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Gardiner's Sign List is a list of common Egyptian hieroglyphs compiled by Sir Alan Gardiner. It is considered a standard reference in the study of Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.

Gardiner lists only the common forms of Egyptian hieroglyphs, but he includes extensive subcategories, and also both vertical and horizontal forms for many hieroglyphs. He includes size-variation forms to aid with the reading of hieroglyphs in running blocks of text. (The Budge Reference has about 1000 hieroglyphs listed in 50 pages, but with no size varieties.)

Unfortunately he does not cross index signs, once put on the list, other significant uses may be overlooked. One example of this is G16, nbtỉ, the ideogram for The Two Ladies, goddesses Wadjet as cobra and Nekhbet as the white vulture. These are the protecting and patron goddesses of the separate Egyptian kingdoms that joined into Ancient Egypt, who were both then displayed on the uraeus of Wadjet when the unification occurred and afterward considered jointly to be the protectors of Egypt and the pharaohs. This ideogram is listed only on the bird list as G16, and overlooked on the deity list and the reptile list.

Other subcategories included by Gardiner are abbreviations and personalized forms, and also a complete subset, used on papyrus, specifically for the Book of the Dead.

A. Man and his Occupations

Group A consists of 55 symbols and can be subdivided into 30 sitting mens, 20 standing mens as well as various other lying, standing or falling figures

B. Woman and her Occupations

C. Anthropomorphic Deities

D. Parts of the Human Body

E. Mammals

F. Parts of Mammals

G. Birds

H. Parts of Birds

I. Amphibious Animals, Reptiles, etc.

K. Fish and Parts of Fish

L. Invertebrates and Lesser Animals

M. Trees and Plants

N. Sky, Earth, Water

Gardiner list N. Sky, Earth, Water

O. Buildings, Parts of Buildings, etc.

P. Ships and Parts of Ships

Q. Domestics and Funerary Furniture

R. Temple Furniture and Sacred Emblems

S. Crowns, Dress, Staves, etc.

T. Warfare, Hunting, Butchery

U. Agriculture, Crafts, and Professions

V. Rope, Fiber, Baskets, Bags, etc.

W. Vessels of Stone and Earthenware

X. Loaves and Cakes

Y. Writings, Games, Music

Z. Strokes, Signs derived from Hieratic, Geometrical Figures

Aa. Unclassified

See also


  • Budge, Sir E.A.Wallis. An Egyptian Hieroglyphic Dictionary, in Two Volumes, Sir E.A.Wallis Budge, (Dover Publications, Inc. New York), c 1920, Dover Edition, c 1978. (Large categorized listings of Hieroglyphs, Vol 1, pp. xcvii-cxlvii (97-147) (25 categories, 1000+ hieroglyphs), 50 pgs.)
  • Wilkinson, Richard. Reading Egyptian Art, A Hieroglyphic Guide to Ancient Egyptian Painting and Sculpture, Richard H. Wilkinson, with 450 Illustrations, (Thames & Hudson Ltd, London), c 1992.

External links

de:Gardiner-Liste es:Lista de Gardiner fr:Liste totale des hiéroglyphes selon la classification Gardiner pl:Lista znaków Gardinera