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from the very beginning of our records. Unfortunately, as yet no record is preserved which can with any probability be dated earlier than the 7th century B.C., and the Phoenician influence had by then nearly ceased. How long this influence lasted we cannot tell. If in Crete a system of writing of an entirely different nature had been developed seven or eight centuries before, there must have been some very important reason for the entire abandonment of the old method and the adoption of a new. In Crete, at least, the excavations show that the old civilization must have ended in a social and political cataclysm. The magnificent palace of Minos—there seems no reason to withhold from it the name of the great prince whom Thucydides recognized as the first to hold the empire of the sea—perished by the flames, and it evidently had been plundered beforehand of everything that a conqueror would regard as valuable. ’The only force in Greek history which we know that could have produced this change was that of the Dorian conquest. As everywhere in the Peloponnese, except at Argos, there seems to have been a sudden break with the earlier civilization, which can have been occasioned only by the semi-barbarous Dorian tribes, so the same result seems to have followed from the same cause in Them. The Dorians apparently were without an alphabet, and consequently when Phoenician traders and pirates occupied the place left vacant by the downfall of Minos's empire, the people of the island, and of the sea coasts generally, adopted from them the Phoenician alphabet.l The Greeks who migrated to Cyprus, possibly as the result of the Dorian invasion, adopted a syllabary, not an alphabet (see Plate; also WRITING). That the alphabet was borrowed and adapted independently by different places not widely separated, and that the earliest Greek alphabets did not spread from one or a few centres in Greek lands, seem clear (a) from the different Greek sounds for which the Phoenician symbols were utilized; (b) from the difierent symbols which were employed to represent sounds which the Phoenicians did not possess, and for which, therefore, they had no symbols. The Phoenician alphabet was an alphabet of consonants only, but all Greek alphabets as yet known agree in employing A, E, I, O, Y as vowels. On the other hand, a table of Greek alphabets2 will show how widely different the symbols for the same sound were. Except fora single Atticinscription (see Plate),thealphabetsof Thera and of Corinth are theoldest Greek alphabets which we possess. Yet at Corinth alongside ,8 a, which is found for the so-called spurious diphthong e4. (Le. the Attic a, which does not represent an IndoEuropean a, but arises by contraction, as in (bike'i-re, or through the lengthening of the vowel sound as the result of the loss of a consonant, as in elpnuévos for RFpnpévos) the short e sound is represented by B; t is found at Corinth in its oldest form é , and also as Z , while in Thera it is $. In Theta thewsound of digamma (F) was entirely lost, and therefore is not represented. Both Thera‘ and Corinth employ in the earliest inscriptions for f, not E, though in both alphabets the ordinary use as E is adopted, no doubt through the influence of trade with other

1 In an excellent summary of the different views held as to the origin of the alphabet (Journal if the American Oriental Society, vol. xxii., first half, 1901). Dr J. . Petersagrees (pp. 191 ff.) that the best test is the etymology of the names of t e letters. He shows that “twelve of the letter-names are words with meanings [1n the northern dialects of Semitic], all of them indicating simple objects, six of the twelve being parts of the body. The objects denoted by the other six names—ox, house, valve of a door, water, fish and mark or cross—clearly do not belong to any ople in a nomadic state, but to a settled, town-abiding popu ation. . . . Six of the letter-names are not words in any known tongue, and appear to be syllables only. Four letter-names are triliterals, and resemble in their form Semitic words." As 11 of the 12 which have meanings are to be found in the Assyrian~Babylonian syllabaries, he suggests a possible Babylonian origin. Different views with regard to some of these symbols are expressed by Lidzbarski, Ephemerisftir semitisehe Epigraphik, ii. pp. 12s fl. (1906). The earliest tradition of the names is discussed by Nol eke in his Beitrdge zur semttischen SPrachwissenschaft (1904), pp. 12? ff.

