Tag Archive: Lexicon



Supplement to the Comprehensive Linear A Lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: Onomastics and Topomastics: +12 = 904 - 916

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It is understood that I have personally interpreted the words below as either eponyms (personal names) or toponyms (place names), but some of them may be neither, being perhaps merely words. It is also possible that one or more of the 3 terms I have listed as onomastics may be topomastics, and that any number of those I have classed as topomastics may be onomastics (or neither).

Onomastics: 

Kanajami
Tateikezare
Tidiate

Toponomastics:

Akanu = Archanes (Crete)
Dawa (Haghia Triada) 5
Dikate = Mount Dikte
Idaa = Mount Ida
Kura
Meza (= Linear B Masa)
Paito = Phaistos (= Linear B) 10
Sukirita/Sukiriteija = Sybrita
Winadu = Linear B Inato 12

TOTAL for the Comprehensive Linear A Lexicon = 916


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 801-903 = TI - ZU

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tikuja
tikuneda
timaruri/timaruwite
timasa 
timi 
timunuta
tina
tinakarunau
tinata (common)/tinita
tinesekuda 810
tininaka
tinu 
tinuka
tinusekiqa
tio
tiqatediti
tiqe/tiqeri/tiqeu
tiraduja
tirakapa3
tira2 820
tire
tisa 
tisiritua
tisudapa
tita
titema
titiku
titima
tiu
tiumaja 830
tizanukaa
toipa
tome
toreqa 
tuda
tujuma
tukidija
tukuse
tuma/tumi/tumitizase
tunada/tunapa 840
tunapa3ku
tunija
tupadida
tuqe
turaa
turunuseme
turusa
tusi/tusu/tusupu2
tute
tutesi 850
udamia
udimi
udiriki
uju
uki 
uminase 
unaa
unadi (common)
unakanasi
unarukanasi/unarukanati 860
uqeti 
urewi
usu
uta/uta2
utaise
utaro
uti
waduko
wadunimi
waja 870
wanai
wapusua
wara2qa
watepidu 
watumare
wazudu
widina
widui 
wija 
wijasumatiti 880
winadu
winipa
winu
winumatari
wiraremite
wireu 
wirudu
wisasane
witero
zadeu/zadeujuraa 890
zadua
zama/zame
zanwaija
zapa
zarse/zaredu/zareki/zaresea
zasata
zirinima
zudu
zukupi
zuma 900
zupaku
zusiza
zute 903


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 701-800 = SI - TI

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sina
sinada
sinae
sinakanau (common)
sinakase
sinamiu
sinatakira
sinedui
sipiki
sipu3ka 710
siriki
siwamaa
sokanipu
sudaja
suja
suniku (common) 
sure
Suria
suropa
siru/sirute 720
sirumarita2
sitetu
situ 
sokemase
sutu/sutunara
suu
suzu
taa
tadaki/tadati
tadeuka 730
taikama 
tainumapa
ta2tare
ta2tite
tajusu
takaa/takari
taki/taku/takui 
tamaduda
tamaru
temeku 740
tami/tamia/tamisi
tanamaje
tanate/tanati 
tani/taniria/tanirizu 
taniti
tanunikina
tapa 
tapiida
tapiqe
tara/tarina 750
tarejanai
tarikisu
taritama
tasa/tasaja
tasise
tata/tati
tateikezare
ta2merakodisi
ta2re/ta2reki
ta2riki 760
ta2rimarusi
ta2u
tedasi/tedatiqa
tedekima
teepikia
teizatima
tejai 
tejuda
teke/teki
tekidia 770
temada/temadai
temirerawi
tenamipi
tenata/tenataa
tenatunapa3ku
tenekuka
teneruda
teniku
tenitaki
tenu/tenumi (common)  780
tera/tere/teri 
teraseda
tereau
terikama 
teridu
tero 
teroa
terusi (extremely common)
tesi/tesiqe 
tesudesekei 790
tetu
tetita2
tewirumati
tidama
tidata
tiditeqati
tiduitii/tiisako
tija
tika 
tikiqa 800


							

Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 601-700 = RE - SI

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rezakeiteta
ria (common)
ridu
rikata
rima
rimisi 
ripaku
ripatu
riqesa
rira/riruma/rirumate 610
risa
risaipa3dai
risumasuri
ritaje
rite/ritepi
ritoe
rodaa/rodaki
roika 
roke/roki/roku
romaku 620
romasa
ronadi
rore/roreka
rosa 
rosirasiro 
rotau
rotwei
rua
rudedi
ruiko
rujamime
ruka/rukaa/ruki/rukike
ruko
rukue
ruma 
rumu/rumata/rumatase
rupoka
ruqa/ruqaqa (common)
rusa (common/rusaka
rusi 
rutari
rutia
ruzuna
sadi
saja/sajama
sajea
saka
sama/samaro
samidae
sanitii 650
sapo
sapi
saqa
saqeri
sara2/sarara
sareju
saro/saru/sarutu
sasaja
sasame
sea
sedire
sei
seikama
seimasusaa
seitau
sejarapaja
sejasinataki
sesasinunaa
sekadidi
sekatapi 670
sekidi
semake
semetu
senu
sepa
sekutu
sesapa3
setamaru 
setira
Setoija 680
sewaude
sezami
sezanitao
sezaredu
sezatimitu
sia
sidare/sidate
sidi
sidija 
sii/siisi 690
siitau
sija
sijanakarunau
sika 
siketapi
sikine
sikira/sikirita
sima 
simara
simita 700


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 501-600 = PI - RE

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pitara
piwaa/piwaja/piwi
posa 
potokuro 
puqe 
pura2 
pusa/pusi
pusuqe
pu2juzu
pu2su/pu2sutu 510
pu3pi
pu3tama
qaka
qanuma
qapaja/qapajanai
qaqada
qaqaru 
qera2u/qara2wa 
qareto 
qaro 520
qasaraku
qatidate
qatiki
qatiju
qedeminu
qeja 
qeka
qenamiku
qenupa
qepaka 530
qepita
qepu 
qequre
qera2u
qerosa
qeta2e
qesusui
qesite
qesizue
qesupu 540
qeti/qetieradu
qetune
raa
rada/radaa/radakuku/radami
radarua
radasija
radizu
radu 
ra2rore
raja/raju 550
rakaa
raki/rakii
rakisi/raku
ranatusu
rani 
raodiki
rapa/rapu
rapu3ra
raqeda
rarasa
rarua
rasa 560
rasamii
rasasaa/rasasaja
rasi
rata/ratapi 
ratada
ratise
razua
ra2i
ra2ka
ra2madami 570
ra2miki
ra2natipiwa
ra2pu/ra2pu2 
ra2ru
ra2saa
rea
reda (common)/redamija/redana/redasi
redise
reduja
reja/rejapa (common) 580
rekau
rekotuku
reku/rekuqa/rekuqe 
rema/remi 
rematuwa
renara/renaraa
renute
repa 
repu2dudatapa
repu3du 590
reqasuo
reradu
reratarumi
rera2tusi
rerora2
resi/resu
retaa/retada
retaka
retata2
retema 600


