> Rather than wait for you to dare a step, I'll just
> move on to illustrate a few things about the
> ancient Egyptian language. I marked with numbers
> some things of interest.
> 1) This verb construction, "hr sekhat" is called a
> pseudo-verbal construction. The number "4" marks
> the added "t" which turns the verb stem "think"
> into an infinitive "to think". So literally "upon
> to think". The use of this pseudo-verbal
> construction begins in the Fifth Dynasty at the
> time the pyramid texts would have been composed.
> For a certain time period this was used to express
> the imperfect aspect of an action...in this case
> "is thinking". And that dates the phrase to a time
> before the New Kingdom, probably to an Old Kingdom
> medical text copied over to the Ebers Papyrus. In
> the New Kingdom this phrase would have been
> written as "m skhat" instead of "hr sekhat".
> 2) This is the geminated (double consonant)
> version of "maah", i.e. "maahh". In this
> particular setting, the meaning of it remains a
> mystery. However, in other settings gemination
> creates an imperfect-like sense, i.e. an action
> which is ongoing or repeated or usual (as in "I
> used to drag stones up ramps until I saw a geyser
> spouting"). My personal opinion is that gemination
> in this setting denotes the imperfect just as does
> the pseudo-verbal construct further down in this
> 3) "Irj" is a preposition turned into an
> adjective...."as for" "with respect to"
> 5) This is the letter "f" which marks person and
> gender...singular masculine. Here, therefore "his
> heart" in both postions
> Few other comments:
> Note the interesting phonetic similarity between
> flooding and forgetting.
> The Egyptian believed that thoughts came from the
> heart. So the context of "heart" is what we relate
> to the "mind".
> Look at the interesting way the word think is put
> together: "cause to appear".."s-kha". This
> suggests that the word relates to the visuals of
> thinking, but it also carries another
> meaning...that this could be made to happen. So to
> the ancient Egyptians thinking was a willed action
> in the heart involving appearing images.
> The grammar: This is a complex nominal predicate
> sentence. It is complex because the usual nouns
> are replaced by noun phrases. At the end is an
> adverbial phrase which qualifies the main clause:
> "...like one who is thinking about another
> The entire sentence reads as follows (my own
> "With respect to "a flooded mind" [the symptom],
> he [ie the patient] is forgetting as if he is
> Jim Allen:
> "As for "his mind is flooded", it means that his
> mind forgets, like one who is thinking of another
> Note that Allen is not translating "is forgetting"
> but "forgets" because he does not believe
> gemination in an unmarked noun clause indicates
> aspect, but could just be a stylistic feature of
> I think gemination, here as in other settings,
> indicates the imperfect aspect. The imperfect
> aspect brings an action to the foreground of the
> listeners' attention. By making an action
> incomplete, the listener or reader feels it is
> ongoing as they hear or read the words. This is a
> dramatizing effect. We do this in English too
> independent of tense:
> "He made a ramp to pull stones up the
> pyramid"..it's done in other words.
> "He was making a ramp to pull stones up the
> pyramid"....it makes you feel something should
> come after this. It hold your attention.
> In the Old Kingdom, this dramatizing effect was
> achieved with the Subject-sdm.f
> construction, the true way to mark imperfect
> aspect before the pseud-verbal construct came in
> the Fifth Dynasty.
> This might make for a nice project: Look in the
> Pyramid Texts to see which parts of it use the
> Subject-sdm.f construct and which
> the pseudo-verbal construct to date them.
This is even more interesting than I expected. I'm a little surprised by the interpretation of "flooded mind" but I'm not sure I have a better one to offer.
I don't have an opinion on the language of this nor its meaning but I can propose another interpretation that to my mind might be more consistent with the way I believe they thought. I could not have derived this on my own, of course, and this interpretation might not be correct even if my theory otherwise is.
Many adolescents have a tendency to daydream a lot or otherwise to live in their minds. Perhaps a flooded (heart) mind is one distracted by testosterone or dreams. It's not so much "forgetfulness" as never encoding the memory at all. I'd be curious what cure is being proposed for this condition. The answer might be here.