Letters of Instruction
A. Hidde Oera Linda, 1255 CE
[00a] Okke, my son,
You must guard these books with body and soul. They contain the history of all our folk and of our ancestors. Last year, I rescued them from the flood, together with you and your mother. But they had become wet and began to decay. So as not to lose them, I copied them on foreign paper.
When you inherit them, you too must make a copy. And your children likewise, so that they shall never be lost.
Hidde, surnamed Oera Linda.
[p.3] OKKE MY SON—
You must preserve these books with body and soul. They contain the history of all our people, as well as of our forefathers. Last year I saved them in the flood, as well as you and your mother; but they got wet, and therefore began to perish. In order not to lose them, I copied them on foreign paper.
In case you inherit them, you must copy them likewise, and your children must do so too, so that they may never be lost.
Written at Liuwert, in the three thousand four hundred and forty-ninth year after Atland was submerged—that is, according to the Christian reckoning, the year 1256. Hiddo, surnamed Over de Linda.—Watch.
- ‘body and soul’ (LIF ÀND SÉLE) — ‘body’ (Dutch: ‘lijf’) can also be understood as ‘life’.
- ‘foreign’ (WRLANDISK) — lit.: ‘overlandish’; paper (PAMPÍER, Dutch: ‘papier’) — if the spelling with M (‘pampier’/’pompier’) is more original than without (‘papier’), relating to the water-lily leaves (POMPA.BLÉDAR) it was made of (see [064/20]), then the word ‘papyrus’, “a loanword of unknown origin” (wikipedia) may have been derived from it.
- ‘make a copy’ (WRSKRÍVA) — lit.: ‘overscribe’.
- ‘Liuwert’ — elsewhere different varieties are used (LJUD.WERD, LJUD.WARDJA). In this and similar cases, a spelling close to the original is used in the translation. The older versions may have been located elsewhere (compare: Lutjeswaard, a sandbank southeast of Texel). Current Frisian spelling: Ljouwert; Dutch: Leeuwarden.
- ‘Atland’ — original spelling is maintained; elsewhere also spelled ‘Aldland’.
- 'Kersten' — left untranslated because there may be a link to 'Krisen' (ch. 15c) — can also be read as 'Christian'. If the Christian year 1256th corresponds to year 3449th 'after Atland sank', the sinking of Atland would have occurred in 3449 - 1256 - 1st (year zero) = 2192 BCE. The 1256th year would have been the year 1255 AD or CE.
- ‘Oera Linda’ — meaning: ‘over the (river) Linde’; see ch. 14a, first line.
- ‘Watch!’ (WÁK) — or: ‘keep watch’, ‘(stay) awake’.
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