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 401-500 = NA - PI

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nasi
nasisea
nataa/nataje
natanidua
natareki (common) 
nati 
nazuku/nazuru
nea/neakoa
nedia
nedira
neka/nekisi 410
nemaduka
nemaruja
nemiduda
nemusaa
nenaarasaja
neqa
neramaa
nerapa/nerapaa
nesa/nesaki/nesakimi
nesasawi 420
nesekuda
neta 
netapa
netuqe
nidapa
nidiki/nidiwa
niduti
nijanu
niku/nikutitii
nimi 430
nipa3
niro/niru
nisi 
nisudu
niti 
nizuka 
nizuuka
nua
nude
nuki/nukisikija 440
numida/numideqe
nupa3ku (extremely common)
nupi
nuqetu
nuti/nutini
nutiuteranata
nutu
nuwi
odami/odamia 450
opi
osuqare
otanize
oteja
pa (common)/paa
padaru
padasuti
pade
padupaa
pa3katari 460
pa3ni/pa3nina/pa3niwi
paja/pajai 
pajare
paka (very common)/paku (very common)/pakuka
pamanuita 
panuqe 
para
paria 
paroda
pasu 470
pata/patu 
pa3a/pa3ana 
pa3da 
pa3dipo
pa3kija
pa3ku
pa3pa3ku
pa3roka
pa3sase
pa3waja 480
pa3qa
panuqe
parane
parosu 
pasarija
pase
pasu
pata 
patada
patane 490
pia/pii
pija/pijawa
piku/pikui
pikuzu
pimata
pina/pini 
pirueju 
Pisa
pita/pitaja 
pitakase/pitakesi 500


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: 301-400 = KU - NA

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kureju
kuro
kuruku
kuruma
kutiti 
kutukore
kuzuni
maadf
madadu
madi  310
mai/maimi
masaja 
majutu
makaise/makaita
makarite
makidete
mana/manapi (common) 320
maniki
manirizu
manuqa 320
maru/maruku/maruri 
masa 
masi 
masuri
matapu
mateti
matiti
matizaite
matu 
masuja 330
maza/mazu
meda
medakidi
mepajai
mera 
merasasaa/merasasaja (very common)
mesasa
mesenurutu
meto
meturaa 340
meza 
mia
midai
midani
midamara
midara
mide
midiu
mie
miima 350
mijanika
mijuke
mikidua
mikisena
minaminapii
minedu
mini/miniduwa
minumi
minute 
mio/miowa 360
mipa
mireja
miru
mirutarare
misimiri
misuma
mita 
miturea
mujatewi
muko 370
mupi
muru
musaja
naa
nadare
nadi/nadiradi/nadiredi
nadiwi
nadu
nadunapu2a
naisizamikao 380
naka 
nakiki
nakininuta
nakuda
namarasasaja
nmatiti
nami
namikua/namikuda
namine
nanau 390
nanipa3
napa3du
narepirea
naridi
narinarikui
narita
naroka
naru 
nasarea
nasekimi 400


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: the third one hundred = 201-300 = JA - KU

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jatituku + jatituku
jatoja
jawi
jedi
jeka
jemanata
jua
judu
juerupi
juka 210
juma/jumaku
juraa
jureku
juresa
jutiqa
juu
ka (extremely common)  
kada/kadasaa
kadi
kadumane 220
kae
kai/kaika 
kairo
kaji/kaju
kaki/kaku 
kakunete  
kami 
kana 
kanatiti
kanau 
kanita
kanuti
kapa/kapaqe 
kaporu
kapusi
kaqa/kaqe
kara
karona
karu 
karunau/karunau 240
kasaru
kasi
kasidizuitanai
kasikidaa 
katanite
kati
kaudeta
keire 
kekiru 
kero 
keta/kete 
ketesunata
kezadidi
kida/kidi 
kidaro
kidata
kidini
kidiora
kii/kiipa
kikiraja 260
kija
kika
kikadi
kina
kinima/ kinite
kipaa
kipisi (fairly common)
kiqa
kira/kiro/kirisi/kiru 
kireta2 270
kiretana
kisusetu
kitai 
kite 
kitiqa
koiru 
koja
kopu 
koru
kosaiti 280
kuda
kuja
kujude
kuka 
kukudara
kumaju
kumapu
kunisu
kupa/kupi
kupatikidadia 290
kupa3natu
kupa3nu
kupa3pa3
kupa3rija
kupaja
kupari
kupazu
kura/kuramu
kurasaqa
kureda 300 


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: the second one hundred = 101-200 = DI - JA

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This is the most comprehensive Linear A Lexicon ever published on the Internet. 

This lexicon comprises all of the intact words in John G. Younger’s Linear A Reverse Lexicon (which is far from comprehensive) plus every last intact word on every single tablet or fragment at his site, wherever any of the latter are not found in the former. By my count, there are 903 words, 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 Linear A Reverse Lexicon. Although Prof. John G. Younger has tallied some 903 Linear A words on his site, Linear A Texts in phonetic transcription, his actual lexicon is far from complete. Consequently, it has been necessary for me to draw all of the intact Linear words from every last Linear A tablet and fragment on Prof. Younger’s site. The difficulty here is that his lexicon includes even those Linear A words containing unknown syllabograms, many of which are assigned numeric values only, e.g. *309 *318 *319 *346-348 etc. And there are a number of them. The problem with all of these syllabograms is that no one knows what their phonetic values are. So it goes without saying that every last Minoan Linear A word which contains even one of these unknown syllabograms should, properly speaking, be disqualified. Moreover, there is  redundancy in some of the vocabulary, since quite a few Linear A words on his site are simply variants of one another. To cite just a few examples, we have: daka/daki/daku/dakuna; maru/maruku/maruri; nesa, nesaki, nesakimi; and tami, tamia, tamisi. Consequently, I have also eliminated all of the variants on any given term. This leaves us with a remaindered total of 903, exclusive of onomastics (personal names) and topomastics (place names).

Words which are apparent variants of one another are listed as one entry, e.g.

daka/daki/daku/dakuna 
dakusenete(ti)
japa/japadi/kapaku
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. Strings of syllabograms > than 15 characters.

NOTE: I have already deciphered well over 200 Linear A words, but none of these are tagged in this comprehensive Linear A Lexicon. I shall be posting my decipherments at a later date.

dipa3a
diqise
dirasa
diredina
dirina
diru
disa
disipita
ditajaru
du/dua 110
duja
dumaina
dumedi
dunawi
dupa3na
dupu3re
dura2
durare 
duratiqe
durezase 120
dusi/dusini
dusima
dusu
duti
duwi
duzu
edamisa
eka
epa3
ero 130
esija
ezusiqe
ia
Ida/Idaa
idada
idapa3
idamate/idamete 
idarea 
idunesi
iduti 140
ijadi
ijapame
ika
ikesedesute
ikurina
ikuta
ima 
imeti
inajapaqa
inaimadu 150
ipinama
ira2  
iruja
isari
ise
itaja
itaki 
itijukui
itinisa
ititikuna 160
izurinita
jaa
jadi/jadikitu
jadireja
jadisi
jadu
jadurati
jai 
jaiterikisu
jaitose 170
jainwaza
jaja
jakisikinu
jako/jaku/jakute
jamaa
jami/jamidare
januti 
japa/japadi/japaku
japametu 
japarajase 180
japanidami
jara2qe
jare/jaremi
jarepu2
jarete
jari/jarina/jarinu
jaripa3ku
jarisapa
jaru/jarui
jasaraanane 190
jasaja
jasapai
jasamu
jasasarame
jasea 
jasepa
jasie
jasumatu 
jata/jatai/jatapi
jate/jateo 200


Comprehensive Linear A lexicon of 903 words in Linear A: the first one hundred = 1-100 = A - DI

Complete Linear A Lexicon banner

This is the most comprehensive Linear A Lexicon ever published on the Internet. 

