Gor versus earth - Part 32

  • Tal dear reader,

    In my previous "Gor versus earth" I touched the matter of the alphabet. In this issue, I gonna continue on that path and gonna talk about writing.

    As I already mentioned: writing is the physical manifestation of a spoken language. (see Gor versus earth - Part 31).

    History is impossible without the written word as one would lack context in which to interpret physical evidence from the ancient past. Writing records the lives of a people and so is the first necessary step in the written history of a culture or civilization.

    The emergence of writing systems is regarded as one of the most significant milestones towards human civilization (Han, 2012). From primitive tool-making to modern-day technology, humans have come a long way to replace their stones and bricks with pen and paper, or even smartphones and tablets in recent decades.

    Goreans write from left to right, then the next line is written right to left, alternating down the page.

    "Gorean, I might note, is somewhat similar, and though I speak Gorean fluently, I find it very difficult to write, largely because of the even-numbered lines which, from my point of view, must be written backwards. Torm, my friend of the Caste of Scribes, never forgave me this and to this day, if he lives, he undoubtedly considers me partly illiterate. As he said, I would never make a Scribe. "It is simple," he said. "You just write it forward but in the other direction."
    Priest-Kings of Gor, Pages 100 - 101

    Illiteracy is common on Gor, especially for those of the Low Castes. Literacy usually follows caste lines, the High Castes tending to be literate. But, some Warriors are illiterate or pretend to be as they do not feel warriors should be so.

    "Ivar, like many of those in the north, was a passable reader but took care to conceal this fact. He belonged to the class of men who could hire their reading done for them, much as he could buy thralls to do his farming. It was not regarded as dignified for a warrior to be too expert with letters, such being a task beneath warriors. To have a scribe's skills would tend to embarrass a man of arms, and tend to lower his prestige among his peers."
    Marauders of Gor, Page 231

    The Scribes are the scholars and clerks of Gor...

    "The Scribes, of course, are the scholars and clerks of Gor, and there are divisions and rankings within the group, from simple copiers to the savants of the city."
    Tarnsman of Gor, Page 44

    They are the scholars of Gorean society, the writers and historians. In their keeping is almost all of the accounting, record-keeping, and writing upon Gor. They tend to be serious and studious, with attention to detail and a passion for knowledge.

    "It took not much time to purchase a small bundle of supplies to take into the Sardar, nor was it difficult to find a scribe to whom I might entrust the history of the events at Tharna. I did not ask his name nor he mine. I knew his caste, and he knew mine, and it was enough. He could not read the manuscript as it was written in English, a language as foreign to him as Gorean would be to most of you, but yet he would treasure the manuscript and guard it as though it were a most precious possession, for he was a scribe and it is the way of scribes to love the written word and keep it from harm, and if he could not read the manuscript, what did it matter--perhaps someone could someday, and then the words which had kept their secret for so long would, at last, enkindle the mystery of communication and what had been written would be heard and understood."
    Priest-Kings of Gor, page 15 

    "At his right hand, there was a Scribe with tablets and stylus. It was with this man that Vella had been placed, her registration papers and purchase having been arranged."
    Assassin of Gor, page 40

    "The standardization of Gorean is accomplished largely in virtue of the meetings of Scribes four times a year on the neutral ground of the great seasonal fairs held in the vicinity of the Sardar itself. This tends to standardize lexicons and prevent phonetic drift."
    Conspirators of Gor, Page 142

    "Let scribes, they say, be adept with letters, and such, for that is their business, little scratches and marks on scrolls, and such."
    Swordsmen of Gor, Page 2

    In the Tahari region, though they speak Gorean, they use a different system of writing called Taharic.

    At one time in Taharic, apparently, no vowel sounds were represented. Some Taharic scholars, purists, refuse to countenance vowel signs, regarding their necessity as a convenience for illiterates."
    Tribesmen of Gor, pages 116 - 117

    I wish you well,

    Yahto

     

     

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