdom narrative tales, such as Sinuhe and King Neferkare and General Sasenet, were rarely copied for school exercises until the New Kingdom. [4] Some genres of Middle Kingdom literature, such as " teachings " and fictional tales, remained popular in the New Kingdom, although the genre of prophetic texts was not revived until the Ptolemaic period (4th century BC to 1st century BC). [4] The Unas text was copied in the Middle Kingdom (ca. 1938 - 1759 BCE) tomb of the official Senwosret-Ankh, high priest of Ptah, suggesting the presence of a separate corpus (on papyrus ?), i.e. a continuous manuscript tradition and an underlying archival tradition. [1] He notes that while some texts were copied numerous times, others survive from a single copy for example, there is only one complete surviving copy of the Tale of the shipwrecked sailor from the Middle Kingdom. [4] It was not until the Middle Kingdom that texts were written for the purpose of entertainment and intellectual curiosity. [4] Teaching texts that have survived from the Middle Kingdom were written on papyrus manuscripts. [4] In Middle Kingdom texts, connecting themes include a pessimistic outlook, descriptions of social and religious change, and great disorder throughout the land, taking the form of a syntactic "then-now" verse formula. [4]

The early pharaohs of the New Kingdom dedicated themselves to preventing any kind of incursion like that of the Hyksos and so embarked on a series of military campaigns to expand Egypt's borders this resulted in the Age of Empire for Egypt which was reflected in a broader scope of content in the literature and art. [3] Although many of these forms are not usually defined as " literature " they are given that designation in Egyptian studies because so many of them, especially from the Middle Kingdom (2040-1782 BCE), are of such high literary merit. [3] The genre of "tales and stories" is probably the least represented genre from surviving literature of the Middle Kingdom and Middle Egyptian. [4] The Middle Kingdom is considered the classical age of Egyptian literature. [3] It was not until the early Middle Kingdom (21st century BC to 17th century BC) that a narrative Egyptian literature was created. [4] The most famous prose narratives in Egyptian history - The Tale of the Shipwrecked Sailor and The Story of Sinuhe both come from the Middle Kingdom as well. [3] Scribes had always been considered an important aspect of Egyptian daily life and the popularity of The Satire on the Trades makes clear how readers in the Middle Kingdom recognized this. [3]

By the New Kingdom and throughout the rest of ancient Egyptian history, Middle Egyptian became a classical language that was usually reserved for reading and writing in hieroglyphs. [4]

"The fact remains, then, that the celestial doctrines of the hereafter dominate the Pyramid Texts throughout, and the later subterranean kingdom of Osiris and Re's voyage through it are still entirely in the background in these royal mortuary teachings. [1]

In the New Kingdom (1550 B.C.- 1070 B.C.) pyramid texts could now be found on tombs of officials. [2]

This exhibit investigates the Pyramid Texts, Old Kingdom religious texts found on the inner walls of Egyptian pyramids. [8] The Pyramid Texts are a collection of ancient Egyptian religious texts from the time of the Old Kingdom, mostly inscriptions on the walls of tombs in pyramids. [9]


For the goal of these Ancient Egyptian studies is not to translate Egyptian texts ab ovo, but to bring together a basket of texts allowing us to appreciate Ancient Egyptian wisdom teachings and clarifying the relationship with Greek philosophy (cf. Hermetism and the Hermetic Keys ). [1] In 2005, Allen published The Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts, containing the texts found in 10 tombs (besides the canonical five, he also includes Ankhesenpepi II, Neith, Iput II, Wedjebetni & Ibi). [1] The list of tombs containing Pyramid Texts is apparently never final, nor has our knowledge of Ancient Egyptian stopped advancing. [1] Following the earlier Palermo Stone, the pyramid texts mark the next-oldest known mention of Osiris, who would become the most important deity associated with afterlife in the Ancient Egyptian religion. [2]


Monumental inscriptions of the gods of Egypt and their enduring support for the pharaoh became a vehicle for expressing the country's superiority over its neighbors, stories and poems reflected a greater knowledge of the world beyond Egypt's borders, and the old theme of order vs. chaos was re-imagined as a divine struggle. [3] Ancient Egyptian literature was written in the Egyptian language from ancient Egypt's pharaonic period until the end of Roman domination. [4] Richard B. Parkinson and Ludwig D. Morenz write that ancient Egyptian literature--narrowly defined as belles-lettres ("beautiful writing")--was not recorded in written form until the early Twelfth dynasty of the Middle Kingdom. [4] During the Middle Kingdom (2055 B.C.- 1650 B.C.) pyramid texts were not written in the pyramids of the Pharaohs, but the traditions of the pyramid spells continued to be practiced. [2] Although the shortest and smallest of all pyramid texts, Unas' texts have been used to replicate numerous texts to follow including those found in Senworsret-ankh at Lisht, from the Middle Kingdom. [2]

The Middle Kingdom (2040-1782 BCE) is considered ancient Egypt's Classical Age during which the culture produced. [3] In the area of language, the Pyramid Texts and the tomb autobiographies are the main textual sources for the written language of the Old Kingdom, usually called Old Egyptian. [10]

