Re: Exemplar Characters

From: Asmus Freytag (
Date: Tue Nov 22 2005 - 14:37:19 CST

  • Next message: Mark E. Shoulson: "Re: Apostrophes (was Re: Exemplar Characters)"

    On 11/22/2005 1:02 AM, Otto Stolz wrote:

    > Hello,
    > Asmus Freytag had written:
    >> In Germany the letters with umlaut may not be taught as separate
    >> letters, ditto for the sharp-s.
    > I had written:
    >> Of course, the students are taught all the letters of the respective
    >> writing systems; however, the list of graphemes is not recited, but
    >> rather presented on sample copy.
    Correct, some way or other people need to be taught to read or write
    all the common features of their writing system.

    > <>
    > is a scan of a typical sample for beginners (with a special ruling for
    > the 1st year). The headline reads "Lateinische Ausgangsschrift"
    > (= Latin initial hand). Note the "" after "s", and the Umlauts
    > after z, and Z, respectively. (In real life, I have never seen the
    > alternate form of the "" given in this sample.)

    Your sample shows several issues, one of which you acknowledge yourself.
    The other is that such sample show hand-written forms of letters, and
    the inventory of shapes may be different there (in addition to being more
    difficult to collate to the printed sample shapes in Unicode).

    More importantly, there is no guarantee that any single such listing is
    complete. I have in my possession reproductions of historic lists for
    German, some of which omit the umlauts, but one of which omits
    only the u-umlaut, (even though I seem to recollect that it is the most
    common of the three) while faithfully reproducing the other two.

    > As I said before, these samples for beginners make a much better
    > starting point for CLDR's exemplar characters than the alphabet
    > (wich is more a collation sequence than a list of characters
    > used). I reckon, this observation holds for other languages,
    > as well.

    They may or may not be sufficient when it comes to characters with
    diacritics, see the evidence of my 'defective' samples above. The
    reason for that (I speculate) has to do with the relative ease with
    which simple diacritics can be attached to the more challenging letter
    forms. That makes them susceptible to become part of the lore
    that somehow doesn't get written down.


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