Gardiner's sign list

Gardiner's Sign List is a list of common Egyptian hieroglyphs compiled by Sir Alan Gardiner. It is considered a standard reference in the study of Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.

Gardiner lists only the common forms of Egyptian hieroglyphs, but he includes extensive subcategories, and also both vertical and horizontal forms for many hieroglyphs. He includes size-variation forms to aid with the reading of hieroglyphs in running blocks of text. In contrast, for example, the Budge Reference has about 1000 hieroglyphs listed in 50 pages, but with no size variations.

Gardiner does not cross-index signs; once put on the list, other significant uses may be overlooked. One example of this is G16, nbtỉ, the ideogram for The Two Ladies, goddesses Wadjet as the cobra and Nekhbet as the white vulture. These are the protective and patron goddesses of the separate Egyptian kingdoms that joined into Ancient Egypt, who were both then displayed on the uraeus of Wadjet when the unification occurred and afterward considered jointly to be the protectors of Egypt and the pharaohs. This ideogram is listed only on the bird list as G16, and overlooked on the deity list and the reptile list.

Other subcategories included by Gardiner are abbreviations and personalized forms, and also a complete subset, used on papyrus, specifically for the Book of the Dead.

Categories

A. Man and his occupations

56 signs in Gardiner (1957:242247), with A59 "man threatening with stick" inserted after A25 "man striking with left hand hanging behind back", and two variants A14* "blood interpreted as ax" of A14 "man with blood streaming from his head" and A17* "child sitting with arms hanging down" of A17 "child sitting with hand to mouth".

A1
A2
A3
A4
A5
A6
A7
A8
A9
A10
A11
A12
A13
A14
A15
A16
A17
A18
A19
A20
A21
A22
A23
A24
A25
A26
A27
A28
A29
A30
A31
A32
A33
A34
A35
A36
A37
A38
A39
A40
A41
A42
A43
A44
A45
A46
A47
A48
A49
A50
A51
A52
A53
A54
A55
A56
A57
A57
A58
A58
A59
A60
A60

B. Woman and her occupations

7 signs in Gardiner (1957:448).

B1
B2
B3
B4
B5
B6
B7
B8
B9
B10
B11
B12

C. Anthropomorphic deities

11 signs in Gardiner (1957:448f.) with the addition of five 19th Dynasty signs, C12 Amun, C17 Mont, C18 Tjanen, C19 and C20 Ptah.

C1
C2
C3
C4
C5
C6
C7
C8
C9
C10
C11
C12
C17
C18
C19
C20

D. Parts of the human body

Expected quantity: 63

D1
D2
D3
D4
D5
D6
D7
D8
D9
D10
D11
D12
D13
D14
D15
D16
D17
D18
D19
D20
D21
D22
D23
D24
D25
D26
D27
D28
D29
D30
D31
D32
D33
D34
D35
D36
D37
D38
D39
D40
D41
D42
D43
D44
D45
D46
D47
D48
D49
D50
D51
D52
D53
D54
D55
D56
D57
D58
D59
D60
D61
D62
D63
D64
D64
D65
D65
D66
D66
D67
D67
D68
D68
D69
D69
D70
D70

E. Mammals

Expected quantity: 34

E1
E2
E3
E4
E5
E6
E7
E8
E9
E10
E11
E12
E13
E14
E15
E16
E17
E18
E19
E20
E21
E22
E23
E24
E25
E26
E27
E28
E29
E30
E31
E32
E33
E34
E35
E35
E36
E36
E37
E37
E38
E38
E39
E39
E40
E40

F. Parts of mammals

Expected quantity: 52

F1
F2
F3
F4
F5
F6
F7
F8
F9
F10
F11
F12
F13
F14
F15
F16
F17
F18
F19
F20
F21
F22
F23
F24
F25
F26
F27
F28
F29
F30
F31
F32
F33
F34
F35
F36
F37
F38
F39
F40
F41
F42
F43
F44
F45
F46
F47
F48
F49
F50
F51
F52
F53
F53
F54
F54
F55
F55
F56
F56
F57
F57
F58
F58
F59
F59
F60
F60

G. Birds

Expected quantity: 54

G1
G2
G3
G4
G5
G6
G7
G8
G9
G10
G11
G12
G13
G14
G15
G16
G17
G18
G19
G20
G21
G22
G23
G24
G25
G26
G27
G28
G29
G30
G31
G32
G33
G34
G35
G36
G37
G38
G39
G40
G41
G42
G43
G44
G45
G46
G47
G48
G49
G50
G51
G52
G53
G54
G55
G55
G56
G56
G57
G57
G58
G58
G59
G59
G60
G60

H. Parts of birds

Expected quantity: 8

H1
H2
H3
H4
H5
H6
H7
H8
H9
H9
H10
H10

I. Amphibious animals, reptiles, etc.

15 signs in Gardiner (1957:475f).

