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EGYPTIAN DEITIES.-1. Nu.
2. Mu. 3. Tefenut.
6. Anubis. 7. 14. King Sethos bringing sacrifice to Osiris. 15. Judgment of the dead. 16. Fune
metropolitans and 12 bishops. In 1895 there were about 9000 schools and 11,000 teachers. In most of these schools education is confined to the elementary branches.
Commerce and Finance.--In 1896 Egypt imported goods to the value of $59,373,490, and exported products valued at $46,330,000. Her chief product and article of commerce is cotton. In 1889 out of 3781 villages, 2685 were occupied in the culture of cotton.
The total debt of Egypt, Jan. 1897, was $508,000,000. The budget for 1897 shows a revenue of $51,000,000 and an expenditure of $50,000,000.
Ancient Egyptian Language and Literature.-Egyptian was a branch of the Hamitic family of languages, connected with all the dialects of the light race of northern Africa, and it is incorrect to regard it as though nearer related to the Semitic family, since those African languages are known only in the form of 19th century Egyptian on monuments 5000 years old. This earliest branch is thus the link connecting the Semitic and Hamitic families and showing that they had one root. It is in about the same degree of development as the Semitic languages, having passed the agglutinative state; and only the peculiar kind of writing has induced many to believe it a monosyl. labic and very simple tongue. The hieroglyphs express (aš do the different Semitic systems of writing, except Assyrian) only the consonants of every word; the vowels are to be supplied by the reader, and therefore modern scholars disagree very much in their transcriptions. The language underwent many changes during its long history, and the difference between the archaic style and the living language became so great about 1400, that the popular style is called Neo-Egyptian as a special language. Later inscriptions, however, mostly are bad imitations of the earliest language. The hieratic writing is only a cursive and easy form of the hieroglyphic, used in daily life and in secular literature. After 700, the cursive forms developed a kind of shorthand, the Demotic, which is often wrongly called the popular dialect, although it is a style of writing and not a language. This stenography was in common use for papyri in the time of the Ptolemies and Romans, and therefore it was called “the popular writing" (demotic). The most recent demotic text dates from the 5th century B.C., an hieroglyphic inscription of 250 B.C. Christians wrote the language in its earliest form with Greek letters, adding five new letters and a syllabic sign, and this dialect was called Coptic, i.e., Egyptian, by the Arabs. The Coptic had a literature nearly exclusively religious. As a living language it died out some centuries ago, and now the Copts read their prayers without understanding them. The early literature was very rich, as can be seen from its many fragments. After the magic texts copied on the walls of the seen from its many fragments. After the magic texts copied on the walls of ihe pyramids, the Book of the Dead (q.v., under DEAD) is the earliest and most remarkable religious work, a collection of hymns and magic formulæ, serving as guide-book for the lower world, describing its stations, and giving magic protection against its dangers. Although the text in the form published by Naville, from manuscripts of the 17th to the 12th century B.C., is corrupted to senselessness, it never was very rich in thougbt. In general, all philosophical literature is wanting. Contrary to expectation entertained before the decipherment of hieroglyphics, collections of moral rules (pap. Prisse, Prescriptions of Ani) show no philosophic ideas. Many magic and ritualistic texts are found in the tombs, but the current literature consisted mostly of short tales and historic novels, being often pretty and fanciful. Love songs also have been found. Egyptian science bears, as has been said, a merely practical character. A short school-book on mathematics has disappointed expectation, as medical papyri have also done. The largest one (pap. Ebers in Leipsic, written about 1600 B.c.) shows at least little knowledge of anatomy. Many letters, acts, and deeds still exist. The larger papyri are mostly copies written in schools for practice. The classic style, of Dyn. 12, imitated in most poetical works, is not clear and simple enough for modern taste. The masterpiece of epic style, the song of Ramses II.'s victory at Kadesh, is too long and without action. Also the demotic papyri contain many copies of earlier books, tales, poems, etc. In general the literature is equal to most oriental literature, but without those features of learning and wisdom which the Greek writers lead us to expect.
Ancient Religion. The religion of Egypt grew from a low kind of fetishism. Every village in prehistoric time had its own god or demon, worshiped in an object, a tree, or an animal. The towns united the gods of the surrounding places into one family, bringing them into relation with the town deity. Thus every town-god has a “divine circle" around him. Very soon solar worship began, Re probably being the earliest god. But his name was not accepted everywhere, several local deities also being identified with the sun. Horsus became a most general form of it ; in Heliopolis the sun was called Aturn; in Hermonthis, near Thebes, Montu, etc. Osiris, the local god of Abydos, thus became the setting sun, the ruler of the lower hemisphere, consequently the god of the region of the dead, and in this character, the most popular god of Egypt. As all local gods, with or without connection with the celestial phenomena, remained, and later were worshiped in the whole country, and none of the different sun-gods replaced another, the confusion which we find already in the earliest texts makes it impossible to construct any system. The Egyptians attempted such constructions very soon, but their families and genealogies of the gods, their identifications of one god with another (very few gods failed to receive a solar character in later times), or division of the natural forces among the gods, only increased the confusion. After the reformation of Amenophis IV., introducing a solar monotheism, had failed, the people