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Athanasius Kircher And The Hieroglyphic Sphinx

By Gerard @presurfer
Athanasius Kircher And The Hieroglyphic Sphinximage credit
More than 170 years before Jean-Franรงois Champollion had the first real success in translating Egyptian hieroglyphs, the 17th century Jesuit scholar Athanasius Kircher was convinced he had cracked it. He published 'Oedipus Aegyptiacus.' Like Oedipus answering the riddle of the Sphinx, Kircher believed he had solved the enigma of the hieroglyphs.
He was very wrong. Daniel Stolzenberg looks at Kircher's Egyptian Oedipus, a book that has been called 'one of the most learned monstrosities of all times.'

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