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In some cases of ideographic scripts, only the author of a text can read it with any certainty, and it may be said that they are interpreted rather than read. Such scripts often work best as mnemonic aids for oral texts, or as outlines that will be fleshed out in speech.

There are also symbol systems used to represent things other than language. Some of these are. In logographic writing systems , glyphs represent words or morphemes meaningful components of words, as in mean-ing-ful , rather than phonetic elements. Note that no logographic script is comprised solely of logograms. All contain graphemes which represent phonetic sound-based elements as well. These phonetic elements may be used on their own to represent, for example, grammatical inflections or foreign words , or may serve as phonetic complements to a logogram used to specify the sound of a logogram which might otherwise represent more than one word.

In the case of Chinese, the phonetic element is built into the logogram itself; in Egyptian and Mayan, many glyphs are purely phonetic, while others function as either logograms or phonetic elements, depending on context. For this reason, many such scripts may be more properly referred to as logosyllabic or complex scripts; the terminology used is largely a product of custom in the field, and is to an extent arbitrary.

In a syllabary , graphemes represent syllables or moras. Note that the 19th century term syllabics usually referred to abugidas rather than true syllabaries. In most of these systems, some consonant-vowel combinations are written as syllables, but others are written as consonant plus vowel.

History of writing

In the case of Old Persian, all vowels were written regardless, so it was effectively a true alphabet despite its syllabic component. Paleohispanic semi-syllabaries behaved as a syllabary for the stop consonants and as an alphabet for the rest of consonants and vowels. The Tartessian or Southwestern script is typologically intermediate between a pure alphabet and the Paleohispanic full semi-syllabaries. Although the letter used to write a stop consonant was determined by the following vowel, as in a full semi-syllabary , the following vowel was also written, as in an alphabet.

Some scholars treat Tartessian as a redundant semi-syllabary, others treat it as a redundant alphabet. Zhuyin is semi-syllabic in a different sense: it transcribes half syllables. A segmental script has graphemes which represent the phonemes basic unit of sound of a language. Note that there need not be and rarely is a one-to-one correspondence between the graphemes of the script and the phonemes of a language. A phoneme may be represented only by some combination or string of graphemes, the same phoneme may be represented by more than one distinct grapheme, the same grapheme may stand for more than one phoneme, or some combination of all of the above.

Segmental scripts may be further divided according to the types of phonemes they typically record:. An abjad is a segmental script containing symbols for consonants only, or where vowels are optionally written with diacritics "pointing" or only written word-initially.

Indus Script

A true alphabet contains separate letters not diacritic marks for both consonants and vowels. Linear alphabets are composed of lines on a surface, such as ink on paper. A featural script has elements that indicate the components of articulation, such as bilabial consonants , fricatives , or back vowels. Scripts differ in how many features they indicate. Manual alphabets are frequently found as parts of sign languages. They are not used for writing per se , but for spelling out words while signing. These are other alphabets composed of something other than lines on a surface.

An abugida , or alphasyllabary , is a segmental script in which vowel sounds are denoted by diacritical marks or other systematic modification of the consonants. Generally, however, if a single letter is understood to have an inherent unwritten vowel, and only vowels other than this are written, then the system is classified as an abugida regardless of whether the vowels look like diacritics or full letters. In at least one abugida, not only the vowel but any syllable-final consonant is written with a diacritic. In a couple abugidas, the vowels are basic, and the consonants secondary.

In Japanese Braille, the vowels but not the consonants have independent status, and it is the vowels which are modified when the consonant is y or w. These writing systems have not been deciphered. In some cases, such as Meroitic , the sound values of the glyphs are known, but the texts still cannot be read because the language is not understood.

In others, such as the Phaistos Disc , there is little hope of progress unless further texts are found. Several of these systems, such as Epi-Olmec and Indus , are claimed to have been deciphered, but these claims have not been confirmed by independent researchers. In Vinca and other cases the system, although symbolic, may turn out to not be writing. A number of manuscripts from comparable recent past may be written in an invented writing system, a cipher of an existing writing system or may only be a hoax.


This section lists alphabets used to transcribe phonetic or phonemic sound; not to be confused with spelling alphabets like the NATO phonetic alphabet. Alphabets may exist in forms other than visible symbols on a surface. Some of these are:. Published - December Submit your article! Read more articles - free! In neolithic, Vinca-Turdas culture developed toward writing slowly , step by step. On its own independently or influenced, by pressure of incoming migrating people waves. Pity, despite the fact that the social life was well, quite-high developed, the stage of organisation was not so high, at the level of those sumerian, egyptian or proto-elamite ones.

Vinca culture become highly developed, but even in later Cucuteni-Tyripilia culture writing not reached the proto-writing stage. Not known or found exemples of writing from this later than Vinca cultures my recollecction, not even of proto-writing. Vincans missed another more years to reach proto writing and maybe later writing. Tartaria tablets shows evidence of proto-writing, as using proto-cuneiform signs symilar or the same as proto-cuneiform sumerian. So they are isolates. They are coming from somewhere outside area. There is a gap between Vinca-Turdas signs and organised Tartaria tablets signs.

