RE: Small Latin Letter m with Macron

From: David J. Perry (
Date: Wed Jan 15 2003 - 17:59:50 EST

  • Next message: Markus Scherer: "Re: Small Latin Letter m with Macron"


    The convention of using a horizontal line to mark an abbreviation, often
    the omission of m or n, goes back to the middle ages (if not earlier)
    and was often used in early printed books; apparently it has lived on in
    some handwriting, to judge from your post. There is no such m-macron
    character in Unicode, and there will not be since no more precomposed
    combinations will be added.

    I think that U+0305, the combining overscore, is the right thing to use
    for marking such abbreviations. I would like to get confirmation of
    this from others on the list just to be sure. The only alternative
    would be the combining macron, U+0304, which in many fonts would look
    too short. Furthermore, I at least think of macrons as diacritics that
    mainly go over vowels.


    > I recently learned in <news:de.etc.sprache.deutsch> that
    > there has been a tradition (in handwritten text more than in
    > print) of writing "mm" as only one "m" with a macron above.
    > I can't find any such character in Unicode, just U+1E3F and
    > U+1E41. You could of course build something similar with
    > "m"+U+0305 to resemble the look, but that won't become "mm"
    > (just "m" or "m¯") after a conversion to e.g. ISO-8859-1.

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