This lexicon comprises all of the intact words in John G. Younger’s Linear A Reverse Lexicon (which is far from comprehensive) plus every last intact word on every single tablet or fragment at his site, wherever any of the latter are not found in the former. By my count, there are 903 words, 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 Linear A Reverse Lexicon. Although Prof. John G. Younger has tallied some 903 Linear A words on his site, Linear A Texts in phonetic transcription, his actual lexicon is far from complete. Consequently, it has been necessary for me to draw all of the intact Linear words from every last Linear A tablet and fragment on Prof. Younger’s site. The difficulty here is that his lexicon includes even those Linear A words containing unknown syllabograms, many of which are assigned numeric values only, e.g. *309 *318 *319 *346-348 etc. And there are a number of them. The problem with all of these syllabograms is that no one knows what their phonetic values are. So it goes without saying that every last Minoan Linear A word which contains even one of these unknown syllabograms should, properly speaking, be disqualified. Moreover, there is  redundancy in some of the vocabulary, since quite a few Linear A words on his site are simply variants of one another. To cite just a few examples, we have: daka/daki/daku/dakuna; maru/maruku/maruri; nesa, nesaki, nesakimi; and tami, tamia, tamisi. Consequently, I have also eliminated all of the variants on any given term. This leaves us with a remaindered total of 903, exclusive of onomastics (personal names) and topomastics (place names).

Words which are apparent variants of one another are listed as one entry, e.g.

daka/daki/daku/dakuna 
dakusenete(ti)
japa/japadi/kapaku
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. Strings of syllabograms > than 15 characters.

NOTE: I have already deciphered well over 200 Linear A words, but none of these are tagged in this comprehensive Linear A Lexicon. I shall be posting my decipherments at a later date.

a
adai
adakisika
adara/adaro
ade/adu
adunitana
aduza
ajesa
aju
akaru
akanuzati  10
aki
akipiete
akumina
ama
amaja 
amidao/amidau
amita
ana 
anatu 
anau 20
anepiti
aparane
apaki 
api
araju 
aranare
aratu
arauda
aredai
arepirena 30
aresana
ari/arinita
aripa 
arisu 
arote 
aru/arudara
aruma 
arura 
asamune
asara2/asararame 40
asasumaise
ase/asi
aseja
asadaka
asidatoi
asijaka
asikira
asisupoa
asuja
asupuwa 50
atanate
atare 
ati 
atika 
atiru
aurete
awapi
azura
daa
dadai/dadana 60
dadipatu
dadumata
dadumine
daku/dakuna
dai/daina
daipita
dajute
daka/daki/daku/dakuna/dakusene(ti)
dami/daminu 
dame/damate 70
danasi
danekuti
daqaqa
dare 
darida
daqera
darunete
daserate
datapa
datara/datare/datu 80
dea 
deauwase
dedi
dejuku
demirirema
depa/depu
deripa 
detaa
dide/didi
dideru 90
didikase/didikaze
dii
dija/dije 
dika 
dikime
dikise
dima 
dimedu
dinaro
dinau 100



Proto-Greek or Mycenaean kiritai = barley on Minoan Linear A tablet HT 114 (Haghia Triada):

Like many other Linear A tablets, HT 114 (Haghia Triada) does not appear to be inscribed only in the Minoan language. The proto-Greek or, more accurately, the Mycenaean word, kirita2 (kiritai), which means barley and which is almost exactly equivalent to Linear B, kirita, meaning the very same thing, appears on the very first line of this tablet. The only difference is that the Linear A word, kiritai, is plural, whereas the Linear B, kirita, is singular, as we can see here:

Minoan Linear A tablet HT 114 Haghia Triade

While the rest of HT 114 is inscribed in Minoan, the appearance of this one Mycenaean word gives pause. Was Linear A the syllabary of proto-Greek or of Mycenaean Greek just before the advent of the new official syllabary, Linear B? The fact is that it was not. However, this does not mean that there was not proto-Greek or Mycenaean vocabulary on Linear A tablets. How can this be, when the language itself is not proto-Greek?

The phenomenon of the superimposition of a superstratum of vocabulary from a source language (Mycenaean in the case of Linear A) onto a target language (Minoan), is historically not unique to the Minoan language. A strikingly similar event occurred in English with the conquest of England by William the Conqueror in 1066 AD. Before that date, the only English was Anglo-Saxon. This is what is called Old English. But after conquest of England in 1066 AD, over 10,000 Norman French words streamed into the language between 1100 and 1450 AD, altering the landscape of English vocabulary almost beyond recognition. In fact, believe it or not, only 26 % of English vocabulary is Germanic versus 29 % is French, 29 % Latin and 6 % Greek. So the latter 3 languages, amounting to 64 % of the entire English lexicon, have completely overshadowed the Old English (Anglo-Saxon) Germanic vocabulary, as illustrated in this Figure:

origins of English vocabulary

This phenomenon is unique to English alone among all of the Germanic languages. While the grammar and syntax of English is Germanic, the great majority of its vocabulary is not. A strikingly similar event appears to have occurred when the Mycenaeans conquered Knossos, is dependencies and Crete ca. 1500 – 1450 BCE. Just as the Norman French superstratum has imposed itself on Old English, giving rise to Middle and Modern English, Mycenaean Greek operated in much the same fashion when it superimposed itself on Old Minoan, leading to New Minoan vocabulary, which is proto-Greek or Mycenaean. I have already isolated no fewer than 150 proto-Greek or Mycenaean words out of 510 intact words (by my own arbitrary count) in the Linear A lexicon. Again, while the Minoan language itself is not proto-Greek in its grammar and syntax, but is of another, to date still unknown, origin, a large portion of its vocabulary is not Old Minoan, but instead proto-Greek or Mycenaean, as I shall demonstrate in no uncertain terms in my decipherments of numerous Linear A tablets to follow this one. One striking feature of New Minoan is this: the percentage of proto-Greek or Mycenaean vocabulary in Linear B comes to 29 %, precisely the same level as Norman French in English. Although this is sheer co-incidence, it is quite intriguing.


Proto-Greek Decipherment of Minoan Linear A silver pin from Mavro Spelio (Middle Minoan III = MM III) in the Heraklion Museum, Greece:

epingle-argent-kn-zf-31 620

This decipherment of Minoan Linear A silver pin from Mavro Spelio (Middle Minoan III = MM III) in the Heraklion Museum, Greece relies rather heavily on the debatable notion that Minoan Linear A is by and large proto-Greek, a theory espoused by Urii Mosenkis, one of the world’s most highly qualified linguists specializing in diachronic historical linguistics, including, but not limited to Minoan Linear A. Accordingly, I have deliberately interpreted ample chunks of the Minoan Linear a vocabulary on this silver pin as being proto-Greek, even though such a decipherment is surely contentious, at least in (large) part.

While the first line of my decipherment makes sense by and large, the second is more dubious. It is apparent that the Minoan Linear A word dadu on the first line is almost certainly not proto-Greek, but the last two syllables of dadumine, ie. mine appear to be the dative singular for the (archaic) Greek word for month, i.e. meinei (Latinized), such that the decipherment of this word at least would appear to read  in the month of dadu. There is nothing really all that strange or peculiar about this interpretation, since we know the names of the months neither in Minoan Linear A nor in Mycenaean Linear B. However, a definite note of caution must be sounded with respect to the decipherment of this word, as well as of all of the other so-called proto-Greek words on this silver pin, since none of them can be verified with sufficient circumstantial evidence or on the contrary. Hence, all translations of putative proto-Greek words in Minoan Linear A must be taken with a grain of salt.

While the second line on this pin, if taken as proto-Greek, makes some sense, it is much less convincing than the first, especially in light of the trailing word at the end, tatheis (Greek Latinized, apparently for the aorist participle passive of the verb teino (Latinized) = to stretch/strain, which actually does not make a lot of sense in the context.

Nevertheless, it would appear that at least some of the Minoan Linear A words which I have interpreted  as being proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean may in fact be that. I leave it up to you to decide which one(s) are and which are not, if any in fact are. Additionally, even if a few or some of them are proto-Greek, they may fall within the pre-Greek substratum. The most dubious of the so-called proto-Greek words on this pin probably are qami -, tasaza & tatei, since none of these are likely to have fallen within the pre-Greek substratum. 

