The Story of the Alphabet [NOOK Book]

Overview

In every day life, most people take words for granted. However, words form the basis for our most important faculty, that of communication. The story of the alphabet is a complex one. From the earliest of cave designs and pictographs mankind has been fascinated with our ability to draw. This naturally led to the capability of writing, notably the cuneiform script of the Sumerians, nearly six thousand years ago. The natural progression of history has done an extraordinary thing to language over the millennia. As ...
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The Story of the Alphabet

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Overview

In every day life, most people take words for granted. However, words form the basis for our most important faculty, that of communication. The story of the alphabet is a complex one. From the earliest of cave designs and pictographs mankind has been fascinated with our ability to draw. This naturally led to the capability of writing, notably the cuneiform script of the Sumerians, nearly six thousand years ago. The natural progression of history has done an extraordinary thing to language over the millennia. As civilizations have risen and fallen over the ages, as they fought their battles and conquered new lands, language has always followed. Sometimes it becomes assimilated into a new culture, other times it does not and follows the defeated nation to the grave, only to be rediscovered eons later by modern linguists, to be recounted in this book.

Unfortunately, the important story of language is often neglected in the very medium that supports its use, book writing. When this book was first written, over a hundred years ago, there was only one comprehensive anthology authored on the subject.. Since that time only a handful more have been written. This little book closes an important gap in understanding the origins of our language. In doing so, we will most surely have an improved grasp of who we are, and more importantly, where we're going. This book opens by describing the beginnings of the alphabet, there is a lengthy chapter on memory aids and picture writing, followed by one on Chinese, Japanese and Korean scripts. The cuneiform writing of the Sumerians, Babylonians and Assyrians as well as the hieroglyphics of the Egyptians are given considerable space for discussion, which isn't surprising given their importance to the origin of language. A short chapter on the peculiar letters of the Cretans, and diminutive forms found in other languages, such as the Hittites, is included followed by the concluding chapters on Greek papyri and the runes and ogam (ogham) of the Celt and Gothic peoples.

This book contains over seventy detailed illustrations in the form of line drawings, renderings and lithographs of such an exquisite nature that they compliment the text precisely. The way in which this book is written, in clear and concise language that easily portrays its message, should prove useful to student and scholar alike. As the author of the Story of Primitive Man, Pioneers of Evolution, the Story of Creation and other similar books, Edward Clodd contributes scientific and practical knowledge to the early creation and use of our alphabet. The story of the alphabet is unlike any other human endeavor, it has evolved, died out, taken its turns of history, and yet still survives to this day. In this day of email, facsimiles and voicemail, it is nice to know that the origins of our language will not be forgotten. This fascinating chronology should make an uncommon addition to any library on ancient civilizations and language. 209 pages o illustrated

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Product Details

  • BN ID: 2940025559238
  • Publisher: D. Appleton and company
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: Digitized from 1900 volume
  • File size: 296 KB

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