The Arcado-Cypriot Linear C keyboard template & the significantly revised timeline for (proto-) historic ancient Greek society: This image of the Arcado-Cypriot Linear C keyboard template has been downsized to 620 pixels to fit the restrictive exigencies of Word Press image size. You may request the full-sized 1200 pixel Linear C keyboard template by contacting me at: email@example.com The Arcado-Cypriot Linear C keyboard template reveals several fascinating characteristics of this extremely important and highly tenacious syllabary. These are: 1. The Arcadians and Cypriots thoroughly redesigned Linear C, almost completely abandoning the Minoan Linear A and Mycenaean Linear B syllabograms, but only in superficial appearance. 2. The only Linear C syllabograms which bear resemblance with their Mycenaean Linear B forbears are: NA SE PA & PO. 3. But almost all of the rest of the syllabograms in Linear C bear the same phonetic values as their Linear B forbears. 4. The DA series of syllabograms in Minoan Linear A and Mycenaean Linear B has completely disappeared from Arcado-Cypriot Linear C. 5. The RA RE RI RO (RU) series of syllabograms in Minoan Linear A and Mycenaean Linear B has split into 2 discreet, separate series: LA LE LI LO LU & RA RE RI RO RU. But what was the reason for this deliberate split? Here is my hypothesis: it would appear that the Minoans and Mycenaeans were unable to distinguish between the liquids L and R, pronouncing L something along the lines the Japanese did. 6. The syllabograms XA and XE, and the syllabogram GA are non-existent in Minoan Linear A & Mycenaean Linear B. 7. Arcado-Cypriot Linear C abandoned ideograms completely. This makes for a much more - 8. streamlined syllabary. 9. The Arcado-Cypriot Linear C syllabary was diachronically extremely tenacious, lasting 7 centuries (ca. 1100 BCE – 400 BCE) co-existing in parallel with the Arcado-Cypriot alphabet. 10. philologists and linguists expert in ancient Greek are accustomed to drawing the timeline for the first appearance of written Greek from 800 BCE onward (ca. the time of Homer’s Ilad to Attic Greek, ca. 400 BCE). But I am in fundamental disagreement with this hypothesis. Since Arcado-Cypriot Linear C came to the fore ca. 1100 BCE, a mere 100 years or approximately one century after the fall of Mycenae and the demise of the Linear B syllabary, it is surely open to doubt whether or not the so-called Greek “Dark Ages” actually lasted at least 400 years (ca. 1200 – 800 BCE). So we have to wonder whether or not that small gap of a mere century or so between the demise of the Linear B syllabary (ca. 1200 BCE) and the sudden appearance of Arcado-Cypriot Linear C (ca. 1100 BCE) makes much of a difference at all in the actual timeline for written ancient Greek, which to my mind runs from 1600 BCE, with the advent of Mycenaean Linear B, all the way through to 400 BCE, i.e. for 12 centuries – 1 century (because of the 1 century gap between Linear B and Linear C), i.e. for 11 centuries! This makes for a huge difference between the previously held timeline of a mere 4 centuries from 800 – 400 BCE. It sets back the timeline for Greek civilization 500 years, receding back from 1100 BCE to 1600 BCE. I also strongly object to the commonly held notion that Mycenaean and Mycenaean Minoan Greece was a prehistoric civilization. Since writing did exist in the form of the Linear B syllabary, albeit only in scribal format, I believe we can safely conclude that the Mycenaean civilization was proto-historic. And there is more: if we also take Minoan Linear A into account (which we definitely should), then the proto-historic period, if we are to include the pre-Greek substrate of Minoan society, recedes several centuries more into the distant past, to at least 2,900 BCE! Just because we cannot read the Minoan language does not mean it not also proto-historic phenomenon. That Arcado-Cypriot Linear C lasted for such a very long time attests to the fact that syllabaries such as Mycenaean Linear B & Arcado-Cypriot Linear C itself were much more suitable to inscribing or writing ancient Greek than most philologists or diachronic historical linguists would care to admit. I shall have plenty to say about this in the article I shall soon be posting on my academia.edu account: Templates for the layouts of the Minoan Linear A, Mycenaean Linear B & Arcado-Cypriot Linear C fonts. You can download the Linear C font here:
