Daniel Jackson: Academic Credentials And Skills

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Dr. Daniel Jackson

Academic Credentials


Daniel Jackson has three university doctorates, in Archaeology, Anthropology, and Philology (the study of linguistic change over time) (9.17 "The Scourge"). Three PhDs is an exceptional achievement, even more so because he completed them at a relatively young age: he was already a non-tenured professor when his academic record and unconventional theories brought him to the attention of Catherine Langford, who brought him into the Stargate Program (Stargate: The Movie).

During his academic career, he attended UCLA (Stargate: The Movie Novelization) and the prestigious University of Chicago's Oriental Institute (4.14 "The Curse", 7.15 "Chimera"). Daniel has never referred to himself as an anthropologist or philologist, but only as a Doctor of Archaeology (3.07 "Deadman Switch"). He has also made reference to spending half his life studying the written word (3.10 "Forever In A Day") and his linguistic skills have been proven time and again.



His mentor, Dr. David Jordan, considered Daniel his most brilliant student (4.14 "The Curse"), but after Daniel's disgrace at a lecture on "The Old Kingdom and the IV Dynasty", Daniel distanced himself from the academic world and devoted himself wholeheartedly to the pursuit of knowledge via the Stargate program. He has not published any papers since that time, as his work became classified.

During his dissertation, Dr. Robert Rothman was his research assistant (3.10 "Forever in a Day"). While working with Dr. Jordan, his associates were Dr. Stephen Rayner and Dr. Sarah Gardner, who was briefly his girlfriend (4.14 "The Curse"). Rayner exhibited jealousy of Daniel's academic prowess and did his utmost to steal an important discovery from him when proof of Daniel's outlandish theories was found. Sarah Gardner openly expressed her admiration of Daniel's brilliance, admitting to reading everything he'd ever published when the two met (7.15 "Chimera").



He has exhibited some in-depth knowledge of the latter two subjects, and while the full extent of languages in his skill set is not known, he has admitted to speaking 23 languages which are known to include:

English, Ancient Babylonian -- which he also reads in cuneiform (5.08 "The Tomb", 1.13 "Fire and Water"), Linear 'A' - which Teal'c claimed was an obscure Goa'uld dialect (1.09 "Brief Candle"), Phoenician (4.13 "Serpent's Venom"), Norse Runes (2.06 "Thor's Chariot"), Aztec (3.05 "Learning Curve"), Mayan (3.21 "Crystal Skull"), Middle English (3.08 "Demons"), Welsh, (5.10 "2001"), Ancient Egyptian/Abydonian/Goa'uld including being able to read Hieroglyphs and write apology letters in Goa'uld (Stargate the Movie, 1.01 "Children of the Gods", 1.14 "Hathor", 1.20 "There But for the Grace of God", 2.17 "Serpent's Song", 3.03 "Fair Game", 3.04 "Legacy", 3.10 "Forever in a Day", 4.04 "Crossroads", 4.12 "Tangent", 4.14 "The Curse", 4.17 "Absolute Power", 4.18 "The Light", 5.01 "Enemies", 5.02 "Threshold", 5.06 "Rite of Passage", 5.15, 5.16, "Summit Part 1", "Last Stand Part 2", 5.18 "The Warrior", 5.21 "Meridian", 7.01 "Fallen Part 1", 7.02 "Homecoming Part 2"). He speaks Mandarin Chinese quite well (9.17 "The Scourge").

He also has demonstrated a familiarity with German (2.21 "1969") and Russian (5.08 "The Tomb", 8.03 "Lockdown", 8.14 "Full Alert"). He speaks Spanish, since he had participated in a dig in the Yucatan Peninsula and related well with the natives there (1.08 "Brief Candle"). He communicated quite effectively in Spanish with the natives during his expedition to Honduras with Dr. Lee and recognized the writing in the ruins to be Ancient Mayan (7.11 "Evolution Part 1").

He learned to communicate with the Unas (4.08 "the First Ones", 5.07 "Beast of Burden", 7.07 "Enemy Mine"). He may also be making some impressive inroads on understanding the language and culture of the Gadmeer. We don't know for sure if Lotan kept his promise to supply Daniel with any relevant cultural material he wanted but as they seem to have parted on very good terms it's reasonable to assume he received something of the Gadmeer to study (4.09 "Scorched Earth").