' See, for example, the tables at the end 0 Roberts's Introduction '0 Greek Epmmphy (1887); or Kirchhoff's Studien zur Geschichte des

griechischen Alphabets (4th ed. 1887); or Larfeld's Handbuch der gmchisehen Epigraphik, vol. i. (1907).


states. On the other hand, at Cleonae, which is distant not more than 8 or 9 m. from Corinth, an ancient inscription written Bouarpodmtlév has recently been discovered, which shows that though Cleonae for B wrote cf, like the Corinthian J‘, and, as at Corinth, wrote B for a vowel sound, the vowel thus represented was not short and long e (e and 11) as at Corinth, but 17 only, as in XPBI“ A, (xpfipa p1'1). Here a represents e, and the spurious diphthong is represented by a, as in V] a M I a (eZpev, Doric infinitive=elwu), a form which shows that L has at Cleonae the more modern form I as distinguished from the Corinthian 2.“

Regarding three other questions controversy still rages. These are: (a) how Greek utilized the four sibilants (Shin, Samech, Zain and Zade), which it took over from the Phoenician; (b) what was the history of development in the symbols for o, x, it, w (the history of 5 belongs to both heads); (c) the history of the symbol for the digamma F. \

In the Phoenician alphabet Zain was the seventh letter. occupyi the same position and having the same form approximately (:5 as the early Greek Z, while in pronunciation it was a

voiced s-sound; Samech (g) followed the symbol for n use a!

and was the ordinary s-sound, though, as we have seen, Phonic,“ it is in difl‘erent Greek states at the earliest riod I as “bu-“m well as E; after the symbol for p came Zade ( ), which

was a strong palatal :, though in name it corresponds to the Greek fire; while lastly Shin (W) follows the symbol for r, and was an sh-sound. The Greek name for the sibilant (at-ma.) may simply mean the hissing letter and be a derivative from alfw; many authorities, however, hold that it is a corruption of the Phoenician Samech. Unfortunately, it is not clear how many sibilants were distinguished in Greek pronunciation, nor over what areas a particular pronunciation extended. There is, however, considerable evidence in sup rt of the view that Greek 00' representing the sound arising rom Ky, xy, 1y, 0y was pronounced as sh (:5), while ; representing gy, dy was pronounced in some districts zh (2;)!

On an inscription of Halicarnassus, a town which stood in ancient Carian territory, the sound of w in ‘Akmapnwaéwv is represented by 'I", as it is also in the ,Carian name Panyassis (Havvd'l‘m,genirive), though the ordinary 25 is also found in the same inscri tion. The same variation occurs at the neighbouring Teos and at Ep esus, while the coins of Mesembria in Thrace show regularly META and MET MBPlANnN, where T represents the sound which resulte from the fusion of fly, and which appears in Homer as 110' in pe'aaos, while in later Greek it becomes plans.“ This symbol 1‘ is in all probability the early form of the letter which was known to the Greeks as San (adv) and in modern times as Sampi, and which is utilized as the numeral for 900 in the shape According to Herodotus (i. 139), San was onl the Dorian name for the letter which the Ionians called Sigma. This would bring it into connexion with the Phoenician W (Shin), which, turned through a right angle, is possibly the Greek 2 , though some forms of Zade on old Hebrew coins and gems (3 2) equally resemble the Greek letter. From other forms of Sade, however, the other early form of a, viz. M, is probably derived. The confusion is thus extreme: the name Zade assimilated in Greek to the names fire and Ofira. becomes (610., though the form is that of Zain; the name of Samech is possibly the origin of Sigma, while the form of Samech is that of E whic has not taken over a Phoenician name. It is probable that the form V\ is an abbreviation in writing from right to left of the earlier M, and s of the four stroke 2. That the confusion of the sibilants was not confined to the Greeks only, but that pronunciation varied within a small area even among the Semitic stock, is shown by the difficulty which the Ephraimites found in pronouncing “ shibboleth " (Judges xii. 6).

