Re: Why blackletter letters?

From: Asmus Freytag <>
Date: Thu, 12 Sep 2013 02:02:24 -0700

On 9/12/2013 1:36 AM, Gerrit Ansmann wrote:
> On Thu, 12 Sep 2013 06:50:23 +0200, Charlie Ruland ☘
> <> wrote:
>> One final remark: Thinking about it I have the impression that the
>> blackletter vs. antiqua distinction once made in German very much
