Re: Numbered consonants in Tamil script abugida series

From: N. Ganesan (
Date: Tue Jun 28 2005 - 18:42:51 CDT

  • Next message: N. Ganesan: "Re: Numbered consonants in Tamil script abugida series"

    RW > Do vocalic R / RR / L / LL round trip?

    There are printed book examples to one-to-one
    of these. First, the vocalic R is the most
    important: "kRSNa" is pronounced as "krushna"
    in South India (called Pancha Dravida lands,
    Gujarat, Maharashtra, Andhra, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu)
    whereas it is pronounced as "krishna" in
    the North India.

    (1) Vocalic r and (2) anusvara ("m") with a circular dot
    below - can do round trip transliteration.
    Please see the anuswara and R differences between
    Grantha and Tamil scripts:">
    (anusvara: "m" with a circular dot below
    is given in P. Visalakshy, The Grantha script, 2003,
    Univ. of Kerala, Trivandrum.
    The vocalic r shown in pdf is in printed books
    like K. Suresh, Chamaka Ghanam (of Rgveda)
    (samhita, Padam, Kramam, Jata and Ghanam
    with Swaram) with meaning in English, Chennai, 2003.

    RR and LL are done with subscript/superscript 2
    on R and L glpyhs. The numbered consonant
    approach is a linearization of the conjuncted
    Sanskrit-language scripts ( Devanagari or TamilGrantha),
    and without any training, Tamils are able to read
    these texts. But the conjuncted Tamil Grantha (or Nagari)
    tales lot more time to read.

    4. The subscript '2', '3' and '4' defy useful abstract analysis.
    They follow the connected glyph portion containing the
    consonant, preceding the glyph of VOWEL SIGN AA or
    AU LENGTH MARK. There seems to be no way to
    represent them in combination with those glyphs using
    Unicode! Can anyone see how (short of burying our heads
    in the sand) we can avoid adding at least combining marks
    and TAMIL VARGA MARK FOUR? <vowel, varga mark> and
     <varga mark, vowel> will be canonically inequivalent.
    The order <varga mark, vowel> seems more logical,
    but <vowel, varga mark> gives a renderer less re-ordering to do.
    Ideally a renderer and a collating sequence should decline to
    distinguish the two orders.

    Can't we generate these subscripted abugidas on k, c, T, t, p using
    subscripts/superscripts? For collation etc., may be we can get the
    varga marks in the Tamil code chart itself. Then can you be able to do
    analysis? For any usage samples, I'll be ready to help.

    No one can deny the existence of numbered consonants
    in Tamil *script*, used for a wide variety of Indic languages into
    Tamil *script*.

    N. Ganesan

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