Concept

Oedipus Aegyptiacus

Summary
Oedipus Aegyptiacus is Athanasius Kircher's supreme work of Egyptology. The three full folio tomes of ornate illustrations and diagrams were published in Rome over the period 1652–54. Kircher cited as his sources Chaldean astrology, Hebrew kabbalah, Greek mythology, Pythagorean mathematics, Arabian alchemy and Latin philology. Hieroglyphs The third volume of Oedipus Aegyptiacus deals exclusively with Kircher's attempts to translate Egyptian hieroglyphs. The primary source for Kircher's study of hieroglyphs was the Bembine Tablet, so named after its acquisition by Cardinal Bembo, shortly after the sack of Rome in 1527. The Bembine Tablet is a bronze and silver tablet depicting various Egyptian gods and goddesses. In its centre sits Isis representing "the polymorphic all-containing Universal Idea." Kircher's Oedipus Aegyptiacus is an example of syncretic and eclectic scholarship in the late Renaissance and representative of antiquarian scholarship before the modern scient
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