Hieroglyphs were far more than a language. They were an omnipresent and all-powerful force in communicating the messages of ancient Egyptian culture for over three thousand years. This ancient form of expression was used as art, as a means of identifying Egyptian-ness, even for communication with the gods. In this exciting new study, Penelope Wilson explores the cultural significance of hieroglyphs with an emphasis on previously neglected areas such as cryptography and the continuing deciphering of the script in modern times. She covers topics like the origins of writing in Egypt, hieroglyphic script and the Egyptian language, hieroglyphs and art, scribes and everyday writing. She also examines the powerful fascination hieroglyphs still hold for us today. This book is the ideal reference for anyone with an interest in the fascinating civilization of Ancient Egypt.