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The Egyptian Book of the Dead:
James Wasserman, compiler
The Book of Going Forth by Day
The funerary papyrus known as Book of the Dead of Ani is seventy-eight feet in total length and is 3,500 years old. Its ancient purpose was to guide the Egyptian soul on its “going forth by day” to the afterlife. This icon of that ancient culture is presented here for the first time in a single volume containing the original facsimile edition from 1890, with hieroglyphic text and vignettes juxtaposed with the English translation of each chapter, on the same page that the Egyptian text occurs.
One of the most valuable features of this publication of The Egyptian Book of the Dead is a “map” of the papyrus—the reassembly on the plates of the original papyrus roll which, when it was purchased by the British Museum in 1888, was cut into thirty-seven framed and glass sheets for the sake of shipping and storage. In addition, state-of-the-art technology has allowed this publication to offer retouched images, bringing them closer than ever to their original form—and thus reclaiming one of the most beautiful treasures of antiquity.
The Egyptian Book of the Dead has much to say to the modern reader; indeed, in its passages, one can almost hear the voice of the modern symbolist poet. The power, wisdom and spiritual vision offered in its pages is a golden thread back to the spiritual and cultural roots of humanity. This beautiful volume will be a prized possession for those interested in the world of ancient Egypt—and in the beginnings of civilization itself.
The Book of the Dead is a collection of writings that were placed in tombs as a means of guiding the ancient Egyptian soul on its journey to the afterlife. The Papyrus of Ani, which is reproduced here, is one of the most important and beautiful of the surviving papyri. Damage in the 19th century seriously confused its sequencing and the relationship between text and illustrations. Here for the first time the scroll is presented in its proper sequence and in its entirety. The English text is placed immediately underneath the corresponding hieroglyphs, and the reproductions are faithful to the originals in all their glowing color. A critical purchase for any serious collection of materials on ancient Egypt. —Library Journal
This magnificent book is the first complete presentation of the Papyrus of Ani, featuring graphics that reveal beautifully the texture of the original papyrus, coupled with the translated text. The original papyrus, on its discovery, was cut into sections for transport. The careless cutting of uneducated workers left the manuscscipt almost indecipherable, and to date only sections of it have been made available to the public. Computer imaging allowed the papyrus to be pieced into its original state, and a faithful translation was then possible. This document is precious not only for its historic significance, but also for its glimpse into the ancient Egyptian religion and its teachings about the passage from life to death. Commentaries and other notes make this work even more accessible. A spectacularly beautiful work of devotion. —NAPRA Trade Journal.
The Papyrus of Ani -- The Book of Going Forth by Day, created around 1250 B.C.E., is the best surviving example of some 200 texts comprising the funerary scrolls that accompanied deceased Egyptians into the afterlife. The Egyptian Book of the Dead: The Book of Going Forth by Day presents the complete papyrus, photographed from an 1890 facsimile edition, with an English translation by the late Raymond O. Faulkner. —Publishers Weekly.
The Egyptian Book of the Dead is a remarkable volume. It is based on the Papyrus of Ani, which, with the exception of the Rosetta Stone, is the most famous Egyptian object in the collections of the British Museum. Its fame is due in no small part to the quality of the illustrated vignettes that rank among the masterpieces of ancient Egyptian painting. . . I, for one, would hope that readers will henceforth refrain from relying on Budge's outdated editions and turn to this volume instead. The quality of the large-format plates, several of which include foldouts; the authoritative translation based on that of R.O. Faulkner, which is considered in the opinion of many experts to be one of the best translations; and commentary by Ogden Goelet make this book a must for all libraries.
About the Compiler
James Wasserman is a graphic designer, author and editor and is a lifelong student of religion
and spiritual development. His writings and editorial efforts maintain a focus on spirituality,
creative mythology, history, religion, and politics. Some of his works include: Illustrated
History of the Knights Templar, The Mystery Traditions: Secret Symbols and Sacred Art, and his
latest work, The Temple of Solomon. Mr. Wasserman was born in New Jersey, and now resides
in New York City.
9-¾ x 14-¼; 176 pages; illustrated (color)