UAX #29 beta update (text breaks): apostrophe ./. H

From: Philippe Verdy (
Date: Mon Oct 27 2003 - 15:34:28 CST

The proposed update to UAX#29 contains this text:

Apostrophe is another tricky case. Usually considered part of one word ("can
't", "aujourd'hui") it may also be considered two ("l'objectif"). Also, one
cannot easily distinguish the cases where it is used as a quotation mark
from those where it is used as an apostrophe, so one should not include
leading or trailing apostrophes. In some languages, such as French and
Italian, tailoring it to break words when the character after the apostrophe
is a vowel may yield better results in more cases. This can be done by
adding a rule 5a:
Break between hyphens and vowels (French, Italian)
hyphens ÷ vowels (5a)

However in French the situation is a bit more complex, as there's the case
of a leading h which may or may not be "aspiré" (never pronounced and
admitting a vocal link with the previous consonnant). When it is not, the
article can/must be elided with an apostrophe. These examples all contain
word breaks after the apostrophe:

l'habit; d'habit
  singular "un habit" (the first "s" is pronounced [z])
  plural "les habits" (the first "s" is pronounced [z])
m'habiller; t'habiller; s'habiller
l'helvète; d'helvète
  singlular "un helvète" (the first "n" is pronounced [n])
  plural "les helvètes" (the first "s" is pronounced [z])
l'heur; d'heur
  singlular "un heur" (the first "n" is pronounced [n])
  plural "les heurs" (the first "s" is pronounced [z])
  singlular "un heur" (the first "n" is pronounced [n])
  plural "les heurs" (the first "s" is pronounced [z])
l'hier; d'hier;
l'honneur; d'honneur;


This does not affect the cases where the leading h is not pronounced (but in
that case there's no elision of the previous article (or pronoun if it's a

So in French we also have the additional word break rule:

  hyphens ÷ LatinLetterH

This case is not documented...

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