Score: 5/10

pros: interesting account of the academicians that discovered the oldest written Greek, and how; limited examples show some of the specifics of deciphering & reading Mycenaean Greek & its relation to Classical Greek

cons: as a book, it tells a moderately interesting story (geared especially to linguist/archaeologist/classicist types), but as a language resource, it’s stingy

John Chadwick’s The Decipherment of Linear B recounts the informative story of how twentieth century scholars came to re-read the oldest written Greek texts in the Mycenaean dialect, which predates Homer by more than four centuries. Along the way, it shares information about the history of the Mycenaeans on the mainland & Crete, their artifacts, especially from Knossos. Crucially for this site, the book contains scattered explanations on the structure of the language and the writing system, including an appendix of Mycenaean tablets in transcription.

I don’t recommend The Decipherment of Linear B as a general language resource for Mycenaean Greek learners (how many of you are there?). If, like me, you’re interested in historical forms of the language like Mycenaean & Proto-Hellenic, that book will provide a bit of background for your studies. After finishing its tale, you’ll have to settle into real lessons on the script and its language, like the introduction above.