3

I'm very curious to see what the Bible looks like in Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. There's an "ancient languages" department at one of the Universities in my city and one of the languages they offer is Egyptian hieroglyphics. When I'm learning a new language I like to refer back to a translation of the Bible into that language so that I can see how a text that I'm familiar with is translated in the language that I'm trying to learn.

I've done a bit of Googling and nothing has turned up. I'm sort of surprised that a hieroglyphics translation hasn't been done, even if just as an academic exercise. I'm not even expecting a full translation. Perhaps just one of the Gospels, or the Psalms, or the Pentateuch. I understand that there wouldn't be much demand for such a translation, but nevertheless I'm surprised it hasn't happened. Perhaps we don't understand hieroglyphics well enough?

  • 1
    Hieroglyphics would not be the writing system for this kind of thing (the entire Bible in stone!) but rather hieratic. What might be interesting for you is a Coptic Bible. – Simon H Mar 13 '17 at 8:40
  • 4
    @SimonH you do not necessarily have to write on stones to write in hieroglyphs. Papyrus and wood was also used in ancient Egypt. In fact, paper is the result of papyrus. :) – onmyway Mar 13 '17 at 8:54
  • @onmyway - I was under the impression that it was restricted to carving i.e. stone/wood and that hieratic derived from it was used for writing i.e. on papyrus. In any case, the OP would be lucky to get either :-) – Simon H Mar 13 '17 at 9:19
  • 2
    1) Hieroglyphics is a script, not a language. 2) Hieroglyphics were only translated in the modern era (after the discovery of the Rosetta stone in 1789). 3)Translations of the bible are generally driven either by spiritual motives (e.g preaching to people of a different language) or by linguistic motives (attempting to use a language --especially constructed for a substantial text), but in this latter case, they aren't really likely to be published. – eques Mar 15 '17 at 21:30
  • 1) heiroglyphics are a logographic script, which means that each character has a specific meaning attached and that therefore they form a language, complete with grammar. But they contain no pronunciation information so they can only be read, not spoken aloud. 3. Sometimes the bible is translated for academic or entertainment purposes (eg translations into eprime, klingon, lolcats) – TheIronKnuckle Mar 15 '17 at 22:54
-2

Here is a link to a hieroglyphic "bible": https://archive.org/details/hieroglyphicbibl00mill

I don't believe you can translate the entire Bible to hieroglyphs, as there are not enough hieroglyphs to correctly translate the Bible. You would have to create many additional hieroglyphs!

  • 5
    Those aren't real hieroglyphs in the sense the OP is asking. Hieroglyphs are a logosyllabic writing system used for writing the Old and Middle Egyptian languages, ancient ancestors of Coptic. They are similar in typology to Babylonian cuneiform or Chinese Hanzi ideograms. – Wtrmute Mar 13 '17 at 11:41
  • This is not the correct answer, but thank you for that link. Would make a very interesting read. – John Doe Mar 13 '17 at 14:28
  • @JohnDoe I know :). I thought it interesting though. I don't think you will find a Bible in hieroglyphs as explained in my answer. Best of luck though! – onmyway Mar 14 '17 at 3:17
  • The reason why you couldn't find it is due to the fact that the Egyptians used Coptic as there written and spoken language in the first century and onward. This is why you can easily find Coptic codex's and manuscripts of the Holy Bible – abbanoob Apr 6 '17 at 16:25

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.