The New York Times features the upcoming International Phaistos Disk Conference sponsored by Minerva Magazine at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London

Dear Readers of LawPundit,

The New York Times has featured the upcoming International Phaistos Disk Conference in London at which we will be giving the first paper on October 31. John Tierney’s TierneyLab at Why Not Test the Phaistos Disc? features an article from which we link the photograph below showing both sides of this enigmatic ancient CD and DVD precursor (info recorded on a disc), and which holds the clue to the origins of writing in Western Europe and thus also the development of our own Western Civilization in subsequent eras.

On October 31 we will present our sensational historic paper at Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, deciphering Old Elamite Script using Greek syllables from our decipherment of the Phaistos Disk thirty years ago and in the process we will view an Elamite statue that is either Helen of Troy or Clymene, also named Asia, who gave Asia its geographic name.

Burlington House, Piccadilly, London W1J 0BD
Home of the Society of Antiquaries and the Royal Academy of Arts
and their current exhibitions:

1. in the Main Galleries, Byyzantium 330-1453
25 October 2008 to 22 March 2009
supported by The J.F. Costopoulos Foundation
the A.G. Leventis Foundation
and the Stavros Niarchos Foundation

“This ground-breaking exhibition,
a collaboration between the Royal Academy of Arts and the Benaki Museum in Athens,
provides a grand-scale survey of 1,000 years of history.
Highlighting the splendours of the Byzantine Empire,
‘Byzantium 330–1453’ incorporates over 300 objects.
Some of the works have never been displayed in public before.”

2. in the Sackler Wing of Galleries
Miró, Calder, Giacometti, Braque: Aimé Maeght and His Artists
4 October 2008 to 2 January 2009
sponsored by BNP Paribas

The exhibition presents Aimé Maeght’s outstanding contributions
to art in the mid-twentieth century as an art dealer, exhibition maker and publisher.
It features work by the major artists he exhibited – Miró, Calder, Giacometti and Braque –
as well as works by Bonnard and Matisse.

To repeat, on Saturday, October 31, 2008, I will be presenting my paper at the Phaistos Disk Conference in the rooms of the Society of Antiquaries, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London. The program (UK “programme”) is given below in our excerpted version (LawPundit has added all the links and commentary and has removed text not relating to the papers as such).

The conference registration fee was £35 but as far as we know, registration is now sold out and closed. We presume that we have a full house, but perhaps not a royal flush? We personally herewith invite members of the Royal Family to attend our presentation and see history being made but it might be SRO (standing room only).

On the occasion of the 100th anniversary of its discovery
Friday, 31 October – Saturday, 1 November 2008
At the Society of Antiquaries of London, Burlington House, Piccadilly
Organised and sponsored by Minerva,
the International Review of Ancient Art & Archaeology



10:30 Opening remarks by Jerome M. Eisenberg, Ph.D., New York, USA

10:40 Keynote speaker Louis Godart, D.Ph., D.ès L., Hon.C.B.E., Rome, Italy
The Phaistos Disk and the Aegean Civilizations

11:40 Introduction by Peter Clayton, F.S.A., Hemel Hempstead, UK
Arthur Evans and Plato Have Much to Answer For
[LawPundit: Peter A. Clayton is the author of Chronicle of the Pharaohs, in German Die Pharaonen, generally regarded to be one of the best books ever written about Ancient Egypt.]

11:50 1st paper Andis Kaulins, J.D., Traben-Trarbach, Germany
The Phaistos Disk: An Ancient Enigma Solved: Two Corroborative
Old Elamite Scripts Deciphered Using the Greek Syllabic Values
Obtained for the Phaistos Disk
[Proof of alleged decipherments of the Phaistos Disk have thus far suffered from the lack of corroborative texts. I have identified two such texts in Elam and have deciphered them using my decipherment of the Phaistos Disk as Greek, with spectacular historical results.]

