Re: Why blackletter letters?

From: Philippe Verdy <>
Date: Tue, 10 Sep 2013 20:35:39 +0200

If this is for German dialectology, then the alphabet needed is too much
incomplete to be usable without usingas well generic letters with
additional out-of-band styling.

We are reaching the point where disunification of the Fraktur script from
the Latin script could occur (just like it occured for Coptic from Greek,
or between 2 of the Georgian alphabets), and promote the ISO 15924 "Latf"
script as a new distinct UCS scrip.

In that case, all the existing Fraktur/BlackLetter letters (currently in
Latin or Maths blocks) could be assigned a new script, and all other
missing letters for usage of Fraktur in Germanic languages (and possibly in
other European medieval texts, at a time where there were much less
diacritics but many more ligatures and abbreviation symbols) could be added
in a new separate block in a supplementary plane. (I don't see the interest
of keeping also the existing Maths symbols separate from the new script, as
maths Fraktur symbols are in fact a very basic and small subset which can
fit perfectly in the core Fraktur alphabet.

But we could leave holes reserved in the new block to simplify font
development with duplicate mappings even if standard interchanges witll use
only the existing code points), or fill these holes with canonical
singleton equivalences (this will not require any change to the existing
collation tailorings, except for the new codepoints added for missing
letters or ligatures or abbreviation symbols).

This would simplify the maitenance of many Latin fonts for modern usages
(even if there will remain fonts giving a Fraktur style to the normal
script, but with artificial inventions to set the modern diacritics and
hinted contextual optional ligatures), even of the Fraktur script is still
considered as a modern script used for the period extending up to the end
of WW2 in Central Europe (plus France, northern Italy, and every place
under German occupation or political influence; it seems that at the same
period, the script was also popular in the Germanic communities in US and
South America, even if they spoke or wrote other languages).

2013/9/10 Jukka K. Korpela <>

> 2013-09-10 20:36, Jukka K. Korpela wrote:
> 2013-09-10 20:01, Asmus Freytag wrote:
>> This rationale is absent in document WG2 N3907 that requests these
>>> characters.
>> If this is document
>> then I’m rather confused: it proposes AB51 for LATIN SMALL LETTER
>> all. And as far as I can see, the proposal has not been accepted.
> The document “ISO/IEC JTC1/SC2/WG2 N4106, Report on the ad hoc re
> “Teuthonista” (SC2/WG2 N4081) held during the SC2/WG2
> meeting at Helsinki, 2011 June 7/8”,
> which is linked to from
> contains AB32 and AB3D as described in Jean-François Colson’s question.
> It does not contain any specific motivation for them; it just lists them
> under “Letters for German dialectology”.
> As far as I can see, the document summarizes an agreement in an ad hoc
> meeting. So it’s not late at all to raise objections, is it?
> Yucca
Received on Tue Sep 10 2013 - 13:37:36 CDT

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