Neolithic/Chalcolithic writing.

From: Mark Odegard
Message: 3434
Date: 2000-08-28

I've a new book, the last one by Marija Gimbutas, The Living Goddess. Miriam Dexter Robbins finished and edited the book after the death of Gimbutas.
--start quote--
Around 5500-5000, ingriguing combinations of signs appear in the archaeological record, contemporaneous with the conceptual symbol script discussed above. The Starcevo-Vinca culture manifested the most examples, but other Old European cultures also employed them. Some thirty abstract signs build a core set. It is important to observe that these signs indeed represent writing; instead of individual or random occurence in pottery panels, the script signs appear in rows or clusters with several different signs following one another ....
Abstract, not pictoral, signs comprised the script. Linearity characterizes and organizes Old European writing, a trait it share with the Minoan Linear A, Cypriot-Minoan, and Cipriot Syllabic scripts, all scripts of the pre-classical world. All of these examples use similar diacritical techniques, such as strokes or dots to midify a basic sign. Old European script is not "prewriting" as conceived by Shan M. Winn (1981). It represents a true writing system ....
[pp. 48-49]
--end quote--
I've heard say of such script before, but didn't know what to think of it; none of the sources I read about it were particularly impressive. With Gimbutas saying there is such a thing, well, then there really is such a think.
I was taught that writing more or less simultaneously developed in Egypt and southern Mesoptamia ca 3200-3000 BCE, with perhaps one influencing the other as regards the 'idea'. 
I have to revise my world view again, and move the 'invention' of writing back to at least 5500 BCE. Interesting date, that, 5500; co-eval with the Black Sea Flood; was writing invented on the shores of the Euxine Lake? Gimbutas died in 1994; this antedates the 'discovery' of the Black Sea flood.
I've not finished the book, but I do gather that the so-called Balkan-Danubian complex was rather refined for its time.
I'm sure there will be more postings about my responses to this book. Not having even finished it, I nonetheless recommend it highly.