Günter Dreyer (5 October 1943 – 12 March 2019) was an Egyptologist at the German Archaeological Institute. In southern Egypt, Dreyer discovered records of linen and oil deliveries which have been carbon-dated to between 3300 BCE and 3200 BCE, predating the Dynastic Period.
He studied Egyptology, Assyriology, and ancient Near Eastern Archeology at Hamburg University and the Free University of Berlin.
In 1988 Dreyer and his colleague Werner Kaiser excavated in Abydos (Umm el-Qaab) on the cemetery "U" the burial site of the king (U-j), which is dated to the Naquada period IIIa2, known as king Scorpion I. Currently, this is the earliest known large royal tomb of old Egypt. The most important finds were about 400 large wine jars being inscribed resp. having tags showing phonetically readable characters of a script, the first of its kind in Egypt. They identify the person laid into the grave, as the inscription says "plantation of (king) Scorpion." Script also name his successor, a king Double Falcon I. The scientific importance lies in the fact of finding Egyptian hieroglyphs which predate cuneiform script. The mentioned hieroglyphs are on small wooden tags applied to the jars probably marking their origin and "are fully developed", as Dreyer stated.
In 1998 Dreyer found another writing on small ivory labels, he concluded that these support the challenge to the prevailing view that the first people to write were the Sumerians of Mesopotamia (modern-day Iraq) sometime before 3000 BCE.