Of kilns and pottery

Each time I go back through photos from Crete, or the lovely book about the kiln found at Kommos, I find myself wondering: where are the pottery words?

Linear B needs a word for kiln, for pithos, words for pottery, for clay. It's a strange gap in the corpus we have.

We've got a-pi-po-re-we. Where are its buddies?

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5 Responses to Of kilns and pottery

  1. Perhaps the following will be helpful:

    *ke-ra-me-ja κεραμεία (kerameia) “potter’s craft”
    *ke-ra-me-u κεραμεύς (kerameus) “potter”
    *ke-ra-me-we perhaps a variation of ke-ra-me-wi[
    *ke-ra-me-wi[ perhaps κεραμεία “potter’s craft” or κεραμει[ος “earthenware” or “potter’s workshop” (depending upon the placement of the diacritical marks)
    *ke-ra-me-wo κεραμεών (kerameon) “large wine jar”

    Cf. ceramic.

    As for pithos, I suspect that it’s derived from ]pu-ti[ > πυτι “that which is poured”. This inscription is found on KHv(ases) 4, 10, and 18. Likewise, pi-ti is an Arcado-Cyriot (Linear C) that is inscribed on three pithoi [ICS 207, 346, and 347]. Cf. πῖθι (pithi) “drink” (imperative).

    Consequently, I think that pithoi is a late derivation that doesn’t appear in the linear scripts.

  2. Albatros says:

    Linear B needs a word for kiln, for pithos, words for pottery, for clay. It’s a strange gap in the corpus we have.

    It’s a strange gap in the interpretation. And it will remain unbelievable till the language of tablets is supposed to be Greek. The content of tablets seems to have nothing to do with records or disbursement of goods.

  3. Hi,
    Anyone got any clues as to where this is located and if it can be viewed?
    I have a catalogue number KN So 4440 but can’t find where it is.


  4. There’s κάμινος from Herodotus … and Perseus mentions καμινώ, a furnace woman, from Homer’s time. ἰπνός seems to come later, but I haven’t researched it properly to confirm that; just a quick skim of what documents it appears in in the Middle Liddell reference on Perseus.

    κάμινος certainly has an attractive alphasyllabic feel to it. But the closest we have, given the current decipherment, are ka-mi-ni-to and ka-mo-ni-jo, and neither of those seem contextually relevant.

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