From: John Cowan (email@example.com)
Date: Mon Nov 10 2003 - 07:59:06 EST
Peter Kirk scripsit:
> But when does an unconventional use become a new convention? If a
> particular community chooses to write English (for example) using e.g.
> Cyrillic or Hebrew characters, with a one to one mapping, are they using
> a cipher or are they transliterating? Does it depend on how regular the
> use is?
I fear that all this talk of signifiers and signifieds (a very un-English
construction, that "signifieds") misses the point of ciphers. A cipher
of the relevant type (a "substitution cipher", technically) is a mapping
of the usual symbols in a text or set of texts to other symbols WITH
THE INTENT OF SECRECY. That is why Theban is a cipher, and so is the
venerable "pig-pen", and Masonic Samaritan; but the ecclesiastical use
of Samaritan is not, nor are
> [l]anguages formerly written in Cyrillic are now
> being written in Latin script with a one to one mapping.
-- There is / One art John Cowan <firstname.lastname@example.org> No more / No less http://www.reutershealth.com To do / All things http://www.ccil.org/~cowan With art- / Lessness -- Piet Hein
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