The Egyptian language - most commonly recognised in its written hieroglyphic form - is a truly ancient language, first spoken over 5,000 years ago in Egypt. Its early history is uncertain, with some suggesting it evolved slowly, written on perishable forms which left no trace of its evolution, others suggesting that it may have been born to a single person in a flurry of creativity.
However it came about, what is certain is that the language stayed alive longer than any other language in the history of mankind, and in its lifetime recorded the rise and fall of Egypt's pharaohs, armies and wealth, and kept safe the cultural, social and scientific knowledge of Egypt's advanced civilisation.
I decided to learn the ancient Egyptian language a few years ago, and I've been studying it on and off since then in my spare time. Egyptian is far more clever and subtle than I expected when I set out, and there's a certain unmatched feeling you get when reading for yourself something written by a hand thousands of years ago.