Tag Archive: Bronze Age



T. Farkas’ brilliant decipherment of Linear B tablet KN 894 Nv 01:

Knossos tablet KN 984 Nv 01

Linear B transliteration

Line 1. ateretea peterewa temidwe -ideogram for wheel, SSYL ZE for set or pair tablet broken off (i.e. right truncated)

Line 2. kakiya -ideogram for wheel, SSYL ZE for set or pair 1. kakodeta -ideogram for wheel, SSYL ZE for pair or set tablet broken off (i.e. right truncated)

Line 3. kidapa temidweta -ideogram for wheel, SSYL ZE for set or pair 41 tablet broken off (i.e. right truncated)

line 4. odatuweta erika -ideogram for wheel, SSYL ZE for set or pair 40 to 89 tablet broken off (i.e. right truncated)

Translation (my knowlege of Greek grammar is not sufficient at present to write out proper sentences [NOTE 1] but I have looked up and know the Greek equivalents for the Linear B words which I will write here.)

Line 1. Pair/set of inlaid/unfinished? elmwood chariot wheel rims

Οn your blog you have translated ateretea as “inlaid” from the Greek ἀιτh=ρeς. I found these words ατελείωτος , ατελεις … that means “unfinished” Do you think that could work? Either way I get that ateretea is an adjective that describes the wheel rims [2].

α)τερεδέα/ατελείωτος πτελεFάς τερμιδFέντα ζευγάρι a1ρμοτα, (sorry for the mishmash Greek [3]).

Line 2. 1 Copper [4] set or pair of wheel fasteners , bronze set or pair of wheel fasteners

I looked around the net and some say copper was used as a band or even as a tire and as leather tire fasteners on bronze age chariot wheels.

Since the deta on kakodeta refers to bindings perhaps this line is refering to sets of types of fasteners of both copper and bronze for wheels? (hubs, linch pins, nails, etc…) [Richard, YES!]

χαλκίος ζευγάρι α1ρμοτα, χαλκοδέτα ζευγάρι α1ρμοτα

Line 3. 41 Sets or pairs of “kidapa” chariot wheel rims

Looked around the net didn’t find and words to match kidapa…I did take note that you think ― like L.R. Palmer ― that it means ash-wood.

κιδάπα τερμιδFέντα ζευγἀρι α1ρμοτα

Line 4. 40 to 89 ? sets of toothed/grooved willow-wood chariot wheels.

Ive looked at many diagrams and pictures of chariot wheels… but none that I could find were clear enough to really understand what might be meant by toothed [5]… Ι even watched a documentary where an Egyptian chariot is built. It is called building Pharaoh’s Chariot. Perhaps one day I’ll happen upon some chariot wheels somewhere and finally understand what is meant.

ο0δατFέντα ε0λικα ζευγἀρι α1ρμοτα 40 -89 ?

Comments by our moderator, Richard Vallance Janke:

This is absolutely brilliant work! I am astounded! 100 % hands down. This is one of the most difficult Linear A tablets to decipher. I too take kidapa to mean ash wood, as it is a tough wood. It is also probably Minoan, since it begins with ki, a common Minoan prefix:

kida/kidi 
kidapa OM = ash wood? (a type of wood) Appears only on Linear B tablet KN 894 N v 01
kidaro MOSC NM1 kidaro ke/dron = juniper berry-or- kedri/a = oil of cedar Cf. Linear B kidaro
kidata OM = to be accepted or delivered? (of crops) Cf. Linear B dekesato de/catoj
kidini
kidiora

See my Comprehensive Linear A lexicon for further details I imagine you have already downloaded the Lexicon, given that at least 16 % of Linear A is Mycenaean-derived Greek. This decipherment alone of an extremely difficult Linear B tablet entitles you to a secondary school graduation diploma, which I shall draw up and send to you by mid-August.

Specific notes:

[1] Thalassa Farkas declares that … my knowlege of Greek grammar is not sufficient at present to write out proper sentences… , but the actual point is that it is not really possible to write out Greek sentences in Mycenaean Greek, in view of the fact that sentences are almost never used on Linear B tablets, given that these are inventories. Grammar is not characteristic of inventories, ancient or modern. So it is up to us as decipherers to reconstruct the putative “sentences which might be derived from each of the tabular lines in an inventory. So long as the sentences and the ultimate paragraph(s) make sense, all is well.

[2] wheel rims is an acceptable reading.

[3] This is hardly mishmash Greek. It is in fact archaic Greek, and archaic Greek in the Mycenaean dialect, absolutely appropriate in the context.

[4] In Line 2, kakiya (genitive singular of kako) might mean copper, but is much more likely to mean “(made of) bronze” (gen. sing.), given that copper is a brittle metal, more likely to shatter under stress than is bronze. Copper tires would simply not hold up. Neither would pure bronze ones. Either would have to be re-inforced, and in this case by kidapa = ash-wood. That is the clincher, and that is why the word kidapa appears on this tablet.

[5] In Line 5, temidweta does not mean with teeth, but the exact opposite, with grooves” or “with notches. After all, if we invert teeth in 3 dimensions, so that they are inside out, we end up with grooves. This can be seen in the following illustration of a Mycenaean chariot in the Tiryns fresco of women (warrior) charioteers:

Tiryns fresco women charioteers

On the other hand, scythes, which are after all similar to teeth, were commonplace on ancient chariots, including Egyptian, a nice little clever addition to help cut or chop up your enemies. Still, it is unlikely that Mycenaean chariots would be reinforced by scythes, in view of the fact that there are far too many of them even on fresco above. That is why I take temidweta to mean indentations” or “notches”. But temidweta could refer to “studs”, which like notches, are small, even though they stick out.

Richard

 

 


Just uploaded to academia.edu: Decipherment of Linear A tablet HT 86 Haghia Triada, a mirror image of HT 95:

decipherment of Linear A tablet HT 86 academia.edu

Linear A Tablet HT 86 (Haghia Triada) Linear A tablet HT 86 (Haghia Triada) appears to be inscribed partially in Mycenaean-derived New Minoan and partially in Old Minoan, just as is HT 95 (Haghia Triada). This is one of the most significant of all Linear A tablets, because it so closely parallels HT 95. The fact that the text of HT 86 so closely mirrors that of HT 95 lends further credence to our decipherment of both of these tablets taken together. We find approximately equal parts of Mycenaean-derived New Minoan and Old Minoan vocabulary on HT 86. Here we have the New Minoan vocabulary on HT 86: akaru, dideru (equivalent to Linear B didero), dame & minute Old Minoan vocabulary on HT 86: kunisu, saru, qara2wa (qaraiwa) & adu. We must pay special heed to the terms akaru and dideru in New Minoan, as these in turn signify " field " (archaic acc.), where all of these crops are obviously grown and didero, which is Linear A for " einkorn wheat ". As for the Old Minoan terminology, we have kunisu, which is " emmer wheat " and adu, which is a very large unit of dry measurement, probably " bales ". Astonishingly, the text as a whole admirably hangs together, all the more so when compared with that of HT 95. 


POST 1600: On academia.edu: Minoan Linear A tablet HT 95, emmer and einkorn wheat, other grains and flax:

Minoan Linear A tablet academia.edu

I have just uploaded an article on academia.edu: Minoan Linear A tablet HT 95, emmer and einkorn wheat, other grains and flax, which you can find here (Click on the banner):

I encourage you to download it and read it, as it is only 4 pages long.

 


Preview of the most Complete Linear A Lexicon of 1029 words ever compiled in history soon to be published on academia.edu just uploaded:

preview of comprehensive Linear A Lexicon

This Preview of the most Complete Linear A Lexicon of 1029 words ever compiled in history soon to be published on academia.edu.pdf is in and of itself a lengthy article (14 pages long), offering full insight into the massive extent and impact of the actual lexicon, Comprehensive Lexicon of 1029 New Minoan, pre-Greek substratum and Old Minoan words, with extensive commentaries, soon to be published on my academia.edu account (sometime in July 2017). The actual Lexicon will be at least 45 pages long, and will include all of the following elements:

1. An in-depth introduction, comparing this Lexicon, with its 1029 Linear A terms with the Linear A Reverse Lexicon of Prof. John G. Younger, containing 774 intact Linear A words. To date, Prof. Younger’ Lexicon has always been considered the de facto standard of Linear A lexicons; but it falls far short of the mark. From scanning through every last Linear A tablet on Prof. Younger’s site, Linear A texts in phonetic transcription, I discovered scores of Linear A words which he missed in his Reverse Lexicon. I have also spent the last two years ransacking the Internet for every last scrap of evidence of extant Linear A tablets, fragments, roundels, pendants and inscriptions on pottery, only to unearth even more Linear words entirely overlooked by Prof. Younger, to the extent that I uncovered a total of 1029 Linear A exograms, 225 more than he did. Thus, our Comprehensive Linear A Lexicon is 27.7 % larger than his.
2. The Lexicon itself, containing 1029 words, of which over 160 are Mycenaean-derived New Minoan, some 85 are either toponyms or eponyms, a few score fall within the pre-Greek substratum and at least 80 are Old Minoan words I have been able to decipher, more or less conclusively. As for the remainder of the Old Minoan substratum, i.e. the original pre-Greek Minoan language, I have been unable to decipher the rest of its vocabulary. But believe it or not, this factor is less of an impediment to the decipherment of Linear A than we might otherwise believe. I have been able to decipher at least 350 words out of a total of 1029, which is to say about 33 % of Linear A.
3. Each section of the final Comprehensive Lexicon, i.e. A: Mycenaean-derived New Minoan NM1 B: the pre-Greek substratum C: eponyms and toponyms D: Old Minoan vocabulary and E: ligatured logograms is accompanied by a detailed analysis and survey of its contents.
4. The final Lexicon contains a comprehensive bibliography of 84 items on every aspect I have detailed of the decipherment of Linear A as outlined in this preview.  

 

 


Credible decipherment of several grains mentioned on of Linear A tablet HT 10 (Haghia Triada):

Linear A tablet HT 10 Haghia Triada dealing with several grain crops

After several abortive attempts at realizing a relatively convincing decipherment of Linear A tablet HT 10 (Haghia Triada), I believe I have finally managed to come through. This has to be one of the most challenging Linear A tablets I have ever been confronted with. Any credible decipherment eluded me for months on end, until it finally struck me that all I needed to do was to identify the grain crops most commonly cultivated in the Neolithic and Bronze Age Mediterranean. And this is precisely what I have just done.  

Neolithic and Bronze age grains cultivated in the Mediterranean during the Neolithic and Bronze Age eras (the most common italicized):

barley (sara2/sarai?) *
einkorn (dideru) *
emmer (kunisu) *
flax (sara2/sarai?) *
freekeh (sara2/sarai?) *
and
bran (less common)
bulgur (less common)
groats (less common)
lentils (less common)
millet (dare -or- kasaru)
spelt (dare -or- kasaru)
vetch for fodder (less common)

Now it strikes me that if we find any of these grains recurring on several Linear A tablets, and we do, these grains must be the most common cultivated then. As it so happens, the 3 grain crops most frequently referenced in Linear A tablets are dideru, kunisu and sarai2 (sarai). They appear over and over and in abundant quantities on several Linear A tablets from Haghia Triada (HT 8 HT 10 HT 28 HT 85-68 HT 91 HT 93 HT 95 HT 114 HT 121 & HT 133), on HM 570, on Khania KH 10, Kophinas KO Za 1 and on Zakros ZA 20. We now know for certain that dideru means “einkorn (wheat)” and kunisu “emmer (wheat)”. It is also highly likely that sara2 (sarai) references “barley”, “flax” or “freekah”. Which one we cannot be sure, but it almost certainly has to be one of these. In addition, we also find dare and kasaru on HT 10. It stands to reason that, by elimination, dare and kasaru are probably either “millet” or “spelt” or vice versa. I have eliminated bran, bulgur, groats, lentils and vetch, as these crops appear to have been relatively less common. 