These texts on the interior walls of the pyramids were a rather disorganized collection of spells, prayers, mortuary rituals, myths, and instructions through these, it is possible to roughly decipher Old Kingdom beliefs of the afterlife, at least for the pharaoh (Kinkade, 334). [8] Specifically, in the Old Kingdom the text appears in the pyramids of Unas, Tei, Pepy I, Merenre I, Pepy II and Ibi, along with those of queens Wedjebten, Neith and Iput. [9] During the rule of Pepy II we begin to find the text in the tombs of queens, and after the Old Kingdom, they even appear on the walls and coffins of officials. [9] Around 2200 B.C., ancient texts suggest that Egypt’s so-called Old Kingdom gave way to a disastrous era of foreign invasions, pestilence, civil war, and famines severe enough to result in cannibalism. [11] With the lack of Old Kingdom temples of local gods or papyri describing religious beliefs, these texts are the only solid information available about Old Kingdom beliefs of the afterlife (Malek, 109). [8] They evolved over time, beginning with the Pyramid Texts in the Old Kingdom, which were the concern only of royal burials, through the Coffin Texts of the Middle Kingdom, the several books in the New Kingdom and later times. [12] The so-called Pyramid Texts have been assembled from fragments of prayers found carved on the walls of royal tombs of the Old Kingdom ( c. 2686- c. 2160 bce ). [13] The Pyramid Texts : Old Kingdom This is a collection of rituals and magical texts in hieroglyphs inscribed on the walls of the burial chamber, ante-chamber and other rooms and corridors inside the royal pyramids of the Vth and Vth Dynasties (initiated by Pharaoh Unis ). [14] Consistent with the other exhibits within the group, functionalist theory will be used to examine what we know about Old Kingdom views of life after death from the Pyramid Texts and how they might be influenced by the contemporaneous society. [8] The spells, or "utterances", of the pyramid texts are primarily concerned with protecting the pharaoh's remains, reanimating his body after death, and helping him ascend to the heavens, which are the emphasis of the afterlife during the Old Kingdom. [9]

The Old Kingdom was an Ancient Egyptian period lasting from 2686 to 2181 BC and from the 3 rd through 6 th dynasties. [8]

Spells or formulae that could aid your path through the next world first appeared on the walls of pyramids during the Egyptian Fifth Dynasty, around 2350 BC. Some 400 years later, in the time of Egypt’s Middle Kingdom, these Pyramid Texts evolved into Coffin Texts that were inscribed on coffins, tomb walls and, sometimes, sheets of papyrus. [15] From Unas, the last king of the 5th Dynasty, varying selections of spells were carved in all the royal pyramids of the Old Kingdom, particularly the sarcophagus chamber and antechamber. [9] We know from ancient writings that Egypt was experiencing many low Nile floods toward the end of the Old Kingdom. [16] The Old Kingdom includes the first important dynasties that made Egypt an advanced civilization. [16] The Old Kingdom began with the Third Dynasty of kings in 2686 B.C. and ended with the Eighth Dynasty, more than 500 years later. [16] The Old Kingdom was, compared to the later and relatively democratized periods, very focused on the glorious power of the pharaoh. [8] Conventional wisdom holds that Egypt’s Old Kingdom collapsed around 2150 B.C., soon after the death of pharaoh Pepi II, whose pyramid is now a pile of rubble. [11] She notes that "there is evidence that the country remained politically unified" long after Pepi II, traditionally considered the last Old Kingdom pharaoh. [11]

During the Fifth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom, the sun god Ra took a dominant place in the state religion. [16]

During the Old Kingdom, Egyptian culture experiences the need to find a unifying model for three independent dimensions of religious life: (1) the worship of the gods (2) the representativeness of the king and (3) the maintenance of the private funerary cult. [10] Here too, the Old Kingdom maintains its paradigmatic function throughout pharaonic history, being the era to which later periods will look back as the most successful compound of the ideological values and the intellectual features of Egyptian culture as a whole. [10] After experiments in the Early Dynastic period, a phase still characterized by a high degree of variety in many areas of Egyptian culture, the Old Kingdom is the period during which the canons governing Egyptian civilization throughout its historical development were uniformly fixed. [10] The rigid organization and the social values of Old Kingdom society also remain a source of inspiration for later Egyptian literature. [10] Old Kingdom references to the Western Desert, inhabited by Libyan populations, are scarce and confined to military confrontations, as documented in the autobiography of Harkhuf however, a 5th Dynasty statue refers to an Egyptian official as "governor of the Farafra Oasis," and in the 6th Dynasty we know of an extensive Egyptian settlement in the Dakhla Oasis. [10]

The ancient text, which dates from the late Old Kingdom to the early Middle Kingdom (2300 - 2000 BC), is a religious manuscript, which contains spells that would most likely have been recited by a priest, and an illustrated composition of temple rituals that would have also been adapted for funerary use. [17]

Middle Kingdom authors, who composed major works of Egyptian literature, liked to set their stories and instruction texts in Old Kingdom times. [18] In the Old Kingdom Egyptians started to put in writing religious and wisdom texts, which date mostly to after the 5th dynasty. [18] Ancient Egyptian religious texts from the time of the Old Kingdom. [19]

As the unifying factor of Egyptian society, the Old Kingdom monarch is at the same time creator and beneficiary of its cohesiveness. [10] A parallel symptom of centralization coming from a different aspect of Egyptian society during the Old Kingdom is represented by the state monopoly in religious affairs. [10] The wisdom literature can be found throughout all periods of ancient Egyptian history from the Old Kingdom through to the New Kingdom. [20]

The intellectual history of the Old Kingdom is mainly documented by monumental texts. [10] Another papyri of wisdom text from the end of the Old Kingdom, preserved in two papri in the British Museum, both are written by the same scribe, a man called Duauf. [20] I find it especially interesting that beliefs of people shifted after the collapse of the Old Kingdom and when the political situation changed that people began to feel empowered and we find evidence of this through these funerary texts. [21]