For the history of the additional symbols which are not Phoenician, we must begin with y. There is no Greek alphabet in which the symbol is not represented. But the Phoenician form "I" corresponding to it is the consonant w, and occupies the I "7'7

sition of the Greek digamma as sixth in the series. ° °

Vhence did the Greeks obtain the di amma? The Mama" point is not clear, but probably the Cree s acted here as they did in the case of the vowel t and the consonant y, adopting the consonant symbol for the vowel sound. As, however, except in Cyprus, Pamphylia and Argos. the only y sound which survived in Greek——

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the glide between i and another vowel as in 6aé=diya—-is never represented, there was no occasion to use the Phoeniciandlod in a double function. With Vau it was difierent; the u-soun existed in some form in all dialects, the w-sound survived in many far into historical times. The Phoenician symbol having been adopted for the vowel sound, whence came the new symbol or E for the

digamma? Hitherto there have been two views. Most authorities have held that the new form was derived from E by droppin the lowermost crossbar_; some have held that it developed out 0 the old Vau, a View which is not impossible in itself and has the similar development in Aramaic (T ema) in its favour. But as Dr Evans has found a form like the digamma amon his most recent types of symbols, and as we have no intermediate orms which will prove the development of F from .Y, though the form found at Oaxos in Crete, viz. N, shows a form sufficiently unlike F, it is necessary to suspendjjud ment. he ree as irates were not the sounds which we represent by pk, th, ch (Score ), but corresponded rather to the sound of the final consonants in such words as 11' , bit, lick, the breath being

0"“ audible after the formation 0 the consonant. It is not g'PI'lE-‘i clear that Greek took over Q with this value, for in one C

Theran inscription e B are found combined as equivalent to T_H, while the regular representation of 4> and x is n B and K E, or Q) (koppa) 5 respectively. In the great Gortyninseription from Crete and occasionally in Thera, I1 (in Cretein the form (3) and K are used alone for o and x, just as converse] even in the 5th century the name of Themistocles has been foun upon an ostrakon spelt GGpLGOOKA‘fiS. Such confusions show that even to Greek ears t e distinction between the sounds was very small. To have recorded it in writing at all shows considerable pro ress in the observation of sounds. Such progress is more easily in icated by changes in the symbols among a people whose ac uamtance with the art is not of long standing nor very familiar. nglish, though possessing sounds comparable to the Greek 0, o, x, has never made an attempt to represent them in writing. On the other hand, no dou t Athens in 403 B.C. officially adopted the Ionic alphabet and ve up the old Attic alphabet. The political situation in Athens, owever, at this time was as exceptional as the French Revolution, and offered an opportunity not likely to recur for the adoption of a s stem in widely extended use which private individuals had been emp oying for a long time.

The history of the symbols ¢ and x is altogether unknown. The very numerous theories on the subject have generally been founded on a principle which itself is in need of proof, viz. that these symbols must have arisen by differentiation from others already existing in the alphabet. The explanation is possible, but it is not easy to see why, for example, the symbol Q or Q =Koppa, the Latin Q, should have been utilized for a sound so different as p-h; nor, again, why the symbol for 6 (Q) by losing its cross stroke should become 4:, seeing that the sounds of 0 and 4> outside Aeolic (a dialect which is not here in question) are never confused. On the other hand, if we remember the large number of symbols belonging to the prehistoric script, it will seem at least as easy to believe that the persons who, by adding new letters to the Phoenician alphabet, attempted to bring the symbols more into accordance with the sounds of the Greek anguage, may have borrowed from this older script. It is now generally admitted that the improvements of the alphabet were made by traders in the interests of commerce, and that these improvements began from the great Greek emporia of Asia Minor, above all from Miletus. Symbols exactly like ¢. x. and #1 (Q ,- X, Y) are found in the Carian alphabet, and transliterated by Professor Sayce ' as 2' (and 11), h and kit respectively. If the Carian alphabet goes back to the prehistoric script, why should not Miletus have borrowed them from it? We have alread seen that, in the earliest alphabets of Thcra and Corinth, the ordinary symbol for i in the Ionic alphabet was used for f. This usage brought in its train another—the use of W, not for \l as in Ionic, but for L1 in the name AAEWA l CORR ='A)\e£a760a, and similarly in Melos, . PAY 1 "(VA | ECM = Hpaimbéeos.’ This experiment, for

it was no more, belongs apparently to the latter part of the 6th

lSee especially Proceedings 0 the Society of Biblical Archaeology for 1895, p. 40; cf. also Kalin , Neuc Jahrbilcher filr Philologle, iii. (1899), p. 683. Similar forms are also found in the Safa inscri tions (South Semitic) with similar values,and Praetorius argues (Z. .M.G. lvi., 1902, pp. 677 ii., and again, lviii., r904, pp. 725 i.) that these were somehow borrowed b Greek in the 8th centu B.C., while in Ixii. pp. 283 ff. he argues that the reason why the reeks borrowed 9 for the aspirated l was its form,the cross in 8 being regarded as T and the surrounding circle asavariety of Dan occasional form of the aspirate. Here also (p. 287) as in his Ursprung des

