JA (iohanne) wrote in linguaphiles,

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Non-Sumerian and Non-Akkadian Cuneiform

I'm interested in looking into cuneiform inscriptions in languages other than Sumerian and Akkadian. According to Professor Henry Rogers in his textbook, Writing Systems: A Linguistic Approach, the cuneiform adaptations to other languages were "conservative" and "kept the structure of Sumerian and Akkadian." In the textbook he mentions Elamite, Eblaite, Hittite, Hurrian and Urartian. In addition, Wikipedia mentions Luwian and Hattic.

In order to have an in-depth look at these other cuneiform scripts I would greatly appreciate it if anyone could point me to any academic sources. I'm particularly interested in exploring the relationship between cuneiform and the spoken language. I have learned from Rogers that cuneiform script made mix use of phonograms and morphograms and I would like explore the distribution of these grapheme classes within the cuneiform inscriptions; where they, for example, in complementary distribution (as Japanese generally uses phonograms for inflections and morphograms for lexical roots) or is the usage up to the whim of the scribe? To a lesser extent I am interested in allographic variation especially variation that arose during the initial adaptation of the script from Akkadian to the new language.

Obviously any works on the proposed phonologies of the above languages may also prove to be helpful especially if I could get my hand on a decent list of phonograms for each language. Finally, because there are apparently great innovations in Old Persian and Ugaritic cuneiform (and more research material, I'm assuming), I am interested in these two scripts most of all. Though this may all seem overly ambitious, any help at all, however small, would be greatly appreciated.

X-posted to linguists

P.S. For some reason, when I look at cuneiform tables on-line, it only shows that little square with numbers and letters. I'm an idiot at technology. What do I have to do to get my computer to support the cuneiform characters?

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