Writing: Why left, right, & vertical?

Discussion in 'Science & Society' started by Dinosaur, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Some where I read the following.

    Left to right due to cultures which first wrote on clay or paper with a stylus or pen-like device. A right handed person would not smear previously written data.

    Right to left due to cultures which first wrote with a hammer & chisel on stone. Hammer in dominant right hand

    Vertical due to cultures (example Chinese) which first wrote with a paint brush​
     
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  3. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Interesting.

    I am going to go into work tomorrow with a hammer and chisel. And if anyone cries foul, I'll scream oppression! to HR.
     
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  5. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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    Why is this in religion?
     
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  7. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    Because I copied & pasted from a word processor by mistake while in that forum.
     
  8. goose Registered Senior Member

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    Gold!!!!
     
  9. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    A fair number of hammer and chisel folks "wrapped" the lines - so they alternated R->L, L->R, with the "letters" themselves mirrored.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boustrophedon
     
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  10. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    ......which practice sometimes got carried over into other media, such as stained glass representations of sequential scenes, e.g. in La Sainte Chappelle in Paris (which where I first encountered this splendid word

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    ).
     
  11. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I didn't know this but it makes perfect sense. Thanks - nice one.
     
  12. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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  13. TheFrogger Registered Senior Member

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    If something is moving to the starboard side it means the viewer is moving leftward. Down means you are rising. However I am of the belief the Western writing system moves towards the individual.
     
  14. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Or not moving but yawing clockwise.

    Or you are not moving but pitching backward.

    So, getting larger...
     
  15. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    When facing forward on a ship, starboard is right & port is left. These terms are used to avoid ambiguity by referring to the ship rather then the human speaking. Similarly: Fore & aft refer to the prow direction & the stern direction.
     
  16. RainbowSingularity Registered Senior Member

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    what cultural association has impirical symbology of movement that supports the motion direction to assert social normity ?
     
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Er, Yes. (says the boat owner).
     
  18. Dinosaur Rational Skeptic Valued Senior Member

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    From Rainbow Post 13
    I think (& surely implied) in my Post that the cultural direction of writing was due to the method of writing.

    BTW: Why not use a spell checker or learn how to spell? I apologize for this remark if English is not your native language.
     
  19. RainbowSingularity Registered Senior Member

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    Do tools define culture ?
    Does tool use define culture ?
    Does culture define tool use ?
    Does culture define communication ?

    Do humans share a common anthropological process of Kinesiology which expresses its self through a common function of communication variables in spite of culture ?

    When you remove that from the end result (reverse engineering the function & tools) do you get left with a common denominator that 'may be' a driving force of the process of writing ?
     
  20. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    Side point: unless presented with excellent and very persuasive evidence, I am not going to believe anyone anywhere "first" wrote with a hammer and chisel in stone. That just strikes me as - - improbable.
     
  21. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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    I used to remind the FNGs, "Port and left have the same number of letters."
     
  22. TheFrogger Registered Senior Member

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    That's how I remember it Gawdzilla! On a plane the port light is red. Because it's the same colour as port. ☺
     
  23. Gawdzilla Sama Valued Senior Member

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    And "red on the right, returning", meaning the masthead lights indicate that the ship is coming at you.
     

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