Egyptian Bureaucratic Terms in the Old Kingdom Documents

Bogdanov Ivan V.

The subject matter is lexeme hr- , underlying notions, connected with the procedure aspects of the activities of the Old Kingdom Egyptian officials. This article consist of two parts. On the «frises d’objets» the word hr(jt)- / hr(j)- is used in two meanings: «scribe’s equipment» and «razor case». In some spells of the Coffin Texts (CT VII, 26m; CT I, 198f) the word hr(j)t- means «under the guidance». The notion in the active form (with a plural ending) hr(jw)- means «sth carrying a hand / sth leading»; the notion in the passive form (with a feminine ending) hr(j)t- means «sth carried by a hand / led, regulated, guided». The notion hr(jw)- «authorities», known from the Testament of N(j)-k (.j)- n∆(.j), literally means «container, etui». The word hrjwin the object meaning «decor, template» is used in the inscription of Nj- n∆(.j)-S∆mt (and others). The word hr(j)- «template», which was applied to the signs engraved on the seal, was included in some titles as the bureaucratic term «the certifying mark». 2. Peculiarities of the use of the term hr(jw)- «control» in various documents. a) The documents with formulae: A hrj- B «A – subordinate to B», and A B hrj- «A, and B (in his) subordination», were studied. b) The author also studied the documents with the formulae A hr(jw)- B «A: supervision (over) B», and so on; Abusir X 69Aa (similarly: ASP 82); some papyri from the Gebelein archive; the inscriptions on the mummy shroud from the tomb of Hkrt-nbtj (Abusir); an inscription from the tomb of Nb-k w(.j)-Ór (Saqqara); O. Leiden J 426, J 427, J 428 (certificates of the sailors death). The control mark hr(j)- «marked, testified, certified» is found on many cylinder seals and their impressions, which are to be analysed separately.

Keywords: ancient Egypt, Old Kingdom, bureaucracy, documents