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TitleNotes on Book of Mormon Heads
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsSmoot, Stephen O.
JournalInterpreter: A Journal of Latter-day Saint Faith and Scholarship
KeywordsAncient Egyptian; Book of Mormon Translation; Heads; Mnemonic Cue; Smith, Joseph, Jr.

This paper looks at the two types of heads used in the Book of Mormon. It argues against a recent theory that these heads served as mnemonic cues that enabled Joseph Smith to extemporaneously compose and dictate the text. Instead, it argues that the function and form of heads in the Book of Mormon finds ancient precedent in Egyptian literary culture and scribal practice. A brief addendum on the ancient precedent for the chapter breaks in the original text of the Book of Mormon is also provided.