For the first time in history, the complete conjugations of 5 major derived (D) active indicative tenses of thematic verbs in Linear B progressive grammar: The tenses of active thematic verbs are: the present indicative active the future indicative active the imperfect indicative active the aorist indicative active the perfect indicative active Here is are the 2 tables (A & B) of the complete derived (D) conjugations of these 5 tenses of the active thematic verb kaue = the archaic ancient Greek kauein (Latinized), “to set on fire”: The ability of a linguist specializing in Mycenaean Linear B, i.e. myself, to cognitively restore no fewer than 5 active tenses of thematic verbs by means of progressive Mycenaean Greek derived (D) grammar boils down to one impressive feat. However, I have omitted the pluperfect indicative active, since it was rarely used in any and all of the numerous dialects of ancient Greek, right on down from Mycenaean to Arcado-Cypriot to Aeolic, Ionic and Attic Greek, and indeed right on through the Hellenistic and New Testament eras. So since the pluperfect tense is as rare as it is, why bother reconstructing it? At least, this is my rationale. Other researchers and linguists specializing in Mycenaean Linear B may disagree. That is their perfect right. Is Mycenaean Greek in Linear B a proto-Greek dialect? Absolutely not! There are still a few researchers and historical linguists specializing in Mycenaean Linear B who would have us believe that Mycenaean Greek is a proto-Greek dialect. Nothing could be further from the truth. The fact that so many fully developed grammatical forms are attested (A) on Linear B tablets confirms once and for all that Mycenaean Greek is the earliest intact East Greek dialect. Among the numerous grammatical forms attested (A) in Mycenaean Greek, we count:  verbs, including infinitives active and some passive for both thematic and athematic MI verbs; a sufficient number of verbs either in the active present or aorist tenses; a considerable number of participles, especially perfect passive; and even the optative case in the present tense,  nouns & adjectives, for which we find enough attested (A) examples of these declined in the nominative singular and plural, the genitive singular and plural and the dative/instrumental/ablative singular & plural. The accusative singular and plural appear to be largely absent from the Linear B tablets, but appearances can be deceiving, as I shall soon convincingly demonstrate. Also found on the extant Linear B tablets are the comparative and superlative of adjectives, and  almost all of the prepositions to be found in later ancient Greek dialects. Taken altogether, these extant attributed (A) grammatical elements form a foundation firm enough to recreate templates for all of the aforementioned elements in a comprehensive derived (D) progressive Mycenaean Linear B grammar. If you are still not convinced, I simply refer you to the previous post, where examples of many of these grammatical elements are accounted for. Moreover, once I have completely recompiled ancient Mycenaean Greek grammar, you should be convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that Mycenaean Greek was the very first true ancient Greek dialect. What is progressive derived (D) Mycenaean Linear B grammar? By progressive I mean nothing less than as full a restoration as possible of the corpus of ancient Mycenaean Greek grammar by means of the procedure of regressive extrapolation of the (exact) equivalents of any and all grammatical elements I shall have reconstructed from the two major sources of slightly later archaic Greek, namely: (a) the Arcado-Cypriot dialect, in which documents were composed in the Linear C syllabary, a direct offshoot of Mycenaean Linear B (Even though the two syllabaries look scarcely alike, the symbolic values of their syllabograms are in almost all instances practically identical), and from so-called Epic Greek, which was comprised of diverse elements haphazardly drawn from various archaic Greek dialects, in other words yielding nothing less than a mess, but a viable one nonetheless. At this juncture, I must emphatically stress that, contrary to common opinion among ancient Greek literary scholars not familiar with either Mycenaean Linear B or Arcado-Cypriot Linear C, the gap between the scribal Linear B tablets and the next appearance of written ancient Greek is not around 400 years (1200-800 BCE), as they would have it, but only one century. Why so? Hard on the heels of the collapse of the Mycenaean Empire and of its official script, Linear B, ca. 1200 BCE, Arcado-Cypriot Linear C first appeared in writing a mere 100 years after, give or take. The revised timeline for the disappearance and reappearance of written Greek is illustrated here: If this is not convincing enough, Mycenaean Greek’s intimate cousin, Arcado-Cypriot, of which the syllabary is Linear C, is even more closely related to Mycenaean Greek than Ionic is to Attic Greek. In fact, you could say that they are kissing cousins. Now it stands to reason that, if Arcado-Cypriot in Linear C is a fully developed East Greek dialect, as it most certainly is (subsisting at least 700 years, from 1100 – 400 BCE), then it follows as day does night that Mycenaean Linear B must also be a fully functional East Greek dialect (in fact, the first). The two factors addressed above should lay to rest once and for all that Mycenaean Greek is merely proto-Greek. That is sheer nonsense.
