Basic Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphs (DL) CLASSIC5126

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: No
  • Taught Wholly by Distance Learning: Yes

Short Description

From the simple recognition of key hieroglyphic signs to the intricacies of word formation (orthography) and grammar, this course serves as a basic introduction to the Middle Egyptian hieroglyphic script. Our aim is to learn to read a variety of funerary and royal inscriptions, setting examples from these genres within their broader cultural context.


10 weekly sessions online comprising of c. 2 hour lectures and follow-up exercises (c. 1 hour each).

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry to Master's at College level.

Excluded Courses






Best 3 out of 5 moodle quizzes (vocabulary, grammar): 20%

Unseen translation and commentary exercise: 60%

Reflective report (c. 1000 words): 20%

Course Aims

This course aims to:

■ Introduce students to the principles of the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic script, building skills in interpreting orthography and grammar

■ Enable students to read a variety of funerary and royal inscriptions in Middle Egyptian

■ Contextualise primary sources read in the original against their cultural background.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:

■ Display a reflective knowledge of the Egyptian hieroglyphic script and the Middle Egyptian language through translation and commentary skills

■ Contextualise funerary and royal texts studied within the broader ancient Egyptian culture, comparing and contrasting different examples

■ Critically analyse key topics in religion and royal culture pertaining to the textual material studied within the course

■ Engage with primary sources and use them to argue opinions.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.