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The Riddle Of The Labyrinth: The Quest To Break An Ancient Code
NPR ^ | Jume 30, 2013 | NPR Staff

Posted on 06/30/2013 2:47:37 PM PDT by OddLane

Critics have called Margalit Fox's new book, The Riddle of the Labyrinth, a paleographic detective procedural. It follows the story of the laborious quest to crack a mysterious script, unearthed in Crete in 1900, known by the sterile-sounding name Linear B.

Fox, an obituary writer for The New York Times, is good at bringing the departed to life. In The Riddle of the Labyrinth, she tells the story of Alice Kober, a classics professor at Brooklyn College, who worked alone over decades and discovered the essential grammar of Linear B, only to die in 1950 before she could complete her work.

Until now, Kober's contribution to Linear B had been largely overlooked, but Fox tells Jacki Lyden, host of weekends on All Things Considered, that the riddle of the script wouldn't have been solved without Kober.

(Excerpt) Read more at npr.org ...


TOPICS: History
KEYWORDS: alicekober; brooklyncollege; crete; cuneiform; epigraphyandlanguage; godsgravesglyphs; history; knossos; lineara; linearb; margalitfox; michaelventris; orthography; pages; script; tablet
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1 posted on 06/30/2013 2:47:37 PM PDT by OddLane
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To: SunkenCiv

ping


2 posted on 06/30/2013 2:47:54 PM PDT by OddLane
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To: OddLane

I always thought that the answer to the riddle of the Labyrinth was that you’re not supposed to give babies to David Bowie.


3 posted on 06/30/2013 2:52:43 PM PDT by Greetings_Puny_Humans
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To: Greetings_Puny_Humans

LOL.


4 posted on 06/30/2013 2:54:47 PM PDT by OddLane
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To: OddLane

Did it offer any clues as to where Hoffa is buried?


5 posted on 06/30/2013 2:56:08 PM PDT by editor-surveyor (Freepers: Not as smart as I'd hoped they'd be)
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To: OddLane

In before someone says that, when deciphered, Linear B means “drink your Ovaltine”.


6 posted on 06/30/2013 3:00:07 PM PDT by married21
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To: OddLane; martin_fierro; mikrofon

You know, I think I've got it figured out. I'm not 100% sure, but I think it reads something like this:

There once was a fella from Knossos
Who suffered from some weird neurosis
He'd sit there in Crete
And write with his feet
And his script would for ages engross us

7 posted on 06/30/2013 3:10:42 PM PDT by Charles Henrickson (Tales from the Script.)
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To: married21

Burma Shave.


8 posted on 06/30/2013 3:18:30 PM PDT by Salamander (.......Uber Alice!.......)
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To: Salamander

Ha!


9 posted on 06/30/2013 3:24:51 PM PDT by married21
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To: OddLane

I did not know that Linear B had been decoded. If it has, then what do those tablets say?

Maybe I am thinking of an older script from Crete but I am sure I read recently that we cannot decipher what the ancient Cretans wrote.


10 posted on 06/30/2013 3:27:02 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: OddLane

The Riddle of the Labyrinth

2 lefts, one right, skip 3, 1 left, 2 rights, you’re home free.


11 posted on 06/30/2013 3:27:37 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: OddLane

Sometimes an ancient unsolved mystery of a unseen script is just a ancient grammar error or mindless doodling. .


12 posted on 06/30/2013 3:30:27 PM PDT by ThomasThomas ("We make a living by what we get. We make a life by what we give.")
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To: married21

;)


13 posted on 06/30/2013 3:33:14 PM PDT by Salamander (.......Uber Alice!.......)
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To: Cvengr

What if the Hokey Pokey really is what it’s all about?


14 posted on 06/30/2013 3:34:39 PM PDT by Salamander (.......Uber Alice!.......)
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To: Salamander

I don’t read cursive hieroglyphs.


15 posted on 06/30/2013 3:36:17 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: yarddog
...I read recently that we cannot decipher what the ancient Cretans wrote...but we do know they were liars...
16 posted on 06/30/2013 3:37:37 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: Cvengr

I don’t understand. How do we know they were liars?