No.img.Unicodephon.descriptionusage, notes
I1
𓆈 U+13188ꜥšꜣlizard"lizard"
I2
𓆉 U+13189freshwater turtleštjw "turtle"
I3
𓆊 U+1318Aı͗tcrocodile"crocodile" (ḫntj), "be greedy; lust after" (ḥnt), "voracious, angry" , (ꜣd)
I4
𓆋 U+1318Bcrocodile on a shrineSobek
I5
𓆌 U+1318Ccrocodile with inward curved tail"collect, gather" (sꜣq)
I6
𓆎 U+1318Ekmpiece of crocodile-skin with spinesas phonogram in kmt "Egypt", skm "grey-haired"
I7
𓆏 U+1318Ffrog"frog" (qrr), Heqet, ideogram in wḥm-ꜥnḫ "repeating life"
I8
𓆐 U+13190ḥfntadpole
I9
𓆑 U+13191fhorned viper
I10
𓆓 U+13193cobra in repose
I11
𓆕 U+13195ḏḏtwo cobras
I12
𓆗 U+13197cobra erectUraeus (iꜥrt), Nesret
I13
𓆘 U+13198I12 + V30"goddess"
I14
𓆙 U+13199snake"snake" (ḏdft), "serpent" (ḥfꜣw)
I15
𓆚 U+1319Avariant of I14

K. Fish and parts of fish

Expected quantity: 7

K1
K2
K3
K4
K5
K6
K7
K8
K8
K9
K9
K10
K10

L. Invertebrates and lesser animals

Expected quantity: 7

L1
L2
L3
L4
L5
L6
L7
L8
L8
L9
L9
L10
L10

M. Trees and plants

44 signs in Gardiner (1957:478484).

M1
M2
M3
M4
M5
M6
M7
M8
M9
M10
M11
M12
M13
M14
M15
M16
M17
M18
M19
M20
M21
M22
M23
M24
M25
M26
M27
M28
M29
M30
M31
M32
M33
M34
M35
M36
M37
M38
M39
M40
M41
M42
M43
M44

N. Sky, earth, water

42 signs in Gardiner (1957:485492). N3 is an Old Kingdom variant of N2. N11 "moon" has vertical (increscent and decrescent) variants, N12 is a 19th-Dynasty variant of N11.