12:20 2nd paper Torsten Timm, Dresden, Germany
The Two Sides of the Phaistos Disk

12:50 3rd paper Dieter A. Rumpel, Dr.-Ing., Dusseldorf, Germany
Facts and Probabilities Regarding the Phaistos Disk and the Axe of Arkalokhori

2:40 4th paper John Coleman, D.Phil., M.A., Oxford, UK
Epigraphic Continuity of the Phaistos Disk Signary
With Cretan Hieroglyphic and Linear Scripts

3:40 5th paper Richard Sproat, Ph.D., Urbana, Illinois, USA
How to Forge the Phaistos Disk Text

4:10 6th paper Jerome M. Eisenberg, Ph.D., New York, USA
Some Unique Decipherments of the Phaistos Disk


10:15 7th paper Tom Palaima, Ph.D., Austin, Texas, USA
Emmett L. Bennett, Jr., Cryptoanalysis, Decipherment, and the Phaistos Disc

10:45 8th paper Gareth Owens, Ph.D., Heraklion, Crete, Greece
The Phaistos Disk: The Enigma of the Minoan Script

11:45 9th paper Mark Newbrook, Ph.D., Heswall, Wirral, UK
Diskomania! Some Highly Non-Mainstream ‘Decipherments’ Of the Phaistos Disk

12:15 10th paper Nicholas Reed, M.A., M.Phil., Folkestone, Kent, UK
Why the Phaistos Disc is Unlikely to be a Forgery

2:15 11th paper Gia Kvashilava, Ph.D., Tbilisi, Georgia
On Deciphering the Phaistos Disk as a Sample of Colchian Goldscript

2:45 12th paper Panagiotes D. Gregoriades, Athens, Greece
The Phaistos Disk: The Oldest Portable Calendar
in Use by the Minoan Navy

Poster presentations

Jan Bigaj, Ph.D., Ustrzyki Dolne, Poland
Phonetic Values of the Signs on the Phaistos Disc in Relation to the Cypriot Syllabary

William H. Considine, B.Sc., Albourne, West Essex, UK
The Phaistos Disk from a Trading Perspective.

Edmund Marriage, Cirencester, Gloucestershire, UK
The Phaistos Disk: The Story of a Pastoral Disaster

Submitted papers and comments on view at the conference
Stephen Chrysomalis, Ph.D., Detroit, Michigan, USA
Phaistos Phakery Redux

Jean Faucounau, Bascharage, Luxembourg
1. Official Statement from the G.L.I.F. [Arguments against the Phaistos Disk being a hoax]
(Several copies are available to registrants)
2. Complementary Note from Mr. Faucounau [On the Proto-Ionian Theory]

-Herbert Ferguson, Redland, Bristol, UK
In Search of the World’s First Printers

Franz Gnaedinger, Zurich, Switzerland
A Concise Interpretation of the Elaia Disc and Tiryns Disc…
[as relating to the Phaistos Disc]

Werner Wagner, Oslo, Norway
Is the Phaistos Disc Genuine?

Morris M. Weiss, M.D., Louisville, Kentucky, USA
The Phaistos Disc and Rogem Hiri – Is There a Connection?

– Hermann W. Zebisch, Dipl.-Ing., Schaerding, Austria
A Summary of the Work of Herbert R. Zebisch

New English-language Online as the Website of the German Embassy, the German Consulates General and the German Information Center USA

We received the following notice from and about the English-language website

We have officially launched the redesigned, streamlined, modernized, fully integrated website of the German Embassy, the German Consulates General and the German Information Center USA.’s newsletter, “The Week in Germany“, will continue to bring you the most important and engaging stories of the week to your inbox every Friday, and it is now better integrated with the content on We thank you for your patience over the past weeks while we worked to build our new newsletter and website.

With this new site, we have taken the features you already like–videos, interactive games, news, cultural events–added more interesting and informative features and combined them with a great new design and easy-to-use menu to make your experience on even better.

Help us celebrate and spread the word about the new and The Week in Germany by taking part in our Spot the Bus Contest, E-Mail A Friend campaign and Gift Emporium. All three offer cool prizes and a chance to show us your creativity.

