Re: Caron / Hacek?

From: Radovan Garabik (
Date: Thu Jun 12 2003 - 12:22:40 EDT

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    On Thu, Jun 12, 2003 at 02:20:42PM +0100, Anto'nio Martins-Tuva'lkin wrote:
    > On 2003.03.05, 07:58, Radovan Garabik <>
    > wrote:
    > >> In the Slovak orthography, the lowercase d, l and t are normally written
    > >> with the 'apostrophe' form of the accent.
    > >
    > > but only the printed version, not in handwriting
    > <...>
    > > In fact, the apostrophe form is used because there is a lack of
    > > convenient space to put carons over "tall" letters d,t,l, whereas
    > > there is no problem with n,e,r.
    > In short, just like the allowed accentless capitals in French or the
    > comma-cedilla in Roumanian, this is a case of technical contraints

    Or like using apostrophe for capitals in Italian.

    > limiting the ideal orthography, lead typesetting and mechanical
    > typewrinting imposing limitations and suggesting kludges.
    > Strange that now, when finnally there are technical and informational
    > tools to achieve "perfection", this is viewed as a mistake and the old
    > kludges, made traditional, are seen as correct and prefered to the
    > idealized forms (nonetheless extant in handwriting).
    > Quite a pity. IMHO, "we" should acknowledge that Unicode is not only a
    > great tool for representing the (up to now) current typographic reality
    > but also that it opens to the users a new space of typographical and
    > othographical improvement, allowing emancipation from 200 of technical
    > constraints.

    Like, emancipation out of the need to use separate fixed-form letters,
    and use handwritting-like ligatures and similar instead? :-)
    (after all, Arabic script never gave up to mechanical typewriting kludges...)

    Well, IMHO using apostrophe-like forms in Slovak/Czech is more of a
    beauty than of a technological constrain - "tall" letters just look
    too ugly when they are extended by yet another diacritics (slovak
    ĺ U+013A LATIN SMALL LETTER L WITH ACUTE is fortunately rather rare
    letter :-)).

    FWIW, I am now involved a bit in converting first grammar book in
    "contemporary" (130 year old) variant of Slovak into electronic format,
    and the book uses carons everywhere instead of apostrophe-like diacritics.

    | Radovan Garabík |
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