- Late Egyptian
Late Egyptian is the stage of the
Egyptian languagethat began to be written in the New Kingdomaround the Amarna period. Texts written wholly in Late Egyptian date to the Ramesside Period and later.
Late Egyptian literature
Late Egyptian is represented by a large body of religious and secular literature, comprising such examples as the "
Story of Wenamun", the love poems of the Chester-Beatty I papyrus, and the "Instruction of Ani". Instructions became a popular literary genre of the New Kingdom, which took the form of advice on proper behavior. It was also the language of the Ramessideadministration. [Loprieno, "op.cit.", p.7] [Meyers, "op.cit.", p.209]
Differences between Middle and Late Egyptian
Late Egyptian is not completely distinct from Middle Egyptian, as many "classicisms" appear in historical and literary documents of this phase. [Haspelmath, "op.cit.", p.1743] However, the difference between Middle and Late Egyptian is greater than the one between Middle and Old Egyptian: from being a synthetic it became an analytic language. [Bard, "op.cit.", p.275] Their relationship has been described as being similar to that of Latin and Italian. [Christidēs et al. "op.cit.", p.811]
* Written Late Egyptian was seemingly a better representative than Middle Egyptian of the spoken language in the New Kingdom and beyond: weak consonants "3, w, j", as well as the feminine ending ".t" were increasingly dropped, apparently because they stopped being pronounced.
* The demonstrative pronouns "p3" (masc.), "t3" (fem.), and "n3" (pl.) were used as definite articles.
* The old form "sḏm.n=f" (he heard) of the verb was replaced by "sḏm=f" which had both prospective (he shall hear) and perfective (he heard) aspects. The past tense was also formed using the auxiliary verb "jr" (make), as in "jr=f saHa=f" (he has accused him).
* Adjectives as attributes of nouns are often replaced by nouns.
Developments during the first millennium BCE
Middle Egyptian had a renaissance after the Third Intermediate Period, when it was often used in hieroglyphic and hieratic texts in preference to Late Egyptian.
Late Egyptian Grammars
* J. Cerny, S. Israelit-Groll, C. Eyre, "A Late Egyptian Grammar", 4th, updated edition - Biblical Institute; Rome, 1984
* Kathryn A. Bard, "Encyclopedia of the Archaeology of Ancient Egypt", Routledge 1999, ISBN 0415185890
* Martin Haspelmath, "Language Typology and Language Universals: An International Handbook", Walter de Gruyter 2001, ISBN 3110171546
* Antonio Loprieno, "Ancient Egyptian: A Linguistic Introduction", Cambridge University Press 1995, ISBN 0521448492
* Anastasios-Phoivos Christidēs, Maria Arapopoulou, Maria Chritē, "A History of Ancient Greek: From the Beginnings to Late Antiquity", Cambridge University Press 2007, ISBN 0521833078
* Eric M. Meyers, "The Oxford Encyclopedia of Archaeology in the Near East", 1997
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