About Sumerian Early-Signs by Shape

By David D. Olmsted (December 2022)

(from slide show by Heather Morris at https://slideplayer.com/slide/5908362/)

General References

Halloran, John Allen (2006) Sumerian Lexicon, version 4. Logogram Publishing, Los Angles. - Based upon a variety of sources representing the state of art in Sumerian at the time.


This lexicon started with the cuneiform sign list compiled in 1950 by I.J Gelb from  the University of Chicago. The signs were drawn by J. Lessoe. The original non-alphabetized version is now online at the Cuneiform Digital Initiative under the heading of Old Akkadian Period. This initiative is an ongoing project of Oxford University and can be found at:


Section Entries in Menu at Left

(Jan 2, 2022) This section organizes early cuneiform signs by shape characteristics to aid in finding them during a translation. Consequently, signs generally appear in several different categories.

Comparing and contrasting the western looking Druid civilization with the eastward looking Sumerian should provide deeper insights into both. The Druid people spoke Akkadian while the Sumerian people spoke Sumerian. The Sumerians invented these signs and assigned them sounds based upon their own language. Their Akkadian speaking neighbors to the north then adopted these signs and sounds for their own language and used it as an aid to trade and empire.

Sumerian is not well understood as a language. No Sumerian text has been translated properly up to the scholars standard.  

Lexicon organized alphabetically at: About This Early-Sign Sumerian Lexicon