Read e-book online Ancient Egyptian literature : an anthology PDF

By John L. Foster

ISBN-10: 0292725264

ISBN-13: 9780292725263

ISBN-10: 0292725272

ISBN-13: 9780292725270

Poetry, tales, hymns, prayers, and knowledge texts came upon beautiful written expression in old Egypt whereas their literary opposite numbers have been nonetheless being recited round fireplace fires in old Greece and Israel. but, due to its very antiquity and the centuries in which the language used to be forgotten, historic Egyptian literature is a newly stumbled on kingdom for contemporary readers.

This anthology deals an in depth sampling of all of the significant genres of historic Egyptian literature. It contains all of the texts from John Foster's prior booklet Echoes of Egyptian Voices, besides choices from his Love Songs of the recent Kingdom and Hymns, Prayers, and Songs: An Anthology of historical Egyptian Lyric Poetry, in addition to formerly unpublished translations of 4 longer and brief poems. Foster's translations seize the poetical fantastic thing about the Egyptian language and the spirit that impelled each one piece's composition, making those old masterworks sing for contemporary readers. An creation to historic Egyptian literature and its translation, in addition to short information regarding the authorship and date of every choice, completes the volume.

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Example text

The mouth of a man can save him; speech can soften an angry face. . —Well, never mind. You do whatever in the world you want, then; it gets to be a bother, talking to you! 17 10:59 But let me tell you just a little story, a bit like this, which happened once upon a time to me. I was traveling to the region of the royal mines and had descended to the Great Green Sea 6732 Foster / ANCIENT EGYPTIAN LITERATURE / sheet 36 of 298 In a grand two-hundred-foot-long vessel (its width was seventy feet from rail to rail), The crew within it, one hundred twenty of the finest men in Egypt: Let them see only sky, let them see land, braver were their hearts than lions; They could foretell a storm before its coming, foul weather before ever it occurred.

He has worked his arms to dropping in his labors, and it is nightfall when he lights his fire out there. 17 10:59 ‘‘The mason cutting with his chisel in all sorts of hard and costly stone— After he finishes two cubic feet of work, his arms are dead and he himself is weary. He sits there until suppertime, knees cramped and with an aching back.  A N C I E N T E G Y P T I A N L I T E R AT U R E 6732 Foster / ANCIENT EGYPTIAN LITERATURE / sheet 61 of 298 vii ‘‘The barber barbers far into evening to earn a bit to swallow, a covering for his shoulders, Taking himself from street to street to hunt down any who are ripe for barbering.

Whose turn is it now making soft eyes up into his face . . . . o my god, love, What kind of man breaks the heart of a girl with such ever so strange goings on? VIII My heart remembers how I once loved you, as I sit with my hair half done, And I’m out running, looking for you, searching for you with my hair down! 17 10:59 If I ever get back, I’ll weave an intricate hairdo down to my toes. Love, there’s so much time now to finish . . 17 10:59 The Instruction for Little Pepi on His Way to School The Satire on the Trades T            piece belongs to the genre of ‘‘schoolboy texts’’—a series of didactic poems and treatises written for fledgling scribes.

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Ancient Egyptian literature : an anthology by John L. Foster


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