Part of speech: noun
Origin: English, 18th century
The study of ancient writing systems and the deciphering and dating of historical manuscripts.
Examples of Paleography in a sentence
"The professor taught paleography, with an expertise in Egyptian hieroglyphics."
"The archivist took a course in paleography so she could do more work with ancient manuscripts."
“Paleography” was formed in English as a combination of two Latin terms: “paleo-,” meaning “ancient,” and “-graphy,” which relates both to writing, and to descriptive sciences like “geography” and “photography.”
Did you Know?
Paleography isn’t actually about understanding ancient writing and is not a study of the contents of such writing. Rather, paleography is limited to studying the structures of ancient writing systems and styles, and sometimes involves dating ancient writings.