The present paper addresses the question whether any modern approach to reconstruct the phonology of a dead language such as Egyptian that is handed down only in written form can achieve more than merely speculative results. After a short overview of the areas of phonology and of theoretical approaches, the major works on Egyptian phonology are introduced diachronically and their theoretical foundations outlined. In the next chapter the limits and possibilities of reconstructing an Egyptian phonology are discussed with certain caveats. As the usual way of presenting the phoneme-system in Egyptian grammars is limited to grapheme-phoneme-identification lists, some specific issues are treated in detail. A further chapter tries to show that phonology might have bearings beyond the said lists. The final chapter discusses future areas of research and the question of how Egyptian phonology might relate to teaching Ancient Egyptian and Coptic as well as how Egyptian phonology might be presented to a specific readership.
The Florentine humanist and theorist Leon Battista Alberti recommends in his painting treatise ‘De Pictura’ the principles of imitatio and aemulatio as decisive constitutive elements for a renewal or further development of the visual arts. Not only Italian, but also Dutch and German artists were concerned with these art-theoretical premises. Only when imitatio is surpassed by aemulatio, as is argued in this study, are works of art created whose narrative, compositional and material quality was able to satisfy the particularly demanding expectations of princes and kings and the courtly elites.
In the cultural and political world of the early modern period, the concept of imitatio and aemulatio cannot ultimately be thought of without the court context, which is why particular attention should be paid to this constellation in this article using concise case studies, with a special view of the Montefeltro diptych Piero della Francesca’s and a side glance at Rubens and Velàzquez. Based on these case studies it can be shown that the art-theoretical principles of imitatio and aemulatio in the sphere of court art were ultimately only able to exist in connection with the principle of political and dynastic representation.