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The History Of The Decipherment

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Chapter Summary

The history of the research to decipher the Carian Alphabet can be divided for convenience into three periods: the 'semisyllabic era'; the 'alphabetic Greek era', and the 'Egyptian approach' and the definitive decipherment of Carian. It must be said that only the third period constitutes the true history of the Carian decipherment: until the pioneering work of Zauzich (1972), who was the first to correctly identify the solution - although his approach was unsuccessful - practically all the previous efforts had produced no results. The 'semisyllabic era' was dominated by the figures of Sayce and Bork, and lasted until the 1960s. Steinherr's work can hardly be considered a decipherment, but it does deserve a great deal of respect: before the Egyptian approach", this was the only moment in the history of decipherment that a correct method of analyzing the Carian alphabet had been envisaged, even if it was in a very limited way.

Keywords: alphabetic Greek era; Carian decipherment; Egyptian approach; semisyllabic era; Zauzich



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