Egyptologists debate Pharaohs' names, pyramid theories

Daily News Egypt
4 Min Read

CAIRO: In a recent interview with Al-Masry Al Youm Dr. Osama Al-Saadawi claimed there have been discrepancies in deciphering and translating the Pharaonic languages. As a result, the image of Ancient Egyptians has been skewed.

“The French icon Champollion made serious mistakes when translating the Rosetta stone because he relied on assumptions that led him to incorrect translations, and thus the language is not right, Al-Saadawi said. “As a result we have a misconception of life during Pharaonic times.

Al-Saadawi claims that only 10 percent of the deciphered hieroglyphics is correct. However, Egyptologists such as researcher and lecturer Ahmed Seddik say that errors in Champollion’s work were a result of minimal technical resources.

Noting that there are mistakes in the first hand-written translations that could have led to wrong assumptions, Seddik said that “Champollion’s work was highly refined and very well translated, and we have been able to unlock the language, the phonetic school of ancient Egypt because of it.

Among Al-Saadawi’s finds is a discrepancy in the name of the Pharaoh who built the larges of the Giza Pyramids. According to him, his name was not King “Khufu, but King “Ghonoom. But according to Seddik, a graduate of the American University in Cairo, both are correct.

“Every pharaoh had at least five names, he said. “Khufu is a nickname. Ghonoom Khoufi was another name. Ghonoom means protect, so it’s literally ‘Protect Khufu.’

The name Khufu he says, has been found repeatedly in hieroglyphic texts, and is 100 percent correct.

Al-Saadawi also asserts that the Ancient Egyptians were not polytheistic as most Egyptologists claim. Ra, the God of the Sun, was not actually a god, he says. Ra is a shortened name for “God of All Things. However, evidence has been presented that when the New Kingdom was attempting to expand, the pharaohs recognized other gods in order to appease the people. Statues in the Cairo Museum are indicative of this.

“Religion in Egypt is old and very complex, said Seddik. “There is a dispute until today about religion. There is no one that can say that they were monotheistic 100 percent.

Al-Saadawi also provides an alternative theory about how the pyramids were built, claiming that over 2,500 horsepower would have been required for Khufu, or King Ghonoom, to build the great pyramids. It is therefore impossible to have had men move the blocks. Rather, the pyramids were built using hydraulic ducts which utilized the flooding of the Nile.

A wide range of theories have been presented regarding the building of the pyramids. Dr Mory Gharib, aeronautics professor at the California Institute of Technology, and a team of students have proven the smaller obelisks used to build the pyramids can be lifted and directed using kites and a pulley. However, although there is scientific evidence that this method is possible, it lacks documentation or finds to back it up.

“In Sakkara they found a kite that was aerodynamically sound, said Seddik. “Yet, these are all speculations. You can’t prove it unless you dig it up.

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