Harakeke

[OB] Glyph Translation Discussion (No Plot Spoilers)

78 posts in this topic

2 hours ago, Jofwu said:

I guess we really only have two vowel characters shown. Call them 'A' and 'E'.

I feel like maybe they should be 'A' and 'I', because of how similar the Dawnate character is to the glyphic radical for 'I', plus the fact that it's represented in English by 'I' more often than 'E'. Also, don't forget the first letter of Aimia, which still seems to me like it might be different from the 'A' in Alethela or Thalath, making for three total vowels.

2 hours ago, Jofwu said:

I see all three of these used on 'A', presumably giving a short "ah", a long "ay", and... something else? I see 'A<' used in "Valhav", "Makabakam", and "Tales". Maybe it's this?

Could it conceivably be the vowel from "cat" or "apple"? It would make Makabakam awkward to pronounce, but I could imagine it in the other two.

2 hours ago, Jofwu said:

Then there's the weird marks of "greater-than" and "circumflex", both on "Valhav". I'm not going to try to understand the 'V>'... But I feel pretty comfortable assuming that the 'L^' is an aspirated 'L', and that the diacritic generally means an aspirated consonant.

Just to make sure, as a non-linguist -- that's something like 'HL' or 'LH', right? So the diacritic would correspond to the H in the English translation?

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14 hours ago, Wonko the Sane said:

I feel like maybe they should be 'A' and 'I', because of how similar the Dawnate character is to the glyphic radical for 'I', plus the fact that it's represented in English by 'I' more often than 'E'. Also, don't forget the first letter of Aimia, which still seems to me like it might be different from the 'A' in Alethela or Thalath, making for three total vowels.

Yes, I would call our two base vowels "A" (weird v above c shape.  almost like a musical quarter rest?) and "I" (shaped like a asymmetric "V").   English is awful with vowel pronunciation and names as a consequence of the great vowel shift.  In just about every other language in the world though the name we give to the letter "E" ("ee") is a sound produced by the letter "I".  Take for example the word intrigue.  Both "i"'s in that word are actually making the same sound.  The first "i" is just a shorter version of the second "i".  Try pronouncing the word and stretching or shortening either "i" sound to confirm to yourself that they are in fact the same sound.

This is how I'm currently spinning our vowels:

I~ = intrigue , seen in Rishir, Iri, Aimia

I` = intrigue , seen in Shin Kak Nish

A~ = obey , seen in Sela Tales, Aimia (not 100% certain on this one, but everything else sounds even more goofy)

A` = father , Natanatan and too many other examples to list.  Not too surprising I suppose when your God was named Tanavast, that you would heavily use this sound in your holy city names :P

I feel pretty comfortable on those, but the versions with the < and > symbols are bit trickier.

I< = Only found in Alethela .  Might indicate a short-e sound?  I'm still messing around if this might actually indicate the following letter has a stop/aspirate?

A< = Many examples.  Makabakam, (Valhav), Sela Tales.  I'm kind of torn in a couple directions on this one, but I'm almost certain it has something to do with aspirated consonants.  k, b, p, t, d,  

Quote

Just to make sure, as a non-linguist -- that's something like 'HL' or 'LH', right? So the diacritic would correspond to the H in the English translation?

Yeah, an aspirate is just a puff or breath of air.  "h" would be the correct letter in English.  We insert them into words without thinking about them following weird rules we don't think about in the English language.  They vary a lot between dialectics and very commonly get dropped from words over time.   Greek for example doesn't even have a letter for "h", its presence is indicated solely by breathing marks over an initial vowel.

They frequently appear before a vowel at the start of a word or after certain stop consonants in English (k, p/b, d/t).  For example the word "pin" has a short aspiration between the "p" and "i", but the word "spin" does not.

 

On 1/2/2018 at 9:27 PM, Emily said:

 

291077A2-C433-4F41-A60A-8E1C3E978F8E.jpeg

Oh, could it just say "vev" (as in spelling out the number "four" from Bridge 4)?  There's kind of a stretched "v" phoneme shape on both sides, while the triangular tip of the spearhead in the middle would correspond to the "e".  

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I started with 'I' but it's ultimately arbitrary and 'E' was easier to read. :) It does seem to span both in my opinion. Short 'i', short 'e', and 'ee'. I do strongly think that 'E<' (or 'I<') is a short 'e' because of it's appearance in "Alethela." I think the pronunciation is supposed to be intuitive to us there, along with "Alethkar". I feel more strongly about that pronunciation than I do any of the other E/I variations.

It's possible that what we have is a non-diacritic version of each vowel, and that's what we're seeing there... And those instances also all happen to include the '<'. Seems unlikely to me. In any case, I really don't like the idea that it's a stop/aspirate on the following letter. First because we see the aspirate on "Valhav". Seems more likely they'd stick marks for that above those letters themselves. Also, that seems awkward to me considering they essentially read the word forward and backward.