Memphis (also a Greek name) was the capital of the Old Kingdom. [16] Many scholars believe that these texts were part of a genre devoted to upholding the power of Middle Kingdom pharaohs by frightening subjects with stories of the terrible consequences of life without firm central control--a theme that echoes to today in modern Egypt. [11] Because religion itself was an all-important factor in everyday life, religious texts are a major part of Egyptian literature. [14] It was after 1550 BC that a corpus of spells written and illustrated on sheets of papyrus started to replace Coffin Texts in Egyptian tombs. [15] The texts constitute the oldest surviving body of Egyptian religious and funerary writings available to modern scholars. [13] Pyramid Texts, collection of Egyptian mortuary prayers, hymns, and spells intended to protect a dead king or queen and ensure life and sustenance in the hereafter. [13] The most important of these was the so-called "Book of the Dead", known to the Egyptians as " prt m hrw " or "coming forth by day", a hundred or so spells of the personal type (called "chapters"), including spells from the earlier literature ( Pyramid Texts and Coffin Texts ). [14] Within Egyptian texts, the Pyramid Texts set up not only the initial narrative of the path of the afterlife that the Coffin Texts and The Book of the Dead would later draw from (a journey containing some form of obstacles and a judgment, ending with a final resting place), but also the idea of secret knowledge that you needed in order to get to the desirable afterlife, which would become less exclusive as society democratized. [8]

The Coffin Texts : First Intermediate Period & Middle Kingdom The Coffin Texts superceded the Pyramid Texts as early as the VIIIth Dynasty (First Intermediary Period), but their principal sources are the later cemeteries of the nomarchs of Middle Egypt in the XIIth Dynasty. [14] The Netherworld (Duat) guides : the Amduat, Book of Gates, Book of Caverns, etc. The Book of the Two Ways of the Coffin Texts, gave rise to several New Kingdom royal netherworld guides. [14]

Much of the 20th-century view of the period between the Old Kingdom’s demise and the start of the Middle Kingdom--what Egyptologists call the First Intermediate Period--is based on a text called the "Admonitions of Ipuwer" that tells the story of a society in turmoil. [11] The literature that make up the Ancient Egyptian Funerary Texts are a collection of religious documents that were used in Ancient Egypt, usually to help the spirit of the concerned person to be preserved in the afterlife. [12] Echoes of what is recorded in these Pyramid texts gets passed down throughout the successive Egyptian funerary texts as they became more democratized and potentially even had an effect on the Archaic and Classical Greek conceptions of the afterlife as depicted in The Odyssey and The Republic. [8]

His dynasty launched a new era in Egyptian civilization called the Middle Kingdom. [16]

A Grammar of the Ancient Egyptian Pyramid Texts is designed as a six-volume study of the earliest comprehensive corpus of ancient Egyptian texts, inscribed in the pyramids of five pharaohs of the Old Kingdom (ca. 2325-2150 BC) and several of their queens. [22]

Already in the Early Dynastic Period officials started to use the form as well as kings and throughout the Old Kingdom the mastaba remained the typical burial for elite members of Egyptian society. [18] Later Egyptian tales about Old Kingdom kings contained much fantasy and magic. [18] It was impossible for Egyptians in later periods to maintain all of the Old Kingdom monuments, and most of them were deserted. [18] Much aware of Old Kingdom and First Intermediate Period traditions, the Egyptians of the Middle Kingdom established a number of practices that were fundamental for subsequent periods. [18]

These officials continued the late Old Kingdom and First Intermediate Period tradition of narrating parts of their careers until the late- 12th dynasty when the mortuary texts on steles became hymns to gods, especially Osiris. [18] Ancient Egypt was a tenaciously conservative society, as witnessed by the fact that gods and goddesses who were worshipped in the Old Kingdom are still worshipped three millennia later, and by the fact that various religious texts persisted for centuries if not millennia. [23] The author of the text, The Memphite Theology, used a language modeled on that of the Old Kingdom, but it is most likely that the text was of much later date and was presented as ancient to give it greater clout. [18] The oldest preserved texts were carved on the walls of the underground chambers and corridors of ten Saqqara pyramids from the late Old Kingdom. [18]


Special compositions : Mouth-Opening Ritual, Litany of Re, Book of the Heavenly Cow From the earlier ritual texts found in the Pyramid Texts, the New Kingdom composed 75 "acts" in which priests "open the mouth" of a statue of the deceased, providing it with offerings. [14]


If the private funerary cult needs the king as intermediary between the individual and the funerary gods (in the Old Kingdom, especially Anubis), the king also needs Egypt and her people as a stage for the fulfillment of his functions: cosmic as sun god, mythical as Horus, and ritual as the gods' sole priest on earth. [10] The Old Kingdom is the period of the gradual development of structures of religious belief and of patterns of social behavior which remained characteristic for Egypt throughout pharaonic history. [10] In the Old Kingdom, it would be the Prime Minister or King addressing his children, in the later periods it is an ordinary middle class man talking to his son. [20] The funerary complex of King Zoser at Saqqara marks the political change from the Early Dynastic period to the Old Kingdom, in the sense that it conveys a modified picture of the relation between the state and its subjects. [10] Most of the temples known from the Old Kingdom are dedicated either to the royal funerary cult or to the worship of the sun god, itself theologically connected with the king. [10] The Old Kingdom era starts around the Third Dynasty of Egypt. [24] During his first digging season, in 2011, he established that the caves had served as a kind of boat storage depot during the fourth dynasty of the Old Kingdom, about 4,600 years ago. [25] It’s throughout the Old Kingdom era that Egypt’s first pyramids were created. [24] An important feature of the country's administration during the Old Kingdom was the progressive establishment of pious foundations (similar to the concept of waqf in Islamic societies) to ensure the maintenance of the king's mortuary cult in the Memphite pyramid towns, of the king's (or the gods') service in provincial temples, and also of the private funerary cult of selected members of the aristocracy. [10] In the domain of private funerary architecture, an explicit sign of centralization in Old Kingdom society is represented by the concentration of the administrative officials' tombs in the Memphite necropolis, especially in Giza (4th Dynasty) and Saqqara (5th Dynasty). [10] Because of this shift in beliefs, after the collapse of the Old Kingdom, Egyptologists began to find these "afterlife instructions and rituals" carved into coffins of common people, too, and not just in the tombs of the Pharaoh. [21] The intellectual divorce between the royal residence and the powerful nomarchs eventually becomes one of the main causes of that crisis of Old Kingdom society which Egyptologists call the First Intermediate Period. [10] The consequent crisis of the economic system based on the total control by the state of the means of production contributed to the profound revision of political structures at the end of the Old Kingdom and during the First Intermediate Period. [10]