No.img.Unicodephon.descriptionusage, notes
N1
𓇯 U+131EFptsky
N2
𓇰 U+131F0grḥsky with sceptredet. for "darkness"
N3
𓇱 U+131F1as N2variant of N2Old Kingdom variant of N2
N4
𓇲 U+131F2 moisture falling from the sky"dew", "rain"
N5
𓇳 U+131F3rꜥ sun
N6
𓇴 U+131F4rꜥ sun with uraeus19th Dynasty
N7
𓇵 U+131F5N5 + T28ẖrt-hrw "day-time"
N8
𓇶 U+131F6wbnsunshineUsually depicted with three rays, older variants may also have four rays.[1] Determinative for e.g. pḥḏ "to shine, illumine" and wbn "rise"; from this latter case, it can also take the phonetic value of wbn when standing on its own, e.g. in wbn "wound". Alternatively, it is either a determiner or ideogram for ḥnmmt, the name of the "sun folk" of Heliopolis (Gardiner p. 486).
A depiction with four rays is found on an ivory wand of c. 2100 BC: The "Sun with rays" hieroglyph is shown once, placed upon the head of a ram. It has a central dot, like the "Sun" hieroglyph (N5), with four elongated, undulating vertical rays.[2] See also Aten.
N9
𓇷 U+131F7psḏmoon with its lower half obscured18th Dynasty
N10
𓇸 U+131F8as N9variant of N918th Dynasty
N11
𓇹 U+131F9crescent moon
N12
𓇺 U+131FAvariant of N1118th Dynasty
N13
𓇻 U+131FBhalf of N11 + N14"half-month festival"
N14
𓇼 U+131FCstar
N15
𓇽 U+131FDstar in circle
N16
𓇾 U+131FEN18 + 3 x N33"earth, land" (flat alluvial land with grains of sand)
N17
𓇿 U+131FFvariant of N16as N16
N18
𓈀 U+13200ı͗sandy tract"island"
N19
𓈃 U+132032 x N18in ḥr-ꜣḫty "Horus-of-the-Horizon"
N20
𓈄 U+13204tongue of land"sand bank, shore"
N21
𓈅 U+13205tongue of land"bank, region" (in "two banks" = "Egypt")
N22
𓈆 U+13206tongue of landOld Kingdom predecessor of both N20 and N21
N23
𓈇 U+13207irrigation canaldifferentiation of N36
N24
𓈈 U+13208land with irrigation tunnels"district, nome"
N25
𓈉 U+13209hills"hill-country, foreign land"
N26
𓈋 U+1320Bḏwmountain
N27
𓈌 U+1320Csun rising over mountain"horizon"
N28
𓈍 U+1320Dḫꜥsun rising over hill
N29
𓈎 U+1320Eqsandy hill-slope
N30
𓈏 U+1320Fmound with shrubs"mound"
N31
𓈐 U+13210road bordered by shrubs"road"
N32
𓈑 U+13211lump of clay or dungOld Kingdom
N33
𓈒 U+13212grain of sand
N34
𓈔 U+13214metal ingot
N35
𓈖 U+13216nripple of watervariant "three ripples" 𓈗 U+13217
N36
𓈘 U+13218water channel
N37
𓈙 U+13219pool"pool"
N38
𓈛 U+1321Bvariant of N37more detailed drawing of N37
N39
𓈜 U+1321Cgarden pool full of watervariant of N37
N40
𓈝 U+1321DN37 + D54"go"
N41
𓈞 U+1321Ebı͗ꜣwell full of water"well"
N42
𓈟 U+1321Fvariant of N41as N41

O. Buildings, parts of buildings, etc.

51 signs (with variants, U+132501329A).

O1
O2
O3
O4
O5
O6
O7
O8
O9
O10
O11
O12
O13
O14
O15
O16
O17
O18
O19
O20
O21
O22
O23
O24
O25
O26
O27
O28
O29
O30
O31
O32
O33
O34
O35
O36
O37
O38
O39
O40
O41
O42
O43
O44
O45
O46
O47
O48
O49
O50
O51

P. Ships and parts of ships

Expected quantity: 11

P1
P2
P3
P4
P5
P6
P7
P8
P9
P10
P11
P12
P12
P13
P14
P14
P15
P15
P16
P16
P17
P17
P18
P18
P19
P19
P20
P20

Q. Domestics and funerary furniture

Expected quantity: 7

Q1
Q2
Q3
Q4
Q5
Q6
Q7
Q8
Q8
Q9
Q9
Q10
Q10

R. Temple furniture and sacred emblems

Expected quantity: 25

R1
R2
R3
R4
R5
R6
R7
R8
R9
R10
R11
R12
R13
R14
R15
R16
R17
R18
R19
R20
R21
R22
R23
R24
R25
R26
R26
R27
R27
R28
R28
R29
R29
R30
R30

S. Crowns, dress, staves, etc.

Expected quantity: 45

S1
S2
S3
S4
S5
S6
S7
S8
S9
S10
S11
S12
S13
S14
S15
S16
S17
S18
S19
S20
S21
S22
S23
S24
S25
S26
S27
S28
S29
S30
S31
S32
S33
S34
S35
S36
S37
S38
S39
S40
S41
S42
S43
S44
S45
S46
S46
S47
S47
S48
S48
S49
S49
S50
S50

T. Warfare, hunting, and butchery

Expected quantity: 35

T1
T2
T3
T4
T5
T6
T7
T8
T9
T10
T11
T12
T13
T14
T15
T16
T17
T18
T19
T20
T21
T22
T23
T24
T25
T26
T27
T28
T29
T30
T31
T32
T33
T34
T35
T36
T36
T37
T37
T38
T38
T39
T39
T40
T40

U. Agriculture, crafts, and professions

41 signs.