Free translation of HT 10:

emmer wheat on 4 hills + PA? + 16 1/2 bushel-like units of another type of grain (millet or spelt) *333? + RO + 6 *u325 + 14 bushel-like units of groats (?) + 2 1/2  of *301 (whatever that is), all stored in 8 vases, of which 2 are pithoi (very large) and also stored in 1 vessel of another type + 2 bushel-like units of bran, flax, millet or spelt & 16 young shoots of grain + 6 /12 of *312 TA ? & 6 bushel-like units of millet or spelt, of which 9 1/4 units were lost to death (i.e. never matured)...

My preliminary research into the types of grains cultivated in the Neolithic and Bronze Age Mediterranean has clearly facilitated this plausible decipherment of HT 10, and has moreover confirmed my even more accurate translations of several other Linear A tablets dealing with grain, almost all of them co-incidentally from Haghia Triada.



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PINTEREST Minoan Linear A, Mycenaean Linear B, Arcado-Cypriot Linear C, Progressive Grammar and Vocabulary:

PINTEREST Linear A Linear B progressive grammar and vocabulary

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If you are not already following our PINTEREST site, now is the time to do just that.

 


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 988 words, with 214 more entries than in John G. Younger’s Reverse Linear A Lexicon:

comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 988 terms

This lexicon comprises all of the intact words in John G. Youngers Reverse Linear A Lexicon (which is far from comprehensive) plus every last intact word on every single tablet at his site, wherever any of the latter are not found in the former, along with additional Linear vocabulary which I have found on my own. By my count, there are 988 words, 214 more than in Prof. John G. Youngers Reverse Linear A Lexicon, which has 774 entries, not counting numeric syllabograms, of which no one knows the phonetic values at any rate + long strings + broken series of syllabograms, though I may have made the occasional error in addition, since I had to subtract some repetitive words and add others from the tablets, which are not in the Reverse Linear A Lexicon. Words which are apparent variants of one another are listed under one entry, e.g.

daka/daki/daku/dakuna 
dakusene(ti)
japa/japadi/japaku
kira/kiro/kirisi/kiru
maru/maruku/maruri 
merasasaa/merasasaja
nesa/nesaki/nesakimi
piku/pikui/pikuzu 
reda/redamija/redana/redasi 
saro/saru/sarutu
tami/tamia/tamisi
zare/zaredu/zareki/zaresea

The following entries have been deliberately omitted:
1 Words containing any syllabograms which are either partially or wholly numeric, since we do not know what the phonetic values of these syllabograms are,
2 Broken series of syllabograms &
3 Strings of syllabograms > than 15 characters.

This is the raw Lexicon, without definitions. Definitions of Old Minoan (OM), pre-Greek substratum (PGS) and Mycenaean-derived New Minoan (NM) terms will soon be published in sub-Lexicons pursuant to this Lexicon on my academia.edu account. 

adai 
adakisika
adara/adaro/adaru
ade/adu 
Adunitana  
adureza 
aduza
ajesa 
aju 
Akanu/Akanuzati  = Archanes (Crete)  = 10
aka 
akaru 
aki/akii  = garlic
akipiete(ne?)
akumina
ama 
amaja
amawasi
amidao/amidau 
amita = 20
ana 
ananusijase
anatu 
anau
anepiti
aparane 
apaki 
apero 
api 
ara = 30
araju 
arako
aranare/aranarai (sing.) 
arati
aratiatu 
aratu  
arauda
aredai
Arenesidi  
aresana = 40
ari/arinita
arisu
arokaku
arote 
aru/arudara
aruma 
aruqaro
arura 
asadaka
asamune = 50
asara2 
asasumaise
ase/asi
aseja 
asidatoi 
asijaka
asikira 
asisupoa
asona
asuja = 60
Asupuwa 
atade 
atanate 
atare 
ati 
atika
atiru
atu 
aurete 
awapi = 70
azura

daa 
dadai/dadana
dadipatu
dadumata
dadumina/dadumine
dai/daina
daipita 
dajute
daka/daki/daku/dakuna = 80
dakusene(ti)
damate Cf. Linear B damate
dame/dami/daminu  
danasi 
danekuti
daqaqa
daqera
dare 
darida 
daropa = 90
darunete 
daserate
dasi 
datapa 
datara/datare
data2 
datu  
dawa  (Haghia Triada)  CF LB dawo
daweda 

dea = 100
deauwase 
dedi
dejuku
demirirema 
depa/depu 
deripa
detaa 
dide/didi
dideru
didikase/didikaze  = 110
dii 
dija/dije
dika 
Dikate  = Mount Dikte
dikime
dikise 
dima
dimaru
dimedu
dinaro = 120
dinau
dipa3a 
dipaja
diqise 
dirasa 
diredina
dirina
diru 
disa
disipita = 130
ditajaru
ditamana  = dittany
du/dua/duja
dumaina 
dumedi
dumitatira2 (dumitatirai)
dunawi
dupa3na
dupu3re 
dura2 = 140
durare
duratiqe
dureza/durezase
dusi/dusini
dusima 
dusu
duti
duwi 
duzu

edamisa = 150
edu 
eka 
epa3
ero
esija
etanasu
etori 
ezusiqe

ia 
Ida/Idaa/Idada/Idapa3  = Mount Ida  = 160
Idamate/idamete  
Idarea 
idunesi 
iduti 
ija 
ijadi 
ijapame  
ijate 
ika 
Ikesedesute   = 170
Ikurina  
ikuta
ima
imeti 
inaimadu
inajapaqa
ipinama
ira2 
iruja
isari  = 180
ise
itaja
itaki
itijukui 
itinisa
Ititikuna  
Izurinita  

jaa
jadi/jadikitu = 190
jadireja 
jadisi
jadu
jadurati
jai 
jainwaza
jaiterikisu 
jaitose
jaja
jakisikinu = 200
jako/jaku/jakute
jamaa
jamauti
jami/jamidare 
januti
japa/japadi/japaku 
japametu 
japanidami 
japarajase
jara2qe = 210
jara/jare/jaremi 
jarepu2  
jarete
jari/jarina/jarinu
jaripa3ku
jarisapa
jaru/jarui 
jasaja
jasamu 
jasapai = 220
jasaraanane
jasasarame
jasidara
jasea/jasepa 
jasie 
jasumatu 
jata/jatai/jatapi 
jate/jateo
jatimane
jatituku+ jatituku (repeated) = 230
jatoja
jawi
jedi 
jeka 
jemanata
jetana 
jua
judu
juerupi 
juka = 240
juma/jumaku
juraa
jureku
juresa 
jutiqa
juu

ka (extremely common)
kada/kadasaa
kadi 
kadumane   = 250
kadusi 
kae
kai/kaika 
kairo
kaji/kaju 
kaki/kaku
kakunete
kami
kana/kanatiti/kanau 
kanajami = 260
kanaka 
kanita 
kanuti 
kapa/kapaqe/kapi 
kaporu 
kapusi
kaqa/kaqe
kara 
karona
karopa2 (karopai) = 270
karu  
karunau 
kasaru 
kasi 
kasidizuitanai  
Kasikidaa   
kasitero 
katanite
kataro  scarab (Egyptian)
kati 
kaudeta = 280 
keda 
keire 
kekiru
kera/kero  
keta/kete 
ketesunata  
kezadidi
kida/kidi 
kidapa 
kidaro = 290
kidata
kidini
kidiora
kii/kiipa
kija  
kika 
kikadi 
kikiraja
kimu 
kina = 300
kinima
kinite
kipaa 
kipisi (fairly common) 
kiqa
kira/kiro 
kireta2 
kiretana 
kireza
kiro/kirisi/kiru  = 310
kiso 
kisusetu 
kitai/kitei 
kitanasija 
kitiqa
kito 
koiru 
koja
kopu
koru  = 320
Kosaiti  
kuda
kuja
kujude 
kuka
kukudara 
kumaju 
kumapu 
kunisu
kupa/kupi = 330 
kupa3natu 
kupa3nu 
kupa3pa3
kupa3rija  
kupaja 
kupari 
Kupatikidadia  
kupazu
kuqani 
kura/kuramu  =340
kurasaqa 
kureda 
kureju 
kuro/kurotu 
kuto 
kuruku
kuruma 
kutiti  Kutaistos Cf. LB Kitaito
kutukore
kuzuni = 350

maa
madadu 
madi 
mai/maimi
majutu 
makaise
makaita 
makarite
makidete 
mana/manapi (common)= 360
maniki
manirizu 
manuqa
maru/maruku/maruri
masa/masaja 
masi/masidu
masuja
masuri
matapu
mateti = 370
matiti 
matizaite 
matu 
maza/mazu 
meda
medakidi
mekidi
mepajai
mera 
merasasaa/merasasaja (very common)  = 380
mesasa 
mesenurutu
meto 
meturaa 
meza 
mia
midai 
midani 
midamara2 (midamarai)
midara = 390
midemidiu
mie
miima 
mijanika
mijuke 
mikidua
mikisena
minaminapii
minedu
mini/miniduwa  = 400
minumi
minute (sing. minuta2 – minutai) 
mio/miowa
mipa
mireja 
miru
mirutarare
misimiri
misuma
mita = 410
miturea 
mizase
mujatewi
muko 
mupi 
murito
muru
musaja 

naa
nadare = 420
nadi/nadiradi/nadiredi
nadiwi
nadu
nadunapu2a
naisizamikao   
naka
nakiki
nakininuta
nakuda
namarasasaja  = 430
namatiti
nami
namikua/namikuda
namine 
nanau 
nanipa3
napa3du
narepirea
naridi
narinarikui  = 440
narita
naroka
naru 
nasarea
nasekimi 
nasi 
nasisea
nataa/nataje
natanidua
natareki (common)  = 450
nati 
nazuku/nazuru
nea 
neakoa  
nedia
nedira
neka/nekisi 
nemaduka
nemaruja
nemiduda = 460
nemusaa
Nenaarasaja 
neqa
neramaa
nerapa/nerapaa 
nere 
nesa/nesaki/nesakimi
nesasawi
nesekuda
neta = 470
netapa 
netuqe
nidapa
nidiki/nidiwa 
niduti
nijanu
niku/nikutitii
nimi
nipa3  
nira2 (nirai) -or- nita2 (nisai)  = 480
niro/niru 
nisi 
nisudu
nisupu
niti
nizuka
nizuuka
nua
nude
nuki/nukisikija  = 490
numida/numideqe 
nupa3ku (extremely common)
nupi
nuqetu 
nuti/nutini
Nutiuteranata  
nutu
nuwi

