From: Ken Whistler (email@example.com)
Date: Mon May 16 2011 - 16:20:29 CDT
On 5/12/2011 2:48 PM, fantasai wrote:
> The interpretation of the question that yields your answer of "only
> Mongolian and Phags Pa is
> "Which scripts should only be written vertically?"
Actually, what Andrew said was:
scripts that should preferably be rendered in a vertical orientation
Mongolian can be, and in some sense "should be" rendered
horizontally, when it is mixed inline with text, such as Chinese,
laid out left-to-right. But the preferred direction for layout of
Mongolian by itself (or as the predominant component of extended
text) is clearly top-to-bottom.
> The interpretation of the question I'm interested in is
> "Which scripts are written vertically in normal (rather than
> exceptional) use?"
And this depends somewhat on the definition of "normal" and the
context of layout.
East Asian typography for the 19th century and earlier clearly treated
top-to-bottom (and lines from left-to-right) as the normal layout
convention for extended text. And which that entire typographic tradition
in East Asia, a significant number of other siniform or related scripts
could be said to have shared that convention.
But both ordinary book publishing (which had to cope with large
amounts of interspersed Roman material, Western digits, and other
material not so amenable to vertical layout) and then of course
digital typography and computers in the latter part of the 20th
century, have changed that. Now I would say that the "normal"
layout for all modern East Asian scripts is left-to-right.
One of the main classes of holdout consists of Japanese newspapers
in their printed editions, which still favor the old conventions. As do
small-form-factor Japanese popular novels, and many magazines.
The corresponding content in China has mostly switched over to
horizontal layout. And even in Japan, the online editions of newspapers
and nearly anything else would almost universally be laid out
horizontally, because it is just so much easier to do.
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