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First phonetic Inscriptions

The short inscription on this small object from the First Dynasty might be an early example of a purely phonetically written inscription, using the signs 'r' and 'S'.

However the interpretation of many early inscriptions is very difficult. This inscription from Abydos can be read rS, but also 'Mouth of the lake', 'lake with the name Ra' or it might be a personal name.

UC 16183

UC 16183

the same problem appears with the following inscription on a comb (UC 16076) from Tarkhan (tomb 213).

The inscription can be read: kA + d, but also wdi ka ('who gives the ka')


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