But if the Minoan language itself is not proto-Greek, then what is it? I shall have ample occasion to address this apparently thorny question in upcoming posts and especially in my second article on the decipherment of Minoan Linear A, which I shall be submitting to Archaeology and Science by no later than April 17, 2017. 


Minoan Linear provides significant evidence of the presence of proto-Greek or even (proto) – Mycenaean in its vocabulary:

Minoan Linear provides significant evidence of the presence of proto-Greek or even (proto) – Mycenaean in its vocabulary, as attested by this Table (Table 2a & Table 2B), which I have had to divide into two parts because it is so long. So we have

Table 2a Minoan words of apparent proto-Greek origin… or are they in the pre-Greek substratum? A-M:

 

Minoan Linear A apparent proto-Greek Table 2 a 620

and Table 2b: N-W:

Table 2b minoan apparent proto-greek 620

It is readily apparent from this Table in two parts that all of the words listed in it may be interpreted as proto-Greek or possibly even (proto-) Mycenaean. But the operative word is may, not certainly. This is because (a) Minoan Linear A, like Mycenaean Linear B, makes no distinction between Greek short and long vowels and (b) like Mycenaean Linear B, the Linear A syllabary is deficient in representing a number of Greek consonants, which otherwise might have been the initial consonants of the successive syllabic series, e.g. da de di do du, ka ke ki ko ku, ta te ti to tu etc. The following Greek consonants, first illustrated in this table of the ancient Greek alphabet including the archaic digamma, which was in widespread use in Mycenaean Linear B, are tagged with an asterisk * :

 

ancient Greek alphabet with digamma

and here Latinized for accessibility to our visitors who cannot read Greek, i.e. b, g, eita (long i) , ksi, fi (pi), chi (as in Scottish loch), psi and omega. Because of these lacuna and the notable ambiguities which arise from it, it is not possible to verify that the so-called proto-Greek or (proto-) Mycenaean words listed in Tables 2a & 2b are in fact that. However, chances are good that they are proto-Greek. Additionally, it is not possible to verify whether or not a few, some or even all of the words in Tables 2a and 2b, which appear to be proto-Greek actually fall within the pre-Greek substratum. If the latter scenario is true, then it is more likely than not that a few, some or even all of these words are in fact Minoan. There is no way to verify this for certain. Nevertheless, numerous international researchers into Minoan Linear A, most notably, Urii Mosenkis, one of the world’s most highly qualified linguists specializing in diachronic historical linguistics, including, but not limited to Minoan Linear A, who stands in the top 0.1 % of 40 million users on academia.edu:

 

Urii Mosenkis academia.edu

have provided significant convincing circumstantial evidence that there are even hundreds of proto-Greek words in Minoan Linear A, which begs the question, is Minoan Linear A proto-Greek? But the answer to the question is not nearly so obvious as one might think, as I shall be demonstrating in my second article, Current prospects for the decipherment of Minoan Linear A”, which I will be submitting to the prestigious international annual journal, Archaeology and Science (Belgrade) by no later than April 17 2017, the deadline for submissions.

There is no positive, indisputable proof that there are any number of proto-Greek or proto-Greek words in Minoan Linear A, any more than there is any positive proof whatsoever that, as Gretchen Leonhardt would have us believe, that there are any number of proto-Altaic or proto-Japanese words, if any at all, in the Minoan language. As for her hypothesis, for which there not even any substantive circumstantial evidence whatsoever, it is my firm belief and contention that she is, to use the common expression, wasting her time and energy barking up the wrong tree.


Can super efficient quantum computers be of assistance at overcoming the seemingly insurmountable obstacles facing us in even a partial decipherment of Minoan Linear A?

Quantum computers, as exemplified by the fantastically powerful D-Wave computer system invented by Canadians and now fully operational in 2017 (Click on their banner to jump to their site):


d-wave-logo

most probably will prove to represent or in fact be a revolutionary development in the power and artificial intelligence of computers even now, as early as twenty-first century (say bu 2025 or so). The D-Wave computer is purported to be 10 million times faster than the most powerful supercomputer on earth! It was recently put to the test to solve an exceedingly complex protein synthesis model, and it did so 3,600 times faster than the the most powerful supercomputer on earth! That is a simply astonishing feat. In fact, quantum computers are purported to be able to solve seemingly impossible problems totally beyond the ken of the fastest supercomputer in the world.

If this proves to be so, is it not conceivable that applying the smarts of a quantum computer such as the D-Wave might lead to real advances in the potential decipherment of Minoan Linear A?

Take for instance my recent analysis and synopsis on the practically unimaginable formidable obstacles facing us in even beginning to get a handle on the syntax and semiotics of Minoan Linear A:

postobstacles

Is it not conceivable that a quantum computer such as the D-Wave might be able to at least make a dent in the potential decipherment, however partial, of Minoan Linear A? Or is it not? The question is not hypothetical. Proponents of the awesome power of quantum computers purport to be able to resolve supremely complex problems completely beyond the reach of even the most powerful of conventional digital supercomputers, as illustrated in this composite:

quantum-computers-intelligence-applications-decipherment

However, there may very well remain possibly insurmountable obstacles even for quantum computers in tackling a seemingly unsolvable problem as fractious as the decipherment of Minoan Linear A, however tentative. Some of the truly form obstacles that can and almost certainly shall practicably stand in the way of quantum computers being able to tackle this redoubtable challenge are:

In spite of the astonishing claims that proponents of quantum computing make for its potential in solving intractable problems which even the most powerful supercomputers cannot even hope to address, what is the substance of these claims? This scenario needs to be logically parsed.
1. Just because quantum computers have unquestionably proven to be able to realize exponentially more efficient leaps in some (and I lay the emphasis on just some) activities, this does not necessarily mean that these quantum leaps imply a parallel or even corresponding quantum leap in AI (artificial intelligence) learning.
2. Even if such a corresponding quantum leap in AI (artificial intelligence) learning were to prove practicable, and in effect take place (possibly by 2025), what is meant by AI (artificial intelligence) or to take the proposition even further, what is implied by the admittedly vague term superintelligence?
3. Do advanced AI or superintelligence necessarily have to conform to or mimic human intelligence, or might they possibly constitute a  discrete, self-contained phenomenon in and of themselves?
4. And if so (i.e. if 3), then would such a superintelligence (or 1 among many) be able to resolve problems, such as specifically, the potential decipherment, even if merely partial, of Minoan Linear A, (anywhere near) as well as human intelligence can? Or put another way, can quantum computing AI or superintelligent learning strategies mimic and even complement human learning strategies?
5. Or if they cannot (i.e. accomplish 4.), can they perhaps accomplish something along the same lines as human learning strategies just because they may in fact not actually resemble human intelligence?

These are just a few of the factors we must absolutely take into consideration if we are to make any assumptions whatsoever over the potential for quantum computers, no matter how clever they may turn out to be and in what sense clever, to accomplish a task as mind-boggling as even the partial decipherment of Minoan Linear A. I shall have plenty more to say about the potentialities of quantum computing in the realm of diachronic linguist decipherment in future, but the introduction suffices for now.


KEY POST! The truly formidable obstacles facing us in even a partial decipherment of Minoan Linear A:

Any attempt, however concerted, at even a partial decipherment of Minoan Linear A is bound to meet with tremendous obstacles, as illustrated all too dramatically by this table:

minoan-linear-a-prefixes-roots-stems-suffixes

These obstacles include, but are not prescribed by:

1. The fact that there are far fewer extant Minoan Linear A tablets and fragments, of which the vast majority are mere fragments (no more than 500), most of them un intelligible, than there are extant tablets and fragments in Mycenaean Linear B (well in excess of 4,500), of which the latter are mostly legible, even the fragments.