A unifying tendency can be observed in the political and religious centers of the country in the Memphite area (Giza, Saqqara, Memphis, Heliopolis, Abusir, etc.) and especially in the earlier periods of the Old Kingdom, during the 3rd-5th Dynasties. [10]

Official Egyptian statuary - not well documented in the Early Dynastic Period but abundant in the Old Kingdom - followed strict rules of representation of the body that regulated the relative size of body parts, the position of the arms, and so on. [18] Egyptians after the Old Kingdom were very much in the same situation that we are in today when looking at the period. [18] The complex was a symbol of the return of royal power as a central force in Egyptian society and a revival of Old Kingdom ideals. [18] Yam area of Nubia reached by Egyptian travelers in the Late Old Kingdom, either located south of the third cataract around Kerma or farther upriver. [18]

Dating from the late Old Kingdom to the early Middle Kingdom (2300-2000 B.C.), the roll measures about 2.5 meters(8.2 feet) and is filled with texts and colorful drawings of the finest quality. [26] The goddess Isis is represented as the wife of Osiris and the mother of Horus already in Old Kingdom texts and the temple at Philae devoted to her was still operating in the 6th century C.E., until it was closed by the Byzantine emperor Justinian (527-565 C.E. ). [23] The Old Kingdom Pyramid Texts already allude to it and over the centuries, into the Roman Period, various versions of it appear. [18] Some private mortuary inscriptions and the Pyramid Texts of the late Old Kingdom had shown skilled literary use of language, but the range of written expression had been limited. [18]

Scholars often refer to dynasties 18-20 as encompassing the "New Kingdom," a period that lasted ca. 1550-1070 B.C. This time period takes place after the Hyksos had been driven out of Egypt by a series of Egyptian rulers and the country was reunited. [27]

Framed as accounts of the services rendered to the king during the tomb-owner's lifetime, these texts are the first examples of the individual concerns, ideas and aspirations of the high officials of the Egyptian administration. [10] The Egyptians believed that in supplying these ritualistic texts in the tomb of the king, that they were ensuring him a safe "journey" to his new role in his afterlife. [21] Touted as the the first literary English translation that elucidates rare texts from Egyptian monuments and tomb walls, the compilation is already published (by Penguin Classics) in Great Britain, while being expected to make its debut in America by January of next year. [28] Recently (March 2000), the discovery of a tenth pyramid containing texts was announced at the 8th International Congress of Egyptology in Cairo by the Head of Egyptian Antiquities Dr. Gaballah and the Director of Excavations, Prof. Jean Leclant. [29] These texts were for the upper classes of Egyptian society who would later in life take up official appointments and rule. [20] These texts constituted the basis for Manetho's compilation of the Egyptian dynasties in Hellenistic times. [10] The precious text contains fine quality depictions of supernatural beings which predate the famous drawings of the Egyptian Book of the Dead. [17]

The later texts of the New Kingdom and Late periods were more for middle class people, also during these periods different texts are composed and added. [20]

Egyptian funerary text used from the beginning of the New Kingdom to around 50 BCE. Translated as Book of the Coming Forth by Day. [19] Egyptian texts of the New Kingdom refer to schools only incidentally, indicating that they existed and that relatively young children attended them. [30] The essential difference between that lifestyle and the Egyptian was much developed in a literary text from the Middle Kingdom: the Tale of Sinuhe. [18]

In like fashion, a stable funerary tradition in ancient Egypt is revealed by the same or similar spells and passages appearing in the Pyramid Texts (Old Kingdom), Coffin Texts (Middle Kingdom), and the Book of the Dead (New Kingdom and Late Period). [23]

"Old Kingdom" is the term used by modern scholars to define the first lengthy period of documented centralized government in the history of ancient Egypt. [10] After this week’s readings and lectures, I found myself particularly intrigued with the concept of the "Old Kingdom" and the documentary evidence we have from that time period. [21] Dynasties 3-6 date from roughly 2650-2150 B.C. and are often lumped into a time period called the "Old Kingdom" by modern-day scholars. [27]

Egyptian language changed over the millennia, with scholars often sub-dividing the surviving writings into categories such as "Old Egyptian," "Middle Egyptian" and "Late Egyptian." [27] The oldest known Egyptian leather manuscript, dating back some 4,000 years, has been rediscovered at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo after it was pulled from a dusty, old storage box, where it had been lost for around 70 years. [17]

