Monday, September 18, 2006

Oldest Writing in New World Discovered

Via Foxnews again.

A stone block discoverd in 1999 in Mexico, covered in inscriptions, could very well be the earliest example of writing in the Western Hemisphere. Dating back to 1100 BC, the block is covered with 62 glyphs, some of which are repeated as many as 4 times. The implications for the ancient Olmec civilization is pretty substantial.

"This reveals the Olmecs, in many ways the first civilization in a vast part of the ancient Americas, were literate, which we did not know for sure before, and hints that they were capable of the same large-scale organization assisted by writing [as seen] in early Mesopotamia or Egypt," researcher Stephen Houston, an archaeologist at Brown University in Providence, R.I., told LiveScience."

I have to say that I'm impressed with the heretofore unnoticed redesign of the Foxnews web site. It's got much more content, easier on the eyes and much easier to locate stuff as well. Bravo.

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