Egyptian hieroglyphics are perhaps the most well recognised form of ancient writing in the modern world. They typically represent real life events, often stylised or simplified, but as a general rule still recognisable. Essentially, the Egyptians made use of images rather than 'letters' in the conventional sense.
Interestingly, most of the non-determinative hieroglyphic signs are actually phonetic rather than visual and so, for instance, a picture of an eye could stand for the English word eye, or the first person pronoun eye. There are, of course, a number of other ways to interpret what is a unique writing system and the translation of these texts can take even educated scholars, a long time to do.
One of the main reasons that translating such a language is tricky is that the standard orthography (or correct spelling) of the language is much looser than in most modern dialects. In fact at least one variant for almost every word in the language has been found!
Perhaps the most famous use of Egyptian hieroglyphics can be found in the legendary pyramids. However, various samples have been found on both papyrus and wood whenever ancient Egyptian sites are uncovered. A large amount of the texts were focused on religious literature.
It's no surprise, then, that hieroglyphs continue to be referenced in popular culture. There are still books sold which teach the buyer to read the symbols and there are also a number of charms and scarabs sold which depict the unique language in a stylistic sense.