Is Ankh a hieroglyph ?

Is Ankh a hieroglyph ?

The Ankh, or annealed cross, cross of life, key of life, Egyptian cross, or Nile cross in Egyptian hieroglyphics, is a hieroglyph (this one : ☥) that stands for the word "n," which indicates "life."  Ankh Cross is nowadays a symbol in the Coptic Orthodox Christian Church, The ancient  Egyptians used it as a representation of life .

Ankh, the life

Although the Ankh was seldom used as an amulet in ancient Egypt, it is ubiquitous on tomb walls because it conveys the phrases "life," "to live." Today, we think that the Egyptians placed a high value on death, as indicated by the pyramids, the wealth of tombs, the complexity of the ceremonies, and mummification. This is not how an ancient Egyptian would have communicated. His greatest worry was not his death, but the continuation of his life after this unavoidable departure. Thus, life, which had been paused for a little period, restarted in a different form.

This is what the paintings depict: the deity portrayed does not gather the deceased's final breath, but instead breaths into him the breath of his new life.

In this view, there is no such thing as resurrection, because life continues after death. Even so, it would be our scarab Kheper who would be aware of a resurrection.

In Egypt, the concept of soul does not have the same connotation as we do. The name is as crucial to immortality as the "divine component" of man (which is better represented by the bird Ba): if a name is deleted or a body is destroyed, immortality is lost!

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Is Ankh just a regular hieroglyph?

Almost, because many hieroglyphs represent a perfectly distinct sign or sound. Many depict bodily parts, instantly recognizable animals, and daily things. But what does Ankh stand for?

Alan Henderson Gardiner (1879-1963), compiler of the standard hieroglyph catalog, places it in category S (crowns, garments, scepters) under number 34. He had imagined it to be a sandal strap (to live, is not to move?).

Some have seen it as a hand mirror, a bull's vertebra, a phallic symbol, the intersection of masculine and feminine symbolism, and hence a fertility sign... In summary, it's one of those signs that invites interpretation.

What is known is that it is not a cross in the modern sense, despite the fact that it is frequently referred to as a "Egyptian cross."

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So, who rescued the Ankh from extinction?

First, Egyptian Christians (the Copts) recognized it as a type of cross, which somehow legitimized the Christian cross as a worldwide emblem of the triumph of life over death. The Copts then adopted this emblem, although it was mostly forgotten over the next centuries.

It is only recently, with the rediscovery of Egypt's wonders and the fascination with ancient secrets, that this symbol returns, with all of the qualities that we now associate with it.

As a result, travelers that visit Egypt are already familiar with it and recognize it everywhere. And isn't it at the core of the name of this young pharaoh, All-Ankh-Amon, that the discovery of his tomb has brought to light?

They buy it and wear it as a necklace, expressing a cultural reference, a less conspicuous Christian sign than the Roman cross, a devotion to life, an unusual aspect... This may be sufficient to explain its long-term success..



  • The ankh hieroglyph is a symbol that is commonly seen in ancient Egyptian art. It is often depicted as a cross with two intersecting circles at its base.
  • The ankh is often used as a hieroglyph for the word "life," and is often depicted next to depictions of deities such as Osiris or Isis. 
  • The ankh hieroglyph is an ancient Egyptian hieroglyph that is often depicted as a cross with a loop at one end. The meaning of the ankh hieroglyph is still unknown, but it may have been used in religious ceremonies or as a symbol of life.
  • The ankh also represents the crossroads between the living world and the afterlife, and is often seen in funerary art. The ankh hieroglyph is often found in tomb paintings and on coffins.


Know more about hieroglyphics 

The ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic writing system was developed during the predynastic period of Egypt’s history about five thousand years ago. It was partially deciphered by Jean-François Champollion in the 19th century and is still being understood today.

The word hieroglyphics means ‘sacred groves’, deriving from a name for a place in Upper Egypt where it is thought that the first temples were built, probably as scholastic centres to educate priests to perform rituals and ceremonies whilst preserving sacred knowledge. The earliest known inscriptions date back to around 3300 B.C. and consist of simple forms such as individual signs, marks made on pottery or stone carvings of plants.

