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The oldest form of the Egyptian language is known as Old Egyptian aka "Archaic Egyptian." This form of the language was used during the Early Dynastic Period of Ancient Egypt, which began around 3100 BC and lasted until the Old Kingdom period around 2686 AD.
Old Egyptian is written in hieroglyphics, a system of symbols representing objects, concepts, and sounds. This language changed over time and developed into other forms, such as Middle Egyptian, Late Egyptian, and Demotic.
According to the elements founud through archeology, Old Egyptian was used most often in religious and funerary texts, such as the Pyramid Texts and Coffin Texts. These can be seen carved on the walls of tombs and burial chambers. However, tlanguage was also used for administrative and legal documents, as well as poetry and literature.
Photo: Wall carving of hieroglyphics, courtesy Getty Open Source Online Library
Original page July 26, 2018 | Updated March 3, 2023