Roots of the “Isu” Naming

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I got the privilege of speaking with Assassin’s Creed Story Writer, Mr. Darby McDevitt and when I asked him about the reason the First Civilization was named “Isu” (pronounced Ee-soo), and the origins of that name, he responded that the name had Ancient Egyptian roots. Of course according to the lore of the franchise, it is the other way around.

When I researched known ancient Egyptian words, I stumbled upon an interesting find. The word Isw (not Isu, and it’s pronounced Ay-su or Ei-su) is present among the known words and it translates to “Ancient Ones”, which reflects who they are, an ancient nation. Now we do have “The Order of the Ancients” as a faction in the game separate from the Isu, but perhaps they used the title and based the term on ancient word from Those Who Came Before.

It must be noted that this isn’t the first time that a name in Assassin’s Creed Origins is translated to a known word. For example Bayek means Falcon or Vulture, a trend among Assassin’s Creed games to give protagonists the names of birds or prey and usually eagles in their respective native tongues, and Senu means Companion which goes in line with the fact that he’s a companion to Bayek.

The name Medunamun, which is that of a member of The Order of the Ancients can be translated to Medu and Amun, and of course there are grammatical structures and rules. The closest translation would be “The Speaker of Amun” or “The Word of God Amun”, which makes sense as he believes himself to be an oracle, a figure confirmed to be part of the Assassin’s Creed Origins lore.

I created this image to represent the word “Isw” in hieroglyphs. Take a look:

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