Re: Medievalist ligature character in the PUA

From: John H. Jenkins (
Date: Tue Dec 01 2009 - 11:38:43 CST

  • Next message: Roozbeh Pournader: "Re: Medievalist ligature character in the PUA"

    On Dec 1, 2009, at 4:04 AM, Wolfgang Schmidle wrote:

    > Unfortunately, the rendering doesn't seem to work this way. And even in a sophisticated font such as Hoefler Text, the "zero width joiner" has the opposite effect: While "fi" is by default displayed as a ligature and thus looks exactly like the "latin small ligature fi" U+FB01, the sequence f+200D+i is not displayed as ligature, but as the normal sequence "fi" with ligatures disabled.
    > Is there no implemented rendering mechanism for 200D in the Latin alphabet? Or is 200D not meant for cases like these? Is there another way to avoid the PUA codepoint?

    Using U+200D to request ligation doesn't really work well with Latin text, because the set of ligatures that are available and appropriate is very much font-specific. Moreover, fonts need to be specifically modified to use it, otherwise U+200D would act to break ligatures as you describe. (Hoefler Text has not been so modified, as it happens.) Even then, the general preference for Latin typography is to use higher-level protocols for ligation control. Quoting TUS 5.0, p. 537, "The ZWJ and ZWNJ are designed for marking the unusual cases where ligatures or cursive connections are required or prohibited. These characters are not to be used in cases where ligatures or cursive connections are desired; instead, they are meant only for overriding the normal behavior of the text."

    Basically, you need to have a font specifically designed to support the ligatures in question. If you need one for a Mac, you can contact me directly and I'll help you get one set up.

    John H. Jenkins

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