The Life of J.D. Åkerblad

The Life of J.D. Åkerblad

Egyptian Decipherment and Orientalism in Revolutionary Times

eBook - 2012
Rate this:
Book News
He was "a dangerous man of the Enlightenment," even while a young secretary at the Swedish mission at Constantinople. His loyalties were torn. He was obsessed by finding time to pursue his scholarly interests in Egyptian hieroglyphics; his support of France, the French revolution, and Napoleon marked him. Thomasson (history research, Uppsala U) examines Åkerblad's career as a diplomat, which was limited by his passion for hieroglyphics. Åkerblad eventually translated part of the Rosetta Stone and spent years as an independent scholar in the Ottoman empire, but his support of the French ruined him after the Napoleonic wars; his time in Italy after the Restoration also proved problematic, as he had no scholarly institution to which he could turn for support. This is a sad but admirable work, well-written and well-researched. It is also extremely well-illustrated; the color plates of Åkerblad's work in hieroglyphics are especially fine. Annotation ©2013 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (

Brill USA
This intellectual biography of Johan David Åkerblad (1763–1819) presents a new account of the decipherment of ancient Egyptian. Oriental and classical studies and their entwinement in the turbulent politics of this age of Revolutions are presented from a novel perspective.

Publisher: Leiden ; Boston : Brill, 2012
ISBN: 9789004236356
Characteristics: 1 online resource (455 pages) : illustrations (some color)


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

There are no comments for this title yet.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability

There are no age suitabilities for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Subject Headings


Find it at NPL

To Top