Fw: Karelian ASSR

From: Anto'nio Martins-Tuva'lkin (antonio@tuvalkin.web.pt)
Date: Thu Dec 26 2002 - 20:43:48 EST

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    This is a forwarded message -- some marginally intersting notes about
    real-world implemantation of combining diacriticals and about karelian

    From: Marco Pribilla <stellalibertatis@yahoo.de>
    To: Anto'nio Martins-Tuva'lkin <antonio@tuvalkin.web.pt>
    Date: Sunday, December 22, 2002, 9:00:22 PM
    Subject: Karelian ASSR

    ===8<==============Original message text===============
    Hello Antnio,

    > > One small problem are Karelian Cyrillic characters
    > that don't exist in
    > > the Russian alphabet, i.e. in the word
    > > &#1042;&#1077;&#1085;&#1103;&#1085; "Venjn"
    > there should be an
    > > umlaut not only on the a but also on the &#1103;.
    > That is not a problem. Even if this particular
    > letter seem to have been
    > left out in Unicode it can be rendered as base
    > letter plus diacritical
    > (actually it *should* -- as all diacritical
    > letters): &#1103;&#776;.
    > 776 is U+308, a character that modifies the
    > preceeding letter adding an
    > umlaut sign above it.

    Sorry, I don't get that diacritical :-( I have the
    usual Cyrillic and Central European language supports
    on my Windows system, but is some special support
    needed to show that sign? Or is it simply the two dots
    > The same, BTW for karelian "": it is not really the
    > same letter than in
    > german, even if it looks the same: You can chose
    > either &#1235; or the
    > combination &#1072;&#776;, i.e., the normal cyrillic
    > "a" modified by an
    > umlaut sign.

    I don't get those characters either, but I got the
    > (BTW, if you even come across some material about
    > these successive
    > orthographic reforms, I'd like to know about it.)

    Please check chapter 8.2 in Mr. Anttikoski's
    dissertation at
    Even if you don't understand any Finnish, you can see
    at this location two proposals for a Cyrillic Karelian
    character set, both scientifically developed. The
    essential difference to the Russian alphabet were the
    a, o, y, &#1103; and &#1102; with umlaut (or short
    line in the second proposal).

    According to Anttikoski, the definite alphabet was
    adopted by order of the People's Commissioner for
    Education (?) of the RSFSR, at the very end of the
    year 1937 (no precise date known) without any
    scientific discussion. It should be as close to the
    Russian alphabet as possible. , and were taken
    into the new alphabet along all the Russian letters
    but the "umlauted" &#1103; and &#1102; were excluded
    because they "would have caused confusion". (Perhaps
    these letters could be included in the list of
    Cyrillic character at <ru_cyr.html>?)

    I'm not sure how long this alphabet was used, but as
    you know the situation changed once more with the
    creation of the Karelian-Finnish SSR that abandoned
    Karelian as an official language. Nowadays Karelian is
    written with a Finnish-based system (adding to it "c"
    and "z" plus the same with hacheks) but the situation
    will probably have to change again due to the new
    language law of the Russian Federation that makes
    Cyrillics compulsory for all the languages within the

    I have been corresponding with Mr. Anttikoski in order
    to obtain some more background information about the
    inscriptions. I'll keep you informed if I learn
    something new.


    ===8<===========End of original message text===========

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    <antonio@tuvalkin.web.pt> |####|
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