2. The fact that Mycenaean Linear B has been completely deciphered, first by Michael Ventris in 1952 and secondly, by myself in closing the last gap in the decipherment of Mycenaean Linear B, namely, the decipherment of supersyllabograms in my article, The Decipherment of Supersyllabograms in Linear B, in the illustrious international archaeological annual, Archaeology and Science, ISSN 1452-7448, Vol. 11 (2015), pp. 73-108, here:

cover-as-2015


This final stage in the decipherment of Mycenaean Linear B has effectively brought closure to its decipherment.

As illustrated all too conspicuously by this table of apparent roots/stems and/or prefixes of Minoan Linear A lexemes and their lemmas, we are still a long way off from being able to convincingly decipher Minoan Linear A.

At the categorical sub-levels of the syntax and semiotics of Minoan Linear A, we cannot even begin to determine which categories to isolate, let alone what these categories are. Allow me to illustrate in discriminative terms:

3. As the table of Minoan Linear A so-called roots & stems + prefixes above all too amply highlights, we cannot even tell which first syllable or which of the first 2 syllables of any of the Minoan Linear A words in this list is/are either (a) roots or stems of the Minoan Linear A lexemes or lemmas which it/they initiate or (b) prefixes of them, even if I have tentatively identified some as the former and some as the latter (See the table).

4. In the case of roots or stems, which ones are roots and which are stems? What is the difference between the two in Minoan Linear A? Let us take a couple of entries as examples to illustrate my point:

4.1 The 3 words beginning with the apparent root or stem asi, (I cannot tell which is which), the first 2 syllables of asidatoi, asijaka & asikira may not even be roots or stems of these words at all, but prefixes of 3 probably unrelated words instead. Who is to know?
4.2 If asidatoi, asijaka & asikira are either nouns or adjectives, what is the gender and number of each one? To say the very least, it is rash to assume that asidatoi is plural, just because it looks like an ancient Greek masculine plural (as for example in Mycenaean Linear B teoi (gods) or masculine plurals in any other ancient Greek dialect for that matter, since that assumption is based on the most likely untenable hypothesis that Minoan Linear A is some form of proto-Greek, in spite of the fact that several current linguistic researchers into Minoan Linear A believe precisely that. The operative word is “believe”, since absolutely no convincing circumstantial evidence has ever come to the fore that Minoan Linear A is some form of proto-Greek.
4.3 The conclusion which I have drawn here, that Minoan Linear A may not be proto-Greek, arises from the fact that almost all of the Minoan words in this table bear little or no resemblance at all even to Mycenaean Greek.
4.5 But there clearly exceptions to the previous hypothesis, these being words such as depa and depu, of which the former is a perfect match with the Homeric, depa, meaning  “a cup”.

On the other hand, depu is less certain. However, in my preliminary tentative decipherment of 107 Minoan Linear A words (which are to appear in my article to be published in Vol. 12 of Archaeology and Science, 2017-2018), I have come to the tentative conclusion that the ultimate u in almost all Minoan Linear A words is quite likely to be a macro designator. If this were so, depu would be larger than depa. So a translation along the lines of [2] “a large cup” or “a libation cup” might be in order. Still, I could be dead wrong in this assumption.
4.6 However, the lexeme depa does appear to reveal one probable characteristic of Minoan Linear A grammar, that the ultimate for the feminine singular may very well be a, as in so many other languages, ancient or modern (let alone Greek). If that is the case, then words such as asijaka, asikira, keta, kipa, saja, sina and tamia may possibly all be feminine singular... that is to say, if any, some or even all of them are either nouns or adjectives, clearly a point of contention in and of itself. Who are we to say that one or more of these words may instead be adverbs or some person, singular or plural, of some conjugation in some tense or mood of some Minoan Linear A verb? On the other hand, at least one or more or even most of these words and the other words in this table ending in a may be nouns or adjectives in the feminine singular. But one again, who can say at all for sure?
4.7 If the ultimate u is supposed to be a macro designator, how then are we to account for the fact that [3] maruku, which very much looks like a (declensional) variant of maru, means “made of wool”, which itself has nothing whatsoever to do with a macro designator, if at the same time the apparent lexeme maru actually does mean “wool”? After all, one might conclude, maru looks a lot like Mycenaean Linear B mari or mare, which as everyone knows, does mean “wool”. But it is just as likely as not that the assumption that maru means “wool”, and its variants maruku “made of wool” ? (a guess at best) and maruri = “with wool” have nothing whatsoever to do with wool in Minoan Linear A.
4.8 In fact, the hypothesis that maruri = “with wool” is based on yet another assumption, namely, that the termination ri is dative singular, similar to the commonplace dative singular oi, ai or i in Mycenaean Linear B. But if that is the case, this implies that Minoan Linear A is probably proto-Greek, for which there is no substantive evidence whatsoever. So we wind up mired in a flat out contradiction in terms, in other words, an inescapable paradox.  
4.9a Next, taking all of the words beginning with the root or stem? - or prefix? sina [4], what on earth are we to make of so many variants? Perhaps this is a conjugation of some verb in some tense or mood. If that is the case, we should expect 6 variations, first, second and third persons singular and plural. Or should we? What about the possible existence of the dual in Minoan Linear A? But here again we find ourselves smack up against the assumption we have just made in 4.5, 4.6, 4.7 & 4.8, that the putative Minoan verb beginning with the so-called root or stem sina is itself proto-Greek.

But I have to ask out loud, are you aware of any verb in ancient Greek which begins with the root or stem sina? Well, according to  Liddell & Scott’s Greek-English Lexicon, there are in fact 2, which I have Latinized here for ease of access to those of you who cannot read Greek, and these are, (1) sinamoreo (infinitive sinamorein), which means “to damage wantonly” and (2) sinomai, “to plunder, spoil or pillage”. The problem is that neither of these ancient Greek verbs bears any resemblance to or corresponds in any conceivable way with the 7 Minoan Linear A variants post-fixed to sina. So I repeat, for the sake of emphasis, are these 7 all variants on some Minoan Linear A verb or are they not?

4.9b What if on the other hand, all 7 of these variants post-fixed to sina are instead a declension of some Minoan noun or adjective in Linear A? It is certainly conceivable that there are 7 cases in the Minoan language, in view of the fact that plenty of ancient and modern languages have 7 cases or more. Latin has six: nominative, genitive, dative, accusative, ablative and vocative. But ancient Greek has only 5, nominative, genitive, dative and accusative and vocative, the ablative absolute (which occurs in Latin) subsumed under the genitive absolute. From this perspective, it would appear quite unlikely that the 7 Minoan Linear A variants on sina are proto-Greek declensions, especially in light of the fact that, once again, none of them bears any resemblance to the ancient Greek, sinapi = “mustard”, sinion = “sieve” or sinos = “hurt, harm, mischief, damage” (nominative).

5. Moving on to taniria and tanirizui [5], we could of course once again draw the (most likely untenable) conclusion if taniria is a feminine singular noun, then tanirizui must be/is dative singular, following the template for the dative singular in Mycenaean Linear B (i, ai or oi). But once again, there is no word in ancient Greek bearing any resemblance to these critters. And once again, even if Minoan Linear A had a dative singular, why on earth would it have to end in i?

6. However, when we come to the 4 words reza, adureza, kireza and tireza, we are confronted with another phenomenon. 3 of these 4 words (adureza, kireza and tireza) each in turn apparently are prefixed by adu, ki and ti. Makes sense at first sight. However, once again, appearances can be terribly deceiving. 