These are usually not read as words but rather symbols that more often than not depict some sort of object or action – i.e., they are ideographs (similar to logograms) rather than alphabetic writing because they represent something rather than simply letters. Hieroglyphs continued to be used throughout Egyptian history until their final fall with the end of ancient Egyptian civilization around 332 B

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The hieroglyphic script was mainly used during the Old and Middle Kingdom periods (2900 B.C. to 2100 B.C.) and was mainly based on pictures of animals, plants and objects. The hieroglyphic script was developed around 2900 B.C. and was mainly used for formal, administrative and religious purposes.

However, it was also used in literature, art and on monuments and pots.

The hieroglyphic script consisted of 178 signs, each sign representing a different concept or idea. A single sign would represent a combination of two or more objects or ideas, which made it easy to record complex ideas in a simple way.

The meanings and uses of hieroglyphic signs are still not fully understood and have been difficult to decipher because they represent many things that are difficult to relate to a single meaning.

How to read hieroglyphs

The hieroglyphic script was rarely used for writing down actual words, but was used mostly for developing pictures to represent concepts and ideas. An example of this is the Egyptian Calendar where the symbols for each day of the month or season are used to depict the event or object that occurs on that day.

An advantage of the hieroglyphic script is that it is relatively easy to learn and write, since there are no strict rules about the way the symbols are used, other than the fact that they are symbols and not letters. Due to this, Egyptians could use a variety of symbols to represent objects and concepts.

There were around 2,100 glyphs used in the formal writing system of ancient Egypt, but this number is not exact as several hundred were used only in special circumstances. In order to make it easier for the Egyptians to learn and use the hieroglyphs, they were often put on walls or temples, and some even appear on modern items such as currency.

Despite the fact that many hieroglyphs were available for general use, they were used mostly in literature and literature only.

Hieratic script

The hieratic script was the most commonly used script in ancient Egypt.

It was mainly used for ceremonial purposes and mainly served the purpose of sketching pictorial forms of words. A pictorial form of the word would have been drawn on a piece of papyrus either by hand or on a potter’s wheel.

The pictorial form of the word would then be taken to a scribe to have a text written down in hieratic script. It is not known for sure when or how the hieratic script originated.

However, some scholars believe that the first hieratic signs appeared about 3000 B.C. and were used mainly for religious purposes. It is also believed that the scribes who used the hieratic script were mostly from the priestly class. The hieratic script was usually written on papyrus, wood or stone.

A guide to hieratic

The hieratic script is mainly used for drawing pictures of words and phrases without any spacing between them. It was mainly used in religious ceremonies and to record administrative and legal texts.

The hieratic script was developed around 2700 B.C. and was mainly used until the end of the New Kingdom around 1500 B.C., after which it was replaced by the hieroglyphic script. The hieratic script was based on cursive forms of hieroglyphs, so it was similar in all ways to hieroglyphs and also looked similar, making it easier for scribes to learn and use.

However, it was mainly used for religious purposes and for recording legal texts until it was replaced by the hieroglyphic script. 


Know more about egypt 

The ancient Egyptians were some of the most advanced and influential civilizations of all time. They were responsible for some of the most iconic art and architecture in history, as well as some of the most important religious beliefs. Hieroglyphics, the writing system of ancient Egypt, is still used by modern Egyptians.

The Egyptian gods are some of the most iconic and well-known in the world. They are depicted in art and religion all over the world, and are some of the most popular deities today. Some of the most well-known Egyptian gods include Ra, Osiris, Horus, and Isis.

Egyptian art is some of the most beautiful and iconic in the world. It is often associated with the pharaohs, who were the ruling class of ancient Egypt. However, the majority of Egyptian art is actually from the later periods of ancient Egyptian history.

Afterlife is an important part of Egyptian religion. Mummies were often funerary objects, and were meant to preserve the body of the deceased for eternity. The Book of the Dead was a vital part of Egyptian funerary ritual. It was a guide to the afterlife, and was used by the Pharaohs to determine the fate of their subjects.

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