Riddle of the Phaistos Disk

December 19, 2011 0:36

Famous Phaistos disc with the printed signs of unknown letters

Crete since the XV century attracted travelers for its ancient buildings, located in different parts of it. The first archaeological excavations were carried out here in 1876 by the Spanish consul M. Kalokerinosom.

 He unearthed near the city of Heraklion ruins of this building. American scientist W. Stilmen studied them in 1881. This was the famous Labyrinth. Since 1884 the island began working Italian expedition of archaeologists who have done a lot of discoveries. After the liberation of the island of Crete in 1898, two centuries of Ottoman rule from his archaeological investigation unfolded in a big way. Special credit goes to the distinguished British scientist Sir Arthur Evans, who dedicated 30 years of his life to the study of the ancient history of the island. They laid the foundation of periodization Cretan culture of the Bronze Age, a lot of work on the scientific systematization of the numerous and varied artefacts and ancient literature. His discovery of the Minoan culture was called and there was in the years 2800-1100 BC. Minoan it is named after the legendary ruler of the island — Minos (or dynasty), whose activity is known to us by the extant myths of Icarus and Daedalus, Minotaur, Theseus and Ariadne, and others.


In ancient times, the island of Crete was a powerful maritime nation. Being in the middle of the Mediterranean Sea, it has held a dominant position on the lines of communication between Asia Minor, the Balkans and Egypt — centers of ancient civilizations. Minoan culture was the ancient culture of Europe, which has had a huge influence on later civilizations of ancient Greece and Rome. That is why so much attention paid scientists studying the island of Crete, and in particular, the written records of the Minoans, in many discovered during the excavations.

Inscriptions found on the island belonged to the three varieties of writing, the sequence of alternating. The first was hieroglyphic writing, which had some similarities with the ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs that under broad contacts with Egypt is not surprising. Then followed the so-called Linear A and Linear B. letter Linear A and B, and characters in its iconography are links of the same evolutionary chain. Most of the inscriptions found on the island, made Linear B, which replaced the Linear A in the middle of the XV century BC. e.

Teaching was that the transcript of one of them will read the rest. More than forty years they have struggled with this problem. What only a hypothesis does not appear when deciphering ancient European title! Drawing a parallel with the written Hittites and Egyptians, Basques and Albanians, Jews, and the Sumerians, even Slavs and Finns. It was only in 1952, Michael Ventris proved that the language of the Linear B was Greek. Thanks to decipher Linear B has failed to read the vast majority of the inscriptions. Read but not understand. Minoans language was different, and it turned out if now write the phrase in Uzbek Russian letters, you read it we could, but do not understand. Linear A, more ancient than the letter B, also still no information is given, it was clearly a non-Greek language, and besides all the documents to get us there is an economic or inventory records or lists. With its similarities with the characters is not difficult to understand. Thus, the most ancient texts in Europe, over the poems of Homer for seven centuries until now were not understood.

