200 years ago, he was deciphering hieroglyphics

200 years ago, he was deciphering hieroglyphics


SURVEY – Six years after deciphering the hieroglyphics, Jean-François Champollion finally realizes his dream: to explore the land of the pharaohs to verify his fabulous discovery. We have followed in the footsteps of the one who brought one of the greatest ancient civilizations back to life.

“Ayn al-hegara al-maktuba?” Where are the written stones? We are in Egypt in 1828. Jean-François Champollion sails on the Nile with his companions aboard their boat, a cange. At each landing, the one who broke the hieroglyphic code six years earlier harangued the locals to ask where the “written stones” were. But dressed in the east and wearing a scimitar on their belts, members of the expedition often display the fellahs who take them for Turkish soldiers.

He speaks 12 languages ​​at 17 years old

The trip to Egypt is the grail of Champollion. Born in Figeac in the Lot in 1790, the Egyptologist did not tread the soil of the Nile Valley until the end of his life. As an early child, he learned the basics of Latin and ancient Greek very early, read Homer and Virgil at the age of 8, and then became interested in Hebrew, Arabic, Syriac, Chaldean, mastering a dozen languages. the age of 17, including Coptic, the last avatar of the ancient language of the pharaohs. In 1822, after teaching history

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