Learn More about the New

Link to the Newsletter added by LawPundit.

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly of US Supreme Court Decisions

A take on the “Worst Supreme Court Decisions” is found at the Los Angeles Times in an article written by David G. Savage, reporting on a survey of law professors which included respondents “Jack Balkin, Yale; Mary L. Dudziak, USC; Jonathan Varat, UCLA; Richard Epstein, University of Chicago; Erwin Chemerinsky, UC Irvine; Goodwin Liu, UC Berkeley; Pamela Karlan, Stanford; Michael C. Dorf, Cornell; Steven Calabresi, Northwestern; Douglas Kmiec, Pepperdine; John C. Eastman, Chapman; Marci Hamilton, Cardozo Law School; M. Edward Whelan, Ethics and Public Policy Center; and Robert A. Levey, Cato Institute and the co-author with William Mellor of “The Dirty Dozen,” a book on 12 Supreme Court decisions that “radically expanded government.”

The Legal Market : Effect of the Financial Crisis on the Demand for Lawyers and their Services in Large Law Firms

The current financial crisis is marked by six factors “likely to have a significant negative effect on [the] demand for legal services“, says Paul Lippe, founder of Legal OnRamp, who lists the following likely legal market trends in the October 22, 2008 edition of the American Lawyer:

1. Downward pressure on corporate executive compensation.

2. Less deal origination in synthetic or derivative securities.

3. Fewer mergers and acquisitions.

4. Economic activity will be dampened by recession.

5. Financial institutions will make budget and personnel cuts.

6. Risk will be less tolerated, and practices more standardized.

Lippe sees five effects on law firms through these trends which can be read here.

Hat tip to Molly McDonough at the ABA Law Journal and “Legal Market Predictions: Double the Extreme“.

We ourselves are more “jaundiced” about the law, to borrow a term intimated in Charles Dickens’ Bleak House in the case name of Jarndyce and Jarndyce, where Dickens perspicaciously recognizes that the law in its processes has no end and that, in the end, the lawyers always win.

After all, the financial crisis everywhere will be straightened out in the last analysis by the lawyers, and not by the bankers, who, as the current credit crunch proves, are not to be trusted, and never have been trustworthy. Greed rules all, and that is why you have to have rules, and that is why we have lawyers, both in good times as well as in bad times.

Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law Online (MPEPIL)

Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law Online (MPEPIL, has just launched as Oxford University Press’s newest online product. This monumental reference work, originally published in 1991, has been fully updated and released in an easy-to-navigate online environment. MPEPIL is an essential resource for scholarly researchers and practitioners in the area of public international law.

Developed in partnership with the Max Planck Institute of Comparative Public and International Law, this online service contains over 450 articles including more than 700 new topics not covered in the previous print edition. New material will be added quarterly until all of the nearly 1700 articles are made available by 2010.

By combining expert content and innovative functionally, MPEPIL is one of the most significant and comprehensive scholarly works available in an online format today.

The MPEPIL Online Service Features Include:

  • Articles written by over 650 scholars and practitioners from around the world
  • Carefully selected bibliographies direct users to additional sources to further research
  • Innovative functionality allows users to browse content alphabetically, by subject and author, or via quick and advanced search functions
  • Increased coverage of international criminal law, international dispute settlement, trade law, and environmental law reflect modern developments in the practice and study of public international law
  • All articles undergo rigorous evaluation by an Advisory Board consisting of renowned experts in various fields of international law, and internal advisors who are Senior Research Fellows at the Max Planck Institute to ensure the highest quality of scholarship
  • All articles include links to the Oxford Law Citator, which provides subscribers with easy-access linking to related articles in MPEPIL, as well as content from all other new law online services from OUP.

Detlev Vagts, from the American Journal of International Law, praised the hardcover versions of Max Planck as being “a monument of learning,” and Thomas Walde of ICLQ called it “an instrument that any serious library, university, foreign affairs ministry, international organization or law…should have.”

As the definitive reference work on public international law, MPEPIL is truly a powerful tool that all researchers and practitioners can benefit from.