I must have been staring at this too long. Definitely messed up those 'A' options... Probably all of them honestly. @Pagerunner, lend us your IPA!

I also completely missed the strangeness of the 'A' in "Aimia". Looking back at the original, I'm not sure I agree that it has a '~' above it at all. It looks like part of a water line to me. Or perhaps it's a regular looking 'A' and the top portion of the letter (as you show it) is the '~' (just not super squiggly, and close to the top of the main character).

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More and more I'm thinking vowels in general are a trap.

There's a scene in WoR when Shallan is looking at very old maps and Pattern "reads" some of the Dawnchant script.  I think it might offer some clues about Roshar languages.

Quote

“Different languages on each,” Pattern said. “Mmm . . . There are patterns here.” He started to try sounding them out.

Shallan smiled. Jasnah had told her that several of them were thought to have been written in the Dawnchant, a dead language. Scholars had been trying for years to—

“Behardan King . . . something I do not understand . . . order, perhaps . . .” Pattern said. “Map? Yes, that would likely be map. So the next is perhaps to draw . . . draw . . . something I do not understand . . .”

“You’re reading it?”

“It is a pattern.”

“You’re reading the Dawnchant.”

“Not well.”

“You’re reading the Dawnchant!” Shallan exclaimed. She scrambled up to the map beside which Pattern hovered, then rested her fingers on the script at the bottom. “Behardan, you said? Maybe Bajerden . . . Nohadon himself.”

“Bajerden? Nohadon? Must people have so many names?”

“One is honorific,” Shallan said. “His original name wasn’t considered symmetrical enough. Well, I guess it wasn’t really symmetrical at all, so the ardents gave him a new one centuries ago.”

“But . . . the new one isn’t symmetrical either.”

“The h sound can be for any letter,” Shallan said absently. “We write it as the symmetrical letter, to make the word balance, but add a diacritical mark to indicate it sounds like an h so the word is easier to say.”

“That— One can’t just pretend that a word is symmetrical when it isn’t!”

Shallan ignored his sputtering, instead staring at the alien script of what was supposedly the Dawnchant. If we do find Jasnah’s city, Shallan thought, and if it does have records, they might be in this language. “We need to see how much of the Dawnchant you can translate.”

“I did not read it,” Pattern said, annoyed. “I postulated a few words. The name I could translate because of the sounds of the cities above.”

“But those aren’t written in the Dawnchant!”

“The scripts are derived from one another,” Pattern said. “Obviously.”

To me this strongly implies a couple important points that we've been bumping into in the various scripts:

  • “The scripts are derived from one another”
    • Although Roshar has many varied language families, the various phoneme scripts show clear links with one another.  The various writing systems probably all evolved from a common Dawnchant source.  Letters over time can converge or diverge in various descendant languages (Thayley may have consolidated consonants, Alethi probably added new ones)  You see a similar pattern in the real world with Phoenician, whose written alphabet influenced other written languages as unrelated as Greek and Hebrew.
  • “The h sound can be for any letter,” Shallan said absently. “We write it as the symmetrical letter, to make the word balance, but add a diacritical mark to indicate it sounds like an h so the word is easier to say.”

    • "h" sounds and such seem to be linked to diacritical marks.  At least in modern Veden languages, this may not be a universal point though.  I do think there's a connection there though.

  • “Behardan, you said? Maybe Bajerden . . . Nohadon himself.”

    • Going back to my "vowels are a trap" point, look at how Pattern has guessed the wrong vowels for every spot in "Behardan" vs "Bajerden". 

      • I think this either means a single letter was used for A/E (but our new script doesn't match that, in fact "E" only occurs as a variant of the "i" phoneme in Aleth), or that Dawnchant was an Abjad alphabet, meaning it wrote out only consonants, leaving the reader to estimate the vowel sounds.  I think the latter is true.  In real world the earliest alphabet (Phoenician), and some  other Semitic languages like Hebrew lacked written vowels, which were only later inserted by scribes into written documents.  It would make more sense to start from a written language without vowels and later evolve in vowels than for a written language to lose existing vowels.  I think Thayleh, with its lack of written vowels actually preserves that Abjad characteristic of the Dawnchant.  Other languages like Alethi and this strange script we're looking at now, likely had to create their own vowel letters (hence the easy to miss and sometimes variable shapes in glyphs).  I think our new script is an "in between" language.  They've added ~2 vowel letters and rely on diacritics to distinguish them.  Alethi glyphs and women's script has continued this evolution by giving a distinct symbol for each vowel.

        • If true, vowels are a trap.  Modern Roshar languages are largely "guessing" at the correct vowels to insert in the Silver Kingdom names.  We probably shouldn't get too hung up distinguishing those sounds.