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same inscription (in the form x), the guttural element must have been different, else E would have been spelt X2. Attica and most of the Cyclades kept X for the guttural element inE (written X§ or +§) and for x as well. On the west of the Aegean a new symbol Y was invented for the aspirate value, and this spread over the mainland and was carried by emigrants to Rhodes, Sicily and Italy. The sign X was kept in the western group for the guttural spirant in £, which was written X S; but, as this spirant occurred nowhere else, the combination was often abbreviated, and X was used for Xi precisely as in the Italic alphabets we shall find that F =f\ievelops out of a combination FH.

The develo ment of symbols for the long vowels 1| and u was also the work of t e Ionians. The h-sound ceased at a very early period to exist in Ionic, and by 800 B.C. was ignored in writing. The symbol 5 or H was then employed for the longopen é-sound,a use suggested by the name of the letter, which, by the loss of the aspirate, had passed from Heta to Eta. About the same period, andJirobably as a sequel to this change, the Greeks of Miletus develope n for the long open 6-sound, a form which in all probability is differentiated out of O. Centuries passed, however, before this symbol was generally adopted, Athens using only 0 for o, w and ou, the spurious diphthong, until the adoption of the whole Ionic alphabet in 403 ac.‘

The discoveries of the last quarter of the 19th century carried back our knowledge of the Latin alphabet by at least two centuries, although the monuments of an early age which have been discovered are only three. (a) In 1880 was discovered between the Quirinal and Viminal hills a little earthenware pot of a. curious shape, being, as it were, three vessels radiating from a centre, each with a. separate mouth at the top.6 Round the sides of the triangle formed by the three vessels and under the mouths runs an inscription of considerable length. The use for which the pot wasintended and the purport of the inscription have been much disputed, there being at least as many interpretations as there are words in the inscription. The date is probably the early part of the 4th century 3.0. Though found in Rome, the vessel is small enough to be easily portable, and might therefore have been brought from elsewhere in Italy. It is equally possible that the potter who . . _ - The inscribed the words upon it was not a native of Rome. 0mm I” One or two points in the inscription make it doubtful Sir-19mm, whether the Latin upon it is really the Latin of Rome.

It is generally known as the Dvenos inscription, from the name of the maker who wrote on the vessel from right to left the inscription, part of which is DVENOS MED FECED (=fecit). (b) The second of these early records is the inscription on a gold fibula found at Praeneste and published in t887. The inscription runs from right to left, and is in letters which show more clearly than ever that the Roman alphabetis borrowed from the alphabets of the Chalcidian Greek colonies in Italy. Its date cannot be later than the 5th and is possibly as early as the 6th century 13.0. The words are MANIOS MED FHEFHAKED NVMASIOI, “ Manius made me ‘for Numasius.” The symbol for M

has still five strokes, s has the angular form 5, §. The giant: inscription is earlier than the Latin change of s between My“. vowels into 1, for N umasioi is the dative of the older

form which corresponds to the later N umcrius. The verb form

3 See especially Athcm'schc M itlcilrmgcn, xxi. p._ 426.

‘ Figured in Roberts's Introduction l0 Greek EPzgraplfp, l|;)>é65.

‘ Details of the history of the individual letters wrl found in separate articles. _ _

° It is figured most accessiny in Egbert’s I nlroduclum lo the Study of Latin Insuiplions. p. [6.

