The Old English Rune poem, an edition
FREDERICK GEORGE JONES, JR.
PhD Thesis, University of Florida (1697)
The earliest records of any of the Germanic lant^uages are written in the runic fu’^ark, a name taken from the first six letters of this ancient and mysterious alphabet. The origins of the fui)ark are obscure, but most scholars now believe it to have been developed by a Germanic tribe which was in contact with certain North Italic alphabets sometime in the period c. 250 to 150 B. C. The rvanes, each of which signifies a sound and a common noion, were in the beginning used primarily for casting lots and for divination, being scratched on sticks and dice, and only secondarily for inscriptional purposes. But during the next five hujidred years, as a result of the Germanic migrations, the fu^ark became the common property of sll the Germanic peoples and its inscriptional uses were realized, so that early forms of the Germanic languages are preserved to this day, scratched on various bits of wood, metal, and stone, from Greece to Greenland.