 

On 12/12/2017 at 3:48 PM, ccstat said:

So I've taken another crack at the Taker of Secrets image. It's tentative, but I think I've got a lead. If I'm right, it contains the word "corrupted" twice.

Sorry to say I have almost nothing to add to figuring out the Mythica border.  In true test taking style, I decided to just skip the hard problem and do the easier one first :P

"A Survey of the Great Thaylen City" also contains an artistic border of Thaylen letters.  This one is much easier though!  For the most part it is just one endless repeating pattern.  Start at the top left and read downwards, when you hit a corner just turn the page and keep reading downwards.  Behind Door #1 we have the pattern repeated on the left and top margins.

Spoiler

 5a73a8ca26856_thaylenahleftandtop.png.0bd9ca6a32dc62fc26405c86541c3159.png

Letters flip horizontally on the bottom and right border, but vertical orientation of the letters always remains constant.  With one exception you can start at the top left corner and read your way down and counter-clockwise infinitely.  Door #2 shows the horizontally flipped pattern (starting with a terminal H from the previous margin).

Spoiler

5a73a8cc9f8e4_thaylenahbottomandright.jpg.3e34a3af9d89203bc00cd59347c5dc53.jpg

Our five repeating letters are T/D, H, L, ?, H.  The fourth letter doesn't match any our of existing Thaylen letters perfectly, but by process of elimination it seems very likely that it is a stylized N (leaving off the first stroke of the pen to maintain a very compact and margin aligned block of text).  This gives us Thaylenah.

Nothing too shocking, but we do have one little Easter Egg at the bottom of the left column, breaking up our otherwise endless loops of THLNH

Spoiler

zkstrt.jpg.79159bcbfaf5412f464d60cceb93c343.jpg

Hmmm, ZKSTRT...I wonder who could have put that there. 

Spoiler

Isaac Stewart

Alas, none of these nice conventions seem to apply for the Sja-Anat Mythica border.  Letters are flipped upside down seemingly at random there, and there doesn't appear to be a nice starting point to make sure you're always reading the document in the correct direction.  I don't think starting top-left and reading counterclockwise helps to make that image any easier to decipher.

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On 12/12/2017 at 2:48 PM, ccstat said:

EDIT: I'm considering the possiblity that the points where symbols flip orientation (the Fs do this a lot) are indicative of word breaks, but I haven't really looked closely at that yet.

As a vertically read language, I think it would be a good rule to assume vertical orientation should always be maintained in letters.  Ignoring those p/f examples, every other letter always keeps it's proper side up in this image (S, R, N/M, K).  So that got me thinking, what if those upside down p/f letters were actually a different letter entirely?  They could be a highly stylized "J", kind of halfway between the Thaylen and Alethi phonemes for "j".  That would also let us finally find Sja-Anat's name in the border!  I think you solved the bottom with "Darkness", and the top is a mess, but I kind of like these guesses for the side columns:

Spoiler

Left:

S ?/W J N/M* T/D K R R P/F T/D = Sja-Anat Corrupt...

* - top stroke reflected inwards, flip it outwards and it's a perfect N/M

Right:

N ?/W S J N/M T/D K P/F R P/F S K R* T/D S = (Now) Sja-Anat Keeper of Secrets

* - top stroke reflected inward restores this "R"

The single stroke phonemes still confuse me.  In the Southern Frostlands map, this largely corresponded to "W" (wind, shipwreck, shallow, new) sounds, with a single instance of "V" (cave/cove) sounds.  These markings cluster so much at the end or start of columns though, I wonder if they're just a start/stop sign for reading instead of actual letters though.

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23 hours ago, Subvisual Haze said:

They could be a highly stylized "J", kind of halfway between the Thaylen and Alethi phonemes for "j".  That would also let us finally find Sja-Anat's name in the border!

Excellent insight! I'm convinced you are correct about the upside-down P characters being J instead. As you point out, it would be an intermediate between the Thaylen letter J and the glyph element for J, so that makes a lot of sense. And it very conveniently gives us Sja-Anat in the border.

I examined the rest of the letters again: 

  • P/J are the only ones that have an apparent vertical reflection.
  • R, K, and S each occur a bunch of times, always in the same orientation.
  • L, V (presumed), and Sh (presumed) occur only once, in the expected orientation.
  • P, J, T, N, occur in both the "normal" orientation (from the glyph elements chart and Frostlands map), and a horizontal reflection. 

These last letters that get reflected freely are the ones that have redundancies in English, so I'm tempted to assign, e.g. T and D to different versions of their character. However, we have confirmation from the artist that "corrupted" is part of the border, and both places where it might occur use a repeated character that has to be transliterated as both T and D. So I provisionally conclude that these horizontal reflections are purely artistic and we are free to use either redundant letter in each case.