odami/odamia
opi = 500
ora2dine (oraidine)
osuqare
otanize
oteja 

pa (common)/paa
padaru
padasuti 
pade
padupaa
Paito = Phaistos = 510
pa3a/pa3ana
pa3da 
pa3dipo
pa3katari 
pa3kija 
pa3ku
pa3ni/pa3nina/pa3niwi
pa3pa3ku
pa3qa
pa3roka  = 520
pa3sase
pa3waja
paja/pajai/pajare
paka (very common)/paku (very common)/pakuka 
pamanuita  
panuqe 
para 
parane 
paria 
paroda = 530
parosu
pasarija
pase 
pasu 
pata/patada/pataqe/patu 
patane 
pia/pii 
pija/pijani/pijawa 
piku/pikui/pikuzu
pimata  pimento = 540
pimitatira2 (pimitatirai) 
pina/pini 
pirueju
pisa
pita/pitaja 
pitakase/pitakesi
pitara 
piwaa
piwaja
piwi = 550
posa 
potokuro
pu2juzu
pu2su/pu2sutu 
pu3pi
pu3tama
puko
punikaso
puqe
pura2  = 560
pusa/pusi
pusuqe

qara2wa 
qa2ra2wa
qajo
qaka
qanuma
qapa3 (qapai) 
qapaja/qapajanai
qaqada = 570
qaqaru 
qareto 
Qaqisenuti  
qaro 
qasaraku 
qatidate 
qati/qatiki 
qatiju 
qedeminu
qeja = 580
qeka 
qenamiku 
qenupa
qepaka
qepita 
qepu
qequre 
qera2u/qera2wa
qeri
qero = 590
qerosa 
qesite
qesizue
qesupu
qesusui
qeta2e
qeti/qetiradu 
qetune 
qisi
qoroqa = 600 
quqani 

raa
rada/radaa/radakuku/radami
radarua 
radasija
radizu
radu 
ra2i
ra2ka 
ra2madami   = 610
ra2miki
ra2natipiwa 
ra2pu/ra2pu2
ra2ri (rairi)  = lily
ra2rore
ra2ru
ra2saa 
raja/raju
rakaa 
raki/rakii/rakisi/raku = 620
ranatusu
rani 
raodiki 
rapa/rapu
rapu3ra
raqeda
rarasa
rarua
rasa/rasi 
rasamii = 630
rasasaa/rasasaja
rata/ratapi 
ratada
ratise (ritise?) 
razua
rea 
reda (common)/redana/redasi 
redamija
redise 
reduja = 640
reja/rejapa 
rekau 
rekotuku 
reku/rekuqa/rekuqe 
rema/rematuwa 
remi
renara/renaraa 
renute
repa 
Repu2dudatapa   = 650
repu3du
reqasuo
reradu
rera2tusi
reratarumi 
rerora2
rese/resi/resu  See sere
retaa/retada
retaka 
retata2 = 660
retema 
reza
rezakeiteta 
ria (common) 
ridu
rikata
rima 
rimisi 
ripaku
ripatu = 670
riqesa
rira/riruma
rirumate
risa
Risaipa3dai  
Risumasuri  
ritaje 
rite/ritepi
ritoe 
rodaa/rodaki = 680
roika
roke/roki/roku
romaku 
romasa
ronadi
rore/roreka 
rosa  = rose 
rosirasiro 
rotau 
roti = 690
rotwei 
rua 
rudedi
ruiko
ruja  
rujamime 
ruka/rukaa/ruki/rukike 
Rukito
ruko
rukue = 700
ruma/rumu/rumata/rumatase 
rupoka
ruqa/ruqaqa (common)
rusa (common/rusaka
rusi
rutari 
rutia 
ruzuna

sadi
saja/sajama/sajamana = 710
sajea
saka
sama/samaro
samidae 
samuku 
sanitii
sapo/sapi
saqa
saqeri
sara2 (sarai)/sarara =720
sareju 
saro/saru/sarutu 
sasaja
sasame  = sesame
sasupu 
sato 
sea/sei 
sedina 
sedire
seikama = 730
Seimasusaa
seitau
sejarapaja  
sejasinataki  
sekadidi
sekatapi
sekidi  
Sekiriteseja  
sekutu 
semake = 740
semetu 
senu
sepa
sere 
sesapa3
Sesasinunaa  
Setamaru
Seterimuajaku
setira 
Setoija   = 750
Sewaude   
sezami 
sezanitao
sezaredu
sezatimitu 
sia 
sidare/sidate
sidi/sidija 
sii/siida/siisi  
siitau = 760
sija 
Sijanakarunau
sika 
siketapi
sikine 
Sikira/sikirita
sima 
simara 
simita 
simito/simitu  = mouse = 770
sina
sinada
sinae  
sinakanau (common)
sinakase  
sinamiu
sinatakira
sinedui
sipiki 
sipu3ka = 780
sire/siro/siru/sirute 
siriki 
Sirumarita2   
Sitetu  
situ 
siwamaa
sokanipu  
sokemase 
sudaja 
suja = 790
Sukirita/Sukiriteija  = Sybrita
suniku (common)
supa3 (supai) 
supi/supu 
sure 
Suria  
suropa 
sutu/sutunara
suu
suzu = 800

taa
tadaki/tadati
tadeuka 
taikama
Tainaro
tainumapa
Ta2merakodisi 
ta2re/ta2reki 
ta2riki
Ta2rimarusi    = 810
ta2tare
ta2tite
ta2u 
tajusu 
takaa/takari
taki/taku/takui
tamaduda
tanamaje
tanate/tanati
Tanunikina  = 820
tamaru 
tami/tamia/tamisi 
tani/taniria/tanirizu 
taniti  
tapa 
tapiida
tapiqe
tara/tarina
tarasa
tarawita = 830
tarejanai 
tarikisu 
taritama
tasa/tasaja 
tasise 
tata/tati 
tateikezare
tedasi/tedatiqa
tedekima
teepikia = 840
Teizatima  
tejai 
tejare 
tekare
teke/teki
tekidia
temada/temadai
temeku 
temirerawi 
tenamipi = 850
tenata/tenataa 
tenatunapa3ku  
tenekuka 
teneruda
teniku 
tenitaki
tenu/tenumi (common)
tepi
tera/tere/teri tera 
teraseda = 860
tereau 
tereza
teri/teridu 
terikama
tero/teroa
terusi (extremely common) 
tesi/tesiqe 
Tesudesekei 
tetita2
tetu = 870
Tewirumati
Tidama  
tidata 
tidiate
tiditeqati 
tiduitii/tiisako 
tija 
tika 
tikiqa
tikuja = 880
Tikuneda
timaruri/timaruwite
timasa 
timi 
timunuta
tina 
Tinakarunau
tinata (common)/tinita
tinesekuda
tininaka = 890
tinu/tinuka 
tinusekiqa 
tio
tiqatediti 
tiqe/tiqeri/tiqeu
tiraduja 
tira2 
tirakapa3
tire 
tisa = 900
tisiritua 
tisudapa
Tita
titema
titiku
titima
tiu
tiumaja
tizanukaa
toipa = 910
tome
toraka  = Linear B toraka
toreqa
tuda
tujuma
tukidija
tukuse
tuma/tumi/tumitizase
tunada/tunapa
tunapa3ku = 920
Tunija
tupadida
tuqe
turaa 
Turunuseme 
turusa
tusi/tusu/tusupu2
tute/tutesi

udami/udamia 
udimi = 930
udiriki
uju 
uki
Uminase  
unaa
unadi (common) 
unakanasi  
unana 
unarukanasi/unarukanati
upa = 940
uqeti 
urewi 
uro
uso/usu
uta/uta2 
utaise
utaro 
uti 

waduko
waduna = 950
Wadunimi  
waja
wanai 
wanaka 
wapusua  
wara2qa
watepidu
watumare 
wazudu
wetujupitu = 960
widina
widui
wija 
Wijasumatiti  
Winadu
winipa
winu 
winumatari 
wiraremite 
wireu = 970
wirudu
Wisasane  
witero 

zadeu/zadeujuraa
zadua
zama/zame
zanwaija
zapa
zare/zaredu/zareki/zaresea
zasata = 980
zirinima
zudu
zukupi
zuma
zupaku
zusiza
zusu
zute = 988

VERSUS Younger = 774 ( – numeric syllabograms + long strings + broken series of syllabograms). Hence Youngers lexicon amounts to 78.3 % of this one, i.e. this lexicon contains 214 more entries and is 21.7 % longer.


3 quasi-identical tablets on rams. But what are the “items related to rams ”? What a quandary!

KN 1175 - KN 1180 sheep

The written text of all three of these tablets is identical. Only the total numbers of rams and so-called “items related to rams ” vary, especially that latter, from a low of 10 to a high of 67. This raises the thorny questions of why the shepherd or owner of these sheep, Dumireweis, would have to use 67 items related to rams on the second tablet, versus 10 on the first and 20 on the third, especially in light of the fact that the number of rams varies but little on all three tablets (4,5,4).

The next problem is that Mycenaean Greek does not in any specify what these items are supposed to be. The only recourse I have is to assume that they are the instruments and implementa the shepherds and sheep owners used to raise their sheep. Turning to modern sheep raising instruments, and using a little imagination to boot, I came up with the ones listed in the illustration above. This still leaves the issue of Dumireweis having to resort to using 67 such items for a mere 5 rams on the second tablet. The only explanation I can come up with is that the is using several of the same items, meaning that he has several of each in stock. But if this is the case, why does he apparently have only 10 items in stock on tablet 1 and 20 on tablet 3, unless these are a subset of his total stock? That can make sense, as in modern inventories, we can and sometimes do find varying numbers of tool, instruments etc. related for instance to car or airplane manufacturing. These instruments can run to a significant number, especially in the aerospace industry. But I find it extremely difficult to believe that there could as many as a total of 67 discrete (separate) instruments used in an ancient agricultural setting such as that of Knossos, Mycenae or Pylos. It would make far more sense to adduce that the number of such tools and implementa is in fact only 10, as illustrated on the first tablet. This would mean that the 20 on the last tablet would make for redundancy in the number of separate, distinct items, for instance 3 forceps for birthing, 2 different shearing tools etc. Shearing in particular could have involved the use of a number of different, even specialized tools. So the number 67 on the second tablet may not be so wacky after all. For instance, Dumireweis could have made use of 2 different type of forceps or calipers for birthing, and as many as 5 different shearing tools, all in quantity, in order that the total runs to 67.

shears and tongs some bronze

But we are not done yet. Why on earth are there 3 tablets inventorying Dumireweis’ rams, when the scribe could have fit all of the rams and all of the instruments on one tablet? That really beats me. He could have listed 97 instruments for 13 rams, but he didn’t. The only explanation I can come up with is that the scribe is inventorying three different groups of rams Dumireweis owns. No matter how you cut it, though, there appears to be no way our of this messy impasse.


The composite supersyllabograms E & KO with the ideogram for horse in Linear B:

KN 226 N j 21 composite SSYLS E KO

This is one of only two tablets in the entire corpus of Mycenaean Linear B tablets, on which two (2) supersyllabograms modify their ideogram, in this case, the one for horse. It is particularly intriguing that these two supersyllabograms are framed on each side with the numeral 1. If this looks peculiar at first sight, I can hardly blame you. Yet there is an explanation which is more than likely sound. We note that there is only 1 chariot. This would mean that there has to be a team of 2 horses. Yet it appears that this factor is not taken into account. In fact, far from it. The scribe has in fact written the number 2, one 1 one on each side of the two supersyllabograms. This would seem to imply that the scribe is referring to 2 sets of a part of the harness, probably the bridle and of the cross-bar. This in turn implies that there is a team of horses to whom these parts are assigned. Even though the supersyllabogram ZE = a team of horses does not appear on this tablet, it looks very much like that is what the scribe intends us to understand, given that there are two sets of the parts assigned, this appears to confirm that there is a team of horses.

