Page:EB1911 - Volume 25.djvu/248

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232
SLAVS



as a liturgical script in Dalmatia, where the Roman Church still allows the Slavonic liturgy in the dioceses of Veglia, Spalato, Zara and Sebenico. and in Montenegro; the Croats now employ Latin letters for civil purposes.

The annexed table gives these alphabets — the Glagolitic in both forms with numerical values (columns 1-3); the Cyrillic in its fullest development (4, 5), with the modern version of it made for Russian (6) by Peter the Great's orders; Bulgarian uses more or less all the Russian letters but the reversed e and the last two, while keeping more old Cyrillic letters, but its orthography is in such a confused state that it is difficult to say which letters may be regarded as obsolete; Servian (7) was reformed by Karadzic (Karajich (q.v.)) on the model of Russian, with special letters and ligatures added and with unnecessary signs omitted. The old ways of writing Slavonic with Latin letters were so con- fused and variable that none of them are given. The Cechs first attained to a satisfactory system, using diacritical marks invented by Hus; their alphabet has served more or less as a model for all the other Slavonic languages which use Latin letters, and for that used in scientific grammars, not only of Slavonic but of Oriental languages. Column 8 gives the system as applied to Croat, and corresponding^ exactly to Karadzic's reformed Cyrillic. Column 9 gives the Cech alphabet with the exception of the long vowels, which are marked by an accent; in brackets are added further signs used in other Slavonic languages, e.?. Slovene and Sorb, or in strict transliterations of Cyrillic. Polish (10) still offers a compromise between the old arbitrary combinations of letters and the Cech principle of diacritical marks. The last column shows a convenient system of transliterating Cyrillic into Latin letters for the use of English readers without the use of diacritical marks; it is used in most of the .ion- linguistic articles in the Encyclopaedia Britannica which deal with Slavs. With regard to Glagolitic (derived from Glagol, a word) and Cyrillic, it is clear that they are closely connected. The language of the earliest Glagolitic MSS. is earlier than that of the Cyrillic, though the earliest dated Slavonic writing surviv- ing is a Cyrillic inscription of Tsar Samuel of Bulgaria (a.d. 993). On the whole Glagolitic is likely to be the earlier, if only that no one would have made it who knew the simpler Cyrillic. It certainly bears the impress of a definite mind, which thought out very exactly the phonetics of the dialect it was to express, but made its letters too uniformly complicated by a love for little circles. A sufficiently large number of the letters can be traced back to Greek minuscules to make it probable that all of them derive thence, though agreement has not yet been reached as to the particular combinations which were modified to make each letter. Of course the modern Greek phonetic values alone form the basis. The numerical values were set out according to the order of the letters. Some subsequent improvement, especi- ally in the pre-iotized vowels, can be traced in later documents. The presumption is that this is the alphabet invented by Cyril for the Slavs who formerly used Greek and Latin letters without system.

When brought or brought back to Bulgaria by Clement and the other pupils of Methodius, Glagolitic took root in the west, but in the east some one, probably at the court of Simeon, where everything Greek was in favour, had the idea of taking the arrangement of the Glagolitic alphabet, but making the signs like those of the Uncial Greek then in use for liturgical books, using actual Greek letters as far as they would serve, and for specifically Slavonic sounds the Glagolitic signs simplified and made to match the rest. Where this was impossible in the case of the complicated signs for the vowels, he seems to have made variations on the letters A and B. With the uncials he took the Greek numerical values, though his alphabet kept the Glagolitic order. Probably the Glagolitic letters for s and H have exchanged places, and the value 800 belonged to â– >, as the order in Cyrillic is u,, M,ui, 41. Who invented Cyrillic we know not; Clement has been said to have made letters clearer, but only in a secondary source and he seems to have been particularly devoted to the tradition of Methodius, and he was bishop of Ochrida, just where Glagolitic survived longest.


GLAGOLITIC


CYRILLIC


LATIN


PHONETIC


Old


New


Num.


Old Num. Russ,


Serb. Croat Ccch&c, Polish


VALUES

Mention must be made of Bruckner's theory that Cyril invented Cyrillic first, but degraded it into Glagolitic to hide its Greek origin from the Latin clergy, the whole object of his mission