The part I'm not comfortable with yet is the characters you reinterpreted with asterisks. Your translation makes a lot of sense, and it would be convenient if they could be read the way you propose, but it doesn't make sense that the characters would be as mutable as that. Why would an R, to take the asterisk character in your proposed "secrets," be written identically six times around the border, but for the seventh occurrence it gets twisted around strangely? If that sort of alteration is possible, then that same character could just as easily be a Z or N. You could be right, but it makes me cringe a bit.

With that in mind, though, I could make a weak case for it by calling it artistic license--the border describes a powerful spren known for "twisted creations," and certain letters could be intentionally distorted to convey the sense of wrongness that comes from the corruption of her touch. 

Also, it is hard to propose an alternative to your asterisked N. The right side clearly says Sja-Anat now that we've assigned the J correctly; the left side mirrors it except that the N appears to have been replaced with a Z. If SJNT = Sja-Anat, what could SJZT be? It's definitely easier to think that some sort of distortion is happening and the letter is intended as an N.

23 hours ago, Subvisual Haze said:

The single stroke phonemes still confuse me.  ... I wonder if they're just a start/stop sign for reading instead of actual letters though.

That is how I'm currently interpreting them. They look like artistic spacers more than anything. Still could be W though.

I tried to guess some more at the letters obscured by other things. Combining those guesses with your proposals, this is what we have so far. Asterisks are reinterpreted characters. Parentheses are questionable assignments.

Spoiler

Top: CoRRuPTeD || (V)LJPT

Left: SJa aN*aT CoRRuPTeD || (T)JSh(?)

Right: Now SJa aNaT KeePeR oF SeCR*eTS TR*(R?S)

Bottom: (??) DaRKNeSS

I'm still not sold on those asterisks, but I don't have a good counterproposal at the moment.

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I think the top angular stroke of letters (as can occur on N/M, R, S, H, Z)  specifically can be flexible and rotate to point the "wrong" direction.  Probably some sort of stylistic thing.  The text on the border of the map of Thaylen City just omits the top stroke of the N/M entirely to allow the column of letters to pile beautifully together like Tetris blocks.

The weird starred letters I'm not completely comfortable with either...but I think in the two cases I identified if the letters were written "correctly" they would crowd into other letters.  The N/M in the left column would break the margin if written "correctly", and the possible "R" in the right margin would poke into the neighboring "K" if written normally.  I'm still kinda baffled what the first letter is on the top column immediately to the right of the divide.  If we reflect the top stroke it's almost an "H", but with an extra stroke in the middle.  H L J P/F T/D = ?????

I personally think T/D are just one letter in Thaylen, and it was an earlier coincidence that lead us to interpret them as two distinct letters.  It would match an overall pattern of Thaylen not differentiating similar consonant phonemes.  Knowing that Thaylen writing doesn't specify vowel sounds, and that spoken Thaylen sounds like sounds being smashed together, it would be extremely difficult to distinguish a "t" sound from a "d" sound.  Specifically, the fortis and lenis pairs of certain consonants are probably treated as single letters: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_phonology#Consonants .  Our P/F is probably P/F/B, although we haven't really run into any "b" sounds yet.

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Hey y'all! I figured you might appreciate this update! I got the first of my first order tattoo! The designs are too complex to do all 9 where I want them, my wrist, so I'm just doing Life, Strength, and Journey!

I got Life done on last Thursday and couldn't be happier!

Staring at it from various angles for the past week has made me realize that it looks like a cremling, do any of you see that too?

IMG_20180208_183610146.jpg

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On 2/15/2018 at 3:20 AM, Subvisual Haze said:

I think in the two cases I identified if the letters were written "correctly" they would crowd into other letters.  

I spent some more time on the letters today, and I think you are right about these altered characters. There are other places where the letters are simply scrunched rather than altering the top stroke, so I don't understand how the artist chose to handle each case--why not scrunch these, or alter the others instead? I guess it doesn't really matter.

Quote

I'm still kinda baffled what the first letter is on the top column immediately to the right of the divide.  If we reflect the top stroke it's almost an "H", but with an extra stroke in the middle.  H L J P/F T/D = ?????

Yeah, it could be anything really. V still looks close to me, but H makes a lot of sense with the top-stroke flip. I suspect we will need to guess it from a viable translation. With that in mind, and assuming J=G, that top section (?LGFT) looks like it could end with "...gified" or "...gaped" or "__  gift". Nothing I try for the first half makes sense with any of those though.

Quote

Knowing that Thaylen writing doesn't specify vowel sounds, and that spoken Thaylen sounds like sounds being smashed together, it would be extremely difficult to distinguish a "t" sound from a "d" sound. 

I think you are right about the thaylen letters, but the reasoning doesn't make much sense to me. If vowels have diminished importance in both written and spoken Thaylen, then I would expect consonants to carry more information content, and therefore to have more variation / fewer "redundancies." But that's neither here nor there. Word length of actual Thaylen could be long enough to make up for it.

