Why Is the Rosetta Stone Important?

The Rosetta Stone is the key that led to the deciphering of Egyptian hieroglyphs. The stone was discovered in 1799 in Fort St. Julien in El-Rashid, Egypt, and dates from 196 B.C.

The Rosetta Stone features two translations of the same decree in three scripts: hieroglyphic, Greek and Demotic. This allowed 19th-century scholars to use the ancient Greek version to decipher the hieroglyphs in the Egyptian translation. Even though many people worked on it over the years, it was Jean Francois Champollion who finally deciphered the inscription in 1822. As of 2014, the Rosetta Stone is displayed at the British Museum in London.