The Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae on the Internet
The Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae is a publication platform made available on the Internet by the Ancient Egyptian Dictionary Project at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of
Sciences and Humanities. Within the Thesaurus, a digital corpus of Egyptian (including Demotic) texts have been released to the public for computer-assisted search. Lemmatization and morpho-syntactic
annotation of the text material allow for specific research from lexical, philological, linguistic, and historico-cultural points of view. All texts come with running translations to assist
particularly non-specialists and scholars of neighbouring disciplines in their work.
The digital text corpus, forming the substance of this information system, is the result of years of ongoing cooperation among several projects, and will continue developing on this
basis. Contributions have been made by the Ancient Egyptian Dictionary Project with project groups at the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities in Berlin and the Saxonian Academy of
Sciences ans Humanities in Leipzig, the Demotic Text Database Project of the Academy of Sciences and Literature Mainz (Wurzburg branch), and the Book of the Dead Project of the North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of
Sciences, Humanities and the Arts (Bonn). The Project "Digital Heka" has been involved from the very beginning. Since 2005, the Leuven Online Index of Ptolemaic and Roman Hieroglyphic Texts Project
of the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven has been involved. Since October 2012 texts of the Horus temple of the Edfu Project have been integrated. This cooperation was promoted by the Göttingen
Academy of Sciences. The origin and concept of this Internet publication have largely been informed by this cooperation.
It is the purpose of the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae to make available, in the form of a virtual dictionary, a new and, within Egyptology novel, tool for lexicographic
research into the Egyptian language. In this sense, the project closely follows both purpose and method of the comprehensive Wörterbuch der ägyptischen Sprache, which Adolf Erman
inaugurated at the Prussian Academy of Sciences in 1897, making it a success story. As a token of admiration for this outstanding researcher, not least in the field of Egyptian lexicography, the
Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae was first released for general use on 31 October 2004 - the 150th birth anniversary of Adolf Erman
Material: The Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae in its version of October 2012 comprises about 1,100,000 text words. This corresponds nearly to the volume of the text archive the Wörterbuch der ägyptischen Sprache is based o and which consist of 1,250,000 words in the alphabetical sorting. The following groups of texts are included:
- Texts from the Old Kingdom and the First Intermediate Period (tomb inscriptions, specifically those of more recent publications of tombs in Giza, Saqqara, Akhmim, and Deir
el-Gebrawi; rock inscriptions; records, and notes)
- Pyramid texts from the Old Kingdom
- texts of the archives from the Old Kingdom: The Abu Sir Papyri
- Letters and Letters to the Dead from the Old Kingdom up to the Third Intermediate Period
- Literary texts from the Middle Kingdom up to the Late Period (tales, dialogues, teachings, laments, prophecies, historical-biographical texts)
- Texts from the Amarna Period
- The Book of the Dead in several manuscripts from the New Kingdom and the Late Period
- Royal-rhetorical texts from the 19th Dynasty
- Books from the private cult of the dead /"mortuary liturgies"
- Books of temple libraries from the ptolemaic and roman times"
- Texts of temples from the ptolemaic and roman times
- Demotic texts (a comprehensive selection of literary, religious and administrative texts)
Functions: In its current version, the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae allows to search for lemmata by transliteration, translation and bibliographic reference, also in a
combined fashion and using regular expressions. For lemmata, citations (Belegstellen) may be consulted, wider co-texts of citations displayed, and the entire texts navigated. Starting from the
display of citation co-texts, all other words are capable of being looked up in their specific contexts. Moreover, users may look into data pertaining to source, date, bibliography, object on which
the text is written, etc. Against the background of the material's spatial classification and provenance, all texts and objects are organized into a hierarchical tree structure, which permits to
explore the context of a text (as, for instance, in the decoration of a monumental tomb).
