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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Sat Aug 12, 2006 4:35 am    Post subject: Inscription Assistance Reply with quote

While the Tutankhamun exhibition is in Chicago, I've been a frequent visitor so I can keep up with my hieroglyphic translations. Needless to say there are plenty of inscriptions to work with, and it's great fun.

But now and then I get stumped. Admittedly I am no expert so I thought I'd turn to people here who are knowledgeable with hieroglyphs (Aset, Nekht-Ankh, et al). I'll give it a try to see if anyone wants to play. Very Happy

I'll start with the outer coffin of Tjuya. It's covered with inscriptions in the golden bands, typical of Dynasty 18 coffins, and for the most part my translations are coming along well but I do have some questions. Here are some excerpts:



No. 1 is the start of a long horizontal inscription running the entire length of the coffin, on the left side if you're looking at the face (the "west" side in more arcane terminology). Most of it is easy but I'm wondering what some of you might come up with. I'm not going to say anything about what I've come up with because I don't want to run the risk of negatively influencing anyone's assistance.

No. 2 is the terminating row of vertical glyphs farthest right on the same side of the coffin as the above inscriptional excerpt. But in fact, the part down to the turtle is in the terminating row of numerous vertical inscriptions on both sides; the glyphs following the turtle tend to change from spot to spot. Again, I won't say what I've come up with.

I've searched my own library and all through the internet (I'm not the most adept web surfer, unfortunately), and while I have found some sources that provide translations, the help is minimal.

If possible include some type of transliteration so I can back-check my own work. If this turns out well I might just do some more of this.

If any of you good folks wish to participate, I'd prefer that you do so here in this thread and not in PMs to me, so that everyone can see what we're doing. Thanks in advance to any and all who lend a hand. Wink
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Aset
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 5:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I want to start.

1. horizontal line:

Dd-mdw-jn = a recitation by / to be recited by / words to be said by
Nw.t = Nut (goddess)
wr.t = great one
t = you, your
Ax = Akh-spirit / glorified spirit / the deceased
jwa = to give (someone) a present / to inherit
HqA = ruler / to rule
jmntj.w = the westerners (the dead)

2 vertical line:

No idea! Embarassed

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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is my offering for number 1:

Dd mdw in nwt wrt Axt iwa HqA imntyw
Words spoken by Nut, the great one, propitious of rewards, who rules the Westerners.

It's much the same as Aset's. However, I'm fairly certain that the 't' under the belly of the bird is an ending for Ax - even thought it appears to come first. It doesn't make sense semantically or grammatically for it to be the 2fs suffix pronoun. I differ also in the translation of Axt. I admit that it could be simply transfigured spirit, but I think it fits better with iwa if it is the adjective meaning splendid, glorious, beneficial profitable etc. Then Axt iwa is literally "the (female) propitious one of rewarding".

I agree completely with Aset on number 2. I've no idea, either!
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kmt_sesh
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 11:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for responding, Aset and Nekht-Ankh. My translation of the horizontal column is close to what both of you came up with. As for Axt, I know the standard translation is something along the lines of "that which is good, beneficial, useful." But Faulkner also mentions it as an alternative spelling for "horizon," and I had wondered if that would make sense.

So, Nekth-Ankh, you see iw' as "propitious"? That angle hadn't occurred to me. I know the standard translation is "inherit" (or with a "t" ending, "heiress"), but is it common to render this as "propitious"?

I have a sinking feeling if neither of you two can make sense of the verticle column, because I think you're both more advanced with hieroglyphs than I am. It's really only down to the turtle idiogram that confuses me because this occurs in numerous spots on the coffin; the stuff below it varies.

I know that mt is commonly rendered as "death" or "dead" or "die," and that makes sense in some of the other columns. In one of the others, for instance, following the turtle is a short inscription that speaks of assembling the corpse in the land of the dead, the "Sacred Land" (i'b kh3t m ta-djsr, if I remember it correctly). I believe that's form one of the spells in the Book of the Dead. But the ankh with the ring idiogram throws me, as does that frustrating turtle idiogram with mt. I was wondering if maybe the ankh in this case does't refer to "life," with that ring idiogram there, but I'm just not sure how to translate it! Mad

Nontheless I really appreciate your help, Aset and Nekht-Ankh. I was hoping both of you would respond, so thanks. Wink
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Thanatosimii
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PostPosted: Sun Aug 13, 2006 11:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok, you'll be running into the same problem as I had when I was translating the tomb text of Ahmose son of Ibana.

