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the most ancient pictorial symbols of Egyptian writing, used from the end of the fourth millennium B.C. (as distinct from the hieratic and demotic scripts). About 5,000 different Egyptian hieroglyphs are known, although no more than 700–800 were used in each era. Four types of Egyptian hieroglyphs are distinguished: (1) single-consonant signs (approximately 30), which represented the consonants of the Egyptian language; (2) two-consonant and three-consonant signs for the phonetic representation of morphemes; (3) ideograms for the representation of entire words; and (4) determinatives, un-pronounced auxiliary ideographic symbols indicating word meanings more precisely.

The term “hieroglyph” is also used with respect to the symbols of other writing systems. Thus, the characters of ancient (2000 B.C. ) and modern Chinese writing and the symbols of the noncuneiform pictorial variety of Hittite writing (2000–1000 B.C.) are usually called hieroglyphs.


Istrin, V. A. Vozniknovenie i razvitie pis’ma. Moscow, 1965.
Diringer, D. Alfavit. Moscow, 1963. (Translated from English.)
Champollion, J. F. O egipetskom ieroglificheskom alfavite. Moscow, 1950. (Translated from French.)
Gelb, I. J. A Study of Writing: The Foundations of Grammatology. London, 1952.
Jensen, H. Die Schrift in Vergangenheit und Gegenwart, 2nd ed. Berlin, 1958.




in geology, randomly curved ridges, furrows, and other forms of imprints on the bedding surfaces of some rocks, usually fine-grained ones (for example, in flysch). They are often molds with the irregularities of the surface of that layer on which the next younger bed was deposited (negative hieroglyphs). Such hieroglyphs may occur through filling up small depressions (furrows) formed by streams (sinter hieroglyphs) or when water currents drag various objects along the bottom.

References in periodicals archive ?
It helped the team translate hieroglyphs and add the fascinating level of detail to the game.
Many hieroglyphs can exhibit more than one of these three functions and quite a few even all three.
The former was possessed of an obsessive, single-minded devotion to the problem of the hieroglyphs (and fell in love with Egyptian art and culture); the latter was a sociable polymath and practicing physician who pursued his Egyptian studies among a variety of other interests in his "off-hours.
But it was a French scholar who, in 1822, made the intuitive leap that both the Demotic (an ancient Egyptian legal language) and the hieroglyphs (familiar from the walls of temples and pyramids, but not hitherto deciphered) used the same phonetic basis for writing language.
The scripts are early demotic and what has been termed abnormal hieratic, a shorthand form of the cursive hieratic derived from hieroglyphs, which are illustrated in the book.
The front cloth which came in during the overture certainly deserved closer examination with its full-sized pharaonic racing chariot, its vivid colours and hieroglyphs.
A team led by Marcello Canuto of Tulane University in New Orleans discovered and deciphered the 2012 allusion in hieroglyphs (above) carved on 22 staircase steps at an ancient Maya site called La Corona.
The Greek compound word hiero-glyph can mean any kind of sacred engraving, but the mysterious hieroglyphs that come down to us from Egyptian culture have a special appeal.
Throughout the story are a series of hieroglyphs which, when deciphered, provide the solution to the puzzle.
Could smoke and drive a Chevy while scribbling hieroglyphs on crossed
If this text provides the most accessible representation of hieroglyphs for English readers, then those readers would have had a fairly distorted notion of the appearance of the genuine articles, which the Hypnerotomachia has translated into the familiar forms of European pictorialism.
In this second edition Mr Robinson adheres to his two earlier divisions: the first looks at three famous deciphered scipts: Egyptian hieroglyphs, Linear B and the Mayan Glyphs from Central America.