U1
U2
U3
U4
U5
U6
U7
U8
U9
U10
U11
U12
U13
U14
U15
U16
U17
U18
U19
U20

adze on block
stp "cut", "choose"
(stp-n-rꜣ "chosen of Ra")
U21
U22
U23
U24
U25
U26
U27
U28
U29
U30
U31
U32
U33
U34
U35
U36
U37
U38
U39
U40
U41

V. Rope, fiber, baskets, bags, etc.

40 signs (38 in Gardiner 1957). V39 is the Tyet or "Knot of Isis". V40 is the numeral 10 in dates.

V1
V2
V3
V4
V5
V6
V7
V8
V9
V10
V11
V12
V13
V14
V15
V16
V17
V18
V19
V20
V21
V22
V23
V24
V25
V26
V27
V28
V29
V30
V31
V32
V33
V34
V35
V36
V37
V38
V39
V40
V40

W. Vessels of stone and earthenware

25 signs.

W1
W2
W3
W4
W5
W6
W7
W8
W9
W10
W11
W12
W13
W14
W15
W16
W17
W18
W19
W20
W21
W22
W23
W24
W25

X. Loaves and cakes

8 signs.

X1

t feminine
X2
X3

bread
X4
X5

bread, food
X6

loaf (pAt)
X7

half-loaf (gSw)
X8

conical loaf; "give" (di, imi)

Y. Writings, games, music

8 signs.

Y1

Papyrus
roll-tied
Y2
Y3

Scribe
equipment
Y4
Y5
Y6

board
game
piece
Y7

Y8

Sistrum

Z. Strokes, signs derived from Hieratic, geometrical figures

11 signs.

Z1
Z2
Z3
Z4
Z5
Z6
Z7
Z8
Z9
Z10
Z11

Aa. Unclassified

31 signs in Gardiner (1957).

Aa1
Aa2
Aa3
Aa4
Aa5
Aa6
Aa7
Aa8
Aa9
Aa10
Aa11
Aa12
Aa13
Aa14
Aa15
Aa16
Aa17
Aa18
Aa19
Aa20
Aa21
Aa22
Aa23
Aa24
Aa25
Aa26
Aa27
Aa28
Aa29
Aa30
Aa31
Aa32
Aa33
Aa33
Aa34
Aa34
Aa35
Aa35
Aa36
Aa36
Aa37
Aa37
Aa38
Aa38
Aa39
Aa39
Aa40
Aa41
Aa42
Aa42
Aa43
Aa43
Aa44
Aa44
Aa45
Aa45
Aa46
Aa46
Aa47
Aa47
Aa48
Aa48
Aa49
Aa49
Aa50
Aa50

See also

References

  1. Betrò, 1995. Hieroglyphics: The Writings of Ancient Egypt, Sun with Rays, p. 152.
  2. Fleming; Lothian; (and Fletcher), 1997. The Way to Eternity: Egyptian Myth, Fergus Fleming, Alan Lothian, and consultant Dr. Joann Fletcher. c 1997, Duncan Baird Publishers. (hardcover, ISBN 0-7054-3503-2), 124-126.
  • Budge, Sir E.A.Wallis, An Egyptian Hieroglyphic Dictionary, in Two Volumes, Sir E.A.Wallis Budge, (Dover Publications, Inc. New York), c 1920, Dover Edition, c 1978. (Large categorized listings of Hieroglyphs, Vol 1, pp. xcvii–cxlvii (97–147) (25 categories, 1000+ hieroglyphs), 50 pgs.)
  • A.H. Gardiner, Catalogue of the Egyptian hieroglyphic printing type, from matrices owned and controlled by Dr. Alan (1928).
  • A.H. Gardiner, "Additions to the new hieroglyphic fount (1928)", The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 15 (1929), p. 95.
  • A.H. Gardiner, "Additions to the new hieroglyphic fount (1931)", The Journal of Egyptian Archaeology 17 (1931), pp. 245–247.
  • A.H. Gardiner, Supplement to the catalogue of the Egyptian hieroglyphic printing type, showing acquisitions to December 1953 (1953).
  • A.H. Gardiner, Egyptian Grammar: Being an Introduction to the Study of Hieroglyphs. 3rd Ed., pub. Griffith Institute, Oxford, 1957 (1st edition 1927), pp. 438548 (pdf).
  • Wilkinson, Richard, Reading Egyptian Art, A Hieroglyphic Guide to Ancient Egyptian Painting and Sculpture, Richard H. Wilkinson, with 450 Illustrations, (Thames & Hudson Ltd, London), c 1992.

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