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Write Your Own Egyptian Hieroglyphs

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Write Your Own Egyptian Hieroglyphs
By Angela McDonald. (University of California Press, Berkeley: 2007. Pg. 80. Illustrated.) ISBN 13: 978-0-520-25235-6.

Reviewed by Auggie Moore - December 28, 2007

Write Your Own Egyptian Hieroglyphs will not make you an expert in reading or writing Egyptian hieroglyphic script, but it also provides an entertaining and edifying introduction to the written language of the Ancient Egyptians. In addition, along the way, you'll learn about ancient Egyptian culture and how to write out some simple phrases that you can use to delight your friends, mystify your enemies, and simply have fun learning and using a new skill.

This book is suitable for amateur Egyptologists of all ages, and it can be used as a fun supplemental text, at both the high school and university levels. Written by Angela McDonald, who lectures in Egyptology at Glasgow University, this book serves as a readable and accessible guide to the basics of reading and writing basic Egyptian hieroglyphs. Within its pages you'll learn to read and write simple titles, descriptions, saying, greetings, names, and even a few insults. It also provides a brief overview on Egyptian culture.

The main body of the text is divided into five chapters covering:
  1. The Hieroglyphic Script
  2. People and their Names
  3. Gods and their Names
  4. Animals and their Names
  5. Practical Hieroglyphs - Words and Phrases in Egyptian
McDonald has also included some practical tips on how to draw hieroglyphs, a glossary, a brief overview of how hieroglyphs are translated and transliterated, and she has included a short list of further reading that will prove useful to anyone who desires to study Egyptian hieroglyphs in greater detail.

Write Your Own Egyptian Hieroglyphs is a fun book to read, and McDonald provides easy-to-follow directions on how to write hieroglyphs that will have you scribing away in no time. Throughout, this book is lavishly illustrated and plentiful examples are provided. Although only 80 pages long, it is crammed full of information and it will help fuel the imagination of young readers and it will encourage novice Egyptologists to consider studying Egyptology in greater depth. Fun and informative; this book is a must for anyone looking for a lively introduction into this fascinating aspect of Ancient Egyptian culture.


Related Reviews:

How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs, by Mark Collier and Bill Manley.
This is a step-by-step guidebook that enables you to teach yourself how to read Egyptian Hieroglyphs.

Egyptian Mythology, by W. Max Müller.
A comprehensive and mesmerizing overview of Egyptian mythology ranging from origin myths to cultic practices.

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