Fiona McGowan- Amphora II


Fiona McGowan- Amphora II


Inscriptions on potsherds from broken vessels.

An assemblage of broken amphorae reveals some stages in the development of the English language as we know it today. Humanity, the great communicators, congregated and built cities in fertile Mesopotamia and Egypt around 5000 BCE. Art and architecture, trade, conquest and colonisation, wealth, power and poverty gave rise to written records of transactions and directions in law and order. Written language later expanded from telling facts to investigating ideas between people in widespread places.

Loss? Oral poems, songs and stories kept alive in the memories of the people, told and retold, embellished? Languages and dialects made obsolete by the requirements of the printing press for standardisation? Languages adapted to standard alphabet?

Inscriptions on Amphora II: 201- Cave drawings, Europe,  202-Rock drawings, New Zealand – 203 Stone age rock drawing, Ireland  204, pre-cuneiform records, Mesopotamia,  205-Cuneiform,  206-Egypyian Hieroglyphic,   207- Egyptian label, King Den,  208-Phoenician first alphabet,  209-Early Greek alters Phoenician,  210- Greek voting Ostracon,  211-Rome adapts Greek alphabet, 212- Ogham, Ireland, 213, Runic, Ireland, 214-Beowulf epic poem, Old English West Saxon, 215-Caxton Printing Press Aesop’s Fables  216- Maori adapted to English alphabet in Declaration of Independence,  217-Autograph book 1925

Size: 240mm x 370mm (14cm diameter top)

Medium: Broken and reassembled ceramic vessel

Status: For Sale

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