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Linguistic dating of the Netherworld Books attested in the New Kingdom. A critical review

Werning, Daniel A.

In: Moers, Gerald ; Widmaier, Kai ; Giewekemeyer, Antonia ; Lümers, Arndt ; Ernst, Ralf (Hrsgg.): Dating Egyptian Literary Texts. Hamburg 2013, pp. 237-281 (Lingua Aegyptia / Studia Monographica ; 11)

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This contribution first reviews linguistic features that have been put forward as arguments for an Old Kingdom date of particular theological compositions first attested in the New Kingdom: the Netherworld Books (Amduat, Book of Gates, Book of Caverns, Book of the Night, Books of the Earth), the Book of the Day, the Book of Nut, as well as the Litany of the Sun. In this context, the adverbial use of jwt/jwtj, the proclitic use of determiners (pn NP), the attestation of ‘old prospective’ forms (sḏm.w=f, nj sḏm.w=f, sḏmm=f, nj sḏmm=f), the lack of certain periphrastic tempora (jw=f r sḏm, jw=f ḥr sḏm), the proclitic pronoun construction sw sḏm=f, and the nominal sentences with ṯwt (js) and swt (js) are discussed in some detail. The review concludes that it is indeed plausible to date at least some of these compositions as attested in the New Kingdom to the New Kingdom (or to the Second Intermediate Period), testifying to the profound philological and linguistic competence of certain Egyptian literates at that time. Therefore, besides the Urkunden IV and some medical texts, the Netherworld Books can serve as another landmark for the linguistic dating of pieces of literature attested not earlier than in the New Kingdom.Daniel A. Werning. Ancient Egyptian Prepositions for the Expression of Spatial Relations and their Translations. A typological approach.

Document type: Book Section
Version: Secondary publication
Date Deposited: 29 Jan 2018 14:44
Faculties / Institutes: Research Project, Working Group > Individuals
DDC-classification: Ägypten (Altertum)
Subject (Propylaeum): Egyptology
Controlled Subjects: Ägypten <Altertum>, Jenseitsführer, Datierung
Subject (classification): Other Languages
Countries/Regions: Egypt (Antiquity)
Paper series:
Schriften von Daniel A. Werning9