Note that the ideogram for armour follows that for one (1) chariot and precedes the two supersyllabograms E & KO. This is the standard formulaic position for the ideogram for armour. This ideograms does not imply that the chariot is armoured, but rather that the driver of the chariot is armoured, hence my translation.

Prior to my discovery of this phenomenon of composite supersyllabograms, no researcher past or present has ever before identified it.


This Minoan object preceded the heralded Antikythera Mechanism by 1,400 years, and was the first analog and portable computer in history

Researcher Minas Tsikritsis who hails from Crete -- where the Bronze Age Minoan civilization flourished from approximately 2700 BC to 1500 century BC -- maintains that the Minoan Age object discovered in 1898 in Paleokastro site, in the Sitia district of western Crete, preceded the heralded "Antikythera Mechanism" by 1,400 years, and was the first analog and "portable computer" in history.

"While searching in the Archaeological Museum of Iraklion for Minoan Age findings with astronomical images on them we came across a stone-made matrix unearthed in the region of Paleokastro, Sitia. In the past, archaeologists had expressed the view that the carved symbols on its surface are related with the Sun and the Moon," Tsikritsis said.  The Cretan researcher and university professor told ANA-MPA that after the relief image of a spoked disc on the right side of the matrix was analysed it was established that it served as a cast to build a mechanism that functioned as an analog computer to calculate solar and lunar eclipses. The mechanism was also used as sundial and as an instrument calculating the geographical latitude.  Source: Athens News Agency [April 06, 2011]

Text © from original below.

Click the BANNER below to visit:

Minoan computer news network archaeology
This Minoan object preceded the heralded Antikythera Mechanism by 1,400 years, and was the first analog and portable computer in history. A stone-made matrix has carved symbols on its surface are related with the Sun and the Moon serving as a cast to build a mechanism that functioned as an analog computer to calculate solar and lunar eclipses. The mechanism was also used as sundial and as an instrument calculating the geographical latitude.

Previous paragraph by Rita Roberts



Knossos tablet KN 894 N v 01 (Ashmolean) as a guide to Mycenaean chariot construction and design

KN 894 An1910_211_o.jpg wheel ZE

In spite of my hard gained experience in translating Linear B tablets, the translation of this tablet on chariot construction and design posed considerable challenges. At the outset, several of the words descriptive of Mycenaean chariot design eluded my initial attempts at an accurate translation. By accurate I not only mean that problematic words must make sense in the total context of the descriptive text outlining Mycenaean chariot construction and design, but that the vocabulary entire must faithfully reconstruct the design of Mycenaean chariots as they actually appeared in their day and age. In other words, could I come up with a translation reflective of the actual construction and design of Mycenaean chariots, not as we fancifully envision them in the twenty-first century, but as the Mycenaeans themselves manufactured them to be battle worthy?

It is transparent to me that the Mycenaean military, just as that of any other great ancient civilization, such as those of Egypt in the Bronze Age, of the Hittite Empire, and later on, in the Iron Age, of Athens and Sparta and, later still, of the Roman Empire, must have gone to great lengths to ensure the durability, tensile strength and battle worthiness of their military apparatus in its entirety (let alone chariots). It goes without saying that, regardless of the techniques of chariot construction employed by the various great civilizations of the ancient world, each civilization strove to manufacture military apparatus to the highest standards practicable within the limits of the technology then available to them.

It is incontestable that progress in chariot construction and design must have made major advances in all of the great civilizations from the early to the late Bronze Age. Any flaws or faults in chariot construction would have been and were rooted out and eliminated as each civilization perceptibly moved forward, step by arduous step, to perfect the manufacture of chariots in their military. In the case of the  Mycenaeans contemporaneous with the Egyptians, this was the late Bronze Age. My point is strictly this. Any translation of any part of a chariot must fully take into account the practicable appropriateness of each and every word in the vocabulary of that technology, to ensure that the entire vocabulary of chariot construction will fit together as seamlessly as possible in order to ultimately achieve as solid a coherence as conceivably possible. 

Thus, if a practicably working translation of any single technical term for the manufacture of chariots detracts rather than contributes to the structural integrity, sturdiness and battle worthiness of the chariot, that term must be seriously called into question. Past translators of the vocabulary of chariot construction and design who have not fully taken into account the appropriateness of any particular term descriptive of the solidity and tensile strength of the chariot required to make it battle worthy have occasionally fallen short of truly convincing translations of the whole (meaning here, the chariot), translations which unify and synthesize its entire vocabulary such that all of its moving and immobile parts alike actually “translate” into a credible reconstruction of a Bronze Age (Mycenaean) chariot as it must have realistically appeared and actually operated. Even the most prestigious of translators of Mycenaean Linear B, most notably L.R. Palmer himself, have not always succeeded in formulating translations of certain words or terms convincing enough in the sense that I have just delineated. All this is not to say that I too will not fall into the same trap, because I most certainly will. Yet as we say, nothing ventured, nothing gained.      

And what applies to the terminology for the construction and design of chariots in any ancient language, let alone Mycenaean Linear B, equally applies to the vocabulary of absolutely any animate subject, such as human beings and livestock, and to any inanimate object in the context of each and every sector of the economy of the society in question, whether this be in the agricultural, industrial, military, textiles, household or pottery sector.

Again, if any single word detracts rather than contributes to the actual appearance, manufacturing technique and utility of said object in its entire context, linguistic as well as technical, then that term must be seriously called into question. 

When it comes down to brass tacks, the likelihood of achieving such translations is a tall order to fill. But try we must.

A convincing practicable working vocabulary of Knossos tablet KN 894 N v 01 (Ashmolean):

While much of the vocabulary on this tablet is relatively straightforward, a good deal is not. How then was I to devise an approach to its translation which could conceivably meet Mycenaean standards in around 1400-1200 BCE? I had little or no reference point to start from. The natural thing to do was to run a search on Google images to determine whether or not the results would, as it were, measure up to Mycenaean standards. Unfortunately, some of the most convincing images I downloaded were in several particulars at odds with one another, especially in the depiction of wheel construction. That actually came as no surprise. So what was I to do? I had to choose one or two images of chariots which appeared to me at least to be accurate renditions of actual Mycenaean chariot design. But how could I do that without being arbitrary in my choice of images determining terminology? Again a tough call. Yet there was a way through this apparent impasse. Faced with the decision of having to choose between twenty-first century illustrations of Mycenaean chariot design - these being the most often at odds with one another - and ancient depictions on frescoes, kraters and vases, I chose the latter route as my starting point. 

But here again I was faced with images which appeared to conflict on specific points of chariot construction. The depictions of Mycenaean chariots appearing on frescoes, kraters and vases unfortunately did not mirror one another as accurately as I had first supposed they would. Still, this should come as no real surprise to anyone familiar with the design of military vehicles ancient or modern. Take the modern tank for instance. The designs of American, British, German and Russian tanks in the Second World War were substantially different. And even within the military of Britain, America and Germany, there were different types of tanks serving particular uses dependent on specific terrain. So it stands to reason that there were at least some observable variations in Mycenaean chariot design, let alone of the construction of any chariots in any ancient civilization, be it Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece throughout its long history, or Rome, among others.

So faced with the choice of narrowing down alternative likenesses, I finally opted for one fresco which provided the most detail. I refer to the fresco from Tiryns (ca 1200 BCE) depicting two female charioteers.


This fresco would go a long way to resolving issues related in particular to the manufacture and design of wheels, which are the major sticking point in translating the vocabulary for Mycenaean chariots.

Turning now to my translation, I sincerely hope I have been able to resolve most of these difficulties, at least to my own satisfaction if to not to that of others, although here again a word of caution to the wise. My translation is merely my own visual interpretation of what is in front of me on this fresco from Tiryns. Try as we might, there is simply no escaping the fact that we, in the twenty-first century, are bound to impose our own preconceptions on ancient images, whatever they depict. As historiography has it, and I cite directly from Wikipedia:      

Questions regarding historicity concern not just the issue of "what really happened," but also the issue of how modern observers can come to know "what really happened."[6] This second issue is closely tied to historical research practices and methodologies for analyzing the reliability of primary sources and other evidence. Because various methodologies categorize historicity differently, it's not possible to reduce historicity to a single structure to be represented. Some methodologies (for example historicism), can make historicity subject to constructions of history based on submerged value commitments. 

wikipedia historicity
The sticking point is those pesky “submerged value commitments”. To illustrate even further, allow me to cite another source, Approaching History: Bias:

approaching history

The problem for methodology is unconscious bias: the importing of assumptions and expectations, or the asking of one question rather than another, by someone who is trying to act in good faith with the past. 

Yet the problem inherent to any modern approach is that it is simply impossible for any historian or historical linguist today to avoid imposing not only his or her own innate unconscious preconceived values but also the values of his own national, social background and civilization, let alone those of the entire age in which he or she lives. “Now” is the twenty-first century and “then” was any particular civilization with its own social, national and political values set against the diverse values of other civilizations contemporaneous with it, regardless of historical era.

If all this seems painfully obvious to the professional historian or linguist, it is more than likely not be to the non-specialist or lay reader, which is why I have taken the trouble to address the issue in the first place.  

How then can any historian or historical linguist in the twenty-first century possibly and indeed realistically be expected to place him— or herself in the sandals, so to speak, of any contemporaneous Bronze Age Minoan, Mycenaean, Egyptian, Assyrian or oriental civilizations such as China, and so on, without unconsciously imposing the entire baggage of his— or -her own civilization, Occidental, Oriental or otherwise? It simply cannot be done.

However, not to despair. Focusing our magnifying glass on the shadowy mists of history, we can only see through a glass darkly. But that is no reason to give up. Otherwise, there would be no way of interpreting history and no historiography to speak of. So we might as well let sleeping dogs lie, and get on with the task before us, which in this case is the intricate art of translation of an object particular not only to its own civilization, remote as it is, but specifically to the military sector of that society, being in this case, the Mycenaean.

So the question now is, what can we read out of the Tiryns fresco with respect to Mycenaean chariot construction and design, without reading too much of our own unconscious personal, social and civilized biases into it? As precarious and as fraught with problems as our endeavour is, let us simply sail on ahead and see how far our little voyage can take us towards at least a credible translation of the Tiryns chariot with its lovely belles at the reins, with the proviso that this fresco depicts only one variation on the design of Mycenaean chariots, itself at odds on some points with other depictions on other frescoes. Here you see the fresco with my explanatory notes on the chariot parts:

Mycenaean-Fresco-Mycenae-women-charioteers

as related to the text and context of the facsimile of the original tablet in Linear B, Linear B Latinized and archaic Greek, here:

Knossos tablet KN 894 N v 01 original text Latinized and in archaic Greek
   
This is followed by my meticulous notes on the construction and design of the various parts of the Mycenaean chariot as illustrated here:

Notes on Knossos tablet 894 N v 01 Wheel ZE

and by The Geometry of chariot parts in Mycenaean Linear B, to drive home my interpretations of both – amota - = - (on) axle – and – temidweta - = the circumference or the rim of the wheel, referencing the – radius – in the second syllable of – temidweta - ,i.e. - dweta - , where radius = 1/2 (second syllable) of – temidweta – and is thus equivalent to one spoke, as illustrated here:

The only other historian of Linear B who has grasped the full significance of the supersyllabogram (SSYL) is Salimbeti, 

The Greek Age of Bronze chariots


whose site is the one and only on the entire Internet which explores the construction and design of bronze age chariots in great detail. I strongly urge you to read his entire study in order to clarify the full import of my translation of – temidweta – as the rim of the wheel. The only problem remaining with my translation is whether or not the word – temidweta – describes the rim on the side of the wheel or the rim on its outer surface directly contacting the ground. The difficulty with the latter translation is whether or not elm wood is of sufficient tensile strength to withstand the beating the tire rim had to endure over time (at least a month or two at minimum) on the rough terrain, often littered with stones and rocks, over which Mycenaean chariots must surely have had to negotiate.  