Nevertheless, in my preliminary decipherment of Minoan Linear A, I have drawn the tentative conclusion that all four of these words are intimately interconnected. And in the actual context of the few extant Minoan Linear A tablets and fragments in which these 4 terms appear, it very much looks as if they are all terms of measurement. But you will have to await the publication of my article on the tentative decipherment of 107 Minoan Linear A words in Vol. 12 (2017-2018) of Archaeology and Science to discover how I came to this conclusion.

7. Notwithstanding the fact that almost all of the words in this highly selective table of Minoan Linear A lexemes and lemmas (whichever ones are which), with the exception of depa and depu, as well as winu, which may be the Minoan Linear A equivalent of Mycenaean Linear B woino = “wine”, appear not to be proto-Greek, that does not imply that at least a few or even some are in fact proto-Greek, based on this hypothesis: a number of words in Mycenaean Linear B, all of which appear to be proto-Greek, disappeared completely from later ancient Greek dialects. Among these we count a number of Mycenaean Greek words designating some kind of cloth, namely, pawea, pukatariya, tetukowoa and wehano [pg. 94, The Decipherment of Supersyllabograms in Linear B, in Archaeology and Science, Vol. 11 (2016)], plus several other Mycenaean Linear B words listed in the same article, which I do not repeat here due to space limitations. However, I must toss a wrench even into the assumption that the words designating some kinds of cloth (but which kinds we shall never know) are Mycenaean Linear B Greek or even proto-Greek, when they may not be at all! What if a few, some or all of them are in the pre-Greek substratum? If that is the case, are they Minoan, even if none of them appear on any extant Minoan Linear A tablet or fragment? Who is to say they are not?

For instance, there is another so called Mycenaean or proto-Greek word, kidapa, which may very well mean “(ash) wood” or “a type of wood”, found only on Linear B tablet KN 894 N v 01. This word has a suspiciously Minoan ring to it. Just because it does not appear on any extant Minoan Linear A tablet or fragment does not necessarily imply that it is not Minoan or that it at least falls within the pre-Greek substratum.

CONCLUSIONS:
It must be glaringly obvious from all of the observations I have made on the Minoan Linear A terms in the table above that the more we try to make any sense of the syntactic and semiotic structure of the Minoan language in Linear A, the more and more mired we get in irresolvable contradictions in terms and paradoxes. Moreover, who is to say that the so-called proto-Greek words which surface in Minoan Linear A are proto-Greek at all, since they may instead be pre-Greek substratum words disguised as proto-Greek. We can take this hypothesis even further. Who is to say that the several so-called proto-Greek words we find in Mycenaean Greek, all of which disappeared completely from the ancient Greek lexicon in all Greek dialects after the fall of Mycenae ca. 1200 BCE, are also not proto-Greek but are instead in the pre-Greek substratum or even, if they fall into that substratum, that they are instead Minoan words or words of some other non Indo-European origin? We have landed in a real quagmire.

So I find myself obliged to posit the hypothesis that, for the time being at least, any attempt at the putative decipherment of Minoan Linear A is inexorably bound to lead straight to a dead end. I challenge any philologists or linguist specializing in ancient languages to actually prove otherwise even with circumstantial evidence to the contrary.



6 more Minoan Linear A putative proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean words: DA-DI. But are they proto-Greek at all?

minoan-linear-a-pre-greek-substrate-da-di

As we forge our way through Prof. John G. Younger’s Reverse Linear A Lexicon, in which he Latinizes the orthography of Minoan Linear A words,  we now arrive at Linear A words beginning with the syllabograms DA through to DI.  It is absolutely de rigueur to read the Notes in the table above; otherwise, my tentative decipherments of 6 more Minoan words in Linear A as being possibly proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean will not make any sense at all.  The table also draws attention to those words which are of moderate frequency (MF) on Minoan Linear A tablets and fragments, with the far greater proportion of them appearing on mere fragments. I cannot emphasize this point enough. In view of the fact that the vast majority of Minoan Linear A extant remnants are just that, remnants or fragments and nothing more, it is of course next to impossible to verify whether or not the 6 words I have extrapolated (or for that matter any other so-called proto-Greek words)  as possibly being  proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean are that at all. 

Add to this caveat that researchers and linguists specializing in ancient Greek often hypothesize that, and I quote verbatim:

It is possible that Greek took over some thousand words and proper names from such a language (or languages), because some of its vocabulary cannot be satisfactorily explained as deriving from the Proto-Greek language (italics mine). Among these pre-Greek substratum words we find Anatolian loanwords such as:
dépas ‘cup; pot, vessel’, Mycenaean di-pa, from the Luwian = tipa = sky, bowl or cup, one of the pre-Greek substratum words right in the table above! 
+ eléphas ‘ivory’, from Hittite lahpa;
+ kýmbachos ‘helmet’, from Hittite kupahi ‘headgear’; 
+ kýmbalon ‘cymbal’, from Hittite huhupal ‘wooden percussion instrument’; 
+ mólybdos ‘lead’, Mycenaean mo-ri-wo-do, from Lydian mariwda(s)k ‘the dark ones’ etc.

But there is more, significantly more. Wikipedia, Greek language:

wikipedia-greek-language

has this to say about Greek vocabulary.

Vocabulary:

Greek is a language distinguished by an extensive vocabulary. Most of the vocabulary of Ancient Greek was inherited, but it includes a number of borrowings from the languages of the populations that inhabited Greece before the arrival of Proto-Greeks. (italics mine) [25] Words of non-Indo-European origin can be traced into Greek from as early as Mycenaean times; they include a large number of Greek toponyms. 

Further discussion of a pre-Greek substratum continues here:

wikipedia-pre-greek-substrate

Where, in addition to the pre-Greek substratum words I have already cited above, we find, and again I quote verbatim:

The Pre-Greek substrate consists of the unknown language or languages spoken in prehistoric Greece before the settlement of Proto-Greek speakers in the area (italics mine). It is thought possible that Greek took over some thousand words and proper names from such a language (or languages), because some of its vocabulary cannot be satisfactorily explained as deriving from the Proto-Greek language  

Possible Pre-Greek loanwords
Personal names: Odysseus; 
Theonyms: Hermes; 
Maritime vocabulary: thálassa = sea; 
Words relating to Mediterranean agriculture: elai(w)a = olive & ampelos = vine 
Building technology: pyrgos = tower; 
Placenames, especially those terminating in -nth- : Korinthos, Zakynthos
& in -ss- : Parnassos & in and -tt- : Hymettus

And, to ram my point home, one of the pre-Greek substrata identified is the Minoan language itself. It is on this basis and upon this foundation, among others, that I posit the following hypothesis:

Pre-Greek substratum words are both proto-Greek and not, simultaneously!

The assumption that certain Minoan words in Linear A appear to be proto-Greek or even proto-Mycenaean (if we wish to stretch the notion one small step further, which I believe is entirely justified) does not in and of itself necessarily imply that some or even quite possibly most of them are de facto actually of proto-Indo-European proto-Greek origin, when quite plainly (so) many of them are not of such origin. In other words, we find ourselves face to face with an apparent contradiction in terms, a dye-in-the-wool linguistic paradox: some, many or even most of the so-called pre- + proto-Greek words we encounter in Minoan Linear A are likely to be proto-Greek, but only insofar as they crop up again and again in later ancient Greek dialects, right on down from the earliest East Greek dialect, Mycenaean, through Arcado-Cypriot on down to Ionic and Attic Greek and beyond, while simultaneously being of non-Indo-european origin, if you can wrap your head around that notion... which I most definitely can.  

