Friday, January 1, 2016

Has the Key to Translating the Phaistos Disk Been Discovered?

Story at Greek Reporter:
Archaeologist Claims to Have Unlocked Phaistos Disk Mystery

The goddess of love, the Minoan Astarte, is the key figure that unlocks the mystery of the Phaistos Disk, according to linguist, archaeologist and coordinator of the program Erasmus of Crete Technological Institute; Gareth Owens.
Image from
Speaking to the ANA – MPA news agency, Owens said that after new data found in his research, his theory has changed slightly compared to the position he had expressed about a year ago. The focus is no longer the “pregnant mother”, as originally estimated, but a “pregnant goddess” that takes shape in the face of Astarte, the goddess of love.
“There is no doubt that we are talking about a religious text. This is clear from a comparison made with other religious words from other inscriptions from the holy mountains of Crete. We have words that are exactly the same,” Owens said and added, “I suspect that the Phaistos Disc is a hymn before Astarte, the goddess of love. Words such as those mentioned on the disk have been found on Minoan offerings and as with today’s offerings, people pray when they are troubled, because of health problems or personal reasons. Man doesn’t change, after all.”
The archaeologist said he believes, moreover, that one side of the Phaistos Disk is dedicated to the pregnant mother goddess and the other to Minoan goddess Astarte. [Emphasis added.]
On the importance of the figure, Owens noted that Minoan Astarte was the goddess of love, war and the mountains and her origin lies in the east. “From ancient Mesopotamia, located in today’s Turkey, Astarte went to Cyprus and became Venus,” he said. [Um, Mesopotomia was never located in Turkey, today's Turkey or yesterday's Turkey.  It is to the south of modern Turkey's southern-most border.]
I found article interesting because of the goddess angle, of course, but even more fascinating was some information in the comments written by a Peter Aleff about the Phaistos Disk being a board game.  I clicked on a link and voila, I was taken to an advertisement page for a book, Solomon's Sky: The Religious Board Game on the Phaistos Disk, explaining the Phaistos Disk as related to ancient astronomical alignments and detailing the board game.

Well, after reading a few paragraphs I'll be honest - my eyes started crossing.  I'll leave the research and inquiry as to the origins of board games and continuing the argument about whether the Phaistos Disk is or is not a board game to others!  But it's out there if you are interested in reading Aleff's articles available online and purchasing his book.

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