As for the meaning of the supersyllabogram (SSYL)TE oncharged directly onto the top of the ideogram for wheel, it cannot mean anything other than – temidweta -, in other words the circumference, being the wheel rim, further clarified here:

wheel rim illustration

Hence my translation here:

Translation of Knossos tablet KN 984 N v 01 Wheel ZE

Note that I have translated the unknown word **** – kidapa – as – ash (wood). My reasons for this are twofold. First of all, the hardwood ash has excellent tensile strength and shock resistance, where toughness and resiliency against impact are important factors. Secondly, it just so happens that ash is predominant in Homer’s Iliad as a vital component in the construction of warships and of weapons, especially spears. So there is a real likelihood that in fact – kidapa – means ash, which L.R. Palmer also maintains. Like many so-called unknown words found in Mycenaean Greek texts, this word may well be Minoan. Based on the assumption that many of these so-called unknown words may be Minoan, we can establish a kicking-off point for possible translations of these putative Minoan words. Such translations should be rigorously checked against the vocabulary of the extant corpus of Minoan Linear A, as found in John G. Younger’s database, here:

Linear A texts in transciption

I did just that and came up empty-handed. But that does not at all imply that the word is not Minoan, given that the extant lexicon of Linear A words is so limited, being as it is incomplete.

While all of this might seem a little overwhelming at first sight, once we have taken duly into account the most convincing translation of each and every one of the words on this tablet in its textual and real-world context, I believe we can attain such a translation, however constrained we are by our our twenty-first century unconscious assumptions. As for conscious assumptions, they simply will not do. 

In conclusion, Knossos tablet KN 894 N v 01 (Ashmolean) serves as exemplary a guide to Mycenaean chariot construction and design as any other substantive intact Linear B tablet in the same vein from Knossos. It is my intention to carry my observations and my conclusions on the vocabulary of Mycenaean chariot construction and design much further in an article I shall be publishing on academia.edu sometime in 2016. In it I shall conduct a thorough-going cross-comparative analysis of the chariot terminology on this tablet with that of several other tablets dealing specifically with chariots. This cross-comparative study is to result in a comprehensive lexicon of the vocabulary of Mycenaean chariot construction and design, fully taking into account Chris Tselentis’ Linear B Lexicon and L.R. Palmer’s extremely comprehensive Glossary of military terms relative to chariot construction and design on pp. 403-466 in his classic foundational masterpiece, The Interpretation of Mycenaean Texts.

So stay posted. 



Rita Roberts’ elegant translation of Knossos tablet KN 1548 Ok 02.

Once again, Rita Roberts has finessed a translation of an intact military tablet from Knossos. It is significant that Rita mentions that the hilt is directly riveted, whether to ivory overlaid on terebinth, or to the terebinth itself. Although the tablet does not explicitly mention rivets, it is obvious that this was the method the highly skilled Mycenaean sword craftsmen used to attached the blade to the hilt.

The following figures clearly illustrate the marked accuracy of her translation.

hilts

swords

Notice in particular the blue stones inlaid in the ivory on the second and third swords in figure 2, and especially in the second. If these stones are lapis lazuli, as I strongly suspect they are, then it follows almost as night follows day that the second sword in particular could only have been reserved for the wanax  transliterated from the Greek into Latin letters for those of you who cannot read Greek  (called wanaka in Linear B), the King of Mycenae, since lapis lazuli was worth a fortune in those days. The second sword could also have been his, though it may also have been the property of the second leader in the Mycenaean hierarchy, the lawaketa, or lawagetas (likewise transliterated into Latin letters) or the leader of the host, in other words the commander-in-chief, the general. I would bet my top dollars on this presumption. I wonder whether Rita would too.  

Bravo,  Rita.


Bibliography (Part A: citations 1-69) for the Presentation, The Rôle of Supersyllabograms in Mycenaean Linear B, by Richard Vallance Janke at the Pultusk Academy of the Humanities, Pultusk, Poland, June 30-July 2 2015 

Supersyllabograms by Richard Vallance Janke Pultusk Academy Humanities Warsaw

NOTES

1. The following abbreviations are always used for the sources they represent:

AJA		American Journal of Archaeology
ANCL		L’Antiquité classique
ASSC		Actes del XV Simposi de la Secció Catalana de la S.E.E.C.
BCH		Bulletin de correspondance hellénique
CAMB		Proceedings of the Cambridge Colloquium on Mycenaean Studies.
		Palmer, R.L. & Chadwick, John, eds. Cambridge: Cambridge University
		Press, © 1966. First paperback edition, © 2011. vii, 309 pp.
		ISBN 978-1-107-40246-1 (pbk.)
CMLB		Duhoux, Yves and Morpurgo Davies, Anna, eds. A Companion to
                Linear B: Mycenaean Greek Texts and their World. Vol. I.
                (Bibliotheque des Cahiers de l’Institut de Linguistique de
                Louvain 120). Louvaine-la-Neuve, France: Peeters, © 2014.
                292 pp.	ISBN 978-2-7584-0192-6 (France)
CRAN		Creta Antica		
CRR      	Colloquium Romanum: atti del XII colloquio internazionale di
		micenologia, Roma, 20 - 25 febbraio 2006
ECR     	Economic History Review
JHS      	Journal of Hellenic Studies	
KADM            Kadmos: Zeitschrift für Vor- und Frühgriechische Epigraphik
KOSM            Kosmos: Proceedings of the 13th. International Aegean Conference/
                13e Rencontre égéenne internationale. University of Copenhagen,
                Danish National Research Foundation’s Centre for Textile Research,
	        21-26 April 2010. Leuven-Liège: Peeters. Ix, 807+ pp. © 2012
KTMA   	        KTEMA, civilisations de l’orient, de la Grèce et de Rome antique.
	        Strasbourg: Université Marc Bloch de Strasbourg, Centre de
                recherches sur le proche orient et la Grèce antiques
MIN       	Minos: Revista de Filología Egea. ISSN: 0544-3733 	
MINR 		Minerva: Revista de Filología Clasíca
MYCAa		Risch, E. & Mühlestein, H., eds. Colloquium Mycenaeum. Actes du
		sixième colloque international sur les textes mycéniens et égéens
		tenu à Chaumont sur Neuchâtel du 7 au 13 septembre 1975, Neuchâtel.
		Genève : Librairie Droz. © 1979
MYCAb           Olivier J.-P., éd. Mykenaïka: Actes du IXe Colloque international
                sur les textes mycéniens et égéens, organisé par le Centre de
                l’Antiquité Grecque et Romaine de la Fondation Hellénique de
                l’École française d’Athènes (sic) (Athènes, 2-6 octobre 1990).
		Paris: BCH, Suppl. 25. © 1992
MYCAc 	        Carlier, P., de Lamberterie, C., et al. Etudes Mycéniennes 2010.
		Actes du XIIIè colloque	international sur les textes égéens,
                Sèvres,	Paris, Nanterre, 20–23 septembre 2010. Pisa et Roma,
                © 2012
OPUS		Opuscula, Annual of the Swedish Institutes at Athens and Rome
PALM		Palmer, L. R. The Interpretation of Mycenaean Texts. Oxford: Oxford
		University Press, © 1963. Special Edition for Sandpiper Books Ltd.,
		© 1998. xiii, 488 pp. ISBN 0-19-813144-5
PASR		Pasiphae: Rivista di filologia e antichità egee
REVC		Revista del Departament de Ciències de l’Antiguitat de
                l’Edat Mitjana  
SMEA		Studi Micenei ed Egeo-Anatolici  

2. Bibliographic Conventions for References & Notes and the Bibliography:

2.1 Monographs follow this convention:
Author(s) or Editor(s) -surname, first name-. Title. Place of publication: Publisher. no. of pages. © year of publication. ISBN(s) (if any. Books prior to 1965 do not have ISBNs)
2.2 Serials and Journals follow this convention:
Author(s) -surname, first name-. “Article Title”, pp. aa-bb (if any) in Journal Title. Vol. no., (issue no., if any), month (if any), year
2.3 Conventions and Colloquiums follow this convention, as far as possible, depending on the amount of bibliographical data provided:
Author(s) or Editor(s) -surname, first name-. Title. Place of publication: Publisher. no. of pages. © year of publication. ISBN(s) (if any. Books prior to 1965 do not have ISBNs) 
2.4 If the same author(s) or editor(s) with exact same title is/are cited a second time, or more than twice, each entry subsequent to the first one is tagged, Op. Cit. = opero citato, Latin for “in the work already cited”
2.5 If the same author(s) or editor(s) is/are cited under a title different from the first one or in a previous identical title or reference not immediately preceding the current one , each entry subsequent to the first one is tagged, Ibid. = Latin adverb ibidem, approximately equivalent to the English “by the same author(s) or editor(s) ”.
2.6 Monographs and articles, for which I have been unable to find sufficient bibliographical date are tagged (PDF) and may be downloaded in PDF format.
2.7 If there are more than two (2) or (3) Author(s) or Editor(s) for any given entry, the first two are named, followed by the tag, et al. = et alii, Latin for “and others”. 
2.8 If there is any error in any entry, orthographic or other, it is followed by the tag (sic) Latin for “thus”. 

Bibliography:

1. Alberti, M.E. “The Minoan Textile Industry and the Territory from Neopalatial to Mycenaean Times: Some First Thoughts”, pp. 243-263 in CRAN, Vol. 8, 2007 

2. Aravantinos, V.L., Godart Louis & Sacconi, A. Thebes. Fouilles de la Cadmee I. Les tablettes en lineaire B de la Odos Pelopidou. Édition et commentaire. Pisa and Rome: Istituti editoriali e poligrafici internazionali, © 2005. xii, 339 pp.
ISBN 88-8147-421-2.(hb) & ISBN 88-8147-434-4 (pbk.)

