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Minoan language

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Title: Minoan language  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Linear A, Linear B, Minoan, Urheimat, Eteocretan language, Tyrsenian languages, Proto-Euphratean language, List of extinct languages of Asia, Cretan hieroglyphs, Cypro-Minoan syllabary
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Minoan language

Linear A tablet
Region Crete
Era ca. 1800–1450 BCE
Cretan hieroglyphs, Linear A
Language codes
ISO 639-3 Either:
omn – Minoan
lab – Linear A
Linguist list
omn Minoan
  lab Linear A
Glottolog mino1236  (Minoan)[1]

The language (or languages) of the ancient Minoan civilization of Crete was written in Cretan hieroglyphs and later in the Linear A syllabary. As the Cretan hieroglyphs are undeciphered and Linear A only partly deciphered, the Minoan language is unknown and unclassified—and indeed, it cannot be known that the two scripts record the same language, or even that a single language is recorded in each. The Eteocretan language, attested in a few alphabetic inscriptions from Crete a thousand years later, is possibly a descendant of Minoan, but it is itself unclassified.


  1. ^ Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Minoan". Glottolog 2.2. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology. 

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