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I am really enjoying the Pulitzer-winning Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff (2010),now in paperback. Spent all morning moseying in wiki & omniglot.com. I started innocently, looking up 'demotic' (a development of 'hieratic' scipt, the everyday version of hieroglyphs)... ended up transiting to development of greek letters, following their thread all the way to modern cyrillic.

Did you know Cleopatra spoke 9 languages (including Troglodyte!)? She was 'allegedly the first and only Ptolemy [i.e., in 300 yrs] to bother to learn [Egyptian,] the language of the 7 million people over whom she ruled.' This allowed her to address populace & army directly, which paid off politically.

I expect all the Ptolemies before her-- like so many English-speakers today-- said, 'what do I need other languages for? Everyone speaks Greek!'
 
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I read a biography of St-Exupery by Schiff. Well done.

Troglodyte was a language??? Probably spoken by an early chimpanzee, Pan Troglodytes Maybe a relative of that Jackanapes fella. Roll Eyes

What did your research show about the additional letters that Cyrillic has that Greek doesn't? A non-native Russian speaker can hurt him/herself trying to pronounce some of that stuff!


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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There's a language called Troglodyte? I thought that was only in Dungeons and Dragons.
 
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Originally posted by goofy:
There's a language called Troglodyte? I thought that was only in Dungeons and Dragons.
Wiki says earliest references are to "Trogodytes", apparently altered to "Troglodyte" via the Greek "trogl" (cave). Not sure about their actually being cave-dwellers; they lived on the African coast of the Red Sea, & today's Afars of Eritrea are probably descendants. In a discussion of a passage in Genesis, historian Flavius Josephus says a descendant of Abraham (via 2nd wife Katurah), Epher, invaded Libya & gave Africa its name.
 
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Originally posted by Geoff:
What did your research show about the additional letters that Cyrillic has that Greek doesn't? A non-native Russian speaker can hurt him/herself trying to pronounce some of that stuff!

Cyrillic was developed in the 10thc. at the behest of Boris I of Bulgaria, by disciples of brothers & Sts Cyril & Methodius. It is an expansion of Glagolitic script, developed by the brothers a century earlier. Glagolitic (named later, from Old Slavic glagol meaning speech) is considered the earliest Slav alphabet, although Slavs were literate when Cyril arrived. The Glagolitic alphabet uses Greek uncial script (all caps) as a base, and adds characters for those hurt-yourself sounds not found in Ancient Greek. It's thought Cyril based those extra characters on the extant script (which may have been early cursive Greek used in the Balkan area of Macedonia) but researchers have given up on pinpointing the origin of those "Rus letters."
 
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Goodness, I didn't know you were a linguist!

Very good, thanks! or should I say, Очень хорошо, спасибо! (One of the few phrases I learned while volunteering as an ESL tutor)


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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Nah, it's all in wiki. I just like to learn stuff. Now those extra-planetary-looking phrases you just threw off-- THAT'S impressive-- as is figuring out how to get it on your computer Wink.
 
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http://www.stanwardine.com/russification.htm Of course, you need to know what you're saying first. Big Grin


It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society. -J. Krishnamurti
 
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