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Ancient symbols of Dal

This is the vocabulary of about 470 cut symbols from the rock-carvings on Dal and the nearby Skepplanda. The symbols are taken directly from the documentation made by Karin Rex Svensson and the province museum. There are some additions from Tommy Andersson in charge at Högsbyn and a few of my own too.

Ancient symbol vocabulary, merged symbols, ideograms, Linear A, Linear B, Minoan symbols, Phaistos desk, Hittitian script

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 Vocabulary tablets: 02voceng | 03voceng | 04voceng | 05voceng | 06voceng | 07voceng |

Hard to say how many unique symbols there are since I would not in this case separated merged symbols, ideogram or figures. Maybe I have commented about 1000 different symbols. Reading the comments and my interpreting tells much about the world of our ancestors as they tell by the rock-carvings.

Later I will add ten complete interpretations of the main rock-carvings as a whole. We will never be able to make complete interpretation. However, in fact we will get more information from our rock-carvings than from those made in Linear B in Greece. That depends on the fact that they are mainly about bookkeeping while our rock-carvings are about calendars and yearly rituals.

We are brought up to believe in written words and have to learn that they are not always true. Another difficulty is the meaning of words and symbols are changing over time. We have to understand what the writer really wanted to say. In a manifold of cultures changing in time we have always to expect varying meanings and look for the red thread. Physical events and establishment are the real thing to build our interpreting on. Another thing is, that we have to expect they used common logic and that things looked the same way as today.

On Dal the rock-carvings are from a period of more than 3000 year and well documented. That is why I have chosen them as a key to understanding similar rock-carvings and symbol language everywhere else in Scandinavia. On Dal we have sufficient symbols of same kind and can then cross-match the meaning of symbols.

We see many similar symbols in other rock-carvings in Scandinavia and that proves that it was a symbol language for ritual use. The collections of rock-carvings show it was mostly for ritual use. Here I leave out the loans of symbols from the south we find in rest of Scandinavia. I suppose they are more than a hundred proving that our symbols are of the same kind as elsewhere.

Our symbols are not standardised in shape but in meaning and that is naturally the main task. Let us look at some foreign examples from the same period.


Unknown text in which we recognise some known symbols, but as a whole it is a mystery

On this little stone we see a row of symbols. Since they are in a row, seeing that they must be writing symbols is easier. When we look closely at each symbol, we recognize some of them belonging to Linear A, but still I doubt is it Linear A.?


These are early Minoan symbols

 This collection is from Linear A, that was the first symbol language on Crete. Some of them may be loans from Egypt and other cultures.



The Phaistos desk has similar serpents of symbols on both sides

The Phaistos desk shows two things. The symbols are surely made by stamps. That technique we know from Anatolia and Catal Hüyük telling about a very old tradition. The other fact is that they make the symbols on a snake showing that when making texts we have to get an order like a string easily to interpret language. The symbol in the middle is the Morning star, so we may ask if that is the clue, because that goddess was the twin sister to the New Moon Maid. This symbolic language is still to be deciphered.


Probably the mother of the syllable languages we know is to be found in Sumer

The cuneiform script followed these pictographic symbols from about 2300 BC onwards. However, they surely used them in less formal connections and neighbouring countries until last millennium BC.



This is the variant from Dal and approximately from 2300 BC


 The Linear B is better known and deciphered mainly from bookkeeping tablets.

They have found about 90 syllable symbols and like the Sumerian they developed many of them from the pictographic syllables. Analysing the bookkeeping has made a picture of the organisation of the society of the city-states. The books also show who got the offers then telling a little about the rituals. We have to understand them partly from what we know about the antique period and partly from what we know from the entire Ionian area and Middle East.


This text is from an outdoor temple at Karkemish and the neo-Hittitian script in northern Syria. It tells about the ritual year with the Eagle and trisected moon year as characteristic items. The texts were solved by using ancient translations

With this introduction we can place our Northern Language among others at the time. They mostly fortified the early European cities and with only a few hundred inhabitants. Maybe some of the Northern villages counted some hundred dwellers, but since there were few of them there was no need for special fortification as far as we know. Our hillforts seem to be from the Great Migration. We have also to remember that they lived in wooden houses. The remains are usually only some holes and maybe a row of stones from the foundation.

Firstly I thought to make an alphabetical survey. But then I thought it is better if they are grouped by the ideas of ritual or calendar and leave other smaller syllable groups at the end.

They put many of the syllable symbols together in smaller strings. Sometimes it is useful to put an "i/in" between the syllables. Since the texts mainly are about the ritual year and "to get something in" some syllables are very frequent. Then GE as in "to give" and KE as in "ken" are useful to express the purpose or the astronomy implied. The syllables can be mirrored to EG and EK, which usually mean a weaker state or a beginning to the consonant syllable. In our language it means "turning point". It is also the root in EKER = spoke seen on many time wheels.

Then words like BANEK and UREK are understandable as points for a ban/orbit to cross alternatively ur-point meaning origin or "to take out".

Using wooden poles or stones for this purpose must have been natural. They used of stony manifestos widely. We read in Gen 1:27 and in Joshua chapter 4 about the customs in Middle East and know also about the use of kuddurrus and law stelae.

Defining the symbols give us a rough picture about their ritual life and the everyday life at least in summer. Maybe New Age people are interested in knowing about the afterlife, but that they may learn from the Egyptians. For my ancestors the essentials were seemingly to rule their production and year and preserve their tribe.

Recently some scientist told in TV that my ancestors were afraid of ghosts and eclipses and they believed that nature was filled whit spirits. I wonder on which rock he has read that? ... jokes away, I think he read that in his own head. My strategy is to look at the world of ancestors like the pragmatic farmers in my youth, since I have learned that farmers are farmers everywhere. I suppose that count for any time too. In the end the only target is to preserve life. Then it is just the same what was in their mind.

We often tie us to words. Once I had a dog and got the idea to use words from the liqueur business as commands. Then after a time some neighbours believed I had drinking problems. My dog still was in love with me.

When I read the Old Testament to learn about custom in Middle East, I could not leave out thinking about the aggression and bloody message I read. Still my imagination is alert as in my youth and I can imagine what I read about. Comparing it to Palestine made me reflect that man never learn.

Usually words are behind all kind of things. That is why we should take off the shoes when we visit our ancestors.