Functionality was enhanced in the summer of 2008, with the ability to directly search for texts and word combinations being added in. Moreover, it has since been possible to generate indexes and word
concordances from individual texts and selected parts of corpora, and to search for the most frequent word classes. A number of statistical functions allow to run collocation and key word analyses,
search for the combined occurrence of two words, or calculate the frequency of specific words.
Searching for hieroglyphic spellings of words of the word list: Since March 2009, it has been possible to search for hieroglyphic spellings in the word list
that have to date been entered into the database in the framework of the project.
step by step.
Searching for hieroglyphic spellings of words of the text corpus: Since 2011, it has been possible to search for hieroglyphic spellings of words in some texts of the text corpus,
such as in texts of tombs of the western cemeteries in the Giza necropois and some texts from the Amarna period.
Integrating the Digitized Slip Archive: Starting from the lemma list of the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae, users may move to navigate within the Digitized Slip
Archive and, in doing so, access reference material for lexemes that are not yet included in the corpus digitized to date. In addition, the Digitized Slip Archive provides extensive
information on hieroglyphic spellings of the words. Navigating within the Digitized Slip Archive from the context of the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae does not require Java
Future prospects: The publication of the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae on the Internet is designed to be dynamic. At regular intervals, but at least once a year, an
update is planned to be released, with the new version to grow in both digital text volume and its search and navigational capabilities.
To use the Thesaurus, you are required to abide by, and expressly acknowledge and agree to, all applicable "Copyright Regulations" For
notes on "Citing" from the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae please see the "Help
Technical Prerequisites: Technical prerequisites for consulting the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae are deliberately kept at a minimum. The programme may be used with any
Internet browser, the Internet publication's functionality having been tested for Mozilla 1.7 and MS Internet-Explorer 5. No additional installation on your desktop is needed. No applets are sent.
Authorship: The editors who entered the individual texts into the digital corpus are identified by notes on authorship, as a text or citation (Belegstelle) is displayed. The
editing of the lemma list has been in the hands of Ingelore Hafemann und Simon Schweitzer. Marianne Eaton-Krauss translated the meanings of the Egyptian lemmata into English. Jana Szeponik translated the Help Texts into English, which may be displayed using an english browser only. The Demotic lemma list
has been taken care of by Günter Vittmann. The web design of this Internet presentation was created by Anika Strobach. The database and its web application have been programmed by Stephan
Acknowledgements: The lemma list of the Egyptian vocabulary is based on a copy of a lemma list compiled by Horst Beinlich (the Beinlich Wordlist) on the basis of the
Wörterbuch der ägyptischen Sprache. Both this lemma list and the lemma list of the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae have since been largely developed independently from each other. Jochen Hallof
made available for incorporation into the lemma list in the framework of the Ancient Egyptian Dictionary project a comprehensive list of Egyptian personal names, which he compiled on the basis of the
Slip Archive of the Wörterbuch der ägyptischen Sprache.
The Edfu Project made lemmata of the Edfu texts for incorporation into the lemma list available. The integration of the whole text data of the Edfu Project have been made possible by the promotion of the
Göttingen Academy of Sciences.
The material of the Demotic lemma list is built on and was made available by Friedhelm Hoffmann at the start of the Demotic Database
project. With texts being entered, this list, too, has developed in its own right. We wish to express our gratitude to all of our colleagues who have contributed to our project by making available
these valuable aids.
Contact: If you have queries or suggestions relating to specific passages in a text, please do not hesitate to contact the editors of these texts shown in the note of
authorship. For all queries, advice and comments pertaining to general aspects and features of this publication, please email email@example.com or mail to
Altägyptisches Wörterbuch, Jägerstrasse 22/23, D-10 117 Berlin. All incoming suggestions will be considered. Please understand that the editors will not be able to reply to all
incoming mail or email.
Should you be interested in being kept abreast of developments pertaining to the Thesaurus Linguae Aegyptiae, please subscribe to the mailinglist. Subscribers will be updated on the project on an irregular basis. By way of this mailing list, you will not
receive messages from other TLA users, nor will you be able to send your own messages through the list.