Johan David Åkerblad

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Johan David Åkerblad (born 6 May 1763 in Stockholm, died 7 February 1819 in Rome) was a Swedish diplomat and orientalist, a student of Silvestre de Sacy.[1][2][3] Sacy's investigation of the Rosetta Stone did not give any result and Åkerblad took on his work in 1802 and managed to identify all proper names in the demotic text in just two months. He could also read words like "Greek", "temple" and "Egyptian" and found out the correct sound value from 14 of the 29 signs, but he wrongly believed the demotic hieroglyphs to be entirely alphabetic.[1] One of his strategies of comparing the demotic to Coptic later became a key in Champollion's eventual decipherment of the hieroglyphic script and the Ancient Egyptian language.[1]

Published works[edit]

  • Om det sittande Marmorlejonet i Venedig (1800–3)[4]


  1. ^ a b c Andrews, Carol (1985). The British Museum book of the Rosetta stone. P. Bedrick Books & British Museum Press 46 Bloomsbury Street, London WC1B 3QQ. p. 13. ISBN 978-0-87226-034-4. 
  2. ^ "Åkerblad, Johan David". Nordisk familjebok (in Swedish) 33 (2 ed.). 1922. pp. 952–953. Retrieved 7 July 2010. 
  3. ^ "Åkerblad, Johan David". Svenskt biografiskt handlexikon (in Swedish) 2 (2 ed.). 1906. pp. 769–770. Retrieved 7 July 2010. 
  4. ^ The Varangians of Byzantium By Benedikt S. Benedikz, retrieved 18/09/2011

Further reading[edit]

  • Fredrik Thomasson, "A dangerous man of the Enlightenment." J.D. Åkerblad and Egyptology and Orientalism in times of revolutions. Florens 2009.
  • Fredrik Thomasson, The Life of J. D. Åkerblad. Egyptian dispherment and orientalism in revolutionary times. Leiden 2011.