On the down row, after Ankh Re, what does the gs sign translate into? I suspect that "side" probably isn't it.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 1:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kmt_sesh wrote:
So, Nekth-Ankh, you see iw' as "propitious"? That angle hadn't occurred to me. I know the standard translation is "inherit" (or with a "t" ending, "heiress"), but is it common to render this as "propitious"?

No, iwa is "reward" (verb) and I'm translating Ax.t as "propitious", a synonym for beneficial. I wanted a word that went well with reward, and, when I looked in the thesaurus, "propitious" sounded good.

Quote:
I was hoping both of you would respond, so thanks.

I think somehow you knew that we wouldn't be able to resist the challenge.
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PostPosted: Mon Aug 14, 2006 11:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

And it certainly was a challenge! It took some work, but I now have a rendering for number 2.

anx ra m(w)t Stw snw q(A)sw
Let the sun live and the tortoise die, and the bindings will be opened.

Notes
1. The sign after the ankh should be the sun-disk (N5). This sign is often depicted with a small circle at its centre.
2. The combination of the three signs above the tortoise are indeed m(w)t “to die”. The small circle N33 is a substitute for A14 (see Gardiner, p.490).
3. I found the formula anx ra m(w)t Stw in the Worterbuch (IV 557,4). The tortoise is an enemy of the sun.
4. The next word is the verb sn, “to open”. The rectangular pool (N37) is part of this word but is not phonetic. Gardiner (p.491) says that it is a replacement for the sign X4. The following w is probably a passive ending for this word.
5. The remaining signs are a variant writing of qAsw. For a writing which omits the A see Faulkner p.281.
6. The last two signs are determinatives. The penultimate sign is presumably V1 not the hieratic w, and the final sign is a variant for the hand holding a stick (D40).
7. qAsw is a plural noun meaning "bonds", "chains" or "cords". The Worterbuch (V 19,12) also mentions its use for mummy bandages, which is possibly what is intended here. The same entry also shows a variant plural writing containing the sedge plant (M23) for sw.
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 1:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks so much for working through that, Nekht-Ankh. (And you're right, I kind of figured you and Aset couldn't resist it.) I like how you thought through the problem.

Regarding "Let the sun live," when I first started working on the translations of this coffin I wanted to regard the disk as N5. I didn't get as far as you just did so I went back to the coffin. And I've been back many times--an advantage of being a docent, free admission whenever I want. Smile I've carefully looked at this glyph and it does not have a circle at center but an inner circle very close to the outer edge. For this reason it seemed to me to be S21, the ring. That's what was throwing me, trying to make this work with the ankh. I don't know that I can just brush it off as a badly formed glyph in the gilded covering because this coffin is from the royal workshop and every glyph on it is exquisitely, clearly formed. And it's not as though the glyph were an aberration in appearance in this one spot, because it strongly resembles the S21 glyph in all of the other locations where it appears. Damn, I wish I could get a photo of this glyph to post here, but that's forbidden.

That being said your translation brought me farther than I managed to get. The disk glyph still throws me, but what you came up with makes a lot of sense. I appreciate the effort you put into it for me.

I just may have to add some more inscriptions to drive you folks nuts. Wink
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 15, 2006 1:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nekht-Ankh:

What I found: Sad
- anx Ra = Ra lives
- Stw = to open
- sn = tortoise
I did not know that formula, but now I found it: Click!

Nekht-Ankh, THANK YOU!

