Hieroglyphs scanned & edited by Wim van den Dungen

Hieroglyphs of the Great Hymn to the Aten
found in the tomb of Ay

The tomb of Akhenaten was discovered by locals in 1881-1882.

We should be grateful that in 1883 - 1884 Urbain Bouriant made a copy of the Great Hymn found in the tomb of Ay(a). The latter was a brother of Teye, the mother of Akhenaten. He probably was the tutor, even father-in-law of the reformer. A third of the inscription in the tomb was maliciously destroyed in 1890 (during a quarrel among local inhabitants). 

On the basis of this copy the famed Great Hymn to the Aten could be studied for the first time by James Henry Breasted in 1895 in his Berlin dissertation : De Hymnis in Solem sub Rege Amenophide IV conceptis ("On the Hymns to the Sun composed under Amenophis IV").

In 1908, Norman de Garis Davies made a fine drawing of the hieroglyphic text, indicating which areas had been destroyed.

In 1887, locals discovered the archive of clay tablets (380 of them) containing the cuneiform correspondence of Akhenaten and his father with the princes of Western Asia. The first authoritative edition was made by J.A.Knudtzon in 1915.

Davies, N. de G. : The Rock Tombs of El Amarna
part VI, The Egypt Exploration Fund - London, 1908.


Hieroglyphs of

The Great Hymn to the Aten

as found in the tomb of Aye