The past week our class focused on the topic of the Great Pyramids, the Valley of the Kings, and Egypt in general. While in class the discussion centered around explorers, the pyramids, and the systematic robbing of Egyptian artifacts something piqued my curiosity. Albeit somewhat briefly, the Rosetta Stone was mentioned.The Rosetta Stone itself was a stele inscribed with a decree by King Ptolemy V, on it were the sane decree but written in three different scripts; Ancient Greek, Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs, and demotic script. This ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic stele has been so important to Egyptology and plays such a predominant role in learning about the ancient Egyptians. Rosetta Stone has even become a name for an essential clue in a field of knowledge. If it were not for the Rosetta Stone archaeologists would not be able to translate Egyptian hieroglyphics.
Through the work of many linguists and archaeologists the Rosetta Stone became a tool to decipher ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics, making scholars and archaeologists able to translate an innumerable amount of cravings, scripts, and wall inscriptions. Information could be gathered from hieroglyphics that could date back thousands of years. For example, ancient Egyptian literature such as papyrus scrolls from the Middle Egyptian era, and hieroglyphs on the walls of Theban temples. Egyptians wrote about burial customs, history, Egyptian mythology, and so much more all across their temples, in scripted on many walls. This gave Egyptologists an insight into the beliefs and minds of ancient Egyptians (or at least the upper, educated class). Such beliefs as the intricate Egyptian mythological system of many gods and goddesses. In addition, through the translation Egyptologists discovered cartouches and the names of the pharaohs, giving them the names of the buried pharaohs in the pyramids.
Locking the code to the Egyptian hieroglyphics also showed archaeologists that Egyptians had an extensive knowledge of astronomy, some scholars even argue that the pyramids have connections with astronomy. While that may be debatable, the impressive knowledge of ancient Egyptian architects is not. These architects designed and built massive structures. Even the sides of some pyramids have slopes with a small margin of error. Their lives and techniques written and stored in the burial places near their pharaohs.
There is plethora of knowledge about ancient Egypt that without the Rosetta Stone would be a mystery. The Rosetta stone has been essential to the modern knowledge of ancient Egyptian literature and civilization.