Full-fledged theological discourse is developed around the figure and the role of the king, as is known to us through the Pyramid Texts, whereas the metaphysical status of the individual Egyptian remains largely unspecified. [10] The manuscript is adorned with high-quality colorful drawings of divine and supernatural beings, illustrated around 1,000 years before similar drawings appeared in the world renowned Book of the Dead, an ancient Egyptian funerary text containing spells to aid a deceased person’s journey into the afterlife. [17] The wisdom texts represent one special category of literature because they look at codes of behaviour and ethical values of the ancient Egyptian society, what they thought was right and wrong, and how they taught people and passed on moral codes. [20] In contrast to their ancient Greek and Roman counterparts, the ancient Egyptian texts are generally not accessible to the public, on account of lack of translated works. [28] The rediscovered leather manuscript in the longest Ancient Egyptian text ever found, exceeding the length of the next longest text, an 8-foot long prenuptial agreemeent (pictured), by just 2 inches. [17] The texts are not about the afterlife, they concerned with living a good life and how to conduct your life on earth, and as such give us a different view of the ancient Egyptians. [20]

In terms of graphic system, of grammatical structures and of vocabulary, this phase of the history of the Egyptian language represents the basis for the development of the literary language of the Middle Kingdom, which is usually referred to as "Classical Egyptian." [10] In the Old and Middle Kingdoms the Egyptians had directed their military actions primarily southwards and into areas of Asia that were close by, while their trade contacts had stretched much farther into Nubia beyond the second cataract and along the Mediterranean coast to harbors of modern-day Lebanon and Syria. [18]

RANKED SELECTED SOURCES(33 source documents arranged by frequency of occurrence in the above report)


4,000-year-old Ancient Egyptian Manuscript measuring over 8 feet found in Egypt

It is the oldest known Ancient Egyptian Manuscript ever found and measures over 8 feet in length.

The ancient Egyptian manuscript was actually rediscovered after it remained hidden for over 70 years. It contains, among other things, depictions of divine and supernatural beings.

Researchers have come across a 4,000-year-old ancient Egyptian manuscript measuring over 8 feet has been ‘rediscovered’ in Cairo.

The oldest known leather manuscript which dates back at least 4,000 years has been rediscovered at the Egyptian Museum after it remained in a dusty storage box for over 70 years.

The fascinating ancient Egyptian text details incredible depictions of ‘supernatural beings’ predating the drawings of the Book of the Dead, making it a crucial piece in Ancient Egyptian History.

According to reports from Discovery News, the manuscript which measures a staggering 2.5 meters in length is currently the longest text ever discovered in Ancient Egypt.

“Taking into account that it was written on both sides, we have more than 5 meters (16.4 feet) of texts and drawings, making this the longest leather roll from ancient Egypt,” Wael Sherbiny, the Belgium-based independent scholar who made the finding, told Discovery News.

The huge manuscript which is believed to date back from the Old Kingdom to the Early Middle Kingdom –between 2300 and 2000BC— is in fact a religious text containing spells that were most likely recited by an ancient priest.

The ancient text also includes illustrations of rituals that would have been adapted for funerary use.

The ancient Egyptian manuscript was adorned with peculiar, colorful drawings of ‘divine’ and ‘supernatural’ beings.

These illustrations are believed to predate by some 1000 years similar drawings that appear in the world-famous Book of the Dead, the ancient Egyptian funerary text which details spells and aids a deceased person journey to the afterlife.

In an interview with Discovery New, Sherbiny explained that the same illustrated composition that was identified in the leather manuscript is also present on the base of the Middle Kingdom sarcophagi which was discovered in the necropolis of Hermopolis in Upper Egypt, dating to between 2055 and 1650 BC.

“Amazingly, the roll offers an even more detailed iconography than the Hermopolitan coffins regarding texts and drawings,” Sherbiny said.

According to researchers, the composition found in the ancient manuscript is believed the predate the illustrations researchers discovered at Hermopolis which indicates that there is a long history of transmission present before being used as decorative images in sarcophagi.

Ancient origin reports that leather manuscripts from Ancient Egypt are extremely rare due to the fact that leather will disintegrate over time. Most of the ancient Egyptian texts were composed on papyrus since papyri were well-preserved due to Egypt’s dry climate.

Thousands of years ago, leather was considered one of the most prestigious writing materials and was used to record religious texts and important historical events.


Ancient Egypt

Great Female Rulers of Ancient Egypt. Women in ancient Egypt had more rights than in any other ancient culture and were valued with greater respect.

This is evident not only in the physical evidence and inscriptions but in their religion. Some of the most powerful and important deities in the Egyptian pantheon are female and some versions of the creation myth itself present the goddess Neith, not the god Atum, as the creator. The most popular and influential religious tale in Egypt was the story of Osiris and how he was brought back to life by his sister-wife Isis. The Hittites. Stone Shabtis of Senkamenisken and Sudanese Society - Nile Scribes. The Nile Scribes are pleased to host another guest blog for a mid-week special written by Dr.

Peter Lacovara, who contributes a brief response to recently proposed ideas on the shabti production of the Twenty-Fifth Dynasty kings, including some on display in the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM). Guest Scribe: Dr. Peter Lacovara A recent blog post on the top five Nubian objects in the Royal Ontario Museum sparked my interest, as number one was a shabti figure of King Senkamanisken (Fig. 1).

This shabti was one of 410 stone funerary figurines from his tomb at Nuri Pyramid 3 that was a gift from the Sudanese Government to the ROM in 1926 made after the division with the Harvard University-Museum of Fine Arts Expedition to the Sudan that excavated the royal cemetery (1). Figure 1: Serpentine shabti of King Senkamanisken (ROM Object number: 926.15.1) Ankhsenamun. We've Been Debating Foie Gras Since Ancient Times Gastro Obscura.

