Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory

BOOKS | 2014

16 January 2015

Minoan Stone Vessels with Linear A Inscriptions

Brent Davis

Minoan Stone Vessels with Linear A Inscriptions

City: Leuven/Liège

Year: 2014

Publisher: Peeters

Series: AEGAEUM 36

Description: Hardback, xxiv & 421 p., 194 b/w figures, 139 b/w plates, 29,5x20,9 cm


Inscribed Minoan stone vessels are ritual gifts that index their dedicants’ intention that both their gift and their name should survive permanently at the place of dedication. These vessels contained offerings, yet the vessels themselves were also offerings, serving as permanent records of a ritual act. These rituals were most likely communal, incorporating group feasting and drinking. The seasonality of these rituals suggests that they were focused on the cycle of life: fertility, birth, death and renewal. Offerings left with the vessels suggest that these rituals also addressed other, more personal concerns. As for Linear A itself: the language behind the script appears to contain a fairly standard phonemic inventory, though there are hints of additional, more exotic phonemes. The morphology of the language appears to involve affixation, a typical mode of inflection in human languages. The presence of significant prefixing tends to rule out PIE as a parent language, while the word-internal vowel alternations typical of Afroasiatic verbal inflection are nowhere to be found in this script. In the end, Linear A appears most likely to represent a non-IE, non-Afroasiatic language, perhaps with agglutinative tendencies, and perhaps with VSO word order.


Acknowledgments [xvii]
Credits for illustrations [xix]
Abstract [xxi]
Introduction [xxiii]

Chapter One: Theory and Methods [1]

I.1. Archaeological Theory [1]
I.2. Approach to interpreting the vessels [4]
I.3. Approach to investigating the inscriptions [10]

Chapter Two: Framework for Interpreting the Vessels [17]

II.1. Sites yielding inscribed stone vessels [17]
II.2. Typologies and distributions [67]
II.3. Minoan and Mycenaean iconographic evidence for libation [87]
II.4. Conclusions [97]

Chapter Three: Interpretations of the Vessels [99]

III.1. Interpretations of libation [99]
III.2. Interpretations of libation receptacles [107]
III.3. Interpretations of ‘ladles’ [112]
III.4. Conclusion: Narrative scenarios [125]

Chapter Four: Framework for Investigating Linear A [143]

IV.1. Overview of the Aegean scripts [143]
IV.2. The linguistic context of Minoan [157]
IV.3. Archaeogenetic evidence for the character of Minoan [175]
IV.4. Other sources of information about the Minoan language [182]
IV.5. Past Work on Linear A [189]
IV.6. Conclusions [191]

Chapter Five: Linguistic Analysis of Linear A [193]

V.1. Introduction [193]
V.2. Phonology: the values of the Linear A syllabograms [193]
V.3. Morphology: statistical indications of affixation [246]
V.4. Orthography: spelling of word-internal clusters [266]
V.5. Syntax: the word-order of the ‘libation formula’ [269]
V.6. Conclusion [277]

Final Summary [279]

Bibliography [281]

Glossary [315]

Appendix A: Catalogue and Concordance of Inscribed Minoan Stone Vessels and Fragments [319]

Appendix B: Ethnographic Case Study: Indigenous Andean Religion [391]

Appendix C: Interpretations of Sightlines at Peak Sanctuaries [401]

Appendix D: International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) [421]


Παρακαλούμε τα σχόλιά σας να είναι στα Ελληνικά (πάντα με ελληνικούς χαρακτήρες) ή στα Αγγλικά. Αποφύγετε τα κεφαλαία γράμματα. Ο Αιγεύς διατηρεί το δικαίωμα να διαγράφει εκτός θέματος, προσβλητικά, ανώνυμα σχόλια ή κείμενα σε greeklish.