3. Barber E. J. W. Prehistoric Textiles. The Development of Cloth in the Neolithic and Bronze Ages with Special Reference to the Aegean. Princeton: Princeton University Press © 1991. 504 pp. ISBN-10: 069100224X & 13: 978-0691002248

4. Bernabé, A. & Luján, Eugenio R. “Mycenaean technology” pp. 201-233 in CMLB. (n.d.) undated. PDF 

5. Bennett E. L. Jr. “A Selection of Pylos Tablets Texts”, pp. 103-127 in Olivier Jean.-Paul, ed. MYCAb. Paris: BCH (Suppl. 25), 1992

6. Ibid. “The Structure of the Linear B Administration at Knossos”, pp. 231-249 in AJA. Vol. 94, no. 2, April 1990

7. Bennet, John. “ ‘Collectors’ or  ‘Owners’, An Examination of their Possible Functions Within the Palatial Economy of LM III Crete”, pp. 65-101 in Oliver, Jean-Pierre, ed. BCH (Supplément XXV). ISSN 0304-2456  

8. Ibid. “Knossos in Context: Comparative Perspectives on the Linear B Administration of LM II-III Crete”, pp. 193-211 in AJA. Vol. 89, no. 2, April 1985

9. Ibid. “Space Through Time: Diachronic Perspectives on the Spatial Organization of the Pylian State”, pp. 587-602. Plates LXIX-LXXI. PDF (bibliographic information lacking) 

10. Bennett, E.L. “The Landholders of Pylos”, pp. 103-133 in AJA. Vol. 60, 1956

11. Ibid. “The Olive Oil Tablets of Pylos. Texts of Inscriptions Found”, in MIN. Supp. 2, 1955

12. Ibid. The Pylos Tablets: A Preliminary Transcription. Princeton: Princeton University Press. xii, 117 pp. © 1951
 
13. Ibid. The Pylos Tablets: Texts of the Inscriptions Found, 1939-1954. London: Institute of Classical Studies. xxxiii, 252 pp. © 1955 

14. Bennett, E.L. & Olivier, Jean-Paul. “The Pylos Tablets Transcribed”, in Incunabula Graeca. Vol L1. Roma: Edizioni Dell’Ateneo. Moulos. Vol. 63, 1973 

15. Bennett E. L. Jr., Driessen J. M., et al. “436 raccords et quasi-raccords de fragments inédits”, pp. 199-242 dans KT 5, MIN. Vol 24, 1989

16. Bernabé, A. & Luján. Eugenio R. “Mycenaean Technology”, pp. 201-233 in CLMB

17. Bunimovitz, S. “Minoan-Mycenaean Olive Oil Production and Trade: A Review of the Current Research”, pp. 11-15 in Eitam, D., ed. Olive Oil in Antiquity: Israel and Neighboring Countries from Neolith (sic) to Early Arab Period. Haifa: University of Haifa. © 1987

18. Burke, B. 2010. From Minos to Midas: Ancient Cloth Production in the Aegean and in Anatolia. (Ancient Textiles Series, Vol. 7). Oxford: Oxbow Books. © 2010.
240 pp. ISBN: 9781842174067 

19. Carington-Smith, J. Weaving, Spinning and Textile Production in Greece: The Neolithic to Bronze Age. Australia: University of Tasmania.
(Ph.D. Dissertation) © 1975

20. Chadwick, John,  Killen, John T. & Olivier, Jean Paul. The Knossos Tablets.
4th ed. London: Cambridge University Press. © 1971. 486 pp. ISBN-10: 0521080851 & 13: 978-0521080859

21. Chadwick John. “Pylos Tablet Un 1322”, pp. 19-26 in Bennett E. L. Jr., ed. Mycenaean Studies. Proceedings of the Third International Colloquium for Mycenaean Studies Held at ‘Wingspread’, 4 -8 September 1961. Madison, Wisc. © 1964  

22. Davies, Lyn. A is for Ox: A short history of the alphabet. London: The Folio Society. 127 pp. © 2006. no ISBN  

23. Del Freo, Maurizio & Rougemont, Françoise. “Observations sur la série Of de Thèbes”, pp. 263-280. PDF (bibliographic information lacking)

24. Del Freo, Maurizio, Nosch Marie-Louise & Rougemont Françoise. “17. The Terminology of Textiles in the Linear B Tablets, including Some Considerations on Linear A Logograms and Abbreviations”, pp. 338-373 in Michel, C., Nosch Marie-Louise, eds. Textile Terminologies in the Ancient Near East and Mediterranean from the Third to the First Millennia BC. Oxford: Oxbow Books. (Ancient Textile Series, Vol. 8). Oxford: Oxbow Books. ©  2010. xix, 444 pp. ISBN: 978-1-84217-975-8

25. Demsky, Aaron. Jacob’s Herds in Light of Ancient Near Eastern Sources. n.d. (undated). PDF (bibliographic information lacking) 

26. Driessen, Jan. “The Arsenal of Knossos (Crete) and Mycenaean Chariot Forces” pp. 481-498 in Acta Archaeologica Anensia. Monographiae 8, 1995, in Lodewijckx, Marc, ed. Archaeological and Historical Aspects of West-European Societies. Album Amicorum André van Doorselaer. Leuven: Leuven University Press, © 1996

27. Driessen, Jan, et al. “107 raccords et quasi-raccords dans CoMIK 1 et II”, in BCH, Vol. 112, 1988

28. Duhoux, Y.  Aspects du vocabulaire économique mycénien (cadastre – artisanat – fiscalité). Amsterdam: A. M. Hakkert © 1976. 202 pp.
ISBN-10: 9025607128 & 13: 978-9025607128

29. Ibid. “Idéogrammes textiles du Linéaire B *146, *160, *165, et *166”, pp. 116-132 in MIN, Vol. 15, 1974

30. Duhoux, Y. “Mycenaean anthology”, pp. 243-393 in CMLB. Vol. I, no pagination.

31. Feinman, G.M. “Crafts, Specialists, and Markets in Mycenaean Greece. Re-envisioning Ancient Economies: Beyond Typological Constructs.” pp. 453-459 in AJA, Vol. 117, no. 3, 2013

32. Fine, John V.A. “The Early Aegean World”, pp. 1-23 in, Ibid. The Ancient Greeks: a Critical History. Cambridge, Mass.: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. ix, 720 pp. © 1983. ISBN 0-674-03314-0 (pbk.)

33. Finley, M.I. “The Mycenaean Tablets and Economic History”, pp. 128-141 in ECR. Vol. 10, 1957

34. Firth, R.J. “Re-considering Alum on the Linear B Tablets”, in Gillis, C. & Nosch Marie-Louise. Ancient Textiles: Production, Craft and Society: Proceedings of the First International Conference on Ancient Textiles, held at Lund, Sweden, and Copenhagen, Denmark, on March 19-23, 2003. Oxford: Oxbow Books. © 2007. 288 pp. ISBN-10: 1842172026 & 13: 978-1842172025

35. Firth, R.J. & Nosch Marie-Louise. “Scribe 103 and the Mycenaean Textile Industry at Knossos: The Lc(1) and Od(1)-Sets”, in MIN, Vol. 37-38, 2002-2003
  
36. Foster, E.D. “The Flax Impost at Pylos and Mycenaean Landholding”, pp. 549-560 in Vegetation History and Archaeobotany. Vol. 20, no. 6, 2011. ISSN 0939-6314
& e-ISSN 1617-6278

37. Foxhall, L. “Cargoes of the Heart's Desire: The Character of Trade in the Archaic Mediterranean World”, pp. 295-309 in Fisher, N. & Van Wees, H. eds. Archaic Greece, New Approaches and New Evidence. Duckworth: The Classical Press of Wales.
© 1998, reprint © 2008. 464 pp. ISBN 0715628097 & 978-0715628096 

38. García, Carlos Varias. “Festes i banquets a la Grièga antiga: orígens d’una tradició ininterrompuda”, pp. 517-532 in, Danés, J. et al. Estudis Clàssics: Imposició, Apologiao o Sedducció? Llieda, 21-23 octubre de 2005. © 2005
ISBN 678-84-690-9931-5

39. Ibid. “Industria y comercio en la sociedad Micénica”, pp. 11-37 in MINR, Número 16, 2002-2003

40. Ibid. La Metodología actual en el Estudio de los Textos micénicos: un Ejemplo práctico. pp. 353-365. PDF (bibliographic information lacking)

41. Ibid. “Observaciones sobre algunos textos gastronómicos de Micenas”, pp. 831-842 in, Aldama, Javier Alonso, et. al., eds. Stij a0mmoudiej tou Omhrou. Homenaje a la Professora Olga Omatos. Spain: Universidad del País Vasco. © n.d. (undated)

42. Ibid. “Un texto micénico singular sobre la industria textil de Cnoso: la tabilla Kn LN 1568”, pp. 442-446 in Zaragoza, Joana; Senmartí, Antoni González, edd. Homatge a Josep Alsina. Actes del Xè Simposi de la Secció Catalana de la SEEC. Tarragona, 28 a 30 de novembre 1990 

43. Godart Louis, Killen John T., et al. “43 raccords et quasi-raccords de fragments”, pp. 377-389, dans le volume I du Corpus of Mycenaean Inscriptions from Knossos. BCH, Vol. 110, 1986 

44. Ibid. “501 raccords et quasi-raccords de fragments dans les tablettes de Cnossos post KT-V”, pp. 373-410. PDF (bibliographic information lacking)

45. Greco, Allesandro. “Omologazione, integrazione, sostituzione: le procedure di  aggiornamento dei documenti inerenti alle greggi del palazzo di Cnoso (Standardization, Integration, Replacement: Procedure for Updating the Documents Pertaining to Knossos Flocks)”, pp. 217-246 in CRAN. (Centro di Archeologia Cretese, Università di Catania). Vol. 2., 2002

46. Ibid. Scribi et Pastori, Amministrazione et gestione nell’archivio di Cnosso. Athens: SAIA (Italian Archaeological School of Athens), Series: Tripodes (Archeologia Antropologica Storia). © 2011. iii, 732pp. ISBN: 978-960-98397-7-8

47. Gregersen, Marie Louise Bech. “Craftsmen in the Linear B Archives”, pp. 43-55 in Gillis, Carole, Risberg, Christian & Sjöberg, Birgitta, eds. Trade and Production in Premonetary Greece. Proceedings of the 4th. and 5th. International Workshops, Athens, 1994 and 1995. Paul Åströms förlag, © 1997

48. Gulizio, Joann. Mycenaean Religion at Knossos. Austin: University of Texas at Austin. (Phd. Thesis), August, 2011.
This dissertation addresses methodological issues in the archaeological and textual evidence for religion in Knossos (LM II-LM IIIB1). The economic focus of Linear B tablets means that there is limited information about religion. It is difficult to assess archaeological evidence for phases of cult practice at Knossos in light of the time line of palace administration. Thus archaeological and textual evidence appears in two temporal phases, allowing for a more accurate assessment of the evolution of religious beliefs and practices in the late Bronze Age culture of Knossos. While earlier Minoan shrines persist, they are incorporated into the pantheon of the new Indo-European deities at Knossos introduced by the newly-established Greek elite. Eventually, the epithets of several Minoan divinities often replace the Greek theonyms in ritual offerings, although Minoan shrines fade from use. Consequently, the nature of Mycenaean religious observances at Knossos represents a unique blend of both Minoan and Mycenaean religious beliefs and practices. 

49. Hammond, N.G.L. Chapter 2, “The Greek Mainland and Mycenaean Civilization”,
pp. 36-71 in Ibid. A History of Greece to 322 B.C. Oxford: Clarendon Press. xxi, 691 pp. Third Edition, © 1986. ISBN 0-19-873093-0 (pbk.)

