Re: missing characters: combining marks above runs of more than 2 base letters

From: Philippe Verdy <>
Date: Sat, 19 Nov 2011 02:36:14 +0100

This example is also NOT a titlo. What I am looking for here, is the
possibility of using a conjoining middle mark for connecting the two
half marks of the inverted breve (in fact top create a long arc).

But I cannot use the middle conjoining U+FE26 on the middle letter(s)
with the U+FE20 and U+FE21 half marks, because it is only expected to
join them at a precise height, and U+FE26 would most probably not join
with U+FE20 and U+FE21 half marks.

And in HTML/CSS, there's still no way to represent it using their
rich-text feature, without also breaking the encoding of the joined
letters (which would become part of a separate image object appearing
in the middle of words: there's no such "decoration" feature defined),
and also prohibiting the contextual styling of text (including the
preervation of fonts used to represent the adjoined/elided letters and
the rest of the text around them.

I have absolutely no clear way to represent sequences like in this
example that use such elongated diacritic applied to runs of more than
two characters. Of course I can still use two half marks in the
plain-text (only on the first and last letter), but what does happen
if I cannot (and in fact don't) mark their joining above intermediate
letters ?

-- Philippe.

2011/11/18 Peter Cyrus <>:
> Ken, you mention "defined markup constructions", but nothing would prevent
> specialized rendering software from, for example, connecting a left half
> mark with the corresponding right half mark via titlo, even though the text
> is still only plain text with no markup, right?  The titlo would simply not
> display as such in the absence of the right software.
> On Fri, Nov 18, 2011 at 8:03 PM, Ken Whistler <> wrote:
>> On 11/17/2011 11:28 PM, Philippe Verdy wrote:
>>> Could the Unicode text specify that a left half mark, when it is
>>> followed by a right half-mark on the same line, has to be joined ? And
>>> which character can we select in a font to mark the intermediate
>>> characters between them ?
>> No.
>> This kind of stuff is not plain text. Mathematicians and musical scorere
>> long ago got over
>> the notion that marking of scoped constructs (with beams and ties in
>> music,
>> and similar kinds of scoping for expressions in math) could be plain text.
>> People who "score" text, whether metricians, prosodic analysts, or
>> phoneticians, need to learn the same lesson. Unicode is not a repository
>> for text scoring hacks, with the expectation that all of the rendering
>> implementations
>> will quietly incorporate this kind of complexity into their already
>> complex
>> requirements for plain text rendering of writing systems.
>> People who need to score text will have to make use of specialized
>> rendering software and defined markup constructions, just like the
>> mathematicians and musicians do.
>> --Ken
Received on Fri Nov 18 2011 - 19:39:44 CST

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