Friday, 2 September 2011

The Vinca "SCRIPT" Is it or isn't it?


There are a lot of theories aobut the Vinca script ranging from claims its the ancestor of Linear A and B through to one theory that compares it with the Old Hungarian "RUNES". The one thing all the experts seem ot agree on is that there's about 27 basic signs that appear again and again and the that they have appeared so far to have only been used on objects made of clay.

My own inclination as a scholar who studies ceramics is that it's possible they were potter's marks, a way of saying who made the object and when and why? Perhaps in the Vinca culture potters were also priests?
Perhaps they are a mixture of numbers and symbols?

It is also noteworthy that like other early scripts it appeared in an area with intensive Neolithic settlement and trade links to other areas. The Vinca culture thrived along the Danube and linked tributaries with trade links down into the Balkans and Northern Greece. Perhaps its ancestral to the later Bronze and Iron Age Thracian and Dacian cultures?

If the dates are correct than the Vinca script predates the earliest known proto-Hieroglyphs, Sumerian protoCuneiform,  and early Chinese Oracle Script.

There's a lot of speculation about this and you can read Gimbutas and a variety of blogs.

Me personally as someone who's studied ancient scripts and ceramics : Potter's marks is my best bet.

But perhaps its too simple an explanation?