EDIT:

Okay, I tried to arrange the letters we know into a chart where relationships between similar characters could stand out. Each column roughly shares the bottom/core element, and each row shares the (potentially mutable) top stroke.

TakerOfSecretsLetters.thumb.jpg.fa70700d04cd483dbba8b83bb035d3ff.jpg

Grayed out letters for N, H, and Z are ones we saw in the Thaylen map border but don't feature on the mythica border. The grayed S is an extrapolation of the stroke-flip rule if it applies to that letter. We also have three unknowns: the maybe-an-H from the top row, and two letters that are partially obscured in the bottom right corner. 

Edited by ccstat
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11 hours ago, ccstat said:

I think you are right about the thaylen letters, but the reasoning doesn't make much sense to me. If vowels have diminished importance in both written and spoken Thaylen, then I would expect consonants to carry more information content, and therefore to have more variation / fewer "redundancies." But that's neither here nor there. Word length of actual Thaylen could be long enough to make up for it.

When we speak a language, we do subtle things with pauses, emphasis and modification of surrounding vowel sounds to distinguish close consonants from one another.  Strip out the vowels and our ability to emphasize subtle differences between sounds is largely lost.

As an example, during the battle at Thaylen city Adolin meets a Thaylen soldier with the fantastic name of "Kdralk".  Say that name out loud, then change the D to a T and say "Ktralk" out loud.  If you can hear a noticeable difference you have fantastic enunciation skills :P .

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Over on Reddit Jofwu suggested I share this crazy theory here. To me this feels like the same Glyph. Am I wrong? 

possibility.jpg.4cab09b8b91ad2d04b17bc8f900f0809.jpg

Going a bit further into examining the Voidbinding Chart I noticed this one. 

5a9b640176f83_possibility2.jpg.252060100196b80cb4078a82e3a0411a.jpg

And during my first foray into the Forum here I saw this one. 

Khakh.png.6db4495aa7bee7a603968b32c6538cf3.png

Now all of these are pretty tenuous, but I thought I'd at least share. 

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On 2/15/2018 at 3:58 PM, Fourth Of The Night said:

Hey y'all! I figured you might appreciate this update! I got the first of my first order tattoo! The designs are too complex to do all 9 where I want them, my wrist, so I'm just doing Life, Strength, and Journey!

I got Life done on last Thursday and couldn't be happier!

Staring at it from various angles for the past week has made me realize that it looks like a cremling, do any of you see that too?

Hmm... Could be a Cremling. I have a theory that doesn't currently have much support beyond my own fever dreams that the Glyphs that are on the "Order" Wheel on what is known as the "Voidbinding Chart" are all representation of animals. 

Such as Larkin.jpg.4046c49852bb254a106c185392c8e168.jpg Being a representation of a Larkin the uncolored sections in the center representing the sucking out of Investiture(Which in Warbreaker required color to function. 

However when it comes to Life, Strength and Journey I can't unsee the woman. Each of the three glyphs is (To me) in the shape of a woman, with life being a close up, Strength being the wide shot and Journey being the Flashback to Childhood. Wait a second.... THIS IS THE STRUCTURE OF THE NOVELS. I have to go theorize. I just broke my brain a bit

Spoiler

Oaths.thumb.jpg.420f136bc0ec5f471a745cc6154f1b07.jpg

. Edit Figured I may as well include the Oaths, so people can see what I'm talking about with the woman/girl. 

Edited by Minion5051
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Something small but interesting that I just noticed. OB chapter 27, Shallan notes that the doorways of the barracks are marked by "archaic Alethi numbers etched unto the stone."

Two things: (1) This implies the number glyphs vary (at least somewhat) from one nation/language to the next. (2) The ancient Radiants favored the symbols of (presumably) Alethela. (Maybe because Urithiru was largely a military base? Could do lots of speculating on this...)

Edit:

Thinking about that a bit more, I was assuming that the modern numbers we know are derived from these archaic ones, but that's not necessarily the case. Another possibility (one that seems more likely to me) is that "archaic Alethi numbers" may refer to some ancient system which has since died off in favor of the modern numerals. Something like Roman numerals for example. So my second point above still stands, but the first isn't necessarily correct (at this point in time).

Edited by Jofwu
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Wanted to put this out there while it's fresh on my mind... Isaac did a workshop on glyphs at JordanCon this weekend. There are some mundane things to be shared eventually. Most of the workshop revolved around his process of creating glyphs. The general idea being: (1) Find/make a cool shape that "feels right" for the word, (2) Work the right phonemes into that sketch, (3) Make adjustments, as if it has been changed and warped over time. And of course, rule zero: "Cool trumps readability."

Anyways...

He revealed that this glyph, found on the "Ironstance Scroll" in WoR...

 Iron Stance Scroll - Unknown 6 - A2.png

...is the symbol of the secretive Calligrapher's Guild. Technically, it "spells" Isaac's name. That is, "IZAK" I believe. Though it's not meant to represent those sounds in world of course. It's merely the glyph of the Calligrapher's Guild.