So if anyone dares claim that all of those words in Minoan (of which there seem to be quite a substantial number) are de facto proto-Greek, that person should think again. Think before you leap. It is much too easy for us to jump to spurious conclusions with respect to the supposed proto-Greek origin(s) of many words in Minoan Linear A.

To compound the matter further, let us consider the situation from the opposite end of the spectrum. It is widely known, by both intellectual non-linguists, i.e. intelligent native speakers of any given language, and by professional linguists alike, that pretty much every modern language borrows not just thousands, but tens of thousands and even hundreds of thousands of words from prior languages. The one modern language which exemplifies this phenomenon par excellence is non other than English, in which we find hundreds of thousands of loanwords from ancient Greek, Latin and Norman French.

Now it goes without saying that all languages, ancient and modern, follow the same pattern of accumulating some and even as many as thousands of loanwords. Ancient Latin did so with ancient Greek. And here lies the rub. So must have Mycenaean Greek with the Minoan language. In Chris Tslentis Linear B  Lexicon, we find many words which cannot possibly be accounted for as being proto-Greek, but which must be of some other origin. And one of the most likely origins for a relatively large subset of these words is probably the Minoan language itself. Allow me to cite just a few of the more glaring examples:

adete = binder 
Akireu = Achilles
Aminiso = Amnisos harbour (Cf. Linear A, Uminaso)
Damate = Demeter (Cf. Linear A, Idamate)
dipa = cup (Cf. Linear A, depa)
erepa = ivory
kama = a unit of land
kanako = safflower, saffron (Cf. Linear A, kanaka)
kidapa = (ash) wood?
mare/mari = wool (Cf. Linear A, maru)
opa = workshop?
serino = celery (Cf. Linear A, sedina)
tarasa = sea

Now if even most of the so-called Mycenaean Greek terms listed here are actually Minoan, then it is stands to reason that Mycenaean Greek inherited them from the Minoan language itself, and ergo, that they are not necessarily proto-Greek words at all.  It is as if we were in a flip-flop. Either way, whether or not any of the words which we have flagged (and shall continue to tag) as possibly being proto-Greek in the Minoan language or the other way around, whether or not certain words in Mycenaean Greek are not proto-Greek at all, and not even of proto-Indo-European origin, we find ourselves floundering in a Saragossa Sea of linguistic incertitude from which we really cannot extricate ourselves.

So to all those researchers, past and present, into the Minoan language who make the claim, categorical or not, that much of the vocabulary of the Minoan language is proto-Greek, I say Beware! lest you fall into a trap from which you cannot reasonably hope to extricate yourselves.


Tentative confirmation of 10 possible proto-Greek words out of 18 under the first vowel, A, in Prof. John G. Younger’s Reverse Linear A Lexicon:

a-minoan-linear-a-possible-greek

When I subjected the first alphabetical entries under A in Prof. John G. Younger’s Reverse Linear A Lexicon to rigorous analysis in order to determine whether or not any of the entries under A just might have been proto-Greek, or more likely than not, proto-Mycenaean. I was able to extrapolate tentative archaic Greek “definitions”, if you like, for no fewer than 10 of the 18 entries under A. That is quite a staggering return! However, in spite of these encouraging findings, we must exercise extreme caution in assigning proto-Greek significance to any number of Minoan words.

Of course, the discovery right fro the outset of 10 words which might possibly be proto-Greek or proto-Mycenaean, is highly tempting. One could, if one were so inclined, that as a consequence of this discovery, the Minoan language must have been proto-Greek. But I would warn us away from such a rash assumption, for several cogent reasons, all of which will become clear as we run alphabetically through the Reverse Linear A Lexicon. One of the most obvious roadblocks to accepting, even on a tentative basis, a proto-Greek reading of words such as the 10 I have isolated under A above is the extreme paucity of consecutive, running text and, what is even worse, the even rarer instances of extant Linear A words providing sufficient context on the tablets for us to be able to extract any real meaning at all from the tablets. This is the brick wall we run up against again and again in any endeavour at deciphering any Minoan word, taken as a single entity.

There is one tenet at least which bears out confirmation or abnegation, and it is this: if we continue to discover a considerable number of potential proto-Greek under subsequent initial syllabograms alphabetically from DA on through to ZU, then there might very well be a case for concluding that either (a) the Minoan language was entirely proto-Greek or (b) the Minoan language was pre-Greek and very probably non Indo-European, but which contained a great many proto-Greek words, for reasons which will become apparent as we proceed through our extrapolative analysis of Minoan words from DA to ZU.

This is bound to be one exciting journey of discovery!


Is the Minoan Linear A labrys inscribed with I-DA-MA-TE in Minoan or in proto-Greek? PART A: Is it in the Minoan language?

In my previous post on the Minoan Linear A labrys inscribed with I-DA-MA-TE, I postulated that the word Idamate was probably either the name of the king or of the high priestess (of the labyrinth?) to whom this labrys has been ritually dedicated. But in so doing I was taking the path of least resistance, by seeking out the two most simplistic decipherments which would be the least likely to prove troublesome or controversial. In retrospect, that was a cop-out.

No sooner had I posted my two alternate simplistic translations than I was informed by a close colleague of mine in the field of diachronic historical linguistics focusing on Minoan Linear A and Mycenaean Linear B that at least two other alternative decipherments came into play, these being:

1. that the term Idamate may be the Minoan equivalent of the Mycenaean Linear B Damate, which is apparently an early version of the ancient Greek, Demeter, who was the goddess of cereals and harvesting:

demeter-ceres-greco-roman-marble-statue-state-hermitage-museum-st-petersburg

linear-b-lexicon-damate-demeter

2. that the term Idamate may be Minoan for Mount Ida, in which case, the word Mate = “mount”, such that the phrase actually spells out  “Ida mount(ain)” :

mount-ida-psiloritis

Since both of these decipherments make eminent sense, either could, at least theoretically, be correct.
 
But there is a third alternative, and it is far more controversial and compelling than either of the first two. 

3. It is even possible that the four syllabograms I DA MA & TE are in fact supersyllabograms, which is to say that each syllabogram is the first syllabogram, i.e. the first syllable of a word, presumably a Minoan word. But if these 4 supersyllabograms represent four consecutive Minoan words, what on earth could these words possibly signify, in light of the fact that we know next to nothing about the Minoan language. It appears we are caught in an irresolvable Catch-22.

Yet my own recent research has allowed me to tease potential decipherments out of 107 or about 21 % of all intact words in Prof. John G. Youngers Linear A lexicon of 510 terms by my own arbitrary count. Scanning this scanty glossary yielded me numerous variations on 3 terms which might conceivably make sense in at least one suppositious context. These terms (all of which I have tentatively deciphered) are:

1. For I: itaja = unit of liquid volume for olive oil (exact value unknown)

2. FOR DA: either:
daropa = stirrup jar = Linear B karawere (high certainty)
or
datara = (sacred) grove of olive trees
or
data2 (datai) = olive, pl. date = Linear B erawo
or
datu = olive oil
or
daweda = medium size amphora with two handles

3. For TE:
tereza = large unit of dry or liquid measurement
or
tesi = small unit of measurement

But I cannot find any equivalent for MA other than maru, which seemingly means “wool”, even in Minoan Linear A, this being the apparent equivalent of Mycenaean Linear B mari or mare.  The trouble is that this term (if that is what the third supersyllabogram in idamate stands in for) does not contextually mesh at all with any of the alternatives for the other three words symbolized by their respective supersyllabograms.

