Manchu/Mongolian in Unicode

From: Tom Gewecke (
Date: Sun Oct 13 2002 - 14:26:04 EDT

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    The latest Mac OS X upgrade has fonts that include the classic
    Mongolian/Manchu range, 1800-18AF.

    Displaying these scripts correctly seems to be loaded with problems: They
    should run top-to-bottom and left-to-right, with ligatures and positional
    variants similar to Arabic.

    I assume that ligatures and positional variants would be handled by font
    tables and rendering software operating on text encoded with the basic
    codepoints. I'm wondering, however, how the directional questions of
    display would be dealt with.

    I gather that vertical display is for markup and not part of Unicode. I've
    found what appears to be the appropriate stuff in the "writing-mode"
    property of XSL and CSS3. Does anyone know of any browsers, Mac or Windows,
    that support this?

    I've also seen examples of the scripts written horizontally, both
    left-to-right and right-to-left. Since the standard font glyphs have a
    vertical orientation, they must be individually rotated minus or plus 90
    degrees for displaying horizontally. Is this also purely a markup issue,
    and are there any browsers that support it?

    Thanks for the help! Any pointers to online or other information on this
    topic would be appreciated.

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