Hieroglyphic Luwian: An Introduction with Original Texts, 3rd Revised Edition.

Author:Simon, Zsolt
Position:Book review
 
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Hieroglyphic Luwian: An Introduction with Original Texts, 3rd Revised Edition. By ANNICK PAYNE. Subsidia et Instrumenta Linguarum Orientis, vol. 2. Wiesbaden: HARRASSOWITZ VERLAG, 2014. Pp. xiv + 217. [euro]29.80 (paper).

Hieroglyphic Luwian Studies have a growing importance not only in Hittitology, but also in ancient Near Eastern studies in general. Thus an introductory textbook to this writing system and dialect is clearly a must and the earlier editions of the book under review represent a widely used and acclaimed introduction. Nevertheless, not only this importance but also the rapid growth of our knowledge of Hieroglyphic Luwian necessitate continuous revisions of even this book, which is the goal of the third edition reviewed here, even though the adaptation of current research has not always been successful (see below), and while the observations of Giusfredi's review (2012) of the second edition have been taken into account, those of Janda's review (2011) have not.

The book has maintained its original structure: the preface and the abbreviations are followed by the introduction containing general information (pp. 1-11) and by a relatively detailed grammatical overview (phonology [meaning here, however, orthography], morphology, and syntax [pp. 13-42]), where all topics are amply illustrated by examples. References to secondary literature keep a healthy balance between general and specialized works, though there could have been more references to new readings of particular signs (p. 10), since this is a quite crucial matter.

The main part consists of twelve sample texts presented with a short introduction, original drawing of the inscription, transliteration (the first six texts provided with a sign-by-sign explanation), grammatical interpretation, translation with short commentary, and a recapitulation with consecutive transliteration and translation (pp. 43-142), thus enabling an easy step-by-step learning of Hieroglyphic Luwian and its writing system. The book closes with a glossary (pp. 143-60), a sign list with an index (pp. 161-206), and a bibliography (pp. 207-26).

Noteworthy is the caution of the author in not adopting (only accurately noting, if necessary) the new values of and . The only structural change is an unfortunate one: the map of the find-spots of Hieroglyphic Luwian inscriptions has been omitted, although it obviously would have been more useful than the one-page fictive Luwian poetry of unknown function at the...

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