Book Egypt in its African Context. Amarna Era Chronological Conundrum: Dating Akhenaten’s Death and the Length of Horemheb’s Reign–Part I. New Egypt discovery could change chronology of the Pharaohs and beliefs about Amenhotep III and IV. A team of Spanish and Egyptian archaeologists has made an unexpected discovery in a southern Egyptian tomb, which could lead to a reinterpretation of Pharaonic chronology and change our understanding of the Pharaoh’s Amenhotep III and his son, Amenhotep IV.

The scientists, led by Spanish archaeologist Francisco Martin Valentin, were excavating the remains of a wall and columns of the mausoleum of a minister of the 18th Dynasty (1569-1315 BC) in the province of Luxor, when they discovered the names of Amenhotep III and Amenhotep IV carved together . According to Mr Valentin, the joint inscription suggests that they reigned together. The inscription that suggests Amenhotep III and Amenhotep IV reigned together. Photo credit: Egypt’s Ministry of State for Antiquities Affairs. Ancient Egyptian Animals Had a Place in the Afterlife. Here’s Why. - The New York Times. Still, the curators have taken pains to erase some popular misconceptions. The ancient Egyptians did not worship entire species — not even their splendid cats, whose mummies, well represented in the exhibition, sometimes appear in casings bearing traces of their original gilding.

“These weren’t your run-of-the-mill New York City cat that would sleep by the window,” said Dr. Anthony Fischetti, a staff doctor and the head of diagnostic imaging and radiology at the Animal Medical Center in Manhattan, who helped identify the mummified remains. “Ancient cats tended to have a longer nose and greater length to their skull.” Photo. Egyptian Clothing - What Clothing Did Egyptians Wear? Ancient Egyptian tomb painting and writing reveal a variety of clothing depending on status and activity.

There are wrap-around garments for ancient Egyptians made from a length of cloth. Scientists thought ancient Egyptian mummies didn’t have any DNA left. They were wrong. Ancient Egyptian mummies preserve many details of the deceased: facial features, signs of illness, even tattoos.

But not, it seemed, DNA. After trying repeatedly to extract it, may scientists were convinced that the hot desert climate and, perhaps, the chemicals used in mummification destroyed any genetic material long ago. The Egyptian Goddess Isis, Found in India. One of the great, largely untold adventure stories of late antiquity is the journey to the East, from Egypt’s Red Sea ports, across the open ocean for 40 days and 40 nights, to the legendary entrepôt of Musiris, on India’s southwestern or Malabar coast, in what is now modern state of Kerala.

This was a great feat of navigation, a technological leap forward comparable to the discovery of the Americas or Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the globe. Mysterious Musiris. The Egyptian God Family Tree – Veritable Hokum. First: I opened a store!

It has a poster of this, as well as updated versions of the Norse and Greek god family trees I did a while back. More to come soon. Next, a disclaimer: this family tree isn’t, strictly speaking, historically accurate, because what we think of as The Egyptian Pantheon is really a whole bunch of similar-but-not-identical pantheons which were mostly based in individual cities – Thebes, Heliopolis, Memphis, etc. – and went through a lot of changes over their 3000+ year history. It’s as nice a chart as I could make after smooshing together a bunch of those similar-but-not-identical pantheons into one image, but it also contains at least a half-dozen gods who were in charge of their own version of this pantheon, and a bunch of others who could be related to each other in totally different ways depending on when and where you asked. And now that I’ve disclaimed historical responsibility, onto What I Know About Those Gods Up There: Nun.

What Explains Our Obsession With Ancient Egypt? Photo EGYPTOMANIAA History of Fascination, Obsession and FantasyBy Ronald H.

FritzeIllustrated. 444 pp. Reaktion Books/University of Chicago Press. $35. Egypt has exerted a peculiar charm since ancient times. The Greeks and Romans deferred to it as a far older civilization, whose monuments and writing seemed both baffling and magical. Egypt unearths 7,000-year-old lost city. Egypt has unearthed a city more than 7,000 years old and a cemetery dating back to its first dynasty in the southern province of Sohag, the antiquities ministry has said.

The find could be a boon for Egypt’s ailing tourism industry, which has suffered a series of setbacks since the uprising that toppled the autocrat Hosni Mubarak in 2011, but remains a vital source of foreign currency. The city is likely to have housed high-ranking officials and grave builders. Interpreting the Murals of Egypt through the Eyes of the Hopi. There has to be something missing in our explanation of the murals of Egypt.

Why are there so many symbols— snakes, birds with human heads, feathers, buzzards, life symbols, monkeys, scarabs, balances, a young man, two twins, and masked individuals— that only a select few can understand? Whoever created the murals must have been trying to communicate with all of us in a simple fashion or a universal language, something that we could all understand. Betrest Wikipedia. Benerib Wikipedia. 4,000-year-old Ancient Egyptian manuscript measuring more than 8ft has been rediscovered in Cairo.

The oldest known Egyptian leather manuscript, dating back some 4,000 years, has been rediscovered at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo after it was pulled from a dusty, old storage box, where it had been lost for around 70 years. The precious text contains fine quality depictions of supernatural beings which predate the famous drawings of the Egyptian Book of the Dead. Discovery News reports that the manuscript measures 2.5 meters (8.2 feet) in length, making it the longest text ever found. It exceeds the next longest text by just 2 inches – an ancient pre-nuptial agreement between a couple due to be married, which sets out how the wife will be provided for, should the marriage fail.

