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Dictionary holds ancient Egypt’s everyday language

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Scholars have completed a dictionary that offers insight into the lives—taxes, work, and marriage—of people in ancient Egypt.

The Demotic language was one of the three texts on the Rosetta stone, which was also written in Egyptian hieroglyphs and Greek. In addition to being used on stone carvings, the script was left behind on papyrus and broken bits of pottery.

“Demotic was used for business and legal documents, private letters, and administrative inscriptions, and literary texts, such as narratives and pieces of wisdom literature,” says Johnson, a professor at the University of Chicago’s Oriental Institute.

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