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is remarkable. In the Dvenos inscription the perfect of facia is feced; here it is a reduplicated form with the same vowel as the present. The spelling also is interesting. The symbol K isstill in ordinary use, and not merely used for abbreviations as in the classical age. But most remarkable is the representation of Latin F by FH. The reason for this is clear. The value of F in the Greek alphabet is w and not f as in Latin. Greek had no sound corresponding to Latin F, consequently an attempt is made by combining F and H to indicate the difference of sound. Etruscan uses FH in the same way. As Latin, however, made the symbol V indicate not only the vowel sound u, but also the consonant sound 1) (Le. English to), the sign for the digamma F was left unemployed, and as F H was a cumbrous method of representing a sound which did not exist in Greek, the second element came to be left out in writing, Thus F came to be the representative of the unvoiced labiodental spirant instead of that for the bilabial voiced spirant. Whether the form fefaked was ever good Latin in Rome may be doubted, for the Romans, in spite of the few miles that separate Praeneste from Rome, were inclined to sneer at the pronunciation and idiom of the Praenestines (cf. Plautus, Trin. 609, True. 691 ; Quintilian i. 5, 56). (c) The last, and in some respects the most important, of these records was found in 1899 under an ancient pavement in the Comitium at the north-west corner of the Roman Forum. It is engraved upon the four sides and one bevelled edge of a pillar, the top of which has been broken off. As the writing is Boue'rpoipmiév, beginning at the bottom of the pillar and running upwards and down again, no single line of the inscription is complete. Probably more than half the pillar is lost, so that it is not possible to make out the sense with certainty. The inscription is probably not older than that on the fibula from Praeneste, but has the additional interest of being undoubtedly couched in the Latin of Rome. The surviving portion of the inscription contains examples of all the letters of the early alphabet, though the forms of F and B are fragmentary and doubtful. As inthe Praenestine inscription, the alphabet is still the western (Chalcidian) alphabet. K is still in use as an ordinary consonant, and not limited to a symbol for abbreviations as in the classical period. The rounded form My is found with the valueof G in RECEI, which is probably the dative of rex. H has still the closed form 8, M has the fivestroke form, 8 is the three-strokeé, tending to become rounded. R appears in the Greek form withoutatail,and V and Y areboth found for the same sound. The manner of writing up and down instead of backwards and forwards across the stone is obviously appropriate to a surface which is of considerable length, but comparatively narrow, a connected sense being thus much easier to observe than in writing across a narrow surface where, as in the gravestones of Melos, three lines are required for a single word. The form of the monument corresponds to that which we are told was given to the revolving wooden pillars on which the laws of Solon were painted. That the writing of Solon’s laws, which was Bova'rpodmtiov, was also vertical is rendered probable by the phrase 6 Ki'i'rwGev vogue in Demosthenes’ speech A gains! Aristocrates, § 28, for which Harpocration is unable to supply a satisfactory explanation. The differentiation of the Roman alphabet from the Creek is brought about (a) by utilizin the digamma for the unvoiced labio— dental spirant F; gb) by dropping out the aspirates 0, 4:, Dmvnfll' x (W in the Chalcidian alphabet, whence the Roman is "anon 0' derived) from the alphabet proper and employing them

Forum Inscriptlon.

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SimilarlyQ became in timeidentified with M as though the initial of mille, 1000, and the side strokes of x in the above form were flattened out till it became .L, and ultimately L, 50. (6) After 350 B.C., at latest, there was in Latin no sound corresponding to 2, which was therefore dropped. In the Chalcidian ' alphabet the svmbol for x was placed after the symbols common to all Greek alphabets, a position which X retains in the Latin (and also in the Faliscap)_alphabet. K in time passed out of use except as an abbreviation, its place_ being taken b C, which, as we have seen, is in the earliest mscri tion still g, ree ints here require explanation: (1) Why K ell into disuse; (2) w y C took the place of


