Author Topic: Is this Coptic lettering?  (Read 952 times)

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Offline ozgeorge

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Is this Coptic lettering?
« on: July 17, 2007, 09:39:48 PM »
On another thread, we are discussing this object (pictured below) which may have some Egyptian connection.
I was wondering whether the bottom row of letters may in fact be Coptic (see this post).
Can anyone comment?

« Last Edit: July 17, 2007, 10:09:45 PM by ozgeorge »
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Offline EkhristosAnesti

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Re: Is this Coptic lettering?
« Reply #1 on: July 17, 2007, 10:26:32 PM »
Dear George,

I can say with 99% confidence that the first letter is not a djanja since I have never witnessed that letter in any form but that which depicts it as being formed from three distinct strokes (1 straight bottom line + 2 straight lines that are curved at the top intersecting at 90 degree angles) as can be see here: http://img524.imageshack.us/my.php?image=djanjapo3.jpg

It is thus most likely to be an upsilon. However, no Coptic word ever begins with an upsilon (upsilon can only be an initial letter when it exists in the diagraph form of omicron + upsilon), so it is probably preceded by the alpha which lies above it (and maybe even that reversed kappa as well?). I will get out my Coptic dictionaries and attempt to investigate the matter further, though i've only just completed my first semester of Sahidic Coptic so i'm not sure how much help I can be. Nevertheless, given that my studies resume next week (though it may be the week after, I still need to check!) I can definitely show it to my Coptic Studies professor, who is a renowned Coptologist, and get and post her opinion.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2007, 10:28:29 PM by EkhristosAnesti »
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Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Is this Coptic lettering?
« Reply #2 on: July 17, 2007, 11:43:28 PM »
It is thus most likely to be an upsilon. However, no Coptic word ever begins with an upsilon (upsilon can only be an initial letter when it exists in the diagraph form of omicron + upsilon), so it is probably preceded by the alpha which lies above it (and maybe even that reversed kappa as well?).
What about if the image is a stamp or seal (as was suggested in the other thread) which would make the bottom row of letters:

TP T(OY)


« Last Edit: July 17, 2007, 11:46:36 PM by ozgeorge »
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Offline EkhristosAnesti

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Re: Is this Coptic lettering?
« Reply #3 on: July 18, 2007, 05:14:27 AM »
Well I would certainly regard the second letter from the right to be a better representation of a reversed rho than a fai given that the loop is connected. In any event, the abbreviated construction that arises from the reversed reading of the inscription is not one i've ever encountered. Needless to say, we are no longer left with any uniquely Coptic letters, so it may as well be a Greek abbreviation. I'll ask my professor next week about it anyway.
« Last Edit: July 18, 2007, 05:19:28 AM by EkhristosAnesti »
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