An Exploration of Writing - Peter T. Daniels

An Exploration of Writing - Peter T. Daniels

Segments and Alphabets

An Exploration of Writing - Peter T. Daniels

Peter T. Daniels [+-]
Independent Scholar
Peter T. Daniels, the world’s leading expert on writing systems, holds degrees in linguistics from Cornell University and the University of Chicago. His first interests were in Comparative Semitic linguistics, which built to the study of writing and decipherment. His challenge to his teacher I. J. Gelb’s influential theories of the evolution of scripts has led to a persistent search for legitimate principles of the nature and development of writing. He is co-editor (with William Bright) of and principal contributor to The World’s Writing Systems (1996) and is hte author of An Exploration of Writing (Equinox, 2018).


The chapter begins again with English, this time—bouncing off the familiar ghoti = fish example—showing some of the regularities of the supposedly chaotic English orthography and its history, and not embracing script reform proposals. It then moves back in time (i.e., more to less familiar), touching on the way the runic, Ogham, and Yiddish alphabets. The Eastern alphabets, besides the wellknown Armenian, Georgian, and Slavic ones, include two that the author believes have never before been discussed in popular treatments of writing: the Avestan, of pre-Islamic Iran, and the recently deciphered Udi of the Christian Caucasus.

Notify A Colleague


Daniels, Peter . Segments and Alphabets. An Exploration of Writing. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 14-36 Feb 2018. ISBN 9781781795293. Date accessed: 23 Jan 2020 doi: 10.1558/equinox.30863. Feb 2018

Dublin Core Metadata