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Egyptian Art Essay

834 words - 3 pages

egyptian art

The time span of Ancient Egypt Stretches over thousands of years. It lasted many periods and included many dynasty's. From the Neolithic Period, ca 5450-3850 B.C. to it's downfall at the Roman Period, ca 30 B.C. - A.D. 395. That is a long time.

For archeologists to understand every day life of the ancient Egyptians, they must rely on many sources. The some of these valuable things being tomb paintings, relics, and objects that were used in every day life, that had been placed in there tombs. The most important findings however were the hundreds of documents written by the Egyptians. These helped shed much needed light on their lives. Giving valued information on their culture, and the way that they used language and communicated with one another.

During the ancient Egyptians more than 3,00 yearlong history, they used three kinds of writings to write religious and secular texts. The basis of the two other writings is hieroglyphic. This writing was mainly used for sacred (Greek hieros) inscriptions on temple walls or public monuments (Greek glypho). Thus the word hieroglyphics. Hieroglyphics use clearly distinguishable pictures to express both sounds and ideas. The pictures could either be inscribed or drawn and often would be painted in many colors. The quality of the writing would vary from highly detailed signs to just mere outlines of them. A special form of hieroglyphics was used for the Book of the Dead, it was written in cursive.

The second form of writing, hieratic is as old as hieroglyphic. It is more cursive and is the result of a quick hand, usually drawing signs on a sheet of papryus with a brush made of reed. With hieratic writing the scribe would often leave out several details that made one sign different from another. Several smaller signs, written in one quick flow, would simply get squished together, but somehow is still able to be transcribed into hieroglyphics. Hieratic was mainly used for religious and secular writings on papyrus, or on linen. Occasionally it could be found on a temple wall during the Greek-Roman era. The name hieratic came by way of the Greeks. When they arrived in Egypt, this writing was almost exclusively used by Egyptian priest (Greek hieratikos, 'Priestly').

The last form of writing Demotic started being used during the 25th/26th Dynasty. This form is a further...

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