Re: polytonic Greek: diacritics above long vowels ᾱ, ῑ, ῡ

From: Richard Wordingham <>
Date: Sat, 3 Aug 2013 05:37:32 +0100

On Fri, 02 Aug 2013 19:27:54 -0700
Stephan Stiller <> wrote:

> If one wants to indicate vowel length for the length-ambiguous vowels
> α, ι, υ in Ancient Greek, one writes ᾱ, ῑ, ῡ. Is there a reason for
> why there are no diacritic-precomposed characters? I guess it's
> because macron usage is rare in orthographic practice, even though
> vowel length here is not clearly less important than the other
> phonetic aspects indicated by the various diacritics in use in
> polytonic orthography.

Characters restricted to dictionaries are generally not well

> Thus I am wondering when and how the relevant
> decisions were made.

Probably in Greek-speaking Alexandria. The practice in Scott and
Liddell is to reserve ᾱ, ῑ and ῡ for a note after the dictionary entry.

> ἀγορᾱ́ ("gathering, marketplace") needs a combining diacritic at the
> end. ῑ̓́φιος ("fat, strong") has ῑ̓́ (which should be thought of as ῑ
> with two combining diacritics: U+1FD1 U+0313 U+0301).

You overlooked the smooth breathing for the first iota.

Received on Fri Aug 02 2013 - 23:44:31 CDT

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