> Hi Jon
> The shape of a stela - its semi circular top, for example -
> might determine whether the sculptor had the physical space to
> write the phrase 'ma heru' (signifying 'one who is deceased')
> with 7 glyphs and a determinative, or with 4 glyphs, three or
> just two.
> As I explained, there were some spelling conventions but
> aesthetic considerations also played a part in the choices made
> by scribe or sculptor.
> Maybe you should read up on it. Being "blissfully ignorant" of
> hieroglyphs and the conventions of Egyptian writing systems
> does not help one to make informed contributions to a
> discussion and blinds you to some of the flimsy
> counter-arguments being presented by some on this thread.
> I, nor anyone else, has any idea of how this language should
> 'sound'; however, linguists have cracked the 'code' and have
> been able to present a meaningful understanding of the grammar
> of this language.
> So, by way of hypothetical example, if a person was to argue
> that 'Khfw' is actually 'Khwf', and you also happen to know the
> sound that modern scholars have ascribed to that glyph in order
> to crack the code (irrespective of the fact that none of us
> know what the 'sound' might originally have been when made by
> an Ancient Egyptian) and you also know how to read lateral
> inscriptions, then you can decide for yourself the rigour of
> such an argument.
> Post Edited (19-Jul-14 12:11)
But please let's just not lose track of the fact that sometimes being "blissfully ignorant" gives one the advantage of not being "influenced" by traditional preconceived notions that have perhaps been long since rendered obsolete. It seems to me that the "tight space" argument might just as easily have been contrived by modern man to allow the square peg fit the round linguistic hole.
Is there any systematic study that provides compelling evidence that tight space is what drives brevity in a name that refers to the same person, especially royalty? Can it be shown that it really was not possible to plan the glyph layoutout to pay due respect to an individual by not cramming merely their nickname into the remaining space? Especially someone worthy of claiming "cartouche" real estate?
It just seems very post-hoc to claim there was no room for a king's formal name on a block of stone on which so much planning and engraving commenced. From a logical point of view, it seems so much more credible that the name they wrote in a cartouche would have had the same glyphs regardless of how much space they had to write it (unless changing the glyphs changed the MEANING such as adding an affect or circumstance to the instance, of course). Meanwhile, if the full name in the cartouche encroached on the space they needed to fit in the grain count, or the number of years something happened, then make those NON-cartouche glyphs smaller, or just make the stone block larger.