Phaistos PROBLEM

Particularly acute problem in deciphering writing Crete made another inscription, the most mysterious and amazing, on a problem which is still puzzling the best minds. This is known as the Phaistos disc. It was found in 1908 by Italian archaeologists in excavations of the royal palace in the city of Festus. In one of the rooms along with it was a clay tablet, written in Linear A. item found is a small disc diameter 15-16 cm and a thickness of about 2 cm on both sides of it covered spiral inscription stamped carefully carved out of a solid material stamps. In the manufacture of the disk used conventional techniques used in ancient times for the production of clay tablets — in crude clay deposited title, and then followed it to the firing kiln. The most interesting thing was to Phaistos disk label on it. She was not like any Cretan hieroglyphs on either Linear A and b. It was a special kind of writing, hitherto unknown. Work on deciphering the Phaistos disk began immediately after its discovery. As the inscription on the disk were not like the Minoan writing, the researchers decided to start looking for signs of external similarity with other known scripts. Signs Phaistos disk compared with Egyptian hieroglyphs, they were referred to a certain North African culture close drevneegipetskoi. A large group of scientists thought the disc from the Festa monument of culture of Asia Minor, as the clay from which it was made, was probably the Anatolian origin. Other scientists on the contrary, felt and clay, and do the writing of local artifacts, the Cretan origin. Tried to read them in Greek and Cypriot language, but too small number of characters, similar to the signs of the Phaistos disc was found in other writing systems. Hence it appeared quite different in content and meaning of his translations. The variety of their high — that religious songs, and ritual or dedicatory inscriptions, edicts about distribution of land plots and planting instructions for the holiday, reports from spies or brief historical chronicle, the winning anthem, the story of the destruction of Atlantis, and more. Discrepancies were so great that scientists have come to understand that all the previously applied methods are unacceptable for solving problems Phaistos. The most suitable is a combinatorial method, which involved all previously known methods in various combinations. However, he was not successful. Combinatorial method allowed to see on the Phaistos disk enumeration of certain proper names and some names. Proper names, obviously, were the names of the Minoan rulers, and place names denote objects geographically-territorial nature. From all this, it was concluded that it is not nothing but a sacred contract or other religious-political act between the rulers of individual cities and the supreme ruler, with a list of their names and possessions. Today it is the interpretation of the inscriptions on the last drive, and as we can see, it is no worse than others, unconvincing and little understood.

However, the use of combinatorial methods allow to draw some conclusions that can serve as a starting point for further research. So, it was noted that the text is often found in the form of a sign of a human head with a cock's comb and pole rotor nose. This symbol of man-cock was an attribute of the supreme deity in Crete and had a solar (sun) cult. It is associated with the image of the ruler. It was further determined that the Phaistos disc writing is not alphabetic or hieroglyphic. It is believed that she had a syllabic character. Attracted the attention of researchers, and the fact that the total number of digits, presumably taken as place names, is 12. In this regard, mention of the archaic tradition in ancient Greece in the form of political associations dvenadtsatigrady. Leaving aside the logical conclusions of authors of the combinatorial method, we have established three things: that the disk is often repeated symbol of the sun, stable groups of twelve signs, and the fact that these characters were not any letters or characters. Comparing these facts, it can be undeniable conclusion — the signs on the Phaistos disk is not the script and try to read them meaningless. And indeed the disk-shaped said otherwise its purpose. For records always used rectangular plate — never round. Then what is it?


This question with certainty theory meets our compatriot, not the venerable scholar, not a linguist or historian, but just out of town history buff Melenki Vladimir Oblast Vladimir Mikhailov. History is replete with examples of amateurs to deal with these problems, which could not solve even leading figures of science. Undoubtedly, this is one of those cases. V. Mikhailov in the study drew disk mythology of ancient Greece, and it turned out that the disk depicted in certain combinations is not nothing but a constellation! In groups of characters on the disc, he found the constellation Leo, Taurus, Ophiuchus, Aries, Cepheus, Cassiopeia, the Big Dipper, Capricorn and others. True, V. Mikhailov later abandoned this theory and took the example of other useless unravel label on the disc, taking them for writing. But his hypothesis that the Phaistos disk is a stellar guide for sailors, commands respect and attention of every kind. The symbols of the sun, the twelve signs of the zodiac, though not all of them are true attributed Mikhailov, allow such an interpretation is the Phaistos disc.