Minoan Linear A ideogram for “man” “soldier” + supersyllabogram KA = kapa = Mycenaean Linear B = eqeta: The illustration above highlights the Minoan Linear A ideogram for “man” “soldier” + supersyllabogram KA = kapa = Mycenaean Linear B = eqeta, which in turn is the Mycenaean military functionary called in English “soldier” (approximately). Actually, the eqeta were the personal attendants of the rawaketa or Leader of the Host (Homeric), otherwise known as the Commander-in-Chief. Yet this title was often synonymous with wanaka, the king, who in the case of the Trojan War was none other than Agamemnon. Since the high Minoan civilization (Late Middle Minoan MMIIIb, ca 1600 BCE) preceded the Mycenaean at Knossos (Late Minoan III, ca 1450 BCE) by about 150 years, it is of course impossible to directly cross-correlate the Minoan word kapa with the Mycenaean eqeta, which came much later, typically at Mycenae itself and at Pylos (ca 1400-1200 BCE). So kapa may not strictly mean “follower”, but simply “soldier” or “foot soldier”. Yet it must be said in all fairness that the Minoan soldier was highly likely to be a subaltern, in other words, follower of his ultimate supernumerary, the King of Knossos. I am relatively confident of my decipherment, given that Haghia Triada tablet HT 94 mentions 62 kapa, a number commensurate with a company of followers or (foot) soldiers, attendants to the King. This is the fifty-seventh (57) Minoan Linear A word I have deciphered, more or less accurately (in this case more).
Just added to my academia.edu: Did you know you speak Mycenaean Greek? You do! An amusing read too! Click on the banner to read, bookmark or download the article: To my utter astonishment, in the first two weeks alone I have been present on academia.edu, my little research corner has already been visited 552 times, and I now have 75 followers. I would be delighted if you were to follow me on academia.edu, and if you yourself are already a member, please be sure to send me a message on site, and I shall follow you back. Richard
Cross-Correlation of the Timelines for Egyptian, Minoan & Mycenaean Civilizations (Click to ENLARGE): This Table cross-correlates the Timelines for the: 1. Egyptian Middle Kingdom MK (ca. 2000-1800 BCE), 2nd. Intermediate Period2IN (ca. 1800-1550 BCE) and New Kingdom LK (ca. 1150-1000 BCE) 2. Middle Minoan MM (ca. 2000-ca. 1600 BCE) & Late Minoan LM (ca. 1550-1350 BCE) 3. Mycenaean Civilization (ca. 1650BCE-1200 BCE). Sir Arthur Evans devised a methodical and practical Timeline for Minoan Civilization, by deriving it from the Egyptian Timelines as outlined in 1 above. His assignation of Periods for Minoan Civilization is still in wide use even today, though it has been modified and revised several times in the past century. Moreover, researchers and archaeologists specializing in these 3 civilizations are at wide variance in their interpretations of the timelines for each of these civilizations, and to such an extent that there are scores of variations in the relative relationship of all 3 timelines to one another. Some would agree that Evans' estimates for the MM & LM periods are reasonably close to the timelines for MK 2IN & NK, while maintaining that the timeline for the Mycenaean civilization does not correspond to that given in this table, while others would argue that MK 2IN & NK do not correspond to Evans' MM & LM, at the same time maintaining that the Mycenaean timeline illustrated here is sound. Still others claim that at least 2 or all of these timelines are out of whack, or that some or none of them are valid. So we end up with a fine mess. However, for the sake of consistency and relative clarity, I have adopted the Table of Timelines you see here, without however claiming that it is any more accurate than any other timeline, and reserving judgement on it until such time as I am convinced that this particular timeline is possibly or probably invalid. For the time being, however, I am in no such position, not yet having even minimally investigated the correlations between the timelines for these 3 great civilizations. Richard