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Oera Linda

A typographic monument for a Frisian cultural mystification

In 1867 an 4000 year old Frisian manuscript was excavated in the north of Holland. It tells the story of the beginning of the world, the sinking of Atlantis and the history of the Frisian people in the Netherlands. It baffled scientists. The book was written in a never before seen alphabet.

The handwriting of the Oera Linda book seems to be written in a unique runic script. For the un- biased reader this seems to be true and maybe the writer of the book considered the comments in Caesars De Bello Gallico on Greek-style letters used by the Gauls and Helvetii. But if one looks closely, we can clearly see that these are Roman capitals.

All 32 letters and 10 numerals are drawn along the six spokes of a wheel. All of this is based the Jol, which in Germanic mythology symbolizes the wheel of time. The Germans used the Jol to schedule a day and regulate the era. Germanic tribes - and thus the Frisians – didn’t believe in linear timing, like we do, but cyclical timing. This has to do with the solstices.

On page 45 of the Oera Linda book a Jol is depicted. It is the symbol of eternity. To take the Wheel of Time as a basis for the script, the author is indicating that the sript is comprehensive. Not only does the book lyrically describes the time past, the design of the letters is time itself. Thus everything written herein is of importance and “absolute”.

To pay tribute to the work, a box is made from lime wood (Lindehout) that contains 42 stamps. The letterfroms are digitized, corrected and made available as typeface for educational purposes.

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