K; (3) why the new symbol G was put in the place of, the lost 2. It is clear that 0 must have become an equivalent 0 K before the latter fell out of use. There is some evidence whic seems to point to a pronunciation of the voiced mutes which, like the South German pronunciation of g, d, b, but slightly differentiated them from the unvoiced mutes, so that confusion might easily arise. The Etruscans, who were se arated from the Romans only by the Tiber, gradually lost the voice mutes. But another cause was perhaps more o;ent. C and IC, as k was frequently written, would easily be conused in writing, and Professor Hempl &Transactions of the American Philologi'cal Association for 1899, pp. 24 .) shows that the Chalcidian form of §'——I developed into shapes which might have partaken of the confusion. Owing to this confusion, the new symbol G, difi'erentiated from C, took the place of the useless I. In abbreviations, however, 0 remained as before in the value of G, as in the names Gaius and Gnaeus. Y and 2 were added in the last century of~the republic for use in transliterating Greek words containing 1: and f.‘ The dialect which was most closely akin to Latin was Faliscan. The men of Falerii, however, regularly took the side of the Etruscans in wars with Rome, and it is clear that the civilization of the old Falerii, destroyed for its rebellion in 2.}! B.C., was Etruscan and not Roman in character. Peculiar to this alphabet is the form forf—li‘. Much more im ortant than the scanty remains ofFaliscan is the Oscan alphabet. he history of this alphabet is different from that of Rome. It is certain from the symbols which they develo or drop that the. ople of Campania and Samnium borrowed their alphabet from the Eiruscans, who held dominion in Campania from the 8th to the 5th century n.c. Previous to the Punic wars Campania had reached a higher stage of civilization than Rome. Unfortunately, the remains of that civilization are very scanty, and our knowledge of the official al habet outside Capua, and at a later period Pompeii, is practical y confined to two im ortant inscriptions, the tabula Agnonensis, now in the British h" useuni, and the Cip us Abellanus, which is now kept in the E iscopal Seminary at ola. Of Etruscan ori in also is the Umbrian alphabet, represented first and foremost in t e bronze tablets from Gubbio (t e ancient Iguvium). The Etruscan alphabet, like the Latin, was of Chalcidian origin. That it was borrowed at an early date is shown by the fact that most of its numerous inscriptions run from right to left, though some are written fiovn'rpodmfibv. That it took over the whole Chalcidian alphabet is rendered robable by the survival in Umbrian and Oscan, its dau hter aphabets, of forms which are not found in Etruscan itscl . This mysterious language, despite the existence of more than 6000 inscriptions, and the publication in 1892 of a book written in the language and handed down to us by the accident of its use to pack an Egyptian mummy, remains as obscure as ever, but apparently it underwent very great phonetic changes at an early period, so that the voiced mutes B, D, G disappeared. Of the existence of the vowel 0 there is no evidence. If it ever existed in Etruscan, it had been lost before the Oscans and Umbrians borrowed their alphabets. On the other hand, both of their alphabets preserve B and Umbrian G in the form >. Etruscan also retained this symbol in the form 3, and

utilized it exactly as Latin did to replace )1. Oscan, in order to

represent D, introduced later a form 9, thus creating confusion between the symbols for d and for r. This form was adopted for

d because (I had already been borrowed from Etruscan as the symbol for r, although q is also found on Etruscan inscriptions. For the Greek digamma Etruscan used both j and .", but the former only was borrowed by the other languages. Etruscan, like Latin, used 51 (from right to left) to represent the sound of Latin F, but, unlike Latin, adopted 5 not as the single symbol. This form it then wrote as two lozenges , whence developed a later sign, 8, which is used also in Umbrian and Oscan. As the old digamma was kept, this new sign was placed after those borrowed from the Chalcidian'alphabet. Similarly it used :F and I for the Chalcidizin ;; Umbrian borrowed the first, Oscan the second form. The form for h was still closed 5, which Etruscan passed on to Oscan, while Umbrian modified it to The form for m has five strokes; from a later form m the Oscan form was borrowed. Of the two sibilants, M and Q or S, Oscan adopted only a, Umbrian both M and the rounded form 8. Q is found on Etruscan inscriptions, but not in the alphabet series preserved; neither Umbrian nor Oscan has this form. T appears in Etruscan as Y, 7‘, and X; of these Umbrian bOl'l'OWS the first two, while Oscan has a form T like Latin. Etruscan took over the three Greek aspirates, 0, ¢, x, in their Chalcidian forms; 0 survives in Umbrian as Q, the others naturally disappear. Both Umbrian and Oscan devised two new symbols. Umbrian

