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Transcript
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Many legends associated with the inventions of
writing.
Greek legend – Prince of Phonecia, Cadmus
Chinese Fable – their 4-eyed dragon god, Cang Jie
did it.
Babylonian God Nebo gave it to the Egyptians.
In Islam – the alphabet was invented by Allah and
presented to humans, but not the angels.
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Began with PETROGLYPHS – or cave
drawings 20,000 yrs ago in Spain
PICTOGRAMS – pix drawings
Represent direct objects
Once it was accepted as representing an
object – then it was extended to
representing ideas associated with the
objects, thus Ideograms.
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Some common examples
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Cuneiform – latin words ‘wedge’ and ‘shape’.
Originated in Sumeria
More than 6,000 years ago
The oldest known writing system
On clay slabs – writing about prayers, epics,
poems, docs, etc.
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It evolved and later became known as logographic,
or word writing
Each symbol represents both word and concept –
like ideograms
Later borrowed by the Babylonians, Assyrians and
Persians – spread thruout Asia Minor
They used them to represent the sounds in their
language
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Cuneiform later evolved into syllabic writing
The Persians greatly simplified the original
cuneiform writing.
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Modern pictographic system
Similar to cuneiform – many symbols are
combined to form meanings /concepts
:-)
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:’-(
B-(
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When a graphic symbol no longer has a visual
relationship to the word it represents, it becomes a
phonographic symbol, standing for the sounds that
represent the word.
A single sign can represent all words with the same
sound – eg.  means ‘sun’ and ‘son’.
An advert which uses this principle – ‘31wonderful
flavours’
This is not an efficient system, why?
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At the same time as the Sumerian’s
cuneiform – 4000BC – Egyptians using
same form of writing
Greeks term it as Hieroglyphs
This system represents both concept and
word for the concept. So – became
logographic writing system.
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A majority of the alphabets of today’s modern
writing system comes from the Greeks.
Word Writing – or logographic writing system
A written character represents both the meaning
and pronunciation of each word or
morpheme(smallest meaningful unit of language).
English words – 26 words and symbols
Chinese and Japanese – many characters that
represent sounds or words – an exception.
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A system without consonant clusters (-ght, -ng)
more efficient than word-writing systems, but has
many variation of sounds – in the Jap lang all
words can be phonologically represented in 100
syllables.
Cherokee people also adopted the syllabic writing
system but only recently invented in 1821.
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Hebrew and Arabic are languages with
alphabets that consist of only consonants.
Eg Arabic consonant ktb forms the root
words for kitab (book), katab (write), etc.
Compared to English, I like to eat out. = LK T
T T.
Works well with person who knows the
spoken language.
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Chap 12 – Fromkin et al.
The end