Is it possible? Completely. Dated Phaistos disc around 1600 BC. At this time, the island was used Linear A, the scientists who have examined the disk as inscriptions, believed that Linear A and B on the drive letter existed in parallel. The inscription on the disk were religious in nature and was made specially introduced for such cases writing. Clearly, this conclusion does not hold water. Something similar argued against Egyptian hieroglyphics Cleitarchus Alexandria in the III century BC, but its long-debunked assertions brilliant Champollion and his predecessors. Furthermore, the manufacture of the disk falls on overseas sredneminoyskogo (2000-1600 years BC. Oe.) And pozdneminoyskogo (1600-1100 years BC. E.) Period in the history of the island. About 1700, 1660 and 1600 BC. e. on the island of destructive earthquakes occur, resulting in the last drive, and was buried under the debris. Prior to these disasters island inhabits non-Greek population, as has been established, to use non-Greek Linear A. The Greeks came to the island of Crete later in pozdneminoysky period, and used the linear script B. Culture of the island during the production disk has a high level of economic development, architecture, crafts, painting, farming, fishing and hunting. The rulers of Crete were subject to the other islands of the Aegean Sea. Cyprus naval supremacy in the Mediterranean made Crete world power. When Pharaoh Thutmosis III (1525-1473 years BC. E.) Crete equally maintained diplomatic relations with Egypt. On Crete opened sea routes in all directions. Its trade links reached Mesopotamia in the east, in the west of the Pyrenees, the Balkans and Egypt in the north to the south. In addition to this military expansion Cretans covers the coast of Central Greece (siege of Megara), Attica (the military subjugation of Athens), Sicily (landing at the city Kamika), Syria (military settlement). Indonemey, grandson of the legendary King Minos, he fought under the walls of Troy. Clearly the extensive connections of Crete with other lands, to carry because of its geographical position solely by sea, have developed a Cypriot seafarers certain skills and traditions.

In antiquity, the sea voyage, as a rule, in view of the coast, without going to sea. Such an orientation of ancient mariners know us come down to us so-called "Periplus" — descriptions of the coastline, islands, estuaries, distinguishing marks on the banks, the distances between the individual geographical locations, wind directions and sea currents, as well as the harbor and city. In fact, they were lotsiyami, giving valuable information on the Mariners sailing conditions in certain waters. Known Periplus Pripontiyskoy Bithynia, Paphlagonia and full Periplus "Periplus Euxine Pontus" (Black Sea) Arrian 134 years BC. e. Information contained in it, are thought to have accumulated since the end of IV century BC. e. In the Middle Ages such sailing called "portulana-mi" (literally — from port to port). It has all the previously known information displayed on parchment as a map.

Is not so mysterious disk of Phaistos kind portulanom Minoan sailors? Greatest sailors from Crete made their voyage, not only along the coast, but also crossed the sea. And here is another orientation was needed — and it is for the sun and stars. The twelve signs of the zodiac symbol of the sun, plus the disc certainly attest to this. That figure is 12 in antiquity was known as "system 12 winds." She was known in Babylon, Ancient Egypt, India and China. It shared the zodiac into twelve sectors to guide the stars. The scientists concluded that "the system 12 of the winds" existed before the rise of Babylon and is the successor to the more ancient cultures.

Thus, with some confidence, we can say that the Phaistos disk is nothing like a star to guide sailors Minoan II millennium BC. The combination of the zodiac signs and the Sun, along with other symbols to enable them to drive on the high seas to make certain changes of a ship for a particular program and reach your destination, checking for signs of the stars on the disk. Perhaps, the current experts in navigation and astronomy can establish the route of ships, marked on the disc.

Fragment of an ensemble of Knossos Palace

Here it is worth recalling that in 1901, the wreckage of dredge Greek galleys, which sank off the island of Antikireta in the 1st century BC, was discovered a mysterious metal device with a gear transmission. At the National Museum of Athens it was obdledovano professor Derek de Soloy of Yale University. He found that it was a difficult fixture for observing the stars. Charles Hapgood, in his book "Maps of sea kings" refers to this device is the oldest computer. Discovery of the computer in the galley showed that observations of the stars during the voyage were not by eye, and with the help of this device. It is tempting to assume that the Phaistos disk is a part of such a device, something the dangers of modern magnetic or laser disc in the computer. As the characters on the disc in depth, the presence of the gear transmission allows to combine it with a convex array machines and thus to follow the route laid down in advance in this primitive computer.

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