RE: ZWJ, ZWNJ and VS in Latin and other Greek-derived scripts

From: Ruszlan Gaszanov (
Date: Fri Jan 26 2007 - 02:48:01 CST

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    John H. Jenkins wrote:

    > In any event, I reiterate: Ligature formation in Latin is a matter of
    > stylistic preference. Stylistic preferences do not belong in plain
    > text.

    The same ligatures (or glyph variations for that matter) could be considered
    stylistic variations in some texts, but may have distinct semantics in others. As a
    trivial example, Latin letters v, u and w can be given - in Classic Latin, u is a
    glyph variation of v and w is a vv ligature - thus vv = uu = w. In most modern
    languages using Latin script, however, those are three distinct letters.

    I'm not suggesting that we should use <v ZWJ v> for w or <v VS2> for u, but there
    are many cases where this approach could, in fact, be useful. When ligature is a
    purely stylistic feature, ZWJ shouldn't be used, but a font may or may not ligate
    characters. But if the author does use ZWJ or VS, it is probably because ligation or
    specific glyph variation is important for semantics, rather then a merely stylistic


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