Or finaly none of above, coming by some kind of economic-cultural exchange from Aegean area. Bringed by a? The round tablet shows evidence and signs of a syllabary, even alphabetic writing in upper half. Suspect connexion of Aegean writings to those of Near-East. Clues,hipothesys, arguments:. The inscribed clay tablets PL. It seems unlikely however that the tablets were drafted by a Sumerian hand or in the Sumerian language of early Mesopotamia. The shapes of the tablets and some of the signs are paralleled in the Minoan scripts of Crete , but the tablets do not seem to be Cretan.

Undeciphered writing systems - WikiVisually

There are indications that a similar use of signs, if not actual writing, was practised in the rest of the Aegean and in Western Anatolia before the end of the 3rd millennium B. A knowledge of writing, or the use of signs derived from it, may have spread to these regions and to the Balkans from Mesopotamia through Syria. This was perhaps one aspect of a common inheritance of religious or magical beliefs and practices. Alternative approaches had been presented and commented in the recent past Hooker The two writing systems probably serve different needs e.

Yet, the relationship was rejected as impossible because of the large distance between the two areas Mesopotamia and Crete. The rejection was very premature considering the next points:. There are still many thousands of tablets in the store rooms of museums but there are not enough experts to read them. The same wide regional coverage appears during the reign of Lugalanemundu BC , king of Adab Guisepi and Willis Their influence expanded to Indus Valley, Iran, Nile and probably Balkans as he suspects and we argue for as well.

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This is supportive for the herein argument, since every sign in written Akkadian has a Sumerian origin. However, the natural process for a script is to evolve from pictorial signs like the Sumerian pre-cuneiform into non-recognizable forms like the late cuneiform and not the reverse e.

So, we make the reverse proposal herein: both the early Aegean scripts and Cuneiform were two evolutionary branches of the same trunk Sumerian pre-cuneiform signs. While it is patently impossible that all of these proto-languages could be at the base of the Minoan language, it is nevertheless remotely conceivable that one of them just might be.

But which one? Given the tangled mass of contradictions these so-called decipherments land us in, I am left with no alternative but to pronounce that none of these so-called proto-languages is liable to stand the test of linguistic verisimilitude. If age is around 3. But I looked close to those signs, and the tablets are not so old. The entire scientific comunity was fooled by supposed C14 age determination 5. Especially the round tablet shows evidence and signs of a syllabary, even alphabetic writing in upper half.

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But i am exposing you the folowing:. Oldest writing in Europe are Cretan hieroglyphic and Linear A. Back to B. There are many papers wich got partial simylarities with semitic family and Luwian, but not found an definite language.

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Now I am asking you:. These proposed languages are:. Some more proposals can be also found, concerning other languages like the Etruscan Perono Cacciafoco Secondly, the Semitic comparisons are mainly with triconsonantal roots — yet if the vowels are ignored we are leaving out half the information presented by the script, and thus much decreasing the chances of success.

Thirdly, if the languge of Linear A does not belong to a well-known family, then the chances of identifiying it are virtually nil. This is not to say that Linear A remains undecipherable; as more documents are found and published, we shall understand more of it. But I doubt very much if speculation at this stage can help; I feel strongly that is likely to belong to an unfamiliar type. As the first literate culture of Europe, the Minoans employed not one but two related writing systems.

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The second system, more ancient but less well-known and even less understood, is called Cretan Hieroglyphs. Most early writing systems have their origins in iconographic systems and likewise. Cretan Hieroglyphs most likely evolved out of non-linguistic symbols on sealstones from the late 3rd and early 2nd millenium BCE.

Undeciphered writing systems

Cretan Hieroglyphs remains undeciphered as no interpretation is widely accepted. It is possible to compare its signs to Linear A and Linear B signs and produce a syllabic grid, but since the underlying language is unknown, few words aside from accounting terms and place names can be distinguished. New York University. These inscriptions date from the late 7th or early 6th century down to the 3rd century BC.

Were the ancient Minoans of Crete Semitic? Did they speak a Semitic language? There is one more approach to the Minoan language. Several classical texts refer to a non-Greek people living in Crete in classical times: the so-called Eteocretans i. These Eteocretans allegedly dwelt in Praisos on Crete, and from this town come a handful of inscriptions from memory from the 4th century B.

The inscriptions are utterly unintelligible. They could conceivably be written in a language descended from the Minoan language, but this is only a guess. Nothing in these inscriptions can be linked up with something in the Linear A documents, so, for now, this too appears to be a scholarly dead end. Ultimately the Minoans remain an enigma. If we could ever read the Linear A documents, we would know a lot more about them, including obviously what language they spoke. This entry was posted on June 27, at pm and is filed under Tartaria tablets.