wall painting from the lost tomb of Nebamen,
about 1375 BC



Blue glazed
composition tiles
with a guilded
heiroglyph text,
c.1390 BC


As miniature pictures, hieroglyphs could
be used as an art form as well as a means of conveying information. As such they were used on almost all types of Egyptian art, often woven into the images they accompanied, such as the wall-painting.(top)The hieroglyphs record the workers' comments (like speech-bubbles in modern cartoons) as they serve the tomb-owner. The workers above are told by the man carrying a cane: Sit and don't talk! Hieroglyphs could also be made of glazed composition, such as this set of tiles from a palace doorway, (left)which have the name and titles of Amenhotep III (1391-1353 BC) rendered in gilded gesso relief. The pectoral below is also formed from hieroglyphs (scarab, hill and sun) which write the throne-name of Senwosret II.(below)





Pectoral of Senwosret II,
about1880 BC