“Taking into account that it was written on both sides, we have more than 5 meters (16.4 feet) of texts and drawings, making this the longest leather roll from ancient Egypt,” Wael Sherbiny, the Belgium-based independent scholar who made the finding, told Discovery News. By April Holloway. Does Chinese Civilization Come From Ancient Egypt? On a cool Sunday evening in March, a geochemist named Sun Weidong gave a public lecture to an audience of laymen, students, and professors at the University of Science and Technology in Hefei, the capital city of the landlocked province of Anhui in eastern China.

But the professor didn’t just talk about geochemistry. He also cited several ancient Chinese classics, at one point quoting historian Sima Qian’s description of the topography of the Xia empire — traditionally regarded as China’s founding dynasty, dating from 2070 to 1600 B.C. The Magic of Heka: Ancient Egyptian Rituals That Have Crossed Cultures and Time. Magic has always been a mysterious way to achieve goals and was often thought to make dreams come true. Hidden in the Hieroglyphs: Is Ancient Egyptian a Lost Language? The ancient Egyptian language is not just one set of symbols which people find on papyri bookmarks at museums. It's a complicated system of symbols which changed over time.

Moreover, the words found on ancient reliefs became a basis for other languages. Hieroglyphs were nothing more than a very sophisticated system of known symbols in ancient Egypt.


The Ancient Civilization of Tiahuanaco

The wall of faces. Tiahuanaco. Image Credit Shutterstock.

Thousands of years ago an advanced civilization rose near the shores of Lake Titicaca in the Andean mountains quickly becoming one of the most advanced civilizations on Earth. Strangely, like many other advanced civilizations, this too disappeared some 500 years after its rise.

The sophisticated people of Tiahuanaco created fabulous cities like Tiahuanaco and Puma Punku and were the FOREFATHERS of another great civilization: The Ancient Inca.

According to scholars, Tiahuanaco emerged ‘suddenly’ sometime around 300 AD, reaching its peak between 500 and 900 AD.

The ancient inhabitants of Tiahuanaco created sophisticated farming techniques and water channels that still function today. This way they provided much-needed water for their crops through advanced irrigation channels.

Researchers estimate date during 700 AD, the ancient civilization of Tiahuanaco was a central power dominating across a vast area that stretches from Peru, Bolivia, Argentina, and Chile.

Researchers estimate that the population of the ancient Tiahauncos reached numbers between 300,000 and 1.5 million.

The ancient builders of Tiahuanaco also created some of the most impressive ancient monuments on the planet, erecting gigantic structures comprised of megalithic stones.

Some of the most noteworthy structures erected by this ancient civilization include Akapana, Puma Punku and Akapana East, Putuni, Kheri Kala and Kalasasaya. The Gateway of the Sun is one of the most well-known structures.

According to archaeologist Arthur Posnanky, the temples the ancient Tiahuanaco civilization made was designed with polished stone blocks that have several rows of small round holes, according to Posnanky, they could have been used to hold something in the distant past. These round holes are so precise that it is hard to believe that ancient civilizations made them without some sort of advanced technology.

Featured image: An artists illustration of a Pyramid on a hilltop. Image by Martin Ostrolucky.


So, what other awesome things came from Nikola Tesla?

X-Rays: Although Tesla took the first, clear x-ray of a booted foot from 8 feet away, instead of trying to beat Roentgen to the “props,” he helped him develop it.

The electro-magnetic motor: It drives everything from a CD player to the cooling fans at a nuclear power plant.

The Tesla coil (or transformer): That little black box that you plug into the wall to charge your smart phone, along with many other devices, is a type of modern day Tesla coil.

The remote control: He built and demonstrated a radio-controlled boat (“telautom automatics”) at Madison Square Garden.

Wireless transmission of electricity (recently accomplished by Japanese researchers): sending power through the air without wires.

Tesla also built the first electric car, which has now been revisited by the motor company bearing his name.

These are just the tip of the iceberg. There are literally thousands of pages on Tesla’s inventions and ideas… never openly taught. Why? Suppressed by big money and fame… or so it would seem.


Ancient Cave Art Masterpieces Were Not Created by Humans

A new discovery that Neanderthals were painting cave walls more than 64,000 years ago has anthropologists rethinking the history of art.

Found deep in Spanish caves, the rock art was once thought to be the work of humans, but the new dates mean that Neanderthals must have figured out fingerpainting, too.

Using a new and improved radioactive dating technique, researchers discovered that paintings in three different caves were created more than 64,800 years ago.

That means the paintings were created 20,000 years before modern humans, or Homo sapiens, arrived in Spain, according to a study published today in the journal Science.

The discovery makes these the oldest examples of cave paintings in the world and the first to be attributed to Neanderthals.

Neanderthals are our closest extinct relative, but for a long time, they had a reputation for being pretty backward. Early modern humans, for example, made cave paintings.

But even though Neanderthals used pigments and decorated themselves with eagle claws and shells, there was no clear proof that they painted caves.

One theory goes that Neanderthals developed their rudimentary culture only after early modern humans arrived in Europe some 40,000 to 50,000 years ago.

Today’s findings show the writing on the wall: Neanderthals were clearly painting splotches and tracing their hands on caves long before modern humans showed up.

The discovery adds to a growing body of evidence upending the idea that Neanderthals were less evolved than early modern humans, says Marie Soressi, an archaeology professor at the University of Leiden who was not involved in the research.

“It’s impossible to say that one is more clever than the other,” she says. These cave paintings are “the very last piece of evidence we were lacking.”

