Topic: Indigenous peoples of North America
The Cherokee syllabary is a syllabary invented by Sequoyah in the late 1810s and early 1820s to write the Cherokee language. His creation of the syllabary is particularly noteworthy as he could not previously read any script. He first experimented with logograms, but his system later developed into a syllabary. In his system, each symbol represents a syllable rather than a single phoneme; the 85 (originally 86) characters provide a suitable method to write Cherokee. Although some symbols resemble Latin, Greek, and Cyrillic letters, they are not used to represent the same sounds.
- "Cherokee Syllabary" | 2019-06-30 | 56 Upvotes 12 Comments
Sequoyah (ᏍᏏᏉᏯ Ssiquoya, as he signed his name, or ᏎᏉᏯ Se-quo-ya, as is often spelled in Cherokee; named in English George Gist or George Guess) (c.1770–1843), was a Native American polymath of the Cherokee Nation. In 1821 he completed his independent creation of a Cherokee syllabary, making reading and writing in Cherokee possible. This was one of the very few times in recorded history that a member of a pre-literate people created an original, effective writing system (another example being Shong Lue Yang). After seeing its worth, the people of the Cherokee Nation rapidly began to use his syllabary and officially adopted it in 1825. Their literacy rate quickly surpassed that of surrounding European-American settlers.
- "Sequoyah – Inventor of the Cherokee Script" | 2019-12-08 | 68 Upvotes 16 Comments
Thomas Harriot (Oxford, c. 1560 – London, 2 July 1621), also spelled Harriott, Hariot or Heriot, was an English astronomer, mathematician, ethnographer and translator who made advances within the scientific field. Thomas Harriot was recognized for his contributions in astronomy, mathematics, and navigational techniques. Harriot worked closely with John White to create advanced maps for navigation. While Harriot worked extensively on numerous papers on the subjects of astronomy, mathematics, and navigation the amount of work that was actually published was sparse. So sparse that the only publication that has been produced by Harriot was The Briefe and True Report of the New Found Land of Virginia. The premise of the book includes descriptions of English settlements and financial issues in Virginia at the time. He is sometimes credited with the introduction of the potato to the British Isles. Harriot was the first person to make a drawing of the Moon through a telescope, on 26 July 1609, over four months before Galileo Galilei.
After graduating from St Mary Hall, Oxford, Harriot travelled to the Americas, accompanying the 1585 expedition to Roanoke island funded by Sir Walter Raleigh and led by Sir Ralph Lane. Harriot was a vital member of the venture, having learned and translating the Carolina Algonquian language from two Native Americans: Wanchese and Manteo. On his return to England, he worked for the 9th Earl of Northumberland. At the Earl's house, he became a prolific mathematician and astronomer to whom the theory of refraction is attributed.
- "Thomas Harriot" | 2014-05-25 | 12 Upvotes 2 Comments
Dené–Yeniseian is a proposed language family consisting of the Yeniseian languages of central Siberia and the Na-Dené languages of northwestern North America.
Reception among experts has been largely, though not universally, favorable; thus, Dené–Yeniseian has been called "the first demonstration of a genealogical link between Old World and New World language families that meets the standards of traditional comparative-historical linguistics," besides the Eskimo–Aleut languages spoken in far eastern Siberia and North America.
Kaktovik Iñupiaq numerals are a featural positional numeral system created by Alaskan Iñupiat.
Arabic numeral notation, which was designed for a base-10 numeral system, is inadequate for the Inuit languages, which use a base-20 numeral system. Students from Kaktovik, Alaska invented a base-20 numeral notation in 1994 to rectify this issue, and this system spread among the Alaskan Iñupiat and has been considered in other countries where Inuit languages are spoken.
The image at right shows the digits 0 to 19. Twenty is written as a one and a zero (I0), forty as a two and a zero (V0), four hundred as a one and two zeros (I00), eight hundred as a two and two zeros (V00), etc.
- "Kaktovik Iñupiaq Numerals" | 2020-12-07 | 26 Upvotes 11 Comments
Kaktovik numerals are a featural positional numeral system created by Alaskan Iñupiat.
Arabic numeral notation, which was designed for a base-10 numeral system, is inadequate for the Inuit languages, which use a base-20 numeral system. Students in Kaktovik, Alaska, invented a base-20 numeral notation in 1994 to rectify this issue, and this system spread among the Alaskan Iñupiat and has been considered in other countries where Inuit languages are spoken.
The image at right shows the digits 0 to 19. Twenty is written as a one and a zero (\ɤ), forty as a two and a zero (Vɤ), four hundred as a one and two zeros (\ɤɤ), eight hundred as a two and two zeros (Vɤɤ), etc.
- "Kaktovik numerals – A base-20 number system that is visually easy too" | 2021-03-04 | 39 Upvotes 2 Comments