From: Richard Wordingham (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Mon Oct 30 2006 - 16:31:17 CST
One of the differences between Thai and Lao collation is in the treatment of
preposed vowels. For Thai, collation is done by treating the preposed
vowels as though they immediately followed the following consonant
regardless of the consonant, and this is captured by DUCET. For Lao, at
least in the modern spelling, they are treated as though they immediately
followed the initial consonant cluster, which may be two consonants long.
However, DUCET applies the Thai rule to Lao. What is the rationale for
this? Is there one?
One possible explanation is that it is not always clear whether the
consonants following the preposed vowel form a cluster. I've looked though
Becker's Lao-English dictionary (a pocket dictionary) and found just two
words where a possible cluster is not a cluster. The current DUCET
treatment of preposed vowels seems to have been proposed in 2003, before CGJ
became a disjunctor. Nowadays, the solution would be simple - one would
encode the word for 'cliff, abyss, chasm' as <E, HO SUNG, CGJ, VO> and the
derogatory word for 'Vietnamese' as <EI, KO, CGJ, VO>.
A second possibility is that it was considered that the ordering would have
greater non-Lao acceptance if it accorded with the Thai ordering.
I appreciate that Lao collation needs much more tailoring than just handling
the preposed vowels - it's not even clear that it can be done by tailoring.
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