The Spelling Bee, Asian linguist Kings and Mendeleev table – Part2

(In continuation from my previous post)

Story of the Thai script is quite the opposite of that of Korean. The only similarity is It was also created by a Thai King (Rama Khamhaeng the Great ขุนรามคำแหงมหาราช). I really can’t provide you with an explanation on why any royalty gets into the business of creating the scripts.  I can’t pronounce his other names – so let me stick to Rama.

King Rama borrowed and derived Thai writing script from the cultural headquarters of Thailand from that time – India. It started off well and gotten into a lot of “expansion” as it was allowed to evolve to all radial directions and dimensions. Eventually, all hell broke loose, and now spellings for single sound can vary based on tone, context, position and maybe even mood of the speaker. For example, there are at least 8 ways you can write t (ฏ, ต, ฐ,ฒ, ถ, ท, ธ, ฑ) Take your pick. I am not even beginning to explain how difficult it is to learn.

VERDICT: Thai seems to make the best fit for Spelling Bee and maybe even for an enigma machine. !!

Finally, let’s come to India. India has a ‘table’ in its place for of alphabet system, and this feature is typical for most Indic languages. By Definition of ‘Table’, It’s literally a two-dimensional array of consonants arranged scientifically. No other way of writing will be a criminal misunderstanding of the reason behind. Unfortunately, a lot of native speakers do not why. Indians designed the 2D table of consonants based on the human mouth

  1. Rows represent how tongue, Lips and dental participation in sound.
  2. Columns represent if they are Voiced or not, aspirated or not and finally nasal! That’s it.
Did the Sanskrit alphabet influence Mendeleev’s periodic table?

It’s a shame that the science behind this arrangement is advertised enough.

Finally, let’s talk about the Mendeleev table. We all know Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev, a Russian physicist who had taken up a task to organize all basic elements of earth (or universe) in a precise scientific order. He eventually sequenced them in a tabular format based on atomic numbers/weight.

A beautiful bathtub curtain also attributed to him 🙂

While designing the table, Mendeleev had to leave a few cells blank as those elements were not invented by then. He had to give provisional names for those, and he chose Sanskrit number pre-fixes. They were precisely Eka, dvi and tri. Some of the elements he predicted were:  eka-boron, Eka-aluminium, eka-silicon, dvi-manganese and dvi-lanthanum and so on. This nomenclature system is well documented in academic circles. Still, I am guessing this is the first time you hear about.

Also, just there is an argument that Mendeleev was inspired by 2D alphabet design for Periodic table design. Just like an alphabet table; a few specific columns in the Mendeleev table have particular properties. E.g. Metal, or inert gases and so on. There is a detailed piece on it in Scientific American. Please go through. I am not vouching for this, but it’s hard to dismiss this.

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