Re: German-Library Collation

From: Nelson H. F. Beebe (
Date: Fri Mar 06 1998 - 18:23:00 EST

>> I have some questions about a sort ordering known as German-Library
>> Collation

I believe the ordering you are referring to is German Industrial
Standard DIN 5007. We have implemented this in the makeindex program,
which is used for indexing LaTeX and TeX documents.

Here is the relevant portion of the manual page description:

       -g Employ German word ordering in the index, in
                   accord with rules set forth in the German
                   Industrial Standard DIN 5007. The normal
                   makeindex word ordering precedence is: sym-
                   bols, numbers, uppercase letters, lowercase
                   letters. The sequence in German word ordering
                   is: symbols, lowercase letters, uppercase let-
                   ters, numbers. In both orderings, case is
                   ignored when grouping letters, so the ordering
                   is A a B b C c ... (normal), or a A b B c C
                   ... (German), not A B C ... a b c ... or a b
                   c ... A B C ... Additionally, this option
                   enables recognition of the German TeX commands
                   {"a, "o, "u and "s} as {ae, oe, ue and ss}
                   during the sorting of the entries, and rede-
                   fines the default quote character to '+'.

A search on the Web at for "DIN 5007"
turned up 35 documents, among them several copies of the makeindex
manual pages, plus the following:

DIN 5007 (04.91)
    Ordnen von Schriftzeichenfolgen
    Ers. f. Ausg. 11.62
    Ablage bei: eb
    {656} Eingabe durch:

Another possibly useful reference is at

Relations of various standards for string orderings are discussed
extensively at

Comments on the sorting issues for internationalization of programs
are at [in French]

Finally, some more information of sorting in a particular programming
language relevant to DIN 5007 is at [in German]

- Nelson H. F. Beebe Tel: +1 801 581 5254 -
- Center for Scientific Computing FAX: +1 801 581 4148 -
- University of Utah Internet e-mail: -
- Department of Mathematics, 105 JWB -
- 155 S 1400 E RM 233 -
- Salt Lake City, UT 84112-0090, USA URL: -

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