17 posted on 06/30/2013 3:43:00 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: Cvengr

Titus 1:12
(12) One of themselves, even a prophet of their own, said, The Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, slow bellies.

Ergo the Cretan Paradox:
Epimenides the Cretan says “All Cretans are liars.” This statement, because it was uttered by a Cretan, is true if and only if it is false.


18 posted on 06/30/2013 3:53:26 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: yarddog

see above


19 posted on 06/30/2013 3:54:17 PM PDT by Cvengr (Adversity in life and death is inevitable. Thru faith in Christ, stress is optional.)
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To: All

42


20 posted on 06/30/2013 4:03:22 PM PDT by BipolarBob
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To: Cvengr

OK, I get it now.


21 posted on 06/30/2013 4:04:47 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: Cvengr

That’s because you are a creepy-a__ (code) cracker.


22 posted on 06/30/2013 4:09:00 PM PDT by Bigg Red (Restore us, O God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved! -Ps80)
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To: Salamander

LOL!

OMG! I nearly feel out of my chair!!

hahahahha!


23 posted on 06/30/2013 4:13:40 PM PDT by Bigh4u2 (Denial is the first requirement to being a liberal)
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To: yarddog

18 jars wine. 26 jars oil. 14 slaves for 18 workdays each equals (scratch scratch). 500 yards linen.

The vast majority of ancient texts in any script are inventories.


24 posted on 06/30/2013 4:19:07 PM PDT by Tax-chick (I want shrimp tacos.)
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To: Charles Henrickson

Good guess and quite funny.

However, I’ve been to Knossos and know for an absolute fact that the script is from a menu at a bistro known as Knossos Joe’s back in the (Neolithic) day, known far and wide for their scrumptious Minotaur burgers.


25 posted on 06/30/2013 4:24:11 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: Charles Henrickson; OddLane; martin_fierro

It could be the secret ingredients for the ORIGINAL hair color restorer - Cretian Formula


26 posted on 06/30/2013 4:37:07 PM PDT by mikrofon (Or Cretan, NTBCW Cretin)
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To: yarddog
We cannot decipher what the ancient Cretans wrote.

And we know that modern cretins can't read.


27 posted on 06/30/2013 4:47:11 PM PDT by katana (Just my opinions)
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To: OddLane; martin_fierro; mikrofon; Veto!; Tax-chick; married21

This is a very early model of a tablet. And it contains one of the first known examples of texting. Note, 160 characters or less. It says:

gurl, pal so txtg. went shpg 2day. omg cray cray. @teotd $ urn @Crete&Barrel. lulz! ttfn <3 #ybff

28 posted on 06/30/2013 4:55:49 PM PDT by Charles Henrickson (Tales from the Script.)
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To: Tax-chick

Probably right. I remember seeing the translation of some cuneiform tablets and that is exactly what they were.


29 posted on 06/30/2013 5:26:49 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog
I did not know that Linear B had been decoded. If it has, then what do those tablets say?

Linear B has been partly decoded. Linear A has not.

30 posted on 06/30/2013 5:32:01 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Revenge is a dish best served with pinto beans and muffins)
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To: Salamander
:snicker:

If you are ever stuck in a labyrinth the way to get out is to rest your hand on the wall and do not lift it as you walk. It may take a bit but you will get out.

31 posted on 06/30/2013 5:35:32 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Revenge is a dish best served with pinto beans and muffins)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

Thanks that explains a lot.


32 posted on 06/30/2013 5:38:14 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: OddLane; mikrofon; Charles Henrickson; SunkenCiv
a paleographic detective procedural

Why am I reminded of,

♪♫ Now Paul is a real estate novelist
who never had time for a wife ♪♫

33 posted on 06/30/2013 5:42:58 PM PDT by martin_fierro (engrossing *yawwwn* reading)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

An even better way is to charm a young Princess into giving you a ball of twine and a sword.


