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Easter Island

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Carolyn Silver
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« Reply #30 on: March 03, 2007, 03:00:52 am »



Fig. 7.26




Fig. 7.3



Rongorongo is often said to be the first script to be found in Oceania. However, in 1913 John Macmillan Brown found a script of some 60 characters on Woleai Atoll in the Caroline Islands (fig. 7.4).8 Whereas the Easter Island script is largely ideographic, the Woleai script was syllabic, but unlike any other in the world. It was used by the young chief of the island and was known only to five people on it, though it was also in use on Faraulep, a small island about 160 km to the northeast. In 1908 an expedition to Faraulep collected a number of symbols forming part of a counting system. The numbers ranged from 100,000 to 60 million and would have had no use in daily life. It seems unlikely that the Woleai script originated on a small isolated island.


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