About this character, which I name HEH WITH SMALL YEH ABOVE, there's a bit
of history in writing Persian. I am sorry I don't know anything about
other languages using it.
Of course, this is not a single character, but two. Persians consider it
a HEH plus a SMALL YEH ABOVE (a not-yet-in-Unicode non-spacing mark).
Early writers of Persian, used "HEH, ZWNJ, YEH", instead of this, i.e. a
final or isolated HEH followed by an isolated YEH (same as its
pronounciation). After two centauries, calligraphers who did not like the
look, made the YEH smaller and moved it over the YEH. This YEH got smaller
and smaller until it got undistinguishable from HAMZA, and some mistook
it with HAMZA (although it pronounced YEH). So, even know, some people
call it HAMZA. In modern Persian fonts, it is undistinguishable from
But these days, some scholars have started the old usage, i.e. HEH, ZWNJ,
YEH. It is getting more and more popular, and there is at least one
document preparation system I know, that lets the user select between
these, and swith all of the usages of HEH-YEH to HEH-SMALL YEH ABOVE and
About the Unicode name, those who were in the process of change should
tell, but I think the character name now reflects the semantics better
(but perhaps not the character shape).
BTW, I think a compatiblity decomposition of HEH+ZWNJ+YEH should be added
for this character. And a decomposition of HEH+SMALL YEH ABOVE after that
character got in.
On Mon, 1 Nov 1999, N.R.Liwal wrote:
> Dear Mr. Roozbeh;
> U+06C0 is HEH with Hamza Above, where Unicode 2.0
> shows HEH with HAMZA above and
> document it HEH With YEH above (Persian),
> HEH with Hamza Above is used in Pashto as
> well as in Dari(Afghan Farsi) and I am sure
> that it is used in Iranian Farsi too. Whatever
> is the case we need this letter and I think
> we should recommend HEH with YEH above
> to added to unicode.
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