From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Yuri Kuchinsky) Newsgroups: sci.archaeology,soc.culture.nordic Subject: Kensington Stone and Prof. Knirk Date: 19 Aug 1998 19:34:54 GMT James E. Knirk, University of Oslo, KENSINGTON RUNESTONE (a review of Hall's and Nilsestuen's books) in Scandinavian Studies, Winter 1997. This review is really quite silly. It is filled with arrogant ad hominems, preconceived notions, and is rather dishonest. Prof. Knirk's snobbery, arrogance and elitism are quite unbelievable. Surely this sort of an attitude must be the worst the University system has to offer, expressing all the dregs of elitist intolerance of the academe in a nutshell. His arrogance is expressed constantly towards "amateurs" who dared to intrude into the Sacred Precincts where only the True Professional Runologists can enter. This is total and complete nonsense of course. The innumerable idiocies and dishonesties of such "true-blue runologists" like Wahlgren, the KRS chief opponent, are legion... and they are all well documented. Take the plank out of your own eye, you, assorted academic hacks, before trying to dump on the "amateurs"... So Knirk spends much of his review putting down Holand, Nilsestuen and Nielsen because they are "amateurs". What nonsense is this? And according to this pathetic snob, these "uppity amateurs", that he's trying to put down into their place with such contempt, constantly "fail to understand" the evidence, and even each other!!! He states, for example that Nilsestuen is "unable to evaluate Holand", and Hall cannot understand Nielsen... This sort of idiocy may pass for balanced scholarship, I suppose, but only among the True Believers... He finds a few microscopic faults with KRS here and there, and tries to blow them out of proportion. Nilsestuen, whose book, it must be admitted, contains some rather speculative background material, provides him with much fodder for arrogant "corrections", none of which, incidentally, have much to do with KRS itself. His star piece of evidence has already been pummeled to death by Mr. Weller in sci.arch. These are the three erroneous lines in Nilsestuen's book dealing with poor Prof. Rygh's contribution to the Minnesota Historical Society KRS Committee. A simple minor error, by all appearances. Yes, they've found their Big Sin of Nilsestuen here... Knirk's review is also quite dishonest. Most of his tricks are transparent and will be quite familiar to the readers of these Usenet discussions. Again we have the same old selective quotation trick, used so frequently by KRS opponents. Yes, he uses the same old "Winchell gambit", also used previously by Stephen Williams (the author of FANTASTIC ARCHAEOLOGY), another bungling "KRS debunker", and quotes selectively from Winchell's notebooks re: KRS weathering. Quoting selectively to one's own advantage is a major academic sin and amounts to obvious deception. So this is a good indication of Knirk's dishonesty, bias and prejudice. In actual fact, there are no problems whatsoever with KRS weathering. Knirk also uses the same old strategy, as used by Blegen, of simply asserting the desired result often, categorically and loudly -- and expects to be taken on his word. He thinks he's done enough by merely stating "the inscription is modern". Trust me, I'm The Expert... Of course he also commends very warmly the dishonest Prof. Blegen, yet another incompetent debunker. Birds of a feather stick together. Here's another dishonest assertion of Knirk. He says that right from the beginning "experts in older Scandinavian languages" found that "many of the rune-forms" on KRS were not medieval. This statement is quite dishonest on two counts. First, he uses obsolete scholarship to validate his questionable thesis. Because early on, it was simply _not known_ that many KRS rune-forms were medieval. Later they were attested adequately. So he plays word games here to create a false impression in the reader. Second, he actually has very little to show in the way of substantiation for his assertion that many of the rune-forms on KRS were not medieval. Yes, dear friends, there's also a tiny amount of substance hiding in Knirk's spiteful and biased screed somewhere towards the end. He does claim to find some faults with a few specific KRS runes. So let's take a look at them. Here are his complaints. He claims that there are some problems with external attestation of the following KRS runes. Kensington x-shaped rune for a, with an extra small branch in the upper right. Runes with "some resemblance", as he himself admits, were found by Nielsen. Nearly exact parallel is found on the Greenlandic stone. But according to Knirk, the parallels are not quite right. Of course, we're supposed to take his word for it... Nonsense. Also he complains about the attestation for X with umlaut for a. According to him they do not stand inspection? I say this is extremely tendentious. Also he apparently has some problem with using p for d? Again, this is highly questionable. His other beefs are quite microscopic. All I can say is that his premise is completely wrong-headed and false. How can any serious scholar expect that an inscription made by non-professionals somewhere in America in 1362 will confirm totally and completely to some preconceived notions of purity as formulated by a biased academic snob in the 20th century? It is well known that standards of spelling in the vernacular in the 14th century were virtually non-existent. Spelling and orthography variations were the rule rather than exception. Inger E Johansson already gave many examples of such variations. And all Knirk can find are only a couple of minor problems with attestations? And on this basis the inscription is modern? This is just too absurd for words... I would say, if anything, KRS runes are _too well attested_ externally by now! Just about every rune has been attested. KRS uses 12 irregular and/or rare runes, and only 9 "standard" runes. Some minor problems may exist with one or two out of the 12 aberrant runes. These problems can hardly serve to invalidate the Stone. Only in Knirk's dreams... At the end of this artilce, I'm reposting some very relevant quotes from Nubkhas. This will serve to illustrate how irregular and shifting the standards of writing were in the middle ages. Knirk is a big joke. His ill-tempered harangue -- quite to the contrary of what he intends -- in fact may serve well to illustrate the total bankruptcy of such establishement hacks in their efforts to debunk KRS. And his dishonesties are very good indication that he's truly desperate in his hopeless task. Regards, Yuri. From: email@example.com Date: 1998/07/11 Forums: sci.archaeology A good document to compare the KRS to is the "Oaths of Strassburg", which spells out the terms of an 842 AD agreement between Charles the Bald of France and King Louis the German. The oath sworn by Louis the German begins: "pro d(e)o amur & pro xpian poblo & n(ost)ro commun salvament, dist di en avant in quant d(eus) savir & podir me dunat. si salvarai eo cist meon fradre Karle...." This is one of the most interesting texts I have ever come across. The linguistic forms used in this "oath" don't conform to those of classical Old North French or to Old South French (Provencal). The language forms used in this text is about as far from either of these languages as the language of the KRS is from "classical" mediaeval Swedish. Yet no one has ever questioned the authenticity of the "Oaths" because of the circumstances of their preservation--together with the contemporary oaths in a proper German for that time which Charles the Bald and Louis the German's army swore. But if the Romance version of the "Oaths" had been a lonely stone found on some peasant's farm in the roots of some tree, someone would have surely said "This is obviously the work of some ignorant peasant who was trying to imitate Old French, but who knew it so badly that he mixed in words from Old Provencal, Latin and even modern French. In fact, he was so ignorant that he even wrote the same word differently twice in two instances!" The debate would still be going on, even though ALL these things really occurred in the manuscript of the "Oaths of Strassburg". Yuri Kuchinsky -=O=- http://www.globalserve.net/~yuku You never need think you can turn over any old falsehoods without a terrible squirming of the horrid little population that dwells under it -=O=- Oliver Wendell HolmesClick here to go one level up in the directory.