Mesoamerican writing systems A stone slab with 3,year-old writing, the Cascajal Blockwas discovered in the Mexican state of Veracruz, and is an example of the oldest script in the Western Hemisphere, preceding the oldest Zapotec writing dated to about BC. The earliest inscriptions which are identifiably Maya date to the 3rd century BC, and writing was in continuous use until shortly after the arrival of the Spanish conquistadores in the 16th century AD. Maya writing used logograms complemented by a set of syllabic glyphs: Iron Age writing[ edit ] Cippus PerusinusEtruscan writing near PerugiaItalythe precursor of the Latin alphabet The Phoenician alphabet is simply the Proto-Canaanite alphabet as it was continued into the Iron Age conventionally taken from a cut-off date of BC.
The theory may be only partly correct, because in the Holy Land the Early Hebrew alphabet was an object of such strong local attachment that for several centuries it was used side by side with the Aramaic script. At any rate, there is little doubt that the Square Hebrew did derive from the Aramaic alphabet.
A distinctive Jewish variety of the Aramaic alphabet that can be regarded as the Square Hebrew script can be traced from the 3rd century bce. It became standardized just before the Common Era, and it was from this script that the modern Hebrew alphabet, in all its styles, eventually developed.
The development was gradual and purely external i. When the Square Hebrew alphabet became standardized, it took at least, in its formal style and, much later, in its printed form the form that, with insignificant changes, it has today.
Minute rules laid down by the Talmud made further development of the Square Hebrew all but impossible. In the Square Hebrew alphabet there are five letters—kaf, mem, nun, pe, and tzade—that have dual forms.
That is, there is one character for initial or medial position and another for final position. The Hebrew alphabet consists of 22 letters, all consonants, though four of them—alef, he, waw, and yod—are also employed to represent long vowels. The absence of vowel letters was not at first a problem, because Hebrew, like other Semitic languageshas consonantal roots, with vowels serving principally to denote inflections in nouns, moods of verbs, and other grammatical variations.
As Hebrew speech passed out of daily use being superseded by Aramaic, which became the vernacular of the Jews and the knowledge of biblical Hebrew steadily declined, it became necessary to introduce some form of vocalic distinction so that the Bible could be read and explained correctly.
The three main vowel systems now extant are the Babylonian, the Palestinian, and the Tiberiadic; of these the latter is the most important and, indeed, the only one still in use. The Tiberiadic system consists of dots, combinations of dots, and small dashes. Before the discovery of the celebrated Dead Sea Scrollsseveral Square Hebrew inscriptions belonging mainly to the 1st century bce and the succeeding centuries were known; they were found on rocks, tombs, or ossuaries depositories for the bones of the dead and in synagogues and catacombs in Palestine, Syria, North Africaand Italy.
The biblical manuscripts, except for some fragments written on papyrusbelong to a much later date. The earliest fragment is the Nash papyrus of approximately the 1st century bce, now in the University of Cambridge Library. Many thousands of fragments of Hebrew biblical and other manuscripts, partly of the 7th and 8th centuries ce, were discovered in the genizah repository of the old Ezra synagogue in Cairo.
The focus of scholarly interest during the late s and the successive years was the sensational discovery of Hebrew biblical and nonbiblical scrolls in caves near the Dead Sea. The tens of thousands of fragmentary manuscripts, composing what are popularly called the Dead Sea Scrolls, may be divided into several groups, the oldest being a collection of biblical and other Hebrew manuscripts dating approximately from the 3rd century bce.
In the more than bimillenary development of the Square Hebrew alphabet, four fundamental types can be noticed: The Hebrew script has been adapted to some other languages, such as Arabic, Turkish for the Karaite people of Crimeaand so forth, but particularly to German—hence, Yiddish —and Spanish—hence, Ladinoor Judeo-Spanish.
Arabic alphabet The Arabic script descended from the Aramaic through the Nabataean and the neo-Sinaitic alphabets. After the Latin script, it is the most widely used form of alphabetic writing in the modern world.
The Arab conquests of the 7th and 8th centuries ce brought the language and the script to the vast expanse of territory extending from India to the Atlantic Ocean. The Arabic alphabet was adapted, with some necessary modifications, to such diverse languages as the Slavic tonguesSpanishPersianUrduTurkishHebrewAmazigh BerberSwahiliMalaySudanese, and others.
The Arabic alphabet probably originated at some time in the 4th century ce, but the earliest extant Arabic writing is a trilingual inscription—Greek-Syriac-Arabic—of ce. It was particularly suitable for writing on stone or metal, for painting or carving inscriptions on the walls of mosques, and for lettering on coins.
Its letters are generally thick, squat, and unslanted.Greek alphabet: Greek alphabet, writing system developed in Greece about BCE that became the ancestor of all modern European alphabets.
Somali is a member of the East Cushitic branch of the Afro-Asiatic language family. It is spoken mainly in Somali, and also in Djibouti and Ethiopia.
In Somali it is an offical language, in Djibouti it is a national language, and it is a working language in the Somali Region of Ethiopia. In A riveting history of counting and calculating from the time of the cave dwellers to the late twentieth century, The Universal History of Numbers is the first complete account of the invention and evolution of numbers the world over.
The history of writing traces the development of expressing language by letters or other marks and also the studies and descriptions of these developments.. In the history of how writing systems have evolved over in different human civilizations, more complete writing systems were preceded by proto-writing, systems of ideographic or early mnemonic symbols.
An alphabet is a standard set of letters (basic written symbols or graphemes) that represent the phonemes (basic significant sounds) of any spoken language it is used to write. This is in contrast to other types of writing systems, such as syllabaries (in which each character represents a syllable) and logographic systems (in which each character represents a word, morpheme, or semantic unit).
Summary. HTML has had a life-span of roughly seven years. During that time, it has evolved from a simple language with a small number of tags to a complex system of mark-up, enabling authors to create all-singing-and-dancing Web pages complete with animated images, sound and all manner of gimmicks.