Indian Hieroglyphs - Kalyana Raman

A comprehensive volume of Indian hieroglyphs

By Manju Gupta, February 25, 2012

Indian Hieroglyphs: Invention of Writing, S Kalyanaraman, Sarasvati Research Centre, Pp 798, price not given

                  The corpora of Indus script show over 600 glyphs. Such a large number of glyphs cannot all be abstractions unrelated to an underlying language if the glyphs were intended to convey ‘meaning’. Language words are powerful tools for communication of ‘meaning’ in any messaging system. The book establishes that inventors of Indian hieroglyphs were literate and used hieroglyphs to present their sounds of speech.

                  The author of the book says that the total number of inscribed objects with Indian hieroglyphs has now reached a critical mass of over 6,000 – a database “for solving a mathematical problem is cryptography of matching cipher text with plain text.”

                    The inventor of Indian hieroglyphs represented a smith, ayakara by representing two glyphs in fish (aya) + crocodile (kara). The writing system evolved further with combinations of glyphs as ligatures to connote word-phrases. For syllabic representations, new methods – syllabic scripts – were invented, called kharosti and brahmi which were used together with Indian hieroglyphs, on, for example, punch-marked coins.