RE: Transcriptions of "Unicode"

From: Marco Cimarosti (
Date: Mon Jan 15 2001 - 03:40:22 EST

Mark Davis wrote:
>Much as I admire and appreciate the French language (second only to
>the proximate derivation of "Unicode" was not from that language, and the
>transcription should not match the French pronunciation. Instead, it has
>solid Northern Californian roots (even though not exactly dating from the
>Gold Rush days).

Of course, my comment about French pronunciation was only partially serious
-- I should have added as smiley. But I think that /ynikod/ is the actual
pronunciation of "Unicode" in French (as opposed to most other European
language, that simply approximate the English pronunciation). So, as you
explained that you are listing languages, and that you accept more than one
language for each script, you might consider a second IPA example.
>According to the references I have, the prefix "uni" is directly from Latin
>while the word "code" is through French.

I wonder what "directly from Latin" may mean in the case of English. Because
of some timing problems, I would say it means: "through direct knowledge of
*written* Latin".

A direct derivation from Latin of English "uni-" would imply that, at some
age, English scholars used to read Latin with a pronunciation influenced by
French. In fact, the initial [ju:] is the regular English approximation of
French vowel [y]. (Is this likely?)

>The Indo-European would have been *oi-no-kau-do ("give one strike"): *kau
>apparently being related to [...] caudal, [...]
Wow! So Unicode also means "single tail", after all... What would that be in
Chinese? :-)


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