Linguistics ‘Hall of Shame’ 23

Hi again, everybody! ‘Hall Of Shame’ continues.

23 WRITERS ON CREE, CHEROKEE AND LENAPE

Jean-Louis Pagé (see my ‘Around The World In Mysterious Scripts & Texts’ 3, this site, 28 May 2012) claims that the Algonkian language Cree and its script are related to his version of ‘Atlantean’ (which very probably never existed) and thus to ancient languages of the Old World. The Cree writing system (a syllabary-cum-alphabet) was demonstrably invented by James Evans in 1840-46 on the basis of shorthand, the syllabic Cherokee script (itself held by some, such as ‘Traveler Bird’, to be much older than it appears to be; this system too was in fact, as it seems, invented, around 1821, by a member of the Cherokee nation named Sequoya) and other scripts known to him; it cannot be related to ancient scripts. In addition, Pagé’s conceptualization of the system as logographic or even ideographic is confused and inaccurate.

Cyclone Covey’s associate Ethel Stewart offers another non-mainstream account of Cree and its writing system.

Another interesting case is that of the ‘Walam Olum’, a document allegedly obtained by Constantine Rafinesque from the nomadic Lenape Amerindians but in fact probably forged. This text, written in Lenape in an otherwise unknown ‘ideographic’ (logographic) script, supposedly recounts the wanderings of the tribe over many thousands of years, starting from their ultimate origins in Asia. Others have endorsed and developed this analysis.

References to all these sources on request!

More next time (which will be delayed until midweek or maybe even 8 September; my beloved & I will be away, in Iceland)!

Mark

For my book Strange Linguistics, see:
http://linguistlist.org/pubs/books/get-book.cfm?BookID=64212

Copies are available through me at the author’s 50% discount, for EU 26.40 including postage to anywhere outside Germany. Please let me know if you’d like one, suggest means of payment (Paypal is possible) and provide your preferred postal address.

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