Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Researchers ‘closer than ever’ to cracking 5000 year old writings

New technology has allowed researchers to come closer than ever to cracking the world’s oldest undeciphered writing system.

Researchers from the University of Oxford and the University of Southampton have developed a Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI) System for Ancient Documentary Artefacts to capture images of some of the world’s most important historical documents. Recently this system was used on objects held in the vaults of the Louvre Museum in Paris.

These images have now been made available online for free public access on the Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative website.

Among the documents are manuscripts written in the so-called proto-Elamite writing system used in ancient Iran from 3,200 to 3,000 BC and which is the oldest undeciphered writing system currently known. By viewing extremely high quality images of these documents, and by sharing them with a community of scholars worldwide, the Oxford University team hope to crack the code once and for all.

Click here to read this article from History of the Ancient World