After the workshop I asked him about this glyph:

Urithiru - B2.png 

It's been quite a mystery that we never solved. It shows up in MANY places in TWoK. It also shows up in the Frostlands map in WoR and the Kholinar map in OB. Maybe other places? Peter confirmed (in that last link) that it's not the symbol of Isasik Shulin (famous Alethi cartographer). That's about all we really know.

So I asked about it. Isaac said that he doesn't know what it means. I'm a little skeptical of this, because it seems that he generally has to know the meaning and word to create a glyph. He doesn't just draw nice shapes or pick random phonemes. Anyways, he claims that he doesn't know what it means, but that Brandon has asked him to put it in several places. He has mentioned before that it's supposed to be an Easter egg of some kind. So that's itself isn't news. One interesting thing that he added was that I should "compare it to the Calligrapher's Guild glyph." He actually held up one of the buttons he had with that glyph on it and said (something along the lines of), "Compare it to this one. That's all I will say."

@Pagerunner and I took the time to compare them this afternoon and it seems to be pretty straightforward. They both clearly seem to share the same phonemes. But what does that mean? Peter seems to have shot down the obvious answer.

To analyze things a bit further...

It's interesting to me that the symbol appears in both obvious and subtle ways. It shows up prominently in the compass rose of Isasik's map of Roshar, for example. But then in the map of Shadesmar it's more like somebody added it later. Like they stamped an existing document. This suggests to me that the person/people using it are some kind of secret society. This idea of a common symbol being used in suspicious ways gives me a major Freemason vibe.

My next thought was to compare the documents that it's used in. Maybe that would give a clue as to who this secret society could be? I started thinking that it might be related to the Sons of Honor because MOST of the items it appears on are maps related in some way to the Alethi monarchy. Maps for Gavilar, maps of the Shattered Plains... The Silver Kingdoms and Shadesmar maps are easy enough to explain along those lines. The view of Kharbranth is more of a stretch, but we have reason to think Taravangian was related to them in some way. The biggest hole with this of course is the (multiple) appearances on the Frostlands map.

It's possible the explanation is more mundane of course... Just something related to cartography or a group of cartographers? But then... Why would it show up stamped in random places, some of which can barely be called maps?

I'm curious if you guys have any thoughts on this. Putting this here for now as it all ties back to this relationship between these two glyphs. If we go down too much of a rabbit hole we can move to another thread so as not to get in the way of actual glyph/language work.

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Could that symbol be the symbol of 17th shard? Brandon poking fun at us a bit?

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Just now, Just another guyn said:

Could that symbol be the symbol of 17th shard? Brandon poking fun at us a bit?

Eh. I suppose it could be that sort of Easter egg. But I realistically, I don't see why the 17th Shard would be in a position to sneak their symbol onto maps (in an official capacity) like this.

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I have been trying to figure out how to make a glyph for alley. Im posting this here because im not sure anyone who knows what they are talking about will see it if I post it in Creater's corner.

This is what I came up with:

IMG_1336.thumb.jpg.2bcbb01f00f4eb83d56e7ccc0ca25ab2.jpg

Here is an annotated version.

5adfeccae06dc_IMG_1336-Copy.thumb.jpg.6bfa6e037728dac6c43cde5826e0142c.jpg

The direct translation should be: AELEA, I put a dash above the first E, I was trying to make it have an H sound like is described by shallan:

On 2/1/2018 at 0:04 PM, Subvisual Haze said:

“The h sound can be for any letter,” Shallan said absently. “We write it as the symmetrical letter, to make the word balance, but add a diacritical mark to indicate it sounds like an h so the word is easier to say.”

I didn't know the proper diacritical mark, so I put that mark.

It should sound like AHLEA. With the EA making a long E sound like in peach, and the Ah making the short A sound, we should be getting alee which has the same pronunciation as alley. In addition, it you look at the 2 E's as buildings, it does resemble an alley.

Any advice? changes I should make? am I doing it completely wrong?

Edited by MacThorstenson
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3 minutes ago, MacThorstenson said:

I have been trying to figure out how to make a glyph for alley. Im posting this here because im not sure anyone who knows what they are talking about will see it if I post it in Creater's corner.

This is what I came up with:

IMG_1336.thumb.jpg.2bcbb01f00f4eb83d56e7ccc0ca25ab2.jpg

Here is an annotated version.

5adfeccae06dc_IMG_1336-Copy.thumb.jpg.6bfa6e037728dac6c43cde5826e0142c.jpg

The direct translation should be: AELEA, I put a dash above the first E, I was trying to make it have an H sound like is described by shallan:

I didn't know the proper diacritical mark, so I put that mark.