50. Hiller S. “A-pi-qo-ro amphipoloi”, pp. 239-255 in Killen J. T., Melena, José. L. & Olivier J.-P., eds. Studies in Mycenaean and Classical Greek presented to John Chadwick, Salamanca, in MIN, Vol. 20-22, 1987

51. Hutton, William F. The Meaning of QE-TE-O in Linear B. pp. 105-131. PZN INT CANADA (University of Calgary, Department of Classics). nd. (undated). PDF (bibliographic information lacking)

52. James, S.A. “The Thebes tablets and the Fq series: a contextual analysis”,
pp. 397–417 in MIN. Vol. 37–38, 2006

53. Jones, D.M. “Land tenure at Pakijane: some doubts and questions”. pp. 245-249 in CAMB.

54. Killen John T. “The Knossos Ld(1) Tablets”, in MYCAa

55. Ibid. “The Knossos Nc Tablets”, pp. 33-38 in CAMB

56. Ibid. “Last year’s debts on the Pylos Ma tablets”, pp. 173-188 in SMEA.
Vol. 25, 1984

57. Ibid. “Linear B a-ko-ra-ja/-jo”,  pp. 117-125 in Morpurgo Davies A. & Meid W., eds. Studies in Greek, Italic and Indo-European Linguistics offered to Leonard R. Palmer on the Occasion of His Seventieth Birthday. Innsbruck: Innsbrucker Beiträge zur Sprachwissenschaft, 16. © 1976

58. Ibid. “The Linear B Tablets and Mycenaean Economy”, in Morpurgo, Davies A. & Duhoux Y., eds. Linear B: A 1984 Survey: Proceedings of the Mycenaean Colloquium of the VIIIth Congress of the International Federation of the Societies of Classical Studies (Dublin, , 27 August -1st September 1984). Louvain-La-Neuve: Peeters.
© 1985. 310 pp. ISBN 2870772890 & 9782870772898 

59. Ibid. “Mycenaean economy”, pp. 159-200 in CMLB. Vol. I. 

60. Ibid. “Some thoughts on ta-ra-si-ja”, pp. 161-180 in Voutsaki S. & Killen John T., eds. Economy and Politics in the Mycenaean Palace States. Proceedings of a Conference held on 1-3 July 1999 in the Faculty of Classics, Cambridge. Cambridge: (TCPhS Suppl. 27). ©  2001

61. Ibid. & Olivier, Jean-Paul. “The Knossos Tablets. A Transliteration”, pp. 292-294 in ANCL. Vol. 34, no 1, 1965

62. Ibid. Studies in Mycenaean and Classical Greek presented to John Chadwick, pp. 319-323 in MIN. Vol. 20-22, 1987

63. Ibid. “388 raccords de fragments dans les tablettes de Cnossos”,
pp. 47-92 in CAMB

64. Lane, Michael Franklin. 14. From DA-MO to DHMOS: Survival of a Mycenaean Land Allocation Tradition in the Classical Period? pp. 110-116 n.d. (undated). 

65. Ibid. “Landholding at PA-KA-JA-NA: Toward Spatial Modeling of Mycenaean Agricultural Estates”, pp. 61-115 in PASR. Vol 6. 2012.
ISSN 1974-0565 & ISSN elettronico 2037-738

66. Ibid. Linear B pe-re-ke-u, pe-re-ke and  pe-re-ko: Contextual Analysis and Etymological Notes. pp. 76-99. PDF (bibliographic information lacking)

67. Lejeune, M. “Chars et Roues à Cnossos: Structure d 'un inventaire”, pp.287-330 in Ibid. Mémoires de philologie mycénienne, lll. Rome, 1972, in Minos.
pp. 9-61. Vol. 9, 1968

68. Ibid. “Le récapitulatif du cadastre Ep de Pylos”, pp. 260-264 in CAMB

69. Ibid. “Sur quelques termes du vocabulaire economique mycenien”, pp. 77–109 in Bennett, E.L., ed. Mycenaean studies. Proceedings of the third international colloquium for Mycenaean studies held at “Wingspread”, 4–8 September 1961. Madison, Wisconsin  © 1964

Part B, Citations 70-138 to follow in the next post.

Richard


The Famous “Dolphin Fresco” at Knossos on Papyrus! Minoan Literature? Did any Exist?

Click to ENLARGE

Replica of the Dolphin Fresco Knossos on papyrus

Here you see a magnificent reproduction of the famous “Dolphin Fresco” at Knossos reprinted on Papyrus, which I purchased for the astonishing price of 10 euros while I was visiting the site on May 2, 2012. The colours on this papyrus version are so vibrant no photograph can fully do justice to them. Nevertheless, the photo turned out wonderfully, and if you would like to use it yourself, please feel free to do so. I even framed it to enhance it.

Papyrus in Minoan/Mycenaean Crete?

The very idea of reprinting one of the amazing Knossos frescoes onto papyrus may seem blasphemous to some, but certainly not to me. It raises the very astute question: did the Minoans, writing in Linear A or in Linear B, ever produce any literature as such? Consent is almost unanimous on the Internet and in print – No! They did not write any literature. But not so fast! It strikes me as peculiar - indeed very peculiar – that a civilization as advanced and sophisticated as that of Knossos, in both the Minoan Linear A eras (Middle Minoan – early Late Minoan) and in the Mycenaean Linear B era (Late Minoan), may very well have had a literature of its own, for these reasons, if none other:

(a) Creation Myths:

Ancient Egypt, Babylon, Assyria, the Hittites and other proto-literate civilizations, at least had a religious literature, whether or not it was composed on papyrus (as with Egypt), here at Wikipedia:

The sun rises over the circular mound of creation as goddesses pour out the primeval waters around it

Egyptian Creation Myth Sunrise_at_Creation 

or on baked clay tablets, as with the Babylonians, here:

The Enûma_Eliš Epic (Creation Myth) ca. 1,000 lines long on 7 tablets: 

Enûma_Eliš Creation Myth

Proemium:

When on high the heaven had not been named,
Firm ground below had not been called by name,
When primordial Apsu, their begetter,
And Mummu-Tiamat, she who bore them all,
Their waters mingled as a single body,
No reed hut had sprung forth, no marshland had appeared,
None of the gods had been brought into being,
And none bore a name, and no destinies determined--
Then it was that the gods were formed in the midst of heaven.
Lahmu and Lahamu were brought forth, by name they were called.


the famous Sumerian Myth of Gilgamesh on 7 Tablets here:

Epic of Gilgamesh

and the Sumerian & Akkadian Myths, including that of Gilgamesh, here:

Akkadian Gilgamesh:

Akkadian cuneiform-gilgamesh

(b) The implications of the astounding achievements of the highly advanced Minoan Civilization for a putative literature of their own:

Just because the Minoans, writing in Linear A or in Linear B, left behind no literature as such on their administrative inventory tablets, does not necessarily mean that they never wrote any literature at all. That strikes me as bordering on nonsensical, since Knossos always had the closest economic and cultural ties with Egypt and with all of the other great civilizations contemporaneous with her. Egypt, above all, set great store on the inestimable value of Knossian, Minoan and Mycenaean artifacts such as gold, in which the Mycenaean artisans were especially gifted, lapis lazuli, of which the finest quality in the entire known world issued from Knossos; Minoan & Mycenaean pottery and wares, which again were of the most splendid designs; Minoan textiles and dyes, again the finest to be found, and on and on. In fact, the Minoans were rightly renowned as the among the very best dyers in the entire known world.

But why stop there? Why should such an obviously advanced civilization as the Minoan, with its understanding of the basic principles of hydraulics, quite beyond the ken of any other contemporary civilization, and with its utterly unique airy architecture, based on the the most elegant geometric principles, again quite unlike anything else to found in the then-known world, not have a literature of its own? To me, the idea seems almost preposterous.

(c) If the Minoans & Mycenaeans did write any literature, what medium would they most likely have used for it?

The question remains, if they did have a literature of their own, it too was most likely religious in nature. But on what medium would they have written it down? - certainly not on their minuscule tablets, as these were so tiny as to virtually exclude the composition of any religious literature such as that of the origin of mankind (very much in currency at that era in the other civilizations mentioned above). Again, the Minoan scribes writing in Linear B used their tiny tablets solely for ephemeral annual accounting and inventories. Still, I can hear some of you objecting, “But the Babylonians and other civilizations wrote down their creation myths on tablets!” Fair enough. Yet those tablets were larger, and they were deliberately baked to last as long as possible (and they have!), quite unlike the Minoan & Mycenaean ephemeral administrative tablets, which were never baked.  And, as if it isn’t obvious, one civilization is not necessary like another, not even in the same historical era. This is especially so when it comes to the Minoan civilization – and to a very large extent to its cousin, the Mycenaean, versus all others at the time, since clearly the socio-cultural, architectural and artistic defining characteristics of the former (Minoan/Mycenaean) were largely very much at odds with those of the latter, (Egypt, Babylon, Assyria etc.), much more ostentatious than the Minoans... except for one thing...

We are still left with the question of medium. If the Minoans, writing in Linear A and later in Linear B, did have a literature, and let us assume for the sake of argument that they did, which medium would they have used? Before I get right down to that, allow me to point out the Knossos was, as it were, the New York City of the Bronze Age, the metropolis at the very hub of all international trade and commerce on the Mediterranean Sea. All you need to do is look at any map of the Mediterranean, and you can see at a glance that Knossos was located smack dab in the centre of all trade routes to all other great civilizations of her day and age, as we quite clearly see on this composite map: Click to ENLARGE

Minoan Trade Routes 1600-1400 BCE

Is it any wonder that no-one was particularly bent on attacking her, or any other city on the island of Crete, such as Phaistos, since after all everyone everywhere strictly depended on Knossos as the very nexus of international trade? No wonder the city was never fortified. This pretty much how Knossos looked at her height: Click to ENLARGE

role-of-knossos-in-the-trojan-war-according-to-homer

No walls or fortifications of any kind in evidence! That alone is a very powerful indicator of the critical commercial value of Knossos as the very hub of international commerce in her era. But more than anywhere else, the archaeological evidence powerfully evinces a very close trade relationship between Knossos and Egypt, since Minoan jewelry, textiles, pottery and wares have shown up in considerable amounts – sometimes even hordes - in Egyptian archaeological sites. The Egyptians clearly placed extreme value on Minoan goods, as exquisitely crafted as they were. So what? - I hear you exclaim.

So what indeed. These major trading partners each must have had something to trade with the other that the other was in desperate need of. And in the case of Knossos and the Minoans, the Egyptian commodity they would probably have needed most of all would be, you have it, papyrus. The Cretan climate was not dry enough for them to produce it themselves. So they would have had to rely exclusively on Egypt for what was, after all, one of the most precious commodities of the entire Bronze Age.

If we accept this hypothesis – and I see no reason why we should not at least seriously entertain it – then the Minoans may very well have used papyrus and ink to record their religious literature. There is some evidence, however second-hand and circumstantial, that they may have composed religious texts, and possibly even a religious epic, on papyrus.