34 posted on 06/30/2013 5:46:26 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog
You are welcome. There were three prehistoric scripts on Crete, Cretan hieroglyphs (undeciphered) Linear A (undeciphered) and Linear B (partly deciphered). Usually you can work backwards from a known writing system to an unknown but in this case they ran into a brick wall.

It makes you wonder if the language changed totally.

35 posted on 06/30/2013 5:47:35 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Revenge is a dish best served with pinto beans and muffins)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

For some reason, Crete has always fascinated me. It seems to be so mysterious and also just as old a civilization as Egypt.

Even the way they made their upside down looking pillars which were larger at the top than the bottom, seems really odd.

The ancient Greek myths always show Crete as the most powerful kingdom in antiquity yet in known history, it was just another large island.


36 posted on 06/30/2013 5:54:55 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog
I have never had any luck charming princesses. :)
37 posted on 06/30/2013 6:01:01 PM PDT by Harmless Teddy Bear (Revenge is a dish best served with pinto beans and muffins)
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To: Charles Henrickson

LOL, But!

OMG @Crete&Barrel bought out Knossos Joe’s? 86d Minotaur burgers?

What’s a gurl 2do?


38 posted on 06/30/2013 6:28:55 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: yarddog
For some reason, Crete has always fascinated me. It seems to be so mysterious and also just as old a civilization as Egypt.

It's the olive oil. Best in the world, guaranteed to add thousands of years to your life.

39 posted on 06/30/2013 6:31:18 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: katana

LOL

Cretin is as Cretin does.


40 posted on 06/30/2013 6:32:05 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: Veto!

I just bought my first bottle of olive oil ever.

I still don’t understand the concept of “extra virgin”.


41 posted on 06/30/2013 6:33:57 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog
I still don’t understand the concept of “extra virgin”.

Uh uh, you're not going to tempt me into that conversation.

And that's a free sample of extra virgin :)

42 posted on 06/30/2013 6:40:28 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: Veto!

I just looked at my bottle and it says Filipo Berio and product of Italy. I guess it will only add a few years to my life.

The darn stuff is pretty expensive. I just wanted to try the stuff. My late wife and my late mother never used anything but good old American peanut oil, well Mother used a lot of lard.


43 posted on 06/30/2013 6:49:58 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog

A few years here and there add up. Hope you develop a taste for it.

Italian evoo is fine too. But oil from Crete is supposedly the best. If you live near a Trader Joe, check out their organic Greek evoo at a fairly reasonable price. I use it for pretty much everything, but
have to keep cooking temps below the smoking point because high heat changes it chemically to something not very good for you.


44 posted on 06/30/2013 7:09:37 PM PDT by Veto! (Opinions freely expressed as advice)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

I wonder if is just an ancient form of ebonics?


45 posted on 06/30/2013 7:21:11 PM PDT by Conservative4Ever (I'm going Galt)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear
 photo Image3copy.jpg I had pretty good luck charming one princess.
46 posted on 06/30/2013 7:45:02 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: yarddog
The Daughter turned out to be more of a Warrior Princess  photo 2spider181.jpg
47 posted on 06/30/2013 7:48:36 PM PDT by yarddog (Romans 8: verses 38 and 39. "For I am persuaded".)
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To: OddLane; martin_fierro; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; ...

Thanks OddLane, and (within reason) martin_fierro. ;') New logo test:

48 posted on 06/30/2013 8:12:43 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (McCain or Romney would have been worse, if you're a dumb ass.)
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To: Harmless Teddy Bear

Hmmm...and that will work for a hedge maze too, I imagine.


49 posted on 06/30/2013 8:33:50 PM PDT by Pharmboy (Democrats lie because they must.)
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To: married21
In before someone says that, when deciphered, Linear B means “drink your Ovaltine”.

Only a fool would say that; any educated person knows it says, "In every taste test, Bosco is best!"

50 posted on 07/01/2013 1:59:06 AM PDT by ApplegateRanch (Love me, love my guns!©)
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