Tag Archives: linguistics

A Newly Discovered Hittite City

Last night I watched A New Iron Age Kingdom in Anatolia, as part of the class I am currently taking on the Languages and Writing Systems of Anatolia. The lecture was about the archaelogy of Türkmen-Karahöyük, a mound in the Konya plain of what is now Turkey. The OI is leading the Türkmen-Karahöyük Intensive Survey Project (TISP), which is part of the Konya Regional Archaeological Survey Project (KRASP). TISP is a surface survey, a necessary first step at an archaeological site. However, it has already yielded significant results.

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As I mentioned before, I am currently taking a class on the Languages and Writing Systems of Anatolia, focusing on the ancient Hittites and some of their neighbors and successors in the region. These languages have long been recognized as part of the Indo-European language family, but they have common features among themselves which are not shared with the rest of the IE family.

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The Ancient Minoan Culture…

DNA reveals their Origin

Nothing really wrong with this, but I think the conclusion is too strong. What it proves is that the Minoans in general were not invaders from elsewhere. But foreign cultural influences can come in by ways other than massive invasion and genocide. Look at all the speakers of Indo-European languages: Quite a variety of genetic types even in antiquity.

Life in Late Bronze Age Greece

Notes on Mycenaeans, by Rodney Castleden

I have been interested in the Greek Bronze Age ever since I read Joseph Alsop’s From the Silent Earth back in High School (1964-1968). Mycenaeans is a very readable and recent survey (2005) and I was quite interested in seeing what is new. Quick summary: Some more sites have been excavated, there have been more digs at known sites, and more Linear B tablets have been
found and translated. So there are Lots of new details, but no revolutionary changes in what archeologists think and the big questions remain unanswered.

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Book Find

After being snowbound for 40 hours we were finally able to get out late Sunday morning. The first event: A family trip to a bookstore. There I found and bought a copy of The Big Con: The Story of the Confidence Man. I had read it decades ago, back in college or even high school. The author, David W. Maurer was a long time friend and colleague of my parents. When I saw The Sting a few years later I immediately noticed how closely it followed Maurer’s book and mentioned that to my father. Dad agreed, but that was done with without Maurer’s permission or any acknowledgement of his work. As noted here, a lawsuit followed.

After all these years, The Big Con still finds new fans, such as Cory Doctorow.