Tag Archive: leather



Translation of Linear B tablet KN 571 Rb 01 by Rita Roberts:

KN 571 R b 01

This is the very last tablet Rita Roberts has had to translate to fulfill the requirements of her third year of university.  In 3 years she has translated at least 250 tablets. Congratulations are in order! 


Translation of Knossos tablet KN LD (1) 573 by Rita Roberts:

Knossos tablet KN 573 textiles

This tablet presents several difficulties. While a literal translation is adequate, we must use our imagination to render a fluent translation. For instance, in line 1.we translate “delivered free” as “tariff free”, since in line 2. the cloth is “foreign”, i.e. “imported”, as well as being “decorated”  or more accurately “embroidered”. In addition in 3. the supersyllabogram WI can mean either simply “leather” or “made of leather”, implying that there is a piece made of leather to go with the imported embroidered cloth. So as we can see, this is far from being a straightforward translation. It is in fact one of the most difficult tablets Rita Roberts has ever had to translate. 


Supersyllabograms in the Military Sector of Mycenaean Linear B:

supersyllabograms for the military sector small

The Table above illustrates all of the supersyllabograms in the military sector of the Minoan/Mycenaean economy. These are identified in Linear B first, then in archaic Greek, and then translated into English. The Linear B Latinized names for each of the supersyllabograms follow, starting TOP DOWN with the left column and then the right.

LEFT COLUMN:

dapu = double axe
kito = chiton
mono = single, spare
qero (ouisia) * = (wicker) shield
qeqinomeno = made by twisting, woven

RIGHT COLUMN:

rino = linen
rousiyewiya = a part of the reins made of leather
perekeu ** = axe
wirineo = leather
zeukesi = a pair of, a set of wheels, a team of horses (derived from the Greek zeugos for “yoke”

NOTES:
* The supersyllabogram is simply QE, but it stands for qero ousiya = “a wicker shield”
** The supersyllabogram is actually WE, which may not seem to make much sense, given that the word it represents is perekeu = “an axe”, but there you have it. That is what it is.

And these are the actual supersyllabograms in the military sector.

SSYLS military actual

PS This is for you, Rita!


The last two military supersyllabograms KO & WI with (animal) hide:

Military supersyllabogram KO & WI with hide

The military supersyllabograms KO kowo = “fleece” & WI = (kito) wirineo = “leather (chiton)” with (animal) hide are the last two we can account for in the military sector. Although I have not been able to find either of them on any extant Linear B. Tablet, they are attested according to John Chadwick.

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