This evidence, although only secondary, if we are inclined to accept it as such – is the high incidence of the names of Minoan and Mycenaean deities and priestesses, and even of religious rites, on the Linear B accounting and inventory tablets from Pylos, over all other Minoan/Mycenaean sites. Why on earth even bother mentioning the names of so many gods so frequently on minuscule tablets otherwise dealing almost exclusively with anything as boring – yet naturally economically vital - as statistics and inventories of livestock, crops, military equipment, vases and pottery, and the like? There was nothing economically useful about religious rites or babbling on about deities. So why bother, unless it was a matter of real significance to the Minoans and Mycenaeans? But ostensibly, it was. Chuck economics, at least where religion is concerned, they apparently believed. This cannot come as any surprise in the ancient world, and of course, in the Bronze Age itself, where religions and superstitious beliefs were rampant, playing an enormous and absolutely essential rôle in virtually every civilization, every society, great or small. This composite of Minoan/Mycenaean deities, which were were found in droves on every single Minoan/Mycenaean site, makes this blatantly obvious: Click to ENLARGE 

Minoan goddesses TOP Mycenaean goddesses B

(d) The implications of a putative Minoan & Mycenaean military literature in The Catalogue of Ships in Book II of the Iliad: 
  
Given this scenario, I am seriously inclined to believe that not only did the Minoan and Mycenaean scribes writing in Linear B (leaving Minoan Linear A aside for the time being) keep track of religious rites, and possibly even compose a creation myth of their own on papyrus, but that they may very well have also written down a stripped down written version of their oral military epic, their own story of the Trojan War, and if so, the most accurate version of the events of that war. Their original history of the Trojan war would have almost certainly been much more factual than the version of The Catalogue of Ships in Book II of The Iliad, which must have been derived from it, had it existed. This would go a long way to explaining why the Greek of The Catalogue of Ships in Book II of The Iliad is written in the most archaic, and the most-Mycenaean like Greek in the entire Iliad – not to say that Mycenaean Greek does not appear elsewhere in both the Iliad and the Odyssey, because, surprise, surprise, it most certainly does.  

There is one passage in The Catalogue of Ships which really brings this sort of scenario to the fore. I refer specifically to lines 645-652, which read as follows in the original Greek and in my translation: Click to ENLARGE

Iliad II Catalogue of Ships Role of Knossos and Crete in the Trojan Wariliad-2-615-652 (1)

It is passingly strange that Homer bluntly states, in no uncertain terms, that Knossos and Crete were major contributors to the Achaean fleet in the Trojan War, since everyone these days, archaeologists and literati alike, assume without question that Knossos fell long before the Trojan War (ca. 1450-1425 BCE). So who is right?  Homer? - us? -anyone? How on earth can we resolve the blatant discrepancy? We cannot, nor shall we ever. But the fact remains that this extremely important passage in The Catalogue of Ships in Book II of The Iliad leaves me quite unsettled. Since Homer is obviously convinced that Knossos and some 100(!) Cretan cities did figure prominently in the Trojan War, where on earth did he get his information from? I for one believe it is quite conceivable that rewrites on papyrus of some Minoan documents from Knossos and possibly even Phaistos may still have been in existence when Homer wrote the Iliad, or that at least stories of their prior existence were still in circulation. If you think correlatively as I always do, this hypothesis cannot simply be dismissed out of hand.

For my in-depth discussion of this very important question, please refer to this post:

RipleyBelieveitorNot Knossos in the Trojan War

(e) If the Minoans and Mycenaeans wrote some sort of religious and/military literature of their own on papyrus, there is absolutely no evidence that they did! 

This leaves us with only one final consideration. If the Minoans and Mycenaeans actually did compose documents on papyrus, where are they all? The answer to that stares us in the face. While the scribes would have taken great pains to assiduously preserve documents on papyrus in dry storage while the city of Knossos was still flourishing, these same documents would all have rotted away entirely and in no time flat, once Knossos and the Minoan civilization had collapsed. Crete was not Egypt. Egypt’s climate was bone dry; the climate of Crete was, and still is, Mediterranean. Ergo, the whole argument against the Minoans and Mycenaeans ever having had a literature of their own, composed on papyrus scrolls is de natura sua tautological, as is the argument they did. 50/50. Take your choice. But since I am never one to leave no stone unturned, I much prefer the latter scenario.

NOTE: This post took me over 8 (!) hours to compile. So I would appreciate if at least some of you would tag it LIKE, comment on it, or better still, reblog it!
For all the intense work Rita and I put into this great blog of ours, it often shocks me that so few people seem to take much interest in some of our most compelling posts. I am merely letting you know how I feel. Thanks so much. 


Richard

  


Fantastic new Blog on the Internet all about #ancient #Greek #warriors & #weapons including #Mycenaean. You simply HAVE to check it out! Richard

KORYVANTES Association published work

Thank you so much, Adonis Koryvantes, for not only inviting me to
join your blog, but for allowing me to be an author. I sincerely
hope I can contribute some really useful posts. PS I hope you got
my invitation to my blog!
In case you are not already following me on Twitter, here is my
account:

https://twitter.com/vallance22

I am already following you on Twitter.

I shall soon post some of the lovely photos of Mycenae I took when
I was there in early May, 2012.

Richard

Meanwhile, you may wish to check out this post on Linear B, Knossos
& Mycenae: Click on the composite of the Frescoes to read this post
the composite is much larger on my blog)

composite of frescoes at Knossos10 of the Loveliest Frescoes from Knossos (Composite): Choose your Favourite(s)! Click to ENLARGE: These frescoes are as follows: [1] The Fresco of the Dolphins in the Queen’s Megaron…

View original post 252 more words


CONTEST QUIZ & LOVELY BOOK PRIZES! Are these statuettes of the Mistress of the Hunt, Zeus & the Priestess of the Winds? Click to ENLARGE:

Potnia Theron Diwo Anemoieriya
NOTE that this POST is classified under the heading MEDIA at the top of this blog. If you click on MEDIA, you will find it much faster than if you simply try scrolling through the hundreds of posts on our blog.

It is quite possible that these 3 statuettes are, from left to right, (a) Potnia Theron (Mistress of the Hunt), (b) DIWO (in Mycenaean Greek) or ZEUS & (c) ANEMOIYEREA (The Minoan Mycenaean Priestess of the Winds). For more on the Priestess of the Winds, click on this BANNER:
 
POST Anemoiyerea
But they may not be. Who is to say, if not you yourself? So why not tell us, and we will let you know if you are right. Moreover, if you get the answer EXACTLY right, you will win FIRST PRIZE of a fine edition of W. Ceram’s Gods, Graves and Scholars, and if you get the closest answer to the FIRST PRIZE winning answer, your SECOND PRIZE is another fine book on The Minoans. See below for details.

HOW TO ENTER THE CONTEST: It is simple. Answer any of questions (a) to (d) below as you see fit.

To reply with your answer, you may either:
(a) leave your reply in the Comments section for this post; or
(b) send me your answer to either of my e-mail accounts:

vallance22@gmail.com

OR

vallance22@gmx.com

(Since I must protect myself from spammers, these e-mail links are not live in this post.
You must add my e-mail address to your address book.)

THIS CONTEST QUIZ IS OPEN UNTIL JULY 1 2015.

Good luck!  

HOW I FOUND THESE AMAZING STATUETTES!     

While watching a truly fascinating TV program this morning, I happened to see these three statuettes, which I instantly recognized as quite possibly being dated anywhere from the late Bronze Age to the early Iron Age (ca. 1300-800 BCE). Just one look at them, and you can see for yourselves that they could easily date from within these five centuries. But the question is, do they, and if they do not, what are they? Do not kid yourself, this is an extremely tricky quiz question, because, unless you have actually seen the program yourself and you recognized them flash across the screen, then you cannot possibly know the answer. However, to be fair, I shall give everyone out there, whether or not you are an expert in ancient Greek archaeology, an historian of ancient Greece, or an aficionado of all things ancient, more than an even break to guess the right answer... and there is only one. 

THIS QUIZ IS SO DIFFICULT IT IS OPEN TO EVERYONE, EVEN MY CO-RESIDENT BLOGGER, RITA ROBERTS.

Answer these questions as you see fit:
(a) Are these statuettes genuine ancient Greek artifacts, Minoan, Mycenaean or early Iron Age? OR
(b) If not, are statuettes from another ancient civilization, and if, so, which one? OR
(c) Are these statuettes fake? AND
(d) If they are fake, precisely what are they? If you believe (c) to be true, then you must answer (d) precisely, i.e. you must identify exactly what these statuettes are and the actual name of the program from which they are derived. The only way anyone can get this last option (d) correct is if you have actually seen the program in question, and even then, I my be leading you astray. In other words, either (a) or (b) may be the right answer, or on the other hand (c) and (d). YOU DECIDE.

There are two beautiful prizes to be won:
FIRST PRIZE: for the person who tells me precisely what they are, down to the very last detail, providing the actual names of each statute in turn, AND the name of the TV program where I found them, this magnificent volume:

Ceram, C.W. Gods, Graves, and Scholars: the Story of Archaeology. London: the Folio Society, © 1999. xxx, 528 pp. Illustrated with full colour and black & white plates. Bound in full buckram, printed on Inveresk Wove paper by the Bath Press.
Approximate Value: $80

Ceram Gods Graves and Scholars Folio
 
SECOND PRIZE: for the person who tells me gets the closest to the answer for the first PRIZE, down to the very last detail, providing the actual names of each statute in turn, but missing out on only one or two details, this splendid book: 

Fitton, J. Lesley. The Minoans. London: the Folio Society, © 2004. xix, 392 pp. Illustrated with full colour and black & white plates. Bound in full cloth, printed on Abbey Wove paper by Cambridge University Press. Approximate Value: $65

Fitton Minoans Folio

NOTE: IF YOU STILL HAVE ANY QUESTIONS OR ARE IN ANY WAY UNSURE HOW TO ANSWER THE QUESTION, PLEASE FEEL FREE TO CONTACT ME IN COMMENTS HERE ON THE BLOG OR BY E-MAIL.


Richard

A Map of the Mycenaean Empire & a Quiz?


A Map of the Mycenaean Empire & a Quiz?

A Blank Map of the the Mycenaean Empire & a Quiz to Test your Memory Skills + a Prize of a Set of Beautiful Photos

Click to ENLARGE:

CBMycenaean world BLANK 

Whoever guesses the largest number correct names of the major Mycenaean cities and settlements on this map (those tagged with a RED SQUARE), and the name of least one of the cities they conquered (tagged with a BLACK SQUARE) will win a beautiful set of 50 photos I took of ruins at Ephesis, Pergamon, Knossos, Mycenae & Epidaurus on my fabulous vacation in the Mediterranean in May 2012.

Richard
 

Two maps of Mycenaean Greece, the Second Illustrating the Mycenaean Empire’s Extensive Trade Routes

Map of Mycenaean Greece and the Orient ca 1450 BCE

Click to ENLARGE this map of the Mycenaean Empire’s Trade Routes:

Map of Mycenaean Greece ca 1250 BCE

It is perfectly clear from this map that the extent of the Mycenaean Empire was as vast as that of the great Athenian Empire some 700-800 years after the fall of Mycenae ca. 1200 BCE. While the actual epicentres of these two great Greek empires, that of Mycenae, the earliest of them all, and that of Athens, were not the same (which goes without saying), amazingly their network of trade routes extended to virtually the same places, some very far away, especially in light of the great difficulties encountered by ancient Bronze and Iron age mariners in their little ships on the high seas. The very fact that they, the Mycenaeans,the Egyptians, the Athenians, the Romans and everyone else in the ancent world had to do all of their international trading in the spring, summer and early autumn, when the Mediterranean Sea was relatively calm speaks volumes to the wide extent and the robust economic strength of their trade routes.  We see here that the Mycenaean trade routes did in fact reach as far as and apparently even beyond Sicily, astonishing as that seems, as well as all the way to Egypt. The Minoan Empire had previously carried on a hefty trade relationship with Egypt before them.

Richard

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