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Title: Investigating the Signs and Sounds of Cypro-Minoan
Author: Valério, Miguel Filipe Grandão
Director: Adiego, Ignasi-Xavier
Keywords: Epigrafia
Inscripcions antigues
Edat del bronze
Ancient inscriptions
Bronze age
Issue Date: 8-Apr-2016
Publisher: Universitat de Barcelona
Abstract: [eng] The aim of this dissertation is to advance our knowledge of Cypro-Minoan, a group of undeciphered syllabic inscriptions dated roughly to the 16th or 15th through the 11th centuries BCE and found mostly on Cyprus, with small numbers of documents from coastal Syria and Tiryns (Peloponnese). Two recently-published collections of inscriptions (Olivier 2007; Ferrara 2012 and 2013) have facilitated greatly the investigation of Cypro-Minoan, but the field is still missing a comprehensive paleographical study of the script and a definitive sign-list on which most scholars can agree. Albeit being now the main reference, Olivier’s sign repertory of 96 syllabograms is structured upon É. Masson’s (1974) division of Cypro-Minoan into three “subscripts” (CM 1, 2 and 3), supposedly created and used for different languages, a scheme which has come under criticism. It remains uncertain whether the Cypro-Minoan documents contain one or multiple writing systems. Together with the size of the corpus (almost 4,000 signs on fewer than 250 inscriptions), these lacunae greatly reduce the chances of decipherment. The present work intends to demonstrate that Cypro-Minoan in fact presents some advantages that open prospects for elucidating the script and that a methodology that is well-adjusted to them may contribute to improve our understanding of the inscriptions. Therefore, the goal of this thesis is twofold: (1) to establish a signary that identifies individual Cypro-Minoan signs and defines their paleographical variation to a fine degree of accuracy; and (2) to investigate the possible sounds represented by these signs. The second objective is achieved by means of a three-step methodology. The first two steps comprise, on one hand, cross-comparisons between the Cypro-Minoan signs (in terms of form and value) and signs attested in related scripts, namely Linear A and the Cypriot Greek syllabary; on the other hand and independently, internal analyses (positional distribution and frequency, alternations of related signs as a result of morphological activity, and scribal hesitations). The sound values proposed through these two methods are then tested by a third, which consists of provisionally transliterating a limited set of Cypro-Minoan inscriptions, to ascertain whether they yield readings corresponding to linguistic data known from external sources, therefore validating the hypothetical sign values and possibly even proposing new ones. While a cogent decipherment is not the scope of this project, two main objectives are achieved. The first is to offer a revised list of Cypro-Minoan signs, not framed within the traditional division, but based on selected homogeneous subcorpora of inscriptions, with no preconceived bias as to the number of script varieties represented. It is argued that Cypro-Minoan contains between 57 and 70 different syllabograms, depending on the validity of a number of proposed assimilations of signs that possibly are mere allographs. Secondly, phonetic values are proposed for 60 of these sign forms: nine are considered confirmed and the rest hypothetical. In the investigation of the phonetic values, interpretations are offered for RASH Atab 004 (= RS 20.25), a clay tablet from Ugarit (Syria) long thought to contain a nominal list, and a limited set of sequences found on inscriptions from Cyprus. The suggested sound values and interpretations of sign-sequences, many of which represent identifications of personal names recognizable from cuneiform sources, independently corroborate a significant number of proposals made by Nahm in the 1980s.
[spa] La tesis desarrolla un estudio de la escritura chiprominoica, representada por un grupo de epígrafes silábicos fechados aproximadamente entre los siglos XVI o XV y XI a.n.e., hallados en Chipre, y, en menor grado, en la costa siria y en Tirinto. El chiprominoico se caracteriza por un corpus limitado, con una serie de problemas de investigación que dificultan el desciframiento. Pese a la reciente publicación de dos recopilaciones de inscripciones, incluyendo un inventario de 96 signos (Olivier, 2007) estructurado a partir de la división del chiprominoico en tres escrituras supuestamente distintas (CM 1, 2 y 3) propuesta por É. Masson (1974), no existe consenso en cuanto al número de signos y escrituras que integran el corpus. Buscando una metodología adaptada a los problemas que la escritura plantea, el objetivo ha sido doble: (1) establecer un signario fundamentado en análisis paleográficos y con criterio y (2) investigar los posibles valores fonéticos de estos mismos signos. El segundo objetivo se ha realizado en tres pasos metodológicos. Los dos primeros son independientes: la comparación entre los signos del chiprominoico (en cuanto a forma y valor) y los de escrituras “emparentadas” (el Lineal A y el silabario chiprogriego); y en una serie de análisis internos (distribución, interacción entre signos de valor relacionado y correcciones de escribas). El tercer método ha consistido en probar los valores fonéticos sugeridos por los dos primeros a través de la transliteración provisional de un conjunto restringido de epígrafes. Así, se presenta, por un lado, un listado revisado de silabogramas chiprominoicos basado no en la división tradicional, pero partiendo de subgrupos homogéneos de epígrafes, sin prejuicio en cuanto al número de escrituras en ellos representados. Este listado se compone de entre 57 a 70 signos, algunos seguramente meros alógrafos. Por otro lado, se proponen valores fonéticos para 60 de estos caracteres, de los cuales nueve se consideran confirmados y los demás hipotéticos. Simultáneamente, se ofrecen interpretaciones de la tablilla RASH Atab 004 (= RS 20.25), procedente de Ugarit, y algunas secuencias en epígrafes de Chipre. Los resultados, que incluyen mayormente identificaciones de antropónimos conocidos de las fuentes cuneiformes y no suponen un desciframiento definitivo, corroboran varias propuestas ya esbozadas por Nahm (1981; 1984).
Appears in Collections:Tesis Doctorals - Departament - Filologia Llatina

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