One of these handprint outlines, found in the Maltravieso Cave in Spain, has been dated to at least 66,000 years ago, which means a Neanderthal must have made it. | Photo by H. Collado

The reason we didn’t know Neanderthals were cave painters until now is because it’s hard to figure out when cave art was created. The most common dating method can only be used on organic material, like bones, so it usually doesn’t work for cave paintings.

Another technique uses the rate of uranium’s radioactive decay as a clock. But it required lots of material to come up with a date, and cave paintings are too rare to risk damaging.

Rock art “is unique, it’s precious — there’s a lot of pressure on you not to make a mistake,” says geochronologist Dirk Hoffmann at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. So he and his colleagues fiddled with the method until only tiny scrapings of cave walls were needed.

With a new way to date the rock art, researchers carrying lights and scalpels crawled deep underground into caves all over Spain. The plan was to scrape samples off of the mineral-rich crusts that had hardened on top of the cave paintings. By figuring out the age of the crusts, they’d know at least how old the paintings were — without having to disturb them.

Dirk Hoffmann and Alistair Pike scraping cave crust from above a ladder-like painting thought to have been created by Neanderthals. | Photo by J. Zilhão

They found the oldest dates for three paintings — the outline of a hand, red-painted stalactites, and a ladder-like geometric shape — in three different caves that had been occupied by archaic human species.

The most recent painting is at least 64,800 years old, according to this technique, and the oldest is more than 66,000 years old.

“When you stand in front of cave paintings, it doesn’t matter who made it,” Hoffmann says. “It’s just the fact that it’s there for over 60,000 years. This is, in a way, breathtaking on its own.”

Other experts agree with the dates and that the timing means the art must have been created by Neanderthals. There’s no fossil evidence of modern humans in Spain that long ago, says John Hawks a paleoanthropologist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison who wasn’t involved in the research.

“There’s no secret story,” he says. “The results are just, ‘Hey, Neanderthals were making these things, and you didn’t know it.’”

We don’t know why the Neanderthals painted these images or what they mean, but there’s one thing they show clearly: Neanderthals and our ancestors weren’t as different as we thought. “These Neanderthals were human,” Hawks says. “We see them doing human things.”


Chemotherapy Proven to Spread Cancer, Cause Lethal Tumors in Groundbreaking New Study

Albert Einstein College of Medicine just proved that chemotherapy is a cash machine for Big Pharma.

CREDIT | ALAMY

In a groundbreaking new study, they’ve proven that chemotherapy causes cancer cells to spread throughout the body – to replicate themselves, making your cancer worse, not better.

The scientists who conducted this study titled, Neoadjuvant chemotherapy induces breast cancer metastasis through a TMEM-mediated mechanism, warn that chemo – the procedure which costs people upwards of $10,000 per treatment, can create lethal tumors.

Metastasis, the spreading of a cancerous tumor is already known to be a leading cause of recurrent cancers, especially in people who undergo chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

It typically means that cancer which may have been contained within one part of the body becomes systemic, making it very hard to reverse – at least with allopathic medicine’s “cures.”

The researchers, George S. Karagiannis, Jessica M. Pastoriza, Yarong Wang, Allison S. Harney, et all, suggest that though chemotherapy may shrink a cancerous tumor, but it simply sends the cancer cells off into other parts of the body to rebuild into yet additional destructive tumors.

This study makes a massive move in exposing the perpetual fraud of the chemotherapy/cancer industry.

In American alone, it’s a $200 billion-dollar industry. It’s part of the reason why our insurance premiums are ridiculously high, and unassuming cancer sufferers, keep suffering.

If you want to see how a cancer cell forms, watch this 5-minute video:

With this research, prescribing chemotherapy to any cancer patient should be considered criminal. Especially when we know of dozens of natural treatments that are much more effective, and don’t cause tumors to spread.

If you know someone who is currently set to receive chemotherapy, share this information with them. Perhaps offer alternatives such as:

The Max Gerson Therapy involving vegetable and fruit juicing to load the body with powerful antioxidants, and coffee enemas to help unload the toxic burden carried by our body’s cells. I speaking of Gerson’s therapy, Albert, Schweitzer, MD (Nobel Peace Prize Winner, 1952) said,

“I see in him one of the most eminent geniuses in the history of medicine. Many of his basic ideas have been adopted without having his name connected with them. Yet, he has achieved more than seemed possible under adverse conditions. He leaves a legacy which commands attention and which will assure him his due place. Those whom he has cured will now attest to the truth of his ideas.”

The Budwig Protocol which involves loading the body with healthy Omega 3s, and removing toxic build up with turmeric, and black pepper (which makes the turmeric more bioavailable to the body). Turmeric alone has literally thousands of anti-cancer properties through its curcumins. Omega 3s reduce inflammation, which has been linked to many forms of cancer.

Budwig also reccommends Indian Frankincense (Boswellia serrata) for fighting cancer, especially brain cancers.

Vitamin C Chelation, or high dose Vitamin C administered through an IV is another method of treating cancer naturally. Even patients with advanced cancers have benefited from this protocol. Linus Pauling is credited for making the discovery that loading the body with Vitamin C, would essentially make it impossible for cancer cells to keep growing.

Medical Marijuana is also an incredibly effective treatment for more than a dozen types of cancer. The plant compounds in cannabis are powerful antioxidants and anti-inflammatory agents which help to make the environment in the body inhospitable to cancerous cell growth.

“The active ingredient in marijuana cuts tumor growth in common lung cancer in half and significantly reduces the ability of the cancer to spread. Side effects include an increase in appetite, pain relief, and inflammation reduction.” Dr. Wakefield, Harvard

Now that we know, undeniably, what chemotherapy does to the body, why are we still using it?


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