Phaistos Disc
The two-sided Phaistos Disc is the only example of its kind, as no other inscription bearing similarly shaped signs has been found. It was found in the ancient city of Phaistos in Southern Crete. It is thought to date to around 1700 BC (from associated archaelogical context), thus contemporary with the Linear A script.

As no other similar artifacts have ever been found anywhere in the Crete, it is sometimes thought that the object was foreign and brought in from another place. This another place is alos doubtful, because symbols similar to the Disc's are not found anywhere in the world either. The place of its origin remains extremely speculative, although subtle clues may exist in the highly pictorial signs on the disc. A sign depicts a helmet with crest, which was used later by Philistines. Another sign depicts a structure similar to sarcophagus used by the Lycians of Asia Minor. So it is likely that the Phaistos Disc was made somewhere in the East Mediterranean.

Because there is essentially no variation between different copies of the same symbol, it is very likely that stamps where used to create these highly detailed signs. While not really a printed work, the Phaistos Disc can be thought of the earliest typewritten work.

The Cretan writing, both its pictograms and Linear scripts show no similarity to the Disc. The number of symbols used on the disk makes us think the script could be syllabic. But the unique direction of symbols, and the signs themselves are still a stumbling point for researchers.

Language which used the script: unknown.


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