Monthly Archives: November 2014

An Update on my Linear B Study

For those who have been following my interest in the Linear B Ancient Script writings, here is an update which includes my visit to The Heraklion Archaeological Museum in Crete. Here I was fortunate enough to see a wonderful display of some of the Linear B clay tablets which Sir Arthur Evans had discovered at Knossos Palace.  I could not believe my eyes when I saw how small these tablets were, and stood in amazement trying to imagine how the scribes managed to convey all the meanings of which they wrote on these tablets, which incidentally,  were not fired when they were initially made, just placed out in the sun to  dry.  Many of the tablets when found had evidence of being burned which has helped preserve them giving us an insight into a lost civilization. This for me was the attraction of learning the Minoan Scripts. It is from these Linear B writings we learn their way of life.  And I might add, it is thanks to my teacher Richard Vallance  who has helped me to achieve the learning of this fascinating subject far enough to be able to read most of the tablets I was looking at. However , Richard has informed me that he has to be a little tougher with my lessons now as they will get  more difficult the further into the study. so I hope my fellow bloggers will excuse the fact that my posts may be fewer than usual.

HERE ARE SOME LINEAR B TABLET PHOTO’S ” Courtesy of The Heraklion Archaeological Museum Crete ”

You can click on all the photo’s to ENLARGE.

2007-02-16 23.56.22

ko-no-so   Knossos      a – mi – ni -so   Amnisos  Port

2007-02-16 23.57.06

Heaklion A

2007-02-16 23.58.53

I love this one. Its so clear. and I can write it all.  And lastly a photo of me at the Heraklion Archaeological Museum


Thanks to you all for your support in reading my Linear B posts.



Posted by on November 30, 2014 in Uncategorized


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2 great photos of the tiny Linear B tablets at the Heraklion Museum, taken by my colleague and fellow Linear B researcher, Rita Roberts

A post about my visit to The Heraklion Museum in Crete where I saw for the first time some of the Linear B tablets which were discovered by Sir Arthur Evans at Knossos Palace. I was thrilled that I was able to read them myself. Thanks for reading. Click on the photo to enlarge.

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Canadian Zen Haiku canadien ISSN 1705-4508

2 great photos of the tiny Linear B tablets at the Heraklion Museum, taken by my colleague and fellow Linear B researcher, Rita Roberts, November 2014. Click on each photo to ENLARGE it:

Heaklion AHeaklion BAnd here is Rita herself, admiring all those great little tablets. I am green with envy, but at the same time delighted Rita has done this wonderful favour for us all.


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Posted by on November 24, 2014 in Uncategorized


NEWS: Middle Kingdom tombs discovered in Luxor

NEWS: Middle Kingdom tombs discovered in Luxor

The Egyptiana Emporium

IMG_0518.JPGArchaeological works at the temple of Thutmose III in Luxor.

A team of Spanish archaeologists and Egyptologists have discovered two tombs with gold and silver jewellery from the Middle Kingdom (2050-1750 BC), under the temple of Pharaoh Thutmose III (1490-1436 BC), on the west bank of the Nile in the province of Luxor in southern Egypt.

As confirmed on Wednesday by the head of the expedition, Myriam Seco, below the temple is “a whole necropolis of the Middle Kingdom,” where, two days ago, the jewels of the lady were found. The body is of a woman of high class bearing two bracelets, a pendant of semi-precious stones and gold cylinders, and a silver anklet. The two gold bracelets are in perfect condition, although the silver jewellery is extremely deteriorated.

The tomb was previously located by geophysical surveys with GPR. This team has already dug fourteen graves “that were robbed in…

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Posted by on November 21, 2014 in Uncategorized


Pylos Tablet PY cc 665: The Shepherd, Fresh Penis, Offers to Goddess Potnia… Click to ENLARGE (the Tablet, I mean, not the Shepherd’s Tool)

A very unusual name for a shepherd in Minoan times. This post is about an Ancient Minoan Linear B Tablet with two alternative translations shared between my teacher Richard Vallance and myself Rita Roberts. I hope my fellow bloggers will enjoy. Thanks for reading and following my interest.

Canadian Zen Haiku canadien ISSN 1705-4508

Pylos Tablet PY cc 665: The Shepherd, Fresh Penis, Offers to Goddess Potnia... Click to ENLARGE (the Tablet, I mean, not the Shepherd’s Tool)

Pylos Tablet PY cc 665 translationWhen my esteemed colleague, Rita Roberts, sent me her latest translation of an extant Linear B tablet from Pylos, PY cc 665, little did she suspect, indeed, even less did I suspect what we were in for. Rita’s translation is the most commonsensical one a translator could come up with. The word NEWOPEO is almost certainly the name of the suppliant making an offering of 100 sheep and 190 pigs to the goddess, Potnia, one of the major Mycenaean deities, almost all of whom were feminine anyway. Potnia, otherwise called, “Potnia Theron” or Mistress of the Wild Beasts, has often been associated with Artemis, the ancient Greek goddess of the hunt, but she may also be linked with Demeter Ceres, goddess of the…

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Posted by on November 14, 2014 in Uncategorized


Ming culinary culture: it’s all very beautiful, but what did they eat?

A most interesting post from The British Museum.

British Museum blog

Malcolm McNeill, project researcher and doctoral candidate, SOAS, University of London

In the book accompanying the BP exhibition Ming: 50 years that changed China, curator Jessica Harrison-Hall’s chapter ‘Courts: palaces, people and objects’ vividly evokes the sumptuous banquets of the Ming elite. A Timurid embassy’s account of a feast held in a meadow on 20 August 1420 treats us to an enticing description of geese, roast fowl, and dried and fresh fruits, all artfully arranged to impress these Central Asian dignitaries. The alfresco fine dining experience was accompanied by courtly pageantry. Beautiful cross-dressed male performers danced for the envoys, while entertainers in papier-mâché animal masks moved like wild beasts. These same Central Asians tell us that the Yongle emperor (reigned 1403?1422), the warrior, dined on a multitude of meats in a single sitting and had a penchant for yellow wine made from grain or rice (huang jiu)…

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Posted by on November 12, 2014 in Uncategorized


The Forbidden City Comes To Richmond

Silver in the Barn

East meets West in grand style in Richmond for the next few months. Our Virginia Museum of Fine Arts is hosting the Forbidden City exhibit and it’s a jaw-dropper.

I was invited to a private tour of the exhibit yesterday (how about that?) and I could have stayed all day if left to my own devices. One fabulous object after another was on display, but one in particular caught my eye.

We’re not allowed to take photographs in the exhibit (dash it!) but here’s something very close to what captured my imagination:


An enormous scroll of a life-sized horse dominated a gallery space, and I was immediately drawn to it. There was something about it that seemed….well, different from the artwork one typically sees on Chinese scrolls. And for good reason, it turns out.

Imagine my surprise to see that it was painted by a young Jesuit missionary in the early…

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Posted by on November 5, 2014 in Uncategorized

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