Re: [unicode] Re: vertical writing mode of modern Yi?

From: <>
Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2012 10:28:42 +0900

Dear Andrew,

Thank you for comment.

On Tue, 27 Mar 2012 13:17:14 +0100
Andrew West <> wrote:

>On 27 March 2012 06:18, suzuki toshiya <> wrote:
>> Is there any typesetted material of modern Yi syllabic script in vertical
>> writing mode?
>Probably nothing more than titles on book spines and names of
>government offices written on gate pillars. However, I believe that
>these examples are sufficient to establish the vertical writing mode
>of the modern Yi script. My observation is that the standardized
>Liangshan Yi script that is encoded in Unicode is written vertically
>with no rotation of glyphs, in the same way that Chinese characters
>are written vertically.

My observation is only in imported bookstores in Japan,
and some photos taken by the foreign visitors. I expected
more living vertical texts of Yi may exist in China, but
it might be too optimistic...

>> On the spines of the manually written books for old Yi, the situation
>> is same; non-rotated glyphs are laid out vertically. Ah, vertical is
>> the native writing mode, so I should say as "on the front cover, non-
>> rotated glyphs are laid out horizontally".
>That seems reasonable, but as Old Yi was written in a variety of
>orientations in different times and different places it is hard to
>agree on what the "correct" vertical and horizontal layout of Old Yi
>(or perhaps more correctly, the various Old Yi scripts) should be.

Please let me ask a stupid question for confirmation; the top/
bottom for Old Yi glyph cannot be defined without a specification
the time & place that the script was used? In previous post, I
wrote as if Yunnan Old Yi glyphs were not rotated from their
original shapes, and Sichuan Old Yi glyphs were rotated (as modern
Liangshan Yi) - it would be hasty observation, and I should not
assume a history as if Sichuan Old Yi glyphs were rotated at some
stage. It's right understanding?

>Moreover, as Old Yi has not been encoded, and therefore cannot be
>represented in Unicode (other than using the PUA), the orientation
>behaviour of Old Yi does not seem particularly relevant to Unicode in
>general or to UTR#50 (
>in particular.

>Really, anything
>written in an "Old Yi" script is irrelevant to discussions of the
>behaviour of the standardized Liangshan Yi script, and just causes
>unnecessary confusion and eventually leads to the definition of
>incorrect vertical text layout properties for Unicode Yi.

Indeed, Old Yi is not coded yet, I know (rather, no official
proposal is submitted to WG2, I think). And, I think your pointing
is very important - "Modern (Liangshan syllabicalized) Yi and
Old Yi should be regarded as different scripts and they could
have different preferences about their text layouts" (it's right

I was assuming that modern Liangshan syllabicalized Yi and Old
Yi materials may share same preferences about vertical writing
mode, but it might be hasty assumption - I have to agree, the
materials in my hands are too few to push my assumption.

Checking the latest draft of UTR#50, it seems that the vertical
writing mode for UCS Yi is different from CJK Ideographs;

        3400..4DBF ; U ; U ; U
        4DC0..4DFF ; U ; U ; U
        4E00..9FFF ; U ; U ; U
        A000..A48F ; S ; S ; S
        A490..A4CF ; S ; S ; S

I guess that somebody found a vertical writing mode of UCS Yi
with "rotated" (umm, I should say as "recovery-rotated?")
glyphs, or, somebody guessed the vertical writing mode of UCS
Yi by Old Yi materials. If the background is former, I want
to see it.

>> In the volume for Sichuan dialect (p.751), you can find the glyphs
>> looking like modern-Yi-after-rotation. You may wonder if "the volume
>> for Sichuan dialect includes only modern Yi, and it should not be
>> recognized as Old Yi?". In the last page for Sichuan volume (p.889),
>> you can find some glyphs that are not included in modern Yi.

About Sichuan dialect, I found another book (ISBN 7-81001-474-9/B,
not dictionary, a collection of annotated Old Yi texts for Chinese
scholars) having several Old Yi dialects. The scanned images are:

        Yunnan dialects
        Sichuan dialects
        Guizhou dialects

In Sichuan dialects, I could not find the orientation of the glyphs
in Sichuan volumes of ISBN 7-5367-2637-6

More investigation is needed.

Received on Wed Mar 28 2012 - 20:34:49 CDT

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