LOST LANGUAGES by P. E. Cleator

LOST LANGUAGES

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A survey of the verbal trails that have led to decipherment of forgotten tongues is an exhaustive history of the ways and means by which Egyptian hieroglyphs and cuneiforms were unravelled and what their translation revealed of the cultures of the people. Other systems, including the Mycenaon Linear B and the Pylos Tablets, are followed in the history of their recovery and interpretation, while a final chapter covers the so far intractable Cretan Linear A, the Phaistos Disk, Mayan glyphs, inscriptions from the Cypro-Minoan, Indus Valley, Easter Island, and the Proto-Elamite. A preliminary chapter examines the ""confusion of tongues"" from theories about the origins of speech to the types of classification now prevailing, the development of writing, and the family relationships that have been deduced. A work that, in its omnium gatherum of achievements to date, should be of value to linguistic circles, this should hold interest for any layman with curiosity about vanished civilizations and the men who found the keys to unlock their secrets.

Pub Date: June 5th, 1961
Publisher: John Day