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3.9 out of 5 stars17
3.9 out of 5 stars
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on 17 August 2003
This updates and extends the great work of Gardiner, it is succint, and amply illustrated, and an excellent introductory work in the language. I have worked with this book for a number of weeks, and find it easier to comprehend than gardiner, although I cannot help refering back to the master! { old habits die hard }.
But within this work you will find everything you need to get up to speed, and quite far along the road into middle egyptian it is well worth owning.
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on 14 February 2002
An up-to-date version of Gardiner's classic Egyptian Grammar, this is an excellent introduction to the language of the Middle Kingdom - both grammar and vocabulary. Accompanied with copies of Wallis Budge's extensive, if somewhat outdated, dictionaries, this book allows the reader to achieve a basic proficiency in the language of 12th dynasty Egypt.
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on 24 June 2005
As an Egyptology student forced to study from Gardiner I find that this book helps to clarify the more confusing grammar points. If you are used to using the Gardinarian transliteration system then the system used by Allen can be a nuisance at first but he does take the time to lay out the diferent systems at the front. He also makes a point of mentioning the outdated grammar terms used in Gardiner, making it possible to find them. This book helped me pass my hieroglyphs exam and I thoroughly recommend this either for grammar work or text translation.
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on 7 November 2001
Real thought has gone into the best way of explaining the ancient language of egyptian hieroglyphics which is what makes Allen's book so readable. I would recommend this to anyone who, like me, wanted to take a more serious interest in being able to read middle Eqyptian. Well structured and easy to read - much more accessible than some of the other texts on the subject. There are exercises at the end of each section which help practice the lesson topics. Worth the investment.
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on 16 September 2003
This introduction on Middle Egyptian is simply superbe ! Having read the first 9 chapters at the moment of writing this review, I can only say that Dr Allen shows a lot of insight into the ancient Egyptian language and culture!
The book is really extremely educational, and the author gives a clear and comprehensive background for reading hieroglyphs from the very bottom! Basic grammar is explained and analogy to English, French, Arabic, Russian, and Coptic is made throughout the book which is also very interesting from a linguistic and cultural perspective. One can feel that all the grammatical issues that typically cause problems to beginners / students are dealt with and discussed, which is perfect to the reader. Even grammatical pitfalls are accounted for, which shows that what a tremendous work must have been put into this perfect book. Dr Allen gives the reader all the relevant knowledge on the ancient Egyptian language in a very straitforward and educational fashion. The exercises that occur at the end of each chapter are very nice and relevant to the present and previous chapters (with answers given at the end, needless to say!). Another nice detail is that the hieroglyphs in this volume are written in several directions as to make it more 'natural'. This book is definitely worthwhile reading if you're serious about hieroglyphs! If you already have tried some books on hieroglyphs, you'l find that Dr Allen's masterpiece is just as educaional as the little nice book by Mark Collier et al. ('How to read Egyptian hieroglyphs') and as extensive as (but far more educational and easy to understand for the beginner than) Gardiners work ('Egyptian grammar' which is, by the way, discussed at the end of Dr Allen's volume).
So, in conclusion, this book is the very best available when it comes to learning the language of Ancient Egypt.
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on 26 June 2008
Be very sure that you need to understand Egyptian grammar to this depth before you buy this book because it is for serious academics only. (Most people study this book because they have to - in English there isn't much else). If you are teaching yourself - you will need to be very, very focused. It assumes a knowledge of English grammar that has not been taught in schools for many, many years (Do you know what an enclitic particle is? Do you need to know?). You may even find yourself having to reach for a book on English grammar to understand the English in this book. Children learn a language well before they understand its grammar. I expect the Egyptians did as well. The secret is - vocabulary. I advise you work through Collier and Manley's How to Read Egyptian Hieroglyphs: A step-by-step guide to teach yourself and Janice Kamrin's Ancient Egyptian Hieroglyphs: A Practical Guide before you plunge into this book to build up your vocabulary. You will find the grammar easier to remember if you have a vocabulary to apply it to. As a footnote, hieroglyphs were never meant to be written this small. Have a magnifying glass handy.
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on 5 February 2004
As a student of Egyptology at University, and one who is taking Egyptian Language as a module, I have to recommend that anyone seriously wishing to study the ancient Egyptian language uses Gardiner's classic Egyptian Grammar. Although it is old-fashioned and, in some places, outdated, it is still the single best volume available.
Allen's book does have its advantages, in that it is modern and in some respects more approachable than that of Gardiner, but it is unfortunately full of errors, printing errors and typos. This alone makes it very difficult to know whether or not you actually have grasped the finer points of vocabulary and grammar. The book is also laid out differently, and is not as logical in its lesson plan as Gardiner.
The book is not useless, far from it, but as I have said, I would not recommend it for serious study.
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on 16 November 2013
The dictionary of this book has quite bad printing. It's really hard to recognise the hieroglyphs, Also this version is slightly larger than the previous version.
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on 11 March 2013
Brilliant book great companion for my coursework at college. One of the best resource books for those wanting to study Egyptology and hieroglyphics.
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on 18 August 2014
Bought this ages ago but have not tried it yet. I was getting through Colliers book first before trying this one. I have flicked through it and it looks really good but maybe a bit advanced for a novice like me. So I'm taking baby steps but looking forward to starting this one will keep you up to date later.
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