For more on the MPEPIL project and its editors visit:

For more information on the Oxford Law Citator visit:

For sample articles, visit:

Also available from Oxford University Press Online:

Oxford Reports on International Law

– via Betsy DeJesu at Oxford University Press

Most Popular Christians : Patron Saints of Learning and the Environment : Religion and Ecology : Law, Religion and Learning

To be mutually and symbiotically effective, both the law and organized religion must maintain a realistic approach to the basic issues of modern everyday life, such as religion and ecology, or law, learning and religion.

An effective blend of these requires a clear understanding of the history of law and religion, but who today has such knowledge?

In this day of global learning and planetary environmentalism, we might for example ask: who is the Christian patron saint of learning? or the patron saint of ecologists? and what relevance do these patrons have for believers today? Are such religious figureheads relevant for modern problems?

Full in the spirit of learning, N.S. Gill, who writes about Ancient and Classical History at, some time ago sent us her most recent newsletter provocatively titled “Most Popular Christians”, which led us ultimately to this link, answering our initial patronly questions:

The Chistrian patron saint of learning is St. Ambrose, also referred to simply as Ambrose (feast day December 7). St. Ambrose’s most influential writings were based on Cicero:

The most influential of his ascetico-moral writings is the work on the duties of Christian ecclesiastics (De officiis ministrorum). It is a manual of Christian morality, and in its order and disposition follows closely the homonymous work of Cicero.

Cicero, a Roman statesman, lawyer, political theorist, and philosopher, who lived in the 1st century BC, is a major figure in the development of legal concepts of the modern State:

Cicero aspired to a republican system dominated by a ruling aristocratic class of men, “who so conducted themselves as to win for their policy the approval of all good men.” … Cicero’s guiding principle throughout his political career was:

That “some sort of free state” is the necessary condition of a noble and honourable existence; and that it is the worst calamity for a people to permanently renounce this ideal and to substitute for it the slave’s ideal of a good master.” …

Cicero was declared a “righteous pagan” by the early Catholic Church, and therefore many of his works were deemed worthy of preservation. Saint Augustine and others quoted liberally from his works “On The Republic” and “On The Laws,” and it is due to this that we are able to recreate much of the work from the surviving fragments. Cicero also articulated an early, abstract conceptualisation of rights, based on ancient law and custom.

Augustine of Hippo (St. Augustine), of Berber descent, quoted above, has relevance today, especially through his best-known work, The Confessions of St. Augustine:

Augustine is one of the most important figures in the development of Western Christianity, and is considered to be one of the church fathers. He framed the concepts of original sin and just war.” …

Catholic theologians generally subscribe to Augustine’s belief that God exists outside of time in the “eternal present”; that time only exists within the created universe because only in space is time discernible through motion and change. His meditations on the nature of time are closely linked to his consideration of the human ability of memory.

Memory is at the root of human learning.

Augustine was perhaps the first saint with a home page on the Internet.

The patron saint of ecologists and the environment is Francis of Assisi (feast day October 4).

Christianity is not the only religion to deal with ecology. The Harvard University Center for the Environment points us to other religions with beliefs of relevance to the environment:

Daoism and Ecology, by James Milles, Queen’s University
Hinduism, Jainism, and Ecology, by Christopher Key Chapple, Loyola Marymount University
Buddhism and Ecology.

Take a look at Gill’s page on Christians for more interesting material about the history of Christianity.

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Understand the Present Financial Crisis by Peering into the Past : Archaeology Websearch Blog : Digging the Internet

You can’t live by law alone.

To fully understand the current financial crisis, it is instructive to peer into the past to see that the ups and downs of civilization are part of a process that has been going on for millennia.

For those of our readers interested in the history of mankind,
we have developed the

Archaeology Websearch Blog : Digging the Internet

as a specialized webtool for searching the Internet
in the areas of ancient history, archaeology, and anthropology,
broadly defined.

Give it a try here:

You can always find this search engine at
the Archaeology Websearch Blog
which is located at