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took over from Etruscan perhaps the sign q, but gave it the new value of a. spirant which developed out of an earlier d-sound, but which is written in the Latin alphabet with rs. The second Umbrian symbol was d, which was the representative of an s-sound developed by palatalizing an earlier k. In Oscan, which had an o-sound, but no symbol for it, a new sign was invented by placing a dot between the legs of the symbol for u—V. This, however, is found only in the best-written documents, and on some materials the dot cannot be distin uished. The symbol l- was invented for the open i-sound and c ose é-sound.l At a much later epoch it was introduced into the Latin alphabet by the emperor Claudius to represent y, and the sound which was written as i or u in maximus, maxumus, &c.

Besides the Italic alphabets already mentioned, which are all derived from the alphabet of the Chalcidian Greek colonists in ltaly, there were at least four other alphabets in use in different Darts of Italy: (I) the Messapian of the south-east part of the‘peninsula, in which the inscriptions of the lllyrian dialect in use there were written, an alphabet which, according to Pauli (Alt-italische Forschungen, iii. chap. ii.) was borrowed from the Locrian alphabet; (2) the Sabellic al habet, derived from that of Corinth and Corcyra, and found in a ew inscriptions of eastern-central Italy; ( ) the al habet of the Veneti 0f north-east Italy derived from the Elean; (4)) the al habet of Sondrio (between Lakes Como and Garda), which Pauli, on the insufficient ground that it possesses no symbols corresponding to 4: and x, derives from a source at the same stage of development as the oldest alphabets of Thera, Melos and Crete.

From the fact that upon the Galassi vase (unearthed at Cervetri, but probably a'sroduct of Caere), which is now in the Gregorian Museum of the atican. a syllabary is found along with one of the most archaic Greek alphabets, and that a similar combination was found upon the wall of a tomb at Colle, near Siena, it has been ar ued that syllabic preceded alphabetic writing in Italy. But a sy labary where each syllable is made by the combinations of a symbol for a consonant with that for a vowel can furnish no proof of the existence of a syllabary in the strict sense, where each symbol represents a syllable; it is rather evidence against the existence of such writing. The syllabary upon the Galassi vase indicates in all probabilit that the vase, which resembles an ink-bottle, bee lon ed to a c ild, for whose edification the s llables Pa, pi, pe, {214 an the rest were intended. The evidence a duced from the Latin rammarians, and from abbreviations on Latin inscriptions like ubs for lubens, is not sufficient to establish the theory.

It has been argued that the runes of the Teutonic peoples have been derived from a form of the Etruscan alphabet, inscriptions in which are spread over a great part of northern Italy, but of which the most characteristic are found in the neighbourhood of Lugano, and in Tirol near Innsbruck, Botzen and Trent. The Danish scholar L. F. A. Wimmer, in his great work Die Runenschrifl (Berlin, 1887), contends that the resemblance, though striking, is superficial. Wimmer’s own view is that the runes were developed from the Latin alphabet in use at the end of the 2nd century AD. Wimmer supports his thesis with great learning and ingenuity, and when allowance is made for the fact that a script to be written upon wood, as the runes were, of necessity avoids horizontal lines which run along the fibres of the wood, and would therefore be indistinct, most of the runic signs thus receive a plausible explanation. The strongest argument for the derivation from the Latin alphabet is undoubtedly the value of f attaching to P ; for, as we have seen, the Greek value of this symbol is w, and its value as f arises only by abbreviation from FH. On the other hand, several of Wimmer’s equations are undoubtedly forced. Even if we grant that the Latin symbols were inverted or set at an angle (a proceeding which is paralleled by the treatment of the Phoenician signs in Greek hands), so that n represents Latin V, M Latin E, I\ Latin \0, and |> Latin D; while the symbol for the voiced spirant 6 is b doubled, D4, D0, it is difficult to believe that the symbol for the spirant g, viz. X, represents a Latin K (which was of rare occurrence), or again ‘ls, X aLatin N,orthat the symbol for ng, (), represents <=c doubled. Moreover, the date of the borrowing seems too late. The runes are found in all Teutonic countries,and the Romans were in close contact with the Germans on the Rhine before the beginning

1 For further details of these alphabets, see Conway, The Italic Dialects, ii. pp. 458 ff. The recent discovery by Keil and Premerstein (Denkschriften der Wiener Akademic, liii., 1908) of Lydian inscriptions containing the symbol 8 suggests that the old derivation of the Etruscans from (In! may be true and that they brought this


symbol with them see artic. on F). _But_ the inscriptions are not yet dcciphered, so that conclusive proof is still wanting.

