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Hieroglyphic Message From the Past - Deciphered

Updated on January 1, 2011



At first, the task of translating this piece of ancient text seemed impossible. But after studying the photograph carefully, the answers began to emerge. Although I was able to decipher the words, I was not able to determine the meaning of the piece. It's probably contextual. Without the entire wall, there is no way to really know for sure what the ancient writer was trying to say.

Taking it line by line from top to bottom and left to right, here is the translation as I see it:

Line 1: a snail, a turtle, a foot stepping on an airplane, some bird legs.

Line 2: A UFO hovering over a pyramid next to a candy cane. Two Ruffles potato chips. A twist tie, a slender boot, and a saddle. An eye over two feathers. The artist formerly known as Prince.

Line 3: Robot head, owl on a UFO, toy gun, several hanging goat bladders, Taco Bell.

Line 4: A mistake which was erased, two bobby pins, a scored fingertip, part of a big face.

The elusive meaning

Obviously this writer was trying to communicate a message of importance. What could he have been trying to say? That he was hungry for Ruffles because they have ridges, but settled for Taco Bell instead? That UFOs hovering over the pyramids made the snails and turtles antsy? That his boot had gone missing and he had his eye on a couple of duck feathers for his new headdress? Ah, these are all good assumptions, but the truth of the matter is that we may never know.

It's late and I'm tired, by the way. I think I'll have a snack and go to bed. Probably I'll read a bit more of Swan Song, if I can hold the book up for any length of time. It's quite thick. This is not related to any of the earlier information.


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    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks, V!

    • V Kumar profile image

      V Kumar 

      7 years ago

      great article.

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Oh, Nell. It's so hard for me to be serious! I do try from time to time, though.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 

      7 years ago from England

      Hi, lol you got me there! there I was thinking that this was going to be serious! brilliant! cheers nell

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks, kbennett! You know, of course, it took me literally minutes and minutes of study to develop my thesis on this particular piece.

    • kbennett51770 profile image


      7 years ago

      Love it :)

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Wow, evvy, a very astute observation. And good job on the test. It's not an easy test. I so hope you didn't cheat....have the answers written on your hand or anything. :)

    • evvy_09 profile image


      7 years ago from Athens, AL

      I really think the artist was just inventoring the items in his wife's purse. I could be wrong. I also scored 100% on the quiz the second time I took it. :P

    • profile image

      Tom Rivers 

      7 years ago

      LOL I like it

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      You did great on the quiz, WK. I'm proud of you because it is not an easy test.

    • W. K. Hayes profile image

      Warren Keith Hayes 

      7 years ago from Bryson City, North Carolina

      I'm so proud of me...I got 50% lol...Really great article...very amusing definitely not what I had expected. Thank you for the fun!

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Lorlie, I scored zero too. And I'm the one who made up the quiz! So, don't feel bad.

    • lorlie6 profile image

      Laurel Rogers 

      7 years ago from Bishop, Ca

      I scored 0%! I swear I'm a genius.

    • Karen Wodke profile imageAUTHOR

      Karen Wodke 

      7 years ago from Midwest

      Thanks, Jamie.

    • Jamie Brock profile image

      Jamie Brock 

      7 years ago from Texas

      LOL! Love it


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