When you write:
"Because it was done in recent history doesn't mean it was done 4,000 years ago."
But ... the Graeco-Roman period of Egypt spans the entire historical period whose authors you cited in support of your viewpoint: Herodotus et al.
In response to your claim, quoted at the top of this post, I point to Ancient Chinese emperors to suggest that you are mistaken. The Xia dynasty of Ancient China is thought to date to approx. 2000 BCE and the Shang dynasty is dated to 1600 BCE, 3 600 years ago.
Honorific titles for ancient Chinese emperors include:
* You of 10, 000 years - wansui
* You, the Holy and Exalted One - wansuiye
* His Majesty - shengjia
* The Son of Heaven - tianzi
* His majesty's health - longti
Here is evidence that various honorifics were indeed used in ancient cultures to address the political/spiritual leader.
The very commonality of this practice in various cultures throughout history is indeed not proof that the AEs adopted it, too, though it makes it seem much more likely, in my humble opinion.
The language also wasn't really "reverse engineered" as you suggest. The Rosetta stone is the same text, composed in hieroglyphs, hieratic and demotic Greek. It provides an irrefutable way for a cryptologist to "crack a code" of meaning, even though we remain completely and utterly clueless about the actual sound of the language.
Hieroglyphs make as much sense as any other language, once you have learned how to read them. They do to me, anyhoo! It takes time, patience and determined effort but it is most rewarding - I can heartily recommend Bill Manley's books if you are curious to learn for yourself.
I disagree when you describe it as "gibberish" because it does make sense as a language and, like all languages, it has rules and grammar which govern its expression. Once you have learned these - and, like learning any modern foreign language, you have to - you can then read inscriptions for yourself quite easily. Of course, we've no idea of the actual pronunciation but the 'meaning' is clear.
Likewise, there are scholars who think that Anglo-Saxon or 'Old English' probably sounded like modern German. The bottom line is: nobody knows for sure but we can still read it. You wouldn't call this "gibberish" and yet it is as similar to modern English as hieratic is to hieroglyphs. see here:
Moreover, when a person can read hieroglyphic inscriptions independently and the "meaning" of what is being read is clear and appropriate to the context in which the expressions were originally produced, I can only disagree with you when you write "It's nonsense and they know it" because it does actually make sense.
Post Edited (12-Jun-14 22:37)