The Rosetta Stone was an artifact discovered in Egypt in the 18th century, on which was carved a text in Greek and two dead Egyptian languages. The discovery of this artifact represented a breakthrough in the understanding of the theretofore untranslated Egyptian languages.

Over time, "Rosetta Stone" became a metaphor for any similar object or text which translated an unknown language into one that is known. (DS9 - Mission: Gamma novel: Cathedral; CoE eBook: Ghost)

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