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Arab scholar cracked 'Rosetta code' 800 years before the West

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posted on Oct, 12 2004 @ 07:04 AM
From the article:

But now the supremacy of Western thinking has been challenged by a London researcher who claims that hieroglyphs had been decoded hundreds of years earlier - by an Arabic alchemist, Abu Bakr Ahmad Ibn Wahshiyah.
'It has taken years of painstaking research to prove this,' said Dr Okasha El Daly, at UCL's Institute of Archaeology. 'I was convinced that Western scholars were not the first, and I have found evidence that shows Arabian scholars broke the code a thousand years ago.

The rest here:

posted on Oct, 12 2004 @ 12:42 PM
another article

Wahshiyah’s work on ancient writing systems showed that he was able to correctly decipher many hieroglyphic signs. Being an alchemist not a linguist, his primary interest was to identify the phonetic value and meaning of hieroglyphic signs with the aim of accessing the ancient Egyptian scientific knowledge inscribed in hieroglyphs.

“By comparing Ibn Wahshiyah’s conclusions with those in current books on Egyptian Language, I was able to assess his accuracy in understanding hieroglyphic signs,” says Dr El Daly.

“In particular I looked at the Egyptian Grammar of Sir Alan Gardiner which has a sign list at the end, it revealed that Ibn Wahshiyah understood perfectly well the nature of Egyptian hieroglyphs.”

Sounds interesting, but I wonder what the alchemist translated the words specifically as, and why there isn't any record of him having acheived this. I had, from the first article, gotten the impression that the alchemist had onyl realized that the glyphs were phonetic, but this seems to be saying that he actually translated them. Too bad he didn't bother to tell anyone else. I look forward to the paper that is published as a result of this.

posted on Oct, 12 2004 @ 02:51 PM
Wow. This is an interesting topic. I wonder what he used to crack the source of hieroglyphs. As stated above, it is a little odd that he didn't write anything about it. Either way, I'd like to see how this all plays out in the end.

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