Experts use mathematics to study Pictish language

A new study, presented to the Royal Society A, by Rob Lee, Philip Jonathan and Pauline Ziman describes the Pictish inscriptions found on stones in Scotland as a language apart from Celtic Ogham. The characters on the stones are considered to "part of a lexigraphic writing, containing symbols that represent parts of speech.

Lee, Jonathan and Ziman used a mathematical method called Shannon Entropy, which "studies the order, direction, randomness and other characteristics of the different engravings" and compares the language "to English prose fictions, Chinese prose and poetry, Egyptian monumental texts, Mycenaen lists," and others.