Do you know How was the Secret of Egyptian Picture Writing Discovered? Let’s know the the history of this great discovery.
For centuries men had tried to make sense of the long inscriptions that were to bed found on the ancient temples and tombs in Egypt. All had failed; some even believed that the drawings of men, plants, birds and so on were not even words, but some kind of magical writing that was not meant to be read like ordinary words.
Then a soldier’s spade unearthed the key. In 1798 Napoleon invaded Egypt and his army included many scholars and scientists. As they were carrying out building operations at a small town called Rosetta, a French solider dug out a slab of black stone. A scholar who inspected the slab noted that one side was covered with lines of nest carving.
He became excited when he saw that it was in three languages, Greek, demotic (a form of long-hand Egyptian) and hieroglyphics. When Napoleon was forced to abandon Egypt after his defeat by the English the stone came to London and was housed in the British Museum, yet it was a French scholar, Jean-Francois Champollion, who finally unraveled the mystery.
When he was a boy of nine he saw his first hieroglyphic inscriptions and on learning that no one could read them said, firmly, ‘In a few years, when I am big, I will be able to.’ The task was to take him many years, but because of his knowledge of many of the ‘dead’ languages and his own personal genius, he managed to solve the mystery by 1828, before this early death at the age of forty-one.
Why is Botany Bay so Called?
When Captain James Cooke sailed for the South Seas in HMS Endeavour, his ship also carried a number of scientists. One of these was Joseph (later Sir Joseph) Banks, a wealthy botanist who went with the expeditions to draw and collect botanical specimens. The Endeavour reached the Australian coast on 28 April 1769 and drop-ped anchor in a large and sheltered bay.
Cook’s first attempt at landing was met by a hostile reception from the Aborigines, but the crew frightened them away with a few shots and Cook and Banks went ashore and named it Sting Ray Bay. During the next few days, however, Banks and his assistants collected such a vast variety of exotic plants that it was renamed Botany Bay.
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