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Digitized by the Internet Archive in 2007 with funding from IVIicrosoft Corporation foj THE ALPHABET AN ACCOUNT OF THE Origin and Development of Letters VOL II. On Thera, we are told, he left a colony of Phoenicians, who lived on the island for eight generations, until the arrival of the ' We have this word in Erebus, the darkness of the west. The island of Thera, as we shall presently see, has furnished the most ancient of all the existing monuments of Greek epigraphy, while with regard to Thasos we have not only ceramic inscriptions of great antiquity;* but we learn from Herodotus that he had seen with his own eyes the traces of the gigantic mining excavations undertaken by the Phoenicians in their search for gold. The date of these Phoenician settlements in Hellas is referred by Greek tradition to a period anterior to the Trojan war, that is to a time earlier than the 1 2th century B. This traditional date is not unsupported by other considerations. The great Hittite empire, already weakened by the wars of Rameses, seems to have been pressed upon by the Amorites, who in turn were driven forward by the Hebrew conquest, many of the fugitives doubtless taking refuge in the coast cities of Phoenicia..'■^^ THE ALPHABET AN ACCOUNT OF THE Origin and Development of Letters Bv ISAAC TAYLOR, MA., LL. The modern Arabic form of the word is gharby familiar to us in the name of the Portuguese province of Algarve, which is simply the Moorish designation al-gharb, "the West" ' See vol. The worship in Samothrace of the Cabiri, the great deities, whose name must be referred to the Semitic word kabir, 'great,* must be regarded as evidence of Phoenician settlement. To * This is evidently a name of the same class as the name of Oxmantown (vicus Ostmannorum), the entrenched quarter of Dublin, which still bears witness to the ancient Danish or Norwegian colony THE LEGEND OF CADMUS. It will be necessary to examine, in the first place, the evidence afforded by Greek tradition, and the results yielded by the modern methods of historic inference ; and, in the second place, the resources of the new science of THE LEGEND OF CADMUS. The mode in which this inquiry can be prosecuted is twofold.and of alphabetic writing, had finally retired from the coasts of Hellas.^ The Cadmean legend affirms that the Greeks obtained the alphabet directly from the mariners of Tyre.There is however an argument, not without weight, which seems to indicate that they acquired it, possibly at a still earlier period, through some Aramean channel.
They counted by sossi and sari^ the sossos being 60, and the saros 60 x 60= 3600.
The Lydian silver standard, which was the stater of 170 grains, was transmitted to Chalcis and Eretria, cities which, prior to the 7th century, were the most important trading communities of Greece, and had active commercial relations with the opposite Asiatic coasts.
The so-called Euboic standard, based on the Lydian, and ultimately on the Babylonian, coming by land through the Aramean region, spread from Chalcis to Athens and Corinth.
The existence of an early settlement of the Phoenicians at Thebes is borne out, not only by the ' That the neighbouring island of Melos was also occupied by a very ancient Phoenician colony we learn from Thucydides, v. They got copper from Cyprus, and gold from Thasos, and they obtained their dye for the Tyrian purple chiefly from the coasts of Hellas, and more especially from the straits of Euboea, where the shell-fish which yielded it was found in the greatest abundance.
This great extension of commercial enterprise among the Phoenicians can hardly be placed later than the year 1200 B. In all probability it was in the 13th century that they settled in Cyprus and Rhodes, and in the 12th that they advanced to the Isles and Hellas.