From: Edward C. D. Hopkins (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Fri Apr 04 2003 - 14:07:12 EST
Yes, I am very interested in the Unicode aspects of handling multiple glyphs
of one Greek character. My original thoughts were to use the PUA, but some
knowledgeable people have suggested I ask for advice on this list for ideas
before using the PUA.
Essentially, I have two issues. First is the encoding of multiple glyphs for
one Greek character. Please see
http://parthia.com/fonts/images/alt-charmap.jpg for the current layout of
the glyphs. The font will also contain a few numismatic symbols not already
in the Unicode. Compounding this problem is that OpenType substitution
features do not seem to be widely supported and I need a usable font in the
near future that works across the spectrum of Unix, Mac, and Windows
applications, including sorting in databases.
Second problem is the construction of a (second and distinct?) font that
contains over a thousand Hellenistic monograms which James Kass has
accurately identified in another message of this thread. I have some 20 Mac
Type 1 fonts containing the glyphs and can post samples if asked. These
monogram fonts are currently used by scholars, museums and commercial firms
in publishing catalogs of numismatic items. My font-making efforts will
concern only the Hellenistic, Parthian and Bactrian monograms, but there are
probably tens of thousand of them if all the coinage through history is
> This looks an interesting discussion and I hope that you will ask your
> questions in this forum.
> The matter of multiple alternate glyphs for each character seems at first
> font issue, and it is partly a font issue, yet it is also a Unicode issue
> once one starts trying to encode a document which is intended to apply
> glyphs in some controlled selection manner. For example, are you going to
> have some texts such as "Author A uses the symbol X for beta whereas
> B uses the symbol Y for beta." where X and Y are just two of the "multiple
> alternate glyphs" which you mentioned?
> What please is a Hellenistic monogram? I am wondering whether this is
> to be a good application of the Private Use Area, either on a permanent
> basis or on a temporary basis pending making a formal encoding
> In either case, reading about the Private Use Area in Chapter 13 of the
> Unicode specification available from the http://www.unicode.org webspace
> prove interesting.
> William Overington
> 4 April 2003
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