Rosetta Stone: The Key To Deciphering Egyptian Hieroglyphics

By | February 26, 2019

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The Rosetta Stone. Source: (

Egypt fever hit British explorers and academics from roughly the late 18th century into well after Howard Carter unearthed the tomb of King Tutankhamen in 1922. The Great Pyramids, the enigmatic Sphinx, and the strange hieroglyphics fascinated scholars from the British Museum and archaeologists carted boatloads of ancient artifacts from Egypt to help historians learn about the ancient Egyptian people. One accidental discovery in 1799 in the city of Rosetta proved to be the key to unlocking the unknown written language of the Egyptian people. The Rosetta Stone was one of the most important discoveries from antiquity. 

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French soldiers unearthed the Rosetta Stone. Source: (

The Rosetta Stone was Found by Accident

On July 19, 1799, during Napoleon’s Egyptian Campaign, French soldiers who were doing repairs to a fort in Rosetta, a town north of Alexandria, discovered a slab of black basalt covered with strange writing. The soldiers couldn’t read the writing on the slab but they were ordered to turn over any old artifacts to Napoleon’s men. They understood that there may be something special about this slab.