From: Philippe Verdy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed Mar 29 2006 - 01:58:39 CST
From: "Keutgen, Walter" <email@example.com>
> In hand writing one always uses superscripts for ordinal numbers, which is not possible in flat text PC writing and required some fumbling whith the mechanical typewriter. I.e. '1er', '2ème' or '2e' etc require superscripts, likewise the forms derived from the Latin wording '1o, 2o' etc for which one uses the '°'. One also often sees Me (maître = master in law) with a superscripted e. Now as to know whether '°' is a superscripted 'o' or the degree sign, my keyboard does not tell me. I would bed however that the '°' often is smaller than the superscripted e.
Actually, french is normally never using the superscript o. French keyboards have a degree symbol key, but even so, it is never used to mark french abbreviations (like "1°" which a French would read as one degree, and not like the Latin locution "primo").
But the *DEGREE SIGN* is commonly used in a few non-numeral Latin locutions like "d°" = "ditto", or for the abbreviation "n°"or "N°" (for "numéro") ; remember that there's no "superscript o" on most common French keyboards, despite old typewriters had a single key for "N°" with a underlined superscript o, and this key was the first one on the left of the first row on typewriter keyboards). The term "numéro" (or plural: "numéros") is also commonly abbreviated as "no." (or "nos.") with a required abbreviation dot (because "no" and "nos" are also actual unabbreviated french words with different meaning).
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