About sign E240


Sign E240 E240 is one of those weird old-kingdom signs which puzzle the reader. While looking at one of Ḥsy-rꜥ beautiful panels, I decided to write a short notice about it for JSesh sign information list.

The beginning is a bit pessimistic :

Unsure value and reading, Dilwyn Jones (o.c.) proposes mḥyt, in the relatively well attested but obscure title T7:E240 mḏḥ mḥy.t?, fashioner/overseer of the cult image of the goddess Mehyt?.

The JSesh version should probably be redrawn, as the actual sign seems not to have a mane. According to Godron, the animal is definitly a lionness. In Thinite versions, the tail can take many forms.

Fischer, (o.c.) has a beautiful facsimile of a composite variant of the sign, which includes the axe. He states reading uncertain.

According to Godron, the most usual shape has three "poles" instead of one : E240B which corresponds to Hieroglyphica code E240B.

Godron lists the proposed readings : mḥyt for Montet, Dunand, Junker ; « Matit » for Weill, mnt for Junker, rwty by Murray. Junker hesitates between mḥyt and mnt.

Godron suggests a reading ḥ.t, based on two thinite seals, with the title U36:X1-V28:X1-E240

The sign is found in titles T7:E240, G17-M3:X1-T7:T7:T7-E240 and U36:X1-V28:X1-E240.


  • Jones, Dilwyn. An Index of Ancient Egyptian Titles, Epithets and Phrases of the Old Kingdom. (2000) p. 459
  • Fischer, Henry-Georges, Varia I (1976), p. 29, n. 9 and fig. 2.
  • Godron, Gérard, « deux notes d'épigraphie thinite », RdE 8, pp. 91-99
  • Curto, Silvio, « Annotazioni su geroglitici arcaici » ZÄS 94 (1967), pp. 15-20
Serge Rosmorduc

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