My partner in Book of Abraham research, Vincent Coon, has made a number of very important observations with regard to the “Valuable Discovery” documents among the Kirtland Egyptian Papers, which mention a woman named Katumin from ancient Egypt, and he has found some very important insights. Here is a link to his article on his site.
“(dd) Katumin, Princess, daughter of On-i-tos [Onitah (i.e. Abraham 1:11], King of Egypt, (mdw in) who began to reign in the year of the World, 2962.
“(Wsir) Katumin was born in the 30th year of the reign of her father, and died when she was 28 years old, which was the year 3020.” (The Joseph Smith Egyptian Papyri: A Complete Edition, pp. 210-212, bold added for emphasis).
There seems to be a possible reason for this, as we will see below, with some association with an eye. It is similarly copied this way throughout the Kirtland Egyptian Papers in the Egyptian Alphabet sections, and identified as “Kah Tou Mon,” except that sometimes it is drawn with the two halves horizontally, like an eye, and at other times vertically:
In other words, scholars forget that we are dealing with symbols that have been recycled here, from their original contexts, adapted into other contexts, for use as decorations in new productions entirely, which have nothing to do with their original contexts. In other words, the use of these symbols as decorations to be used to represent the name "Katumin" have nothing to do with their origins from the Book of the Dead, because they were anciently lifted from that context into a new Egyptian document that contained a context that was dealing with something entirely different.
Certain Egyptologists in the Church like Robert W. Smith in particular have argued irrationally and ideologically against the possibility that cursive versions of hieroglyphs (i.e. hieratics and demotics) could be used the same as the non-cursive versions of the characters (i.e. hieroglyphics) in terms of using the characters in a context of recycling or adaptation of the kind that Kevin Barney suggests for larger-scale pictures in the Facsimiles. The problem with this, of course, is that it is a nonsensical assertion of Mr. Smith. Because that's like saying that because the letter A is in italic like this (A), or because it could be in a different font like a cursive A (𝓐), or even the same letter in a highly stylized font (𝔄), that it is still not the letter A, and that it is not derived from Aleph, which is a pictograph of an ox-head. Nonsense. An A is an A is an A. Similarly, the highly-stylized and cursive Arabic versions of the Semitic alphabet are still the Semitic alphabet. It didn't change their historic identity that they are written the way they are written. The hieratic and demotic versions of heiroglyphs are just exactly that: different fonts of the same characters. It is exactly the same as writing English in cursive characters, and there is no distinction. When Egyptologists translate hieratic or demotic, they frequently re-transcribe the *same exact text* in equivalent hieroglyphic characters before they translate them. Moeller's list of hieratics, for example, gives the grand majority of heiroglyphic equivalents to the characters in the hieratic FONT. Just because something is cursive doesn't mean that it isn't the same character, and can be adapted in the same manner, especially if the ancient people doing the adaptation are *literate*, and happen to know which hieratics and demotics are equivalent to which heiroglyphics. Despite my numerous and comprehensive list of examples that I have presented on this blog over the years, where the same principle is demonstrated over and over again, individuals like that continue to pontificate.
Now, to start with, let’s review the other translations for Katumin in the Egyptian Alphabet sections of the Kirtland Egyptian papers, where it is spelled “Kah tou mun.” Remember, that in the Egyptian alphabet, some of the translations are presented in order of five “degrees”:
Similarly, for the word “Ho oop hah,” here are the five degrees:
First Degree: “Crown of a princess, or unmarried queen.”
Second Degree: “Crown of a married queen.”
Third Degree: “Crown of a widowed queen.”
Fourth Degree: “Queen who has been married the second time.”
Fifth Degree: “Queen Kah tou mun: a distinction of Royal female lineage or descent, from her whom Egypt was discovered while it was under water, who was the daughter of Ham.— a lineage with whom a record of the fathers was entrusted by the tradition of Ham and accord ding to the tradition of their elders; by whom also the tradition of the art of embalming in was kept.”
It is interesting that some of the degrees here seem to go along with the life-stages of a certain queen along the path of her life, as if the degrees sometimes correspond to time in some way.
(Middle Egyptian: An Introduction ot the Language and Culture of Hieroglyphs, by James P. Allen, p. 37)
Furthermore, Francois Gaudard writes:
Interestingly, Gaudard also points out the “pars pro toto principle,” where "a part
of a sign could stand for the entire sign." Interestingly, the example that he uses is where the pupil of the eye can stand for the entire eye. Indeed, in Joseph Smith's Egyptian Alphabet, this is precisely what is going on, where the pupil of the eye, or a dot, is used for the whole eye hieroglyphic.
Extremely notable as well, as Vincent Coon has pointed out, is the fact that the Egyptian Khat crown/headress with a Uraeus, importantly, seems to correspond to the KT words as well.
