Origin of the Runes


The oldest runic inscriptions that have survived to this day date are attributed to the 2nd-3rd centuries. AD, however, it is undoubted that many of the runic signs, from which the runes appeared in the form that we observe now, have a much earlier origin, drawing their roots in the magical symbols of the pictographic Celtic writing of the druid priests, thus during various historical events, they passed to the Scandinavian, Slavic and Germanic tribes. Pre-Runic images have been found on the walls of many Bronze Age caves, for the first time in Norway. Some of these still pre-runic signs are analogous to signs in the late runic alphabet. While others are the initial concepts that later pass into the names of the runes. The exact meaning of these mysterious signs or pra-rune symbols can now only be guessed at, however, there are suggestions that they were intended for various kinds of predictions and quite likely had a certain magical meaning similar to late runes. The runic alphabet appeared in the places of settlement of those peoples for whom the main form of writing symbols was cutting or carving elements of alphabetic characters on a hard surface. Thus, if consider the origin of runes in terms of writing technique, this is a magical or alphabetic letter sign that was carved on stones or excised on bone or wood. It was customary to decorate weapons, all kinds of household items, items of clothing, dishes with runic writing or ornaments. Spells were written with runes on the doors of the house or on the bow of the ship, and the production of runes in the form of a separate divination kit was also widely practiced. Runes were decorated with talismans, charms and amulets of our ancestors – in other words, the ancient Scandinavians and Germans used runic symbols everywhere in all areas of everyday life. Nowadays, among scientists involved in an in-depth study of the issue of the origin of the runes, there are a number of disagreements about the origin of the runic alphabet as such. Some researchers believe that runes, as a writing system, are related to Greek or even Cretan culture.
However, the main party belongs to the adherents of the North Italian, Etruscan theory.