From: Andy White (Andy__White@btinternet.com)
Date: Wed Feb 12 2003 - 18:47:52 EST
Michael Everson wrote:
> At 02:27 +0000 2003-02-12, Andy White wrote:
> >I said:
> >? (I am talking about the letters mentioned in the Unicode Indic FAQ,
> > > http://www.unicode.org/faq/indic.html#13)
> >Just to be clear, I mean the letters called 'Vowel_A_zophola_AA' &
> >'Vowel_E_zophola_AA' as mentioned in the above mentioned FAQ.
> These are A-VIRAMA-YA-AA and E-VIRAMA-Y-AA, which are sequences of an
> independent vowel plus a subjoined consonant plus a dependent vowel.
> Those sequences are used to represent foreign sounds in Bengali.
> Since the ya-phalaa is a common glyph that can also follow consonants
> it makes sense not to treat the use of it with independent vowels
Oriya Ba(Va), when subscript, is known as Ba-phalaa (bophola). When in
this position it represents the original Va/Wa consonant.
Since Ba-phalaa is a common glyph that can also follow consonants, using
the above logic, you have reasoned that it should not have been included
in the standard!
> Yes, Oriya O-VIRAMA-BA could be considered structurally similar, and
> it could even be said that Devanagari K-VIRAMA-SSA which is thought
> of as a letter in Marathi could considered similar.
Not really; KSSA does not include a vowel.
> In the case of
> Oriya, however, there were two issues. (Did you read my paper, N2525?)
Yes, I read it yesterday, but as I am already very familiar with the
history of this character, I only skim read it, sorry!
> The original consonant [va] was lost in Oriya, merging with [ba].
> Later, a need to represent the foreign sound [va] and the foreign
> sound [wa] was perceived. Taylor 1883 showed a shape for this [va]
> which is rather unusual, but in any case what came to be used was a
> BA with a dot in or above its head.
This was not unusual at all but common practise. In both Bengali and
Oriya the letter Va looked identical to Ba, It is a common theme in
Indic scripts for letters that have become ambiguous to be marked by a
> To represent [wa] the consonant
> BA was, unusually subscripted to the initial vowel O.
> Two new, rare, foreign consonants were born. We chose to encode them.
No, letter Va was always there - just that it was hard to see at times
due to the lack of a dot.
One new method of signifying the sound Wa was born.
I have put up some samples of the Bengali version of the letter Wa here:
> >I must add here that Bengali also has a combination used to
> >Wa. It is LETTER O + YYA_PHALAA.
> Prove it, please. Bagchi suggests as much in Daniels & Bright but the
> description is ambiguous.
> >Another is 'Bengali Letter Central A' used to transcribe English 'a'
> >as in ball. (Comparable to Devanagri Chandra A). It is visibly a
> >Bengali letter A with postfix letter Ya (Bengali Letter A with
> >Ya-phalaa). I think that this letter, among with a few others not
> >mentioned, should be included for compatibility with the Devanagri
> >code block. But what do you think?
> I don't see how Bengali is incompatible with Devanagari.
I never said it was, my point was that the Bengali block currently has
no parallel letter to Chandra A.
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