But does that mean the phrase is not Minoan? Far from it. There are at least 2 cogent reasons for exercising extreme caution in jumping to the conclusion that the phrase cannot be in Minoan. These are:    
1. that the decipherments of all of the alternative terms I have posited for the supersyllabograms I DA & TE above are all tentative, even if they are more than likely to be close to the mark and some of them probably bang on (for instance, daropa), which I believe they are;
2. that all 3 of the supersyllabograms I DA & TE may instead stand for entirely different Minoan words, none of which I have managed to decipher. And God knows there are plenty of them!  Since I have managed to decipher only 107 of 510 extant intact Minoan Linear A words by my arbitrary count, that leaves 403 or 79 % undeciphered!  That is far too great a figure to be blithely brushed aside. 

The > impact of combinations of a > number of Minoan Linear A words on their putative decipherment:

combinations-with-repetition-and-their-impact-on-the-decipherment-of-minoan-linear-a-terms

To give you a rough idea of the number of undeciphered Minoan words beginning with I DA & TE I have not been able to account for, here we have a cross-section of just a few of those words from Prof. John G. Younger’s Linear A Reverse Lexicon:
which are beyond my ken:

linear-a-reverse-lexicon

For I:
iininuni
ijadi
imetu
irima
itaki

For DA:
dadana
daini
daki
daku
daqaqa

For MA:
madadu
majasa
manuqa
masuri

For TE:
tedatiqa
tedekima
tenamipi
teneruda

But the situation is far more complex than it appears at first sight. To give you just a notion of the enormous impact of exponential mathematical permutations and combinations on the potential for gross errors in any one of a substantial number of credible decipherments of any given number of Minoan Linear A terms as listed even in the small cross-section of the 100s of Minoan Words in Prof. John G. Younger’s Reverse Linear A Lexicon, all we have to do is relate the mathematical implications of the  chart on permutations to any effort whatsoever at the decipherment of even a relatively small no. of Minoan Linear A words:

CLICK on the chart of permutations to link to the URL where the discussion of both permutations and combinations occurs:

permutations-and-the-decipherment-of-minoan-linear-a

to realize how blatantly obvious it is that any number of interpretations of any one of the selective cross-section of terms which I have listed here can be deemed the so-called actual term corresponding to the supersyllabogram which supposedly represents it. But, and I must emphatically stress my point, this is just a small cross-section of all of the terms in the Linear B Reverse Lexicon beginning with each of  the supersyllabograms I DA MA & TE in turn.

It is grossly obvious that, if we allow for the enormous number of permutations and combinations to which the supersyllabograms I DA MA & TE must categorically be  subjected mathematically, it is quite out of the question to attempt any decipherment of these 4 supersyllabograms, I DA MA & TE, without taking context absolutely into consideration. And even in that eventuality, there is no guarantee whatsoever that any putative decipherment of each of these supersyllabograms (I DA MA & TE) in turn in the so-called Minoan language will actually hold water, since after all, a smaller, but still significant subset of an extremely large number of permutation and combinations must still remain incontestably in effect.

The mathematics of the aforementioned equations simply stack up to a very substantial degree against any truly convincing decipherment of any single Minoan Linear A term, except for one small consideration (or as it turns out, not so small at all). As it so happens, and as we have posited in our first two alternative decipherments above, i.e.
1. that Idamate is Minoan for Mycenaean Damate, the probable equivalent of classical Greek Demeter, or
2. that Idamate actually means “Mount Ida”,

these two possible decipherments which do make sense can be extrapolated from the supersyllabograms I DA MA & TE, at least if we take into account the Minoan Linear A terms beginning with I DA & TE (excluding TE), which I have managed, albeit tentatively, to decipher.

However, far too many putative decipherments of the great majority of words in the Minoan language itself are at present conceivable, at least to my mind. Yet, this scenario is quite likely to change in the near future, given that I have already managed to tentatively decipher 107 or 21 % of 510 extant Minoan Linear A words, by my arbitrary count.  It is entirely conceivable that under these circumstances I shall be able to decipher even more Minoan language words in the near future. In point of fact, if Idamate actually does mean either Idamate (i.e. Demeter) or Ida Mate (i.e. Mount Ida), then:
(a) with only 2 possible interpretations for IDAMATE now taken into account, the number of combinations and permutations is greatly reduced to an almost insignificant amount &
(b) the actual number of Minoan Linear A words I have deciphered to date rises from 107 to 108 (in a Boolean OR configuration, whereby we can add either  “Demeter” or “Mount Ida” to our Lexicon, but not both).  A baby step this may be, but a step forward regardless. 


Can quantum computers assist us in the potentially swift decipherment of ancient languages, including Minoan Linear A?

d-wave-natural-languages-hypotheses

quantum-computing-applictions-cryptographya

No-one knows as yet, but the potential practical application of the decryption or decipherment of ancient languages, including Minoan Linear A, may at last be in reach. Quantum computers can assist us with such decipherments much much swifter than standard digital supercomputers.

austronesian-phylogenetic-tree-b-l

austronsian-sphylogenetic-tree-zoom-in

Here are just a few examples of the potential application of quantum computers to the decipherment of apparently related words in Minoan Linear A:

dide
didi
dija
dije
dusi
dusima
ida
idamete
japa
japadi
japaku
jari
jaria
jarinu
kireta2 (kiretai) *
kiretana *
kuro *
kuru
kuruku
maru (cf. Mycenaean mari/mare = “wool” ...  may actually be proto-Greek
maruku = made of wool? 
namikua
namikudua
paja
pajai (probably a diminutive, as I have already tentatively deciphered a few Minoan Linear A words terminating in “ai”, all of which are diminutives.  
qapaja
qapajanai
raki
rakii
rakisi
sati
sato
sii
siisi
taki
taku
takui
etc.

All of these examples, with the exception of  * kireta2 (kiretai), kiretana & kuro *, each of which I have (tentatively) deciphered, are drawn from Prof. John G. Youngers Linear A Reverse Lexicon:

linear-a-reverse-lexicon

It is to be noted that I myself have been unable to decipher manually on my own any of the related terms above, with the exception of the 3 words I have just mentioned.  The decipherment of kuro = “total” is 100 % accurate. I would like to add in passing that I have managed to (at least tentatively) decipher 107 Minoan Linear A words, about 21 % of the entire known lexicon. But everyone anywhere in the world will have to wait until 2018 to see the results of my thorough-going and strictly scientific research until the publication of my article on the partial decipherment of Minoan Linear A in Vol. 12 (2016) of Archaeology and Science (Belgrade), actually to be released in early 2018. But if you would like to get at least a very limited idea of what my eventual decipherment is all about, you can in the meantime consult this preview on my academia.edu account here:

preview-of-mycenaean-linear-b-tablet-rosetta-stone-for-minoan-linear-a-haghia-triada-ht-31

Academia.edu DRAFT PAPER = Preview and brief summary of the article, “The Mycenaean Linear B ‘Rosetta Stone’ to Minoan Linear A Tablet HT 31 (Haghia Triada) Vessels and Pottery”, to be published in Archaeology and Science (Belgrade) ISSN 1452-7448. Vol. 12, 2018. (approximately 40 pages long), with some excerpts from the article to whet your appetite.

preview-linear-b-pylos-ta-641-1952-ventris-rosetta-stone-for-linear-a-tablet-ht-31-haghia-triada

This article represents the first major breakthrough in 117 years in the partial, though far from complete, decipherment of Minoan Linear A.

Even this preview, with excerpts running to 9 pages from the actual article, will give you a quite clear idea of exactly how I managed to finesse the decipherment of 21 % (107/510 words) of Minoan Linear A lexicon, more or less accurately. Anyone the least bit interested in the ongoing struggle to decipher Minoan Linear A, even partially, is definitely going to want to read this preview and brief summary, with a few excerpts from the article, which is to appear sometime early in 2018. It quite literally represents by far the most significant development in any attempt to decipher even a relatively small subset of the Minoan Linear A lexicon.


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