Aset
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hey, Aset, thanks for looking into it further. You and Nekht-Ankh have been invaluable, and I appreciate it. Until you two came along I wasn't confident about my attempts at translating the glyphs down to the turtle, but the link you found confirms one of my original thoughts: that the inscriptions below these upper glyphs come from the Book of the Dead. I didn't know which spell, though, so I'm glad you found that. Wink

But now I have two versions to struggle with, yours and Nekht-Ankh's. Laughing Whichever shall I choose? I'm curious to see what Nekht-Ankh might have to say about the translation you found. If nothing else, I guess that even though the disk glyph resembles S21 much more than N5, I should probably regard it as the latter.

My problem--well, one of my problems--is that I'm not very good at finding reliable internet sites for translations. It's been tough to try to find good translations for KV46. I have Davis's classic The Tomb of Iouiya and Touiyou, which is very interesting and useful to a point, but the inscriptional material and translations tend to favor the burial equipment of Yuya.

You two have been so helpful, I just might have to post some more inscriptions. There are still one or two on Tjuya's coffin, for instance, with which I'm struggling.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 9:45 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kmt_sesh wrote:
But now I have two versions to struggle with, yours and Nekht-Ankh's. Laughing Whichever shall I choose? I'm curious to see what Nekht-Ankh might have to say about the translation you found.


I don't think Aset and I differ significantly in our interpretation - assuming that the transposition of the meanings of sn and Stw is unintentional. The translation on the UCL site is described as a short version of Chapter 161. It does not appear to contain anything corresponding to this particular verse, which may be contained in other versions.

The one thing that I do take from that text is that English translators prefer "turtle", as in Faulkner, to "tortoise". Tortoise came from translating from the German with IMTranslator.
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 2:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, Nekht-Ankh. I see what you're saying. And some of those other excerpts from Spell 161 in Aset's link look possibly to be the translations for other parts of the verticle inscriptions from Tjuya's coffin.

I'm keeping it at. I may have more inscriptions to share with you folks. Wink
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I found another example for anx ra m(w)t Stw: the sarcophagus fragment of Amenhotep son of Hapu

- fragment of his (outer) granite sarcophagus: photo
Unfortunately, the glyphs are indistinct Sad

- the translation of the text: photo "May Re live may the turtle die"

My "Hannig Wörterbuch" (p. 841) says also a form of optative sentense.

Concerning to "w" in the word sn.w, I think it is a sDm.w=f form (prospective verb), but I'm not sure!

Aset
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PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2006 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The glyphs are hard to see but the version of the photo with the added text helps to make it clearer, and I can see that it's written differently from Tjuya's coffin. That's to be expected, though. There's always variation. I'm glad you were able to find more evidence of the inscription, and I was reading the full version of this spell last night. It's all there. Wink
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 17, 2006 1:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Aset wrote:
"May Re live may the turtle die"

My "Hannig Wörterbuch" (p. 841) says also a form of optative sentense.

I had to look up "optative". It means expressing a wish, which is what the translation above starting "May ... " does. Both wishes, e.g. "May ... ", and exhortations, "Let ... ", as I wrote in my translation, are standard translations of the subjunctive.

Quote:

Concerning to "w" in the word sn.w, I think it is a sDm.w=f form (prospective verb), but I'm not sure!

That might be expected, since a verb form that describes future action would be appropriate here. However, if we follow Allen, then that has to be ruled out. According to him, 2-lit., 2ae-gem. and 3-lit. verbs do not exhibit a w ending in the prospective. And, in any case "the bindings" can hardly be the actor of the verb "to open"; so the verb needs to be passive in meaning. In that case the prospective would have to be the sDmm=f form.

I considered the possibility that this is sDm.w a 3rd person masc. singular stative verb used as part of an adverbial clause of result. This would lead to a translation such as "and he (Re?) will have opened the bindings". The problem is that in this translation the verb is active in meaning, but the stative of transitive verbs is nearly alway passive in meaning.

I suppose snw could be a participle but none of the other clauses in the text that you linked to have that construction.

This leaves the passive sDmw=f. Although this most often express action in the past, it actually expresses completed action, and that can include future action; i.e. "the bindings will have been opened". However, after looking again in Allen, I notice that the passive in a subordinate clause describes prior circumstance. In this case we could translate the clause as "after the bindings have been opened". I.e. a relative past tense. I think this is probably better than trying to translate it as an independent clause describing completed action in the future.
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