The Coptic (Late Egyptian) version of the word ntr, which is pronounced as noute, attests to the dropping or silencing of the sound of the r at the end of this particular word in some dialects of the Egyptian language. Other times, in other Egyptian words, we see this manifest as well. For example, in the Book of Abraham, one of the Egyptian gods was given the name of Elkenah. Yet, in some parts of the Kirtland Egyptian Papers that are early Book of Abraham Manuscripts, the name is given as Elkener. The name of Pharaoh Onitah (Onitos) might be another example of this. In the Valuable Discovery documents, it is given as Onitos, showing the possibility that someone in the Greco-Roman time period had attached the Greek nominative S to the name, much like the word Egyptus (Aegyptos) in the Book of Abraham. Yet, that name in other parts of the Kirtland Egyptian Papers is given as Zeptah. Or, is there yet a different reason that we will yet see, that there was an S attached to his name in this form of Onitos? Indeed, there seems to be, as the reader will see.
Anyhow, the name Onitah seems to be a likely origin of the word ntr/noute, since Pharoah was thought of as a god to the Egyptians. Certain Egyptian gods are thought by some to have originated as real human beings at some point, perhaps very ancient royalty, and were elevated to be gods by the pagan Egyptians.
The next part that we are concerned about in the characters from the Amenhotep papyrus is the Egyptian symbols I and N. These are Uni-literal characters, meaning that each only has one consonantal sound in the Egyptian Alphabet, one being the character for the Egyptian letter I (the papyrus reed symbol on the right, which is Gardiners sign list M17), and the other for the Egyptian letter N (the symbol for water on the left, which is Gardiners sign list N35).
We have already dealt somewhat with the pictographic elements in these two symbols above. As we read above, the Goddess Wadjet had the sign of the papyrus reed associated with her, as well as the color green, since wadj means green one or papyrus-colored:
Wadjet . . . known to the Greek world as Uto . . . or Buto . . . among other names, was originally the ancient local goddess of the city of Dep (Buto) . . . She was said to be the patron and protector of Lower Egypt and upon unification with Upper Egypt, the joint protector and patron of all of Egypt "goddess" of Upper Egypt. The image of Wadjet with the sun disk is called the uraeus, and it was the emblem on the crown of the rulers of Lower Egypt. She was also the protector of kings and of women in childbirth. . . .
The name Wadjet is derived from the term for the symbol of her domain, Lower Egypt, the papyrus.
Her name means "papyrus-colored one", as wadj is the Ancient Egyptian word for the color green (in reference to the color of the papyrus plant) and the et is an indication of her gender. Its hieroglyphs differ from those of the Green Crown (Red Crown) of Lower Egypt only by the determinative, which in the case of the crown was a picture of the Green Crown and, in the case of the goddess, a rearing cobra. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wadjet)
The Papyrus plant lives by the water, and the god of Pharoah, the crocodile, lives in the water. Along with the mdw or staff symbol, these two are associated with the line that Joseph Smith produced, saying that Onitah had begun to reign in the year 2962. The element here of a reign once again is quite clearly indicated pictographically both by the staff as well as by the papyrus leaf. In another part of the Kirtland Egyptian papers, the papyrus leaf/reed was interpreted by Joseph Smith to be Land of the Chaldees, since the ancient name for Land of the Chaldees is the land of reeds, but this is a separate context entirely. And as these pictographic elements depend to a large degree on outside context imposed upon them, it is not surprising that multiple interpretations of these symbols in separate contexts exist entirely separate from each other, when lifted from a context alien to that in which they were found originally in a Book of the Dead copy.
The next hieroglyphs from the Amenhotep papyrus we have to deal with are these:
Usually, when reading these together as a unit, they spell out the name Osiris. Another "spelling" of the name Osiris is this:
As you can see in the first example, as well as the second, we see the throne symbol, usually vocalized as IS or WS/US (Gardiner’s sign list Q1), and the eye symbol, usually vocalized as IR (Gardiner’s sign list D4). As we stated previously, in the first example, we have the flag/NTR hieroglyph already analyzed above. In the first case, it is used as a determinative, stating that Osiris is a god. But in this name, this is interchangeable with the other determinative in the second case that we see above, the seated male god, which is Gardiner’s sign list A40. Either spelling is appropriate.
Alone, by itself, the throne symbol pronounced (IS), indicates the goddess Isis, pronounced Iset, since the et ending indicates the feminine.
These symbols are used to decorate this line in Joseph Smith’s translation: “Katumin was born in the 30th year of the reign of her father, and died when she was 28 years old, which was the year 3020.”
Interestingly, the Book of the Dead names Isis, who is the throne, as “She who gives birth to heaven and earth.” Isis was considered the patron of childbirth, the archetypical mother, the perfect example of motherly qualities (http://www.ancientegyptonline.co.uk/isis.html). And Osiris is known to be the god of the dead, the god of the afterlife. So in these figures pictographically is seen both the elements of birth and death. And so, we see that an external context of Katumin’s life was imposed on them, and with that context, we see that they are able to symbolize both her birth and her death.
The eye symbol, if seen as the Eye of Horus, or the Wedjat. The wedjat was a symbol that was found on the mummies in the tomb, meant to protect them in the afterlife, and of course, it is the symbol of the goddess Wadjet, as we had seen previously. It is a symbol of restoration, protection, and sacrifice, because of the myth of the offering of the eye of Horus to his father Osiris in the hopes of the restoration of his life. Once again, the themes of life, death and restoration/resurrection are found in these symbols. This is entirely appropriate for the context of how Joseph Smith is interpreting them.