Teutonic mun.


of the Christian era. We hear of correspondence between the Romans and German chieftains in the early days of the empire. It is strange, therefore, if the Roman alphabet, which formed the model for the runes, was that of two whole centuries later, and even then the formal alphabet of inscriptions. By that time the Teutons were likely to have more convenient materials than wood whereon to write, so that the adaptation of the forms would not have been necessary. That the Germans were familiar with some sort of marks on wood at a much earlier period is shown by Tacitus’s Germania, chap. x. There we are told that for purposes of divination certain signs were scratched on slips of wood from a fruit-bearing tree (including, no doubt, the beech; cp. book, German Buch, and Buchslabe, a letter of the alphabet); the slips were thrown down promiscuously on a white cloth, whence the expert picked them up at random and by them interpreted fate. In these slips we have the origin of the Norse kefli, the Scots kaivel, which were and are still used as lots. The fishermen of north-east Scotland, when they return after a successful haul, divide the spoil into as many shares as there are men in the boat, with one share more for the boat. Each man then procures a piece of wood or stone, on which he puts a private mark. These lots are put in a heap, and an outsider is called in who throws one lot or kaivel upon each heap of fish. Each fisherman then finds his kaivel, and the heap on which it lies is his. This system of “ casting kaivels,” as it is called, is certainly of great antiquity. But its existence will not help to prove an early knowledge of reading or writing, for in order that everything may be fair, it is clear that the umpire should not be able to identify the lot as belonging to a particular individual. It has, however, been contended that a system of primitive runes existed whence some at least of the later runes were borrowed, and the ownership marks of the Lapps, who have no knowledge of reading and writing, have been regarded as borrowed from these early Teutonic runes.2 Be this as it may, the resemblances between the runic and the Mediterranean alphabets are too great to admit of denial that it is from a Greek alphabet, whether directly or indirectly, that the runes are derived. That Wimmer postdates the introduction of the runic alphabet seems clear from the archaic forms and method of writing. It is very unlikely that a people borrowing an alphabet which was uniformly written from left to right should have used it in order to write from right to left, or floua'rpodmfiov. Hence Hempl contends3 that Wimmer’s view must be discarded, and that the runes were derived about 600 ac. from a western Greek alphabet which closely resembled the Formello alphabet (one of the ancient Chalcidian abecedan'a) and the Sabellic and North Etruscan alphabets. He thus fixes the date at the same period as Isaac Taylor had done in his Greeks and Goths and The Alphabet. Taylor, however, derived the runes from the alphabet of a Greek colony on the Black Sea. Hempl's initiative was followed by Professor Gundermann of Giessen, who announced in November r897‘ that he had discovered the source of the runic alphabet, the introduction of which he declares preceded the first of the phonetic changes known as the “Teutonic sound-shifting,” since <=gis used for k, X =X for g, a Theta-like symbol for d, while zd is used for st. If this view (which is identical with Taylor’s) be true, we have a parallel in the Armenian alphabet, which is similarly used for a new value of the sounds. Hempl,on the other hand,contends that the sound-shifting had already taken place, and, arguing that several of the symbols have changed places (e.g. Yr f and R a, O u and 8 b, because at this time b was a bilabial spirant

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“’ 7 “WM about AD. 600. Prehistoric Linear Script from Crete.

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Cyprian Inscription (4th century B.C.) from Curium (British Museum EA'cat'ations,dr>. 64). Below are (i) the transliteration of the symbols; (2) the Greek words, both like the Cyprian rea ing from right to left.

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