It should sound like AHLEA. With the EA making a long E sound like in peach, and the Ah making the short A sound, we should be getting alee which has the same pronunciation as alley. In addition, it you look at the 2 E's as buildings, it does resemble an alley.

Any advice? changes I should make? am I doing it completely wrong?

You're off to a great start. A couple of quick things:

First, I seem to recall Shallan is talking about women's script, not glyphs, in that passage. I don't think you get a diacritic in glyphs.

Second, the A needs to be a dot or a circle; the straight line is a B.

Third, when you use your symbols, you build half of the glyph using the entire word, and then reflect it. Not all glyphs are based on symmetrical words (like the highprince glyphs, for example), and the ones that are symmetrical will have at least four instances of some letters. (The Nahn glyph is a good example; you've basically got 4 N's. Two for word on tbe left, the same two mirrored on the right.) So, you basically have a glyph for ALE. 

Lastly is how to Alethize the word. The vowels in Alethi are just as versatile as they are in English. (See; Kaladin vs Shallan vs Adolin. I mean, just how the A's are pronounced differently.) No need to add an H, and I'd say you can get away with ALE, ALI, or ALY for your glyph. Or just use the straight-up full English word, ALLEY. Nothing inherently wrong with that.

But it looks to me like you're on the right track. Fix your A's, and you're in good shape.

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20 hours ago, Pagerunner said:

You're off to a great start. A couple of quick things:

First, I seem to recall Shallan is talking about women's script, not glyphs, in that passage. I don't think you get a diacritic in glyphs.

Second, the A needs to be a dot or a circle; the straight line is a B.

Third, when you use your symbols, you build half of the glyph using the entire word, and then reflect it. Not all glyphs are based on symmetrical words (like the highprince glyphs, for example), and the ones that are symmetrical will have at least four instances of some letters. (The Nahn glyph is a good example; you've basically got 4 N's. Two for word on tbe left, the same two mirrored on the right.) So, you basically have a glyph for ALE. 

Lastly is how to Alethize the word. The vowels in Alethi are just as versatile as they are in English. (See; Kaladin vs Shallan vs Adolin. I mean, just how the A's are pronounced differently.) No need to add an H, and I'd say you can get away with ALE, ALI, or ALY for your glyph. Or just use the straight-up full English word, ALLEY. Nothing inherently wrong with that.

But it looks to me like you're on the right track. Fix your A's, and you're in good shape.

Ok, thank you for the response.

With regards to the A's I was trying to do the same thing as was done in the sas glyph, extending the line. I didn't do a good job on emphasizing the points on the ends.

Thank you for your third point. That was extremely helpful, I didn't know that. I thought that each glyph was based on words that were phonetically symmetrical.

 

Here is the final glyph pair. It says Dark Alley. It should also be rotated 90 degrees counter clockwise.

IMG_1337.JPG

Edited by MacThorstenson
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Hello. Welcome back to yet another episode of the hottest show in the Cosmere, Argent Bothers Random Employees of Dragonsteel Entertainment until He Gets Answers.This week we are doing an Isaac Special (because Karen didn't get me nearly as many upvotes as I had hoped, please go upvote my thread, my life has no meaning without these sweet sweet fake Internet points, and I am not above begging for them like the disgrace that I am).

Ahem

Anyway.

Remember Navani's journal entries in Oathbringer, all the way back on the first page of this topic? The airship designs and the watch designs? Well, the translation of the former always bothered me - the "ha" at the end of the first sentence didn't fit with anything else we'd seen, and it didn't really fit with Navani's personality as I understood it. So I did what everyone without a shred of decency would've done - I asked Isaac. And, for good measure, I also asked about The Taker of Secrets page too, because people struggled with nailing  that one too, and I am the kind of person who, instead of working through the solutions, goes and asks the teacher. And then writes two paragraphs before getting to the point.

Which is.

Navani's notebook: Ship Designs

Quote

Argent

Back around the release of Oathbringer a couple of users translated the writing on this page to something like this:

Too fanciful, ha
Ask Rushu how to keep the mast from ripping off
Jasnah's Favorite

The first line in particular always felt weird to me. Can you give us the version you worked with and consider canonical?

Isaac Stewart

This looks mostly correct. There is no comma and space after fanciful, however. "Ha" in this case is not an English word. What I used was this: "TOO FANSIFULHA" Please notice that the question mark is handwriting that should be recognizable.

Argent

Hey, wait a moment! That question mark was always weird to me, but now that you point it out, it's the same as the one on the wines page! That's Nazh's handwriting! So what's up with the "ha"? I'd guess Nazh was as confused as I am, hence the question mark.

Isaac Stewart

As for Nazh's question mark, he's not using it because he is confused. :)

I am trying to find out more, but Isaac has been trained at avoiding answers by the best, so we'll see if it takes us anywhere.

