Hittite Logograms and Hittite Scholarship
The cuneiform writing system – as used by the Hittites in Anatolia in 2nd millennium BC for writing their own language – was composed of both phonetic and logographic writings. The logograms, most generally defined as non-phonetic writings of Hittite words, were derived from Sumerian and Akkadian, the cuneiform languages of Mesopotamia from where the Hittites inherited the script.
In his study Mark Weeden investigates logographic writings in Hittite cuneiform as a phenomenon of ancient scholarship. Many Hittite logograms are used with different meanings, forms or functions from those found for the same or related writings in Mesopotamia. Analyses of these differences help to place Hittite cuneiform within the so-called peripheral cuneiform world and to elucidate the processes constituting the transmission of cuneiform knowledge into Anatolia. Additionally, it throws light on scholarship in the textually poor attested contemporary period in Mesopotamia.