Hieroglyphs: Writing the Words of God

Hieroglyphs mainly refer to the writing system consisting of graphical figures like animals, objects, people or gods. Even though the Greeks discovered the Hieroglyphs in Ancient Egypt in 300BC and gave the name (‘hieros’ meaning holy; ‘glyph meaning carving) to it, Egyptians were not the only ones that used Hieroglyphs as a way of keeping records. They were first used by Sumerians in Mesopotamia. Their main goal in using this writing system was to record agricultural products and registering births. This writing system was widely used by Sumerians, Assyrians and Babylonians 5000 years ago and it led to the birth of linear and cuneiform script.


Sumerian Heieroglyphs

Pictographs are the drawings of things with their literal meanings. A picture of a dog can mean just a dog, but also another things and this means that not everybody could write these symbols. Hieroglyphs was much more complex and detailed in Ancient Egypt than the ones in Sumer and this was why the scribes in Ancient Egypt were high ranking members of the social hierarchy, ranking same with the priests.


Ancient Egypt


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How did they create colors 30,000 years ago?

Cave paintings let us learn about the lives of people long ago. People painted animals and even painted outlines of their hands on the walls of the caves “Cave painting” usually refers to drawings and paintings on the walls of prehistoric caves. Researches prove that cave paintings began around 30,000 BC and the most impressing ones are discovered in France and Spain, but there are also many different decorated caves around all the continents of the world. The importance of the early examples of the cave art is their monochromic painting style with only one color. Different from the early examples, other polychromic cave art contain mostly the red and black color. They used many different methods to create the colored paints and I think they did great job as the colors can be seen today.  Stone Age painters employed several different combinations of materials to make coloured paints. Clay ochre provided three basic colours: numerous varieties of red, plus yellow and brown. For black colour, artists used either manganese dioxide or charcoal. After grinding the pigments to fine powder, artists mixed the powder with cave water (typically high in calcium carbonate) animal fats, vegetable juice, blood and urine to help it stick to the rock surface. They also used extenders like biotite and feldspar, or ground quartz and calcium phosphate (obtained from crushed, heated animal bone).

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