His grandfather, Nicholas Ballard, is Dutch, and this language may also be included (4.02 "The Other Side") on the list as conjecture.

The Ancients' Language


While at the time not fluent in Latin, he had a working knowledge of the language that allowed him to interpret for Col. O'Neill while Jack was under the influence of the Ancients' database. Their knowledge had been downloaded into his brain, and was slowly re-writing it to think in and understand their language, which bore many similarities to medieval Latin (2.15 "The Fifth Race").

Dr. Jackson consequently became fluent in the Ancients' dialect and very non-Latin writing system, as he has been called upon many times to translate items left behind by the Ancients, such as a time altering device (4.06 "Window of Opportunity").

His increased understanding of the language of the Ancients since his ascension became invaluable in advancing the efforts of the SGC to counter the growing threat of Anubis and to continue their search for the Ancients' Lost City (6.22 "Full Circle", 7.01 "Fallen Part 1"). His understanding was strained when he tried to decipher the coded location of the Lost City under Osiris' urging (7.15 "Chimera"), though he used his skills again when Jack once again took the Ancients download (7.21 "The Lost City Part 1", 7.22 "The Lost City Part 2").

His knowledge was critical to understanding the time travel and flight capabilities of the Puddle Jumper as well (8.13 "It's Good To Be King", 8.19 "Moebius Part 1"). His notes on the language were used by Carter and Jacob/Selmak to decode the entrance into the chamber housing the Ancients' weapon that would destroy all the replicators (8.17 "Reckoning Part 2").

Daniel's knowledge of Ancient became a two-edged sword when Vala brought a coded Ancient tablet to the SGC, blackmailing Daniel into deciphering it. His translation led the team to the Avalon Chamber, where his abilities enabled them to overcome the deadly traps protecting the treasure and to find the Ancient communication device (9.01 "Avalon Part 1"). That in turn led to Daniel and Vala's contact with the Ori and the Ori's decision to send a crusade-like invasion force to our galaxy. Daniel used his knowledge of Ancient throughout the first year of battle with the Ori. Late in that year, he translated Merlin's secret code telling of a weapon that could destroy the Ori and found the gate address to the planet of Camelot (9.18 "Arthur's Mantle"). Once at Camelot, he unlocked the secrets of Merlin's library, uncovering the next clue to the whereabouts of Merlin's weapon (9.20 "Camelot Part 2").

In the second year of battle with the Ori, Daniel made continuing the quest for Merlin's weapon possible when he traveled to Atlantis to search its archives for more information and ended up face to face with the Ascended being Ganos Lal, or Morgan Le Fay, who gave him key clues in her language (10.03 "The Pegasus Project"). The next step in their quest, to retrieve the Sangreal and build Merlin's weapon, was completely dependent on Daniel's ability to read the Ancient parchment held by village librarian Osric (10.10 "The Quest Part 1"). Even with the Ori destroyed by Merlin's weapon, Daniel's skill in the language was critical to dealing with their followers: with Merlin's subconscious help, he led the team to the Ark of Truth that neutralized the armies of the Ori, freeing both their galaxy and ours of that threat (Stargate: The Ark of Truth).


Among Daniel's other skills is midwifery. While on a dig in the Yucatan, he delivered a baby. That knowledge came in handy during a visit to Argos (P3X-8596) when SG-1 encountered a young woman in the throes of labor. Daniel delivered the child, which was consequently named after him (1.08 "Brief Candle"). The next opportunity he had to practice this skill was an emotionally devastating experience, as the child he was bringing into the world was the offspring of the host of Apophis and of his own wife, Sha're (2.09 "Secrets").


Daniel has a piano in his apartment, and although we have never seen him play it, during the effort to break through the force field protecting the malfunctioning Sentinel device, he demonstrated an affinity for and familiarity with music that suggests he not only has an 'ear' for it but some musical training as well (5.20 "The Sentinel"). He also has a very nice singing voice (3.16 "Urgo").

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