Re: New contribution

From: John Hudson (
Date: Fri Apr 30 2004 - 14:04:04 EDT

  • Next message: Michael Everson: "Re: New contribution"

    Michael Everson wrote:

    >> Okay, perhaps we're getting somewhere and beginning to understand each
    >> other. What you are saying, in effect, is that there is already a de
    >> facto unification of Phoenician and Hebrew encoding, employed by a
    >> significant user group.

    > But there is no de facto unification. This script has been on the books
    > for ages. This script has been described by historians of writing as
    > distinct from Hebrew for two hundred years.

    There does appear to be a de facto unification *in the practice of many semiticists*,
    particularly when dealing with ancient Hebrew texts written with 'Phoenician' letters. I
    think this is perfectly understandable, given that the language is Hebrew regardless of
    what the letters look like: why would they have thought to encode such texts as anything
    other than Hebrew? I'm not saying that this is a reason not to encode what I favour
    calling the 'Ancient North Semitic' script, only that we need to acknowledge that there is
    a genuine question about how ancient Hebrew texts in that script should be encoded. Simply
    repeating 'They're different scripts' is not addressing that question. It is very obvious
    that, among semiticists, there is a prevailing concept of a single 22 letter abjad. I'm
    not saying that this concept should determine what gets encoded in Unicode, only that we
    should acknowledge and address the confusion that stems from the incompatibility of
    contrary views of the semitic script universe.

    John Hudson

    Tiro Typeworks
    Vancouver, BC
    I often play against man, God says, but it is he who wants
       to lose, the idiot, and it is I who want him to win.
    And I succeed sometimes
    In making him win.
                  - Charles Peguy

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