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Linguistics (400)
JAL328H1 (31)
Lecture

07 - October 22, 2013.docx

4 Pages
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Department
Linguistics
Course Code
JAL328H1
Professor
Danny Harvey

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Description
Indic script has huge variety – spread from India over a huge area and Philippines Once reached an area, they made ichagnes to make the script th Balinese, Tibetan are examples Indus Valley not yet deciphered Cannot tell if separate characters or different versions of separate characters Do not know number of characters Short inscriptions – are they names? Sentences? DO NOT KNOW Near Mesopotamia Some people think it’s related to Mesopotamia – weird version of Cuneiform or at least the idea of writing diffused from Mesopotamia to India – like Egyptians getting idea from Cuneiform So some people think Indus Valley writing originated from these two sources Ethic ramifications in modern day in how to decipher the Indus Valley script – do not know the language that the script is written in – so have to choose which language it is very carefully A lot of people wan to claim Indus Valley script as their own language – a lot of racism in those regions; fighting amongst them – problematic to try to claim this ancient script as their language After Indus Valley script – no writing – no evidence of writing for 1500 years 1500 years later, get two Indic Scripts First is Kharosthi originally from 4 century BC It originated in northern Pakistan and Afghanistan Spread far and wide – written right to left Know it has an Aramaic predecessor – a lot of evidence linking the two Replaced 3 century AD – before that, all Sanskrit written in Kharosthi th th Brahmi – 5 century BC to 5 AD Bottom is transcription in modern Indian script Year zero, splits into north and south varieties of Brahmi but same sript Kharosthi has Aramaic predecessor but Brahmi does not have graphical predecessor that we know of Many theories Ashoka’s pillar in Nepal – have these Brahmi inscriptions because Ashoka was well-known conqueror and after his last battle, story that he saw the carnage and converted to Buddhist – and these inscriptions are “how not to be a douchebag”/Buddhist teachings Did not find Sanskrit text Religious institions did not feel conformatble writing their teachings down – Sanskrit used to write down intellectual teachings many years after it was already spoken How Semitic are Indic scripts? Unlike Ethiopoic, the vowel nuclii are diacritics Left to right direction Standardized unwritten vowel instead of no vowels written at all (in Semitic scripts) These scripts, the unwritten vowel is ALWAYS a in Indic scripts Alost in alphabetical order via phonetic/place of articulation (start with velars at back of mouth; voiceless sounds come first) Spread of Indic scripts Southest Asia and India – ltons of little dots – there are tons of Indic scripts because you became your own region, you had your own indic script – small communities and now have massive variety How Indic scripts work via Sanskrit The image is Brahmi in Sanskrit Principles of Brahmi writing Vowel only base symbols – if no onset consonant, in the syllable, must start with vowel; must have symbol for the vowel because the consonant symbol have inherent vowel a; but must write vowel by itself Every other base symbol – consonant and vowel Different vowel in nucleus Distinct element – vowel diacritic – on top or bottom or side of the symbol to tell you it’s a different vowel instead of the inherent vowel Four – consonant cluster – two consonants together – formed by making a ligature, called conjuncts as well – to delete vowel in the middle, use ligature to link the two consonants together Fifth – different diacritic – if want to mute the inherent vowel; say it’s at the end of the vowel and want the word to end on a consonant; add virama – does not change the inh
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