The Global Prehistory Consortium at EURO INNOVANET
 The Old European Script. Further evidence
di Shan M. M. Winn

The distribution of signs

During the summer of 1981 the author had the opportunity to collect more than 100 additional examples of incised artifacts from the sites of Tordos and Parţa (4) (see Figs. 5-11).
The new data continues to show remarkable consistency with previous observations pertaining to distribution of signs as well as sign usage at widely separated sites (Table I).
Many common signs appearing on pottery as well as on spindle whorls and figurines were employed both as single signs and as components of sign groups (Table I, column B).
The new evidence supports this distribution in sign usage. Certain signs, primarily found on spindle whorls and figurines, have been observed only in the context of sign clusters (column D).
A class of widely used signs has been found only on pottery, except for occurrences on the Tartaria tablets and the Lepenski Vir stone. The new evidence supports the pottery associations of these signs (column C).
Thus, different subsets within the sign system may be postulated:

  1. signs that are generally important in a group context are significantly associated with usage on spindle whorls, tablets and figurines;
  2. commonly used single signs are found almost exclusively on pottery;
  3. signs on spindle whorls, figurines and in unrestricted use on pottery are found singly or as components of sign groups.

The latter signs are characteristic script signs and many of them occur on the Tartaria tablets and the Lepenski Vir stone.

Figure 3. Examples of new evidence pertaining to Parţa and Tordos (Turdaş)