The Decipherment of Linear B: KN Db 1232

· Linear B Decipherments

The Lamb Tablet

KN Db 1232

Scribe 117

.1  OVIS:m 23 ,  OVIS:f  27

.2  NA-PU-TI-JO  /  ti-ri-to , pe-ri-qo-ro-jo**

  1. na-pu-ti-jo | νηπύτιο(ς) (neputios) | a small child; childish
  2. OVIS:f | sheep: female; ewes
  3. OVIS:m | sheep: male; rams
  4. pe-ri-qo-ro-jo** | *περιχωρόζω (perikhorozo) | *to be round about a place, to dance or to caper about, to be among < περίχωρος (perikhoro“round about a place” + -ζω “to be”
  5. ti-ri-to | τρί(σ)το (tristos) | three
  6. ti-ri-to | τρίτος (tritos) | third

.1  rams 23, ewes 27

  • 23 rams, 27 ewes

.2  νηπύτιο  / τρίτο  *περιχωρόζω

  • three lambs capering about or three lambs among

Translation: three lambs among 23 rams and 27 ewes

Notes:  Lambs are often born during the third month, around the commencement  of  Aries (the Ram).   Cf. Τριτο-γένεια, an epithet for Athena that has been interpreted as either “born on the third day” or “born as the third child”.

** SMII clearly shows pe-ri-qo-ro-jo, whereas The Knossos Tablets [4th ed.] includes the following note: “pe-ri-qo-te-jo possibly over erasure”.  Nevertheless, the transcription of pe-ri-qo-te-jo is consistent with the syntax in similar, sheep tablets, inscribed by hand 117.  Thus far, there is no obvious translation for pe-ri-qo-te-jo.   Is pe-re-qo-te-jo correct, or did hand 117 mis-scribe ‘te’ for ‘ro’?  I’m not wholly satisfied with this decipherment but will allow it to stand for now. (05.27.23)


  1. Athena. Greek Family History. 2011. Ret. on 27 Sep 2014 <>.
  2. Chadwick, J., J.T. Killen, and J.-P. Olivier. 1971, The Knossos Tablets: A Transliteration [4th ed.], Cambridge University Press, pg. 73.

Updated on September 27, 2014 * May 27, 2023

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