Re: IPA Null Consonant

From: Philippe Verdy (
Date: Sun May 25 2003 - 12:33:51 EDT

  • Next message: Philippe Verdy: "Re: IPA Null Consonant"

    From: "Chris Jacobs" <>
    > ----- Original Message -----
    > From: "Andrew C. West" <>
    > To: <>
    > Sent: Sunday, May 25, 2003 1:18 PM
    > Subject: IPA Null Consonant
    > > Can someone advise me how to represent a null consonant in phonetic
    > > notation using Unicode ?
    > >
    > > I have seen a null consonant initial or final variously represented as a
    > > circle,
    > > a slashed circle, a zero or a slashed zero in printed sources, but am not
    > > sure
    > > what the correct form of the glyph is, or how it should be encoded in
    > > Unicode.
    > >
    > > Neither my copy of the "Principles of the International Phonetic
    > > Association" or
    > > the IPA web site ( seem to be of
    > > any help.
    > >
    > > Andrew
    > The Unicode Standard Version 3.0 p165 says:
    > "Unifications. The IPA symbols are unified as much as possible with other
    > letters, albeit not with nonletter symbols like U+222B ∫ INTEGRAL".
    > So, if you don't find it in the IPA block you should look not for a slashed
    > circle or slashed zero, but for a slashed letter o.
    > And indeed, if we look at U+00F8 LATIN SMALL LETTER O WITH STROKE ø, the
    > book says that it is used in Danish, Norwegian, Faroese, and IPA

    Note that some French dictionnaries use the small letter o with stroke to designate the "eu" sound like in the french plural word "oeux" (normally written with a ligature, meaning "eggs") or "heureux" (meaning happy), or the same sound as the German letter ö in "Österreich" (Austria).

    This is clearly a vowel sign for most readers, so I don't think this letter could be safely used as a "null consonnant". Couldn't it be instead an apostrophe, or the bottom part of a square box (used in technical symbols to replace a blank by a visible glyph) ?

    If you really want to use some similar form, I think that a small and centered black bullet with a long overriding stroke would be good to the confusion with the empty symbol...

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