• The Writing of the Gods

  • The Race to Decode the Rosetta Stone
  • By: Edward Dolnick
  • Narrated by: Fajer Al-Kaisi
  • Length: 8 hrs and 32 mins
  • 4.6 out of 5 stars (152 ratings)

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The Writing of the Gods  By  cover art

The Writing of the Gods

By: Edward Dolnick
Narrated by: Fajer Al-Kaisi
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Publisher's Summary

The fast-paced and “engrossing account” (The New York Times Book Review) of “one of the greatest breakthroughs in archaeological history” (The Christian Science Monitor): two rival geniuses in a race to decode the writing on one of the world’s most famous documents - the Rosetta Stone.

The Rosetta Stone is one of the most famous objects in the world, attracting millions of visitors to the British museum every year, and yet most people don’t really know what it is. Discovered in a pile of rubble in 1799, this slab of stone proved to be the key to unlocking a lost language that baffled scholars for centuries.

Carved in ancient Egypt, the Rosetta Stone carried the same message in different languages - in Greek using Greek letters, and in Egyptian using picture-writing called hieroglyphs. Until its discovery, no one in the world knew how to read the hieroglyphs that covered every temple and text and statue in Egypt.

Dominating the world for 30 centuries, ancient Egypt was the mightiest empire the world had ever known, yet everything about it - the pyramids, mummies, the Sphinx - was shrouded in mystery. Whoever was able to decipher the Rosetta Stone would solve that mystery and fling open a door that had been locked for two thousand years.

Two brilliant rivals set out to win that prize. One was English, the other French, at a time when England and France were enemies and the world’s two great superpowers. Written “like a thriller” (Star Tribune, Minneapolis), The Writing of the Gods chronicles this high-stakes intellectual race in which the winner would win glory for both himself and his nation. A riveting portrait of empires both ancient and modern, this is an unparalleled look at the culture and history of ancient Egypt, “and also a lesson…in what the human mind does when faced with a puzzle” (The New Yorker).

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2021 Edward Dolnick. All rights reserved. (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

What listeners say about The Writing of the Gods

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Hieroglyphs For The People

This is the book written by everyone’s favorite professor…the one who makes history come alive with true stories told with wit, humor, and skill. You will want to read everything this author has ever written if you love the language, love history, and look around for more.

2 people found this helpful

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Good book awful reading

The book is very good, lots of interesting information. Where do the accents come from ? The reader is imagining what people sounded like ? He even mispronounces Rosetta Stone.

2 people found this helpful

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Dolnick sparkles

What a brilliant book! Dolnick is a great story teller, conveying a complicated idea-how to decode a mystery-clearly even for a “ lay” reader. His familiar & often funny analogies make his tale wonderfully readable & relevant to today. Great last line.

2 people found this helpful

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A great story and fascinating listen

I have read about this for many decades, but the details and explanations filled in the blanks.

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Great Story

Really enjoyed the story. The author takes pains to bring the historical characters to life, particularly Jean-François Champollion.

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Compelling story of discovery

Dolnick tells a good story and does a fine job describing the challenges faced by Young and Champollion. The story is engaging and exciting.

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Wonderfully written, very engaging.

Mr. Dolnick has quickly become a favorite author, for his encompassing narratives, and well rounded scenes of 'what else was going on' in the world, and why we are at 'this point', ties into 'that' point. Narration is flawless and kept the story very interesting.

1 person found this helpful