Re: Berber/Tifinagh (was: Swahili & Banthu)

From: Patrick Andries (
Date: Mon Nov 10 2003 - 20:11:14 EST

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    ----- Message d'origine -----
    De: "Philippe Verdy" <>

    > From: "Patrick Andries" <>
    > > > In this condition, why couldn't Latin glyphs be among
    > > > these, when they already have the merit of covering the whole abstract
    > > > character set covered by all scripts in the Tifinagh family?
    > >
    > > Because it is best to use Tifinagh glyphs as representative glyphs of
    > > Tifinagh script?
    > No: the simple reason is the choice of the "representative" glyph, which
    > will probably be accurate for one cultural convention but completely wrong
    > another, as that glyph represent another phoneme coded at a different
    > place where another "representative" glyph is used, which may also be
    > wrong.

    I understood your objection. I answered this is rare and names help.

    > Look at the phonemic meaning of the glyph that looks like two triangles,
    > pointing top and bottom to each other. Look at the glyph which looks like
    > moon crescent (open on right side) with a dot in the middle... Which
    > phonemic value do they have? This depends on cultural conventions, and it
    > really looks as if there was not _one_ but several distinct Tifinagh
    > using the same glyphs but with incompatible phonemic values...

    1) Could you tell me what the values of those characters are for you and in
    which varieties of the script ? I know of this sand-glass character but I
    have a single suspicious source giving me this as having a different value
    from the traditional one. I'll happily collect a second source (en privé si
    tu veux) to list ambiguities. Could you also be specific for the
    2) As mentioned before, characters have a name and it can be used to
    uniquely identify the character if need be (i.e. the referential glyph is
    only a help and may not be sufficient to uniquely identify a character).

    > > But I agree that chosing the representative glyphs
    > > may become a sensitive issue if the Tifinagh script is to be unified,
    > > school might feel offended that its preferred glyphs were not chosen in
    > > ISO/IEC 10646. This does not necessarily mean that Tifinagh should be
    > > encoded with an easy Latin mapping in mind.
    > I'm just suggesting that if the phonemic encoding model is used,

    I don't know if this is what will be chosen (note that this is different
    from your name-based scheme you suggested a few messages ago).

    > the choice
    > of "representative" glyphs will create confusion, as it will privilegiate
    > one interpretation of the glyphs and not the other one. Polemics are
    > present on the Internet because of the choice of interpretation that has
    > been made by Morocco, which excludes other interpretations.

    Could I have a pointer ? Tu peux me l'envoyer sous courriel privé.

    P. A.

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