Rosetta Stone: A basalt slab discovered at Rosetta (Rashid), at the western mouth of the Nile, during Napoleon's occupation of Egypt in 1799. It was seized by the victorious British Army and is now in the British Museum. The text is an honorific decree of Ptolemy V (196 B.C.) that was written in ancient Greek, hieroglyphics, and demotic, which is a later form of ancient Egyptian. The stone enabled the French explorer and linguist Champollion to decipher ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics by comparing the unknown text of hieroglyphics to the known and translated text in Greek and demotic.
A-G | H-M | N-R | S-Z