Navani's notebook: Watch Designs

Quote

Argent

Similarly, the writing on the watch page was translated to

Top View
Side View
Stormpiece
Timepiece

We were pretty confident about this one, but maybe you can give a nod of confirmation?

Isaac Stewart

Here's your nod of confirmation.

I now realize that I completely forgot about the huge chunk of text on the top of the page, but I think our (well, fine, @Pagerunner's) translation didn't include any oddities, so I am not too heartbroken.

The Taker of Secrets: Border

Quote

Argent

This one has been far more difficult, in part because the Thaylen hate vowels, and in part because of the obstructed letters. User ccstat tried his hand at decoding the writing along the border (link), but got stuck after a couple of words. Any help - or solution - you can offer on this one would be greatly appreciated by about 5 people :)

Isaac Stewart [after checking with Miranda Meeks, the artist behind this piece]

This is what I got from Miranda:

"The border contains the Thaylen symbols, including words like "Sja-Anat," "Keeper of Secrets," and I think "Corrupted" is in there as well somewhere (that is, if I understood the translation key correctly, in that no vowels are included, and since there isn't a letter for "c" I excluded that from "Secrets" and "corrupted"). Some of the symbols have been flipped or mirrored to fit better with each other. I'm not entirely sold with how I wrote the word "Sja-Anat" so I can adjust that later on to make it fit better."

It would be supremely funny to me if @ccstat's guesses at the beginning of page 2 are not at all what Miranda meant to write, and it was just lucky that some of the symbols lined up to say things like "spies."

So not super exciting, and the question mark is even more frustrating than it was in the beginning, but at least we know something.

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Thanks for getting some confirmation on these, Argent. It's always nice to get a look at the answer key.

12 hours ago, Argent said:

That's Nazh's handwriting!

Called it!

On 11/18/2017 at 11:45 PM, ccstat said:

For the "fanciful (ha)" question--I translated it the same way, but on further inspection that question mark looks funny, almost as if it were in the font for annotations by Nazh.

For the Taker of Secrets page, it's great to get some more confirmation:

12 hours ago, Argent said:

This is what I got from Miranda:

"The border contains the Thaylen symbols, including words like "Sja-Anat," "Keeper of Secrets," and I think "Corrupted" is in there as well somewhere (that is, if I understood the translation key correctly, in that no vowels are included, and since there isn't a letter for "c" I excluded that from "Secrets" and "corrupted"). Some of the symbols have been flipped or mirrored to fit better with each other. I'm not entirely sold with how I wrote the word "Sja-Anat" so I can adjust that later on to make it fit better."

@Subvisual Haze was absolutely right about the flipped, mirrored symbols and strokes. They get the credit for figuring out those symbol redundancies. I'm also a bit frustrated with this response, though, because the confirmed words are the ones we were most confident of. For the record, this is the translation as we have it. Bold are confident assignments, while italics are sections of text with low confidence transliterations or undeciphered words, including some letters obscured by the artistic misty border.

Quote

Top: Corrupted || VLJPT

Left: Sja Anat Corrupted || TJSh?

Right: Now Sja Anat Keeper Of Secrets TR || R?S

Bottom: ?? Darkness

If anyone wants to take a crack at the remaining portions, the updated translation key is here.

12 hours ago, Argent said:

It would be supremely funny to me if @ccstat's guesses at the beginning of page 2 are not at all what Miranda meant to write, and it was just lucky that some of the symbols lined up to say things like "spies."

As it happens, most of my guesses in that post were way off. "Corrupted" and "Darkness" were the only things even close to correct.

Edited by ccstat
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:) thanks for the confirmation on some of the things we were able to guesswork out.

The fact that the border text reads "Keeper of Secrets", instead of her traditional title "Taker of Secrets" seems important.  Another confirmation that Sja-Anat is a traitor?  Also she is "Corrupted", instead of "Corrupter".  Now if only I could figure out what is going on with the top border :P

Edited by Subvisual Haze
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Ah, so... the question mark. Good news and bad news. Good news, I know exactly why it's there, and it's a neat, albeit small thing. No big secrets. The bad news, however, is that I can't share this. Sorry, I - like the dwarves - dug too deep... :(

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Well, if I were to speculate I'd say it's because Nazh is aware that it isn't too fanciful, because he's seen one just like it at the point in time he's collecting these papers.

That's just a guess, but since Argent can't comment let's pretend he chimed in here to say that I'm exactly right.

The best alternative if that's not the answer is that he's trying prompt Khriss to build him one.

Edited by ccstat
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2 hours ago, Argent said:

Ah, so... the question mark. Good news and bad news. Good news, I know exactly why it's there, and it's a neat, albeit small thing. No big secrets. The bad news, however, is that I can't share this. Sorry, I - like the dwarves - dug too deep... :(

And woke the Nameless Fear? (being the fact that you have knowledge that you cannot share?)

Also, "Nameless fear" sounds like something a standard Rosharan would use to refer to an Unmade

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