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Title: Conversations in the House of Life: A New Translation of the Ancient Egyptian Book of Thoth
Author: Jasnow, Richard Karl-Theodor Zauzich
Publisher: Harrassowitz Verlag; Publication Date: 2014
Paperback; ISBN: 9783447101165
Volumes: 1; Pages: xiv, 244
List Price in Paper: $30.00 Our price: $24.99
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Conversations in the House of Life offers a new translation of a text first published as The Ancient Egyptian Book of Thoth (2005). The composition is a dialogue between a Master, perhaps the god Thoth himself, and a Disciple, named "The-one-who-loves-knowledge." Originally written in Demotic, the text dates to the Graeco-Roman Period (ca. 300 B.C. to 400 A.D.). The dialogue covers everything from how to hold the writing brush and the symbolic significance of scribal utensils to a long exposition on sacred geography. The work may be an initiation text dealing with sacred knowledge. It is closely associated with the House of Life, the temple scriptorium where the priests wrote their books. The 2005 publication was aimed at specialists, but Conversations in the House of Life is intended for the general reader. The revised translation reflects recent advances in our understanding of the text. The explanatory essays, commentary, and glossary help the reader explore the fascinating universe of the Book of Thoth. As a document of Late Period Egyptian thought it is of importance to all those interested in Graeco-Roman Period intellectual history; students of the Classical Hermetica will find the Book of Thoth especially intriguing. The express goal of Conversations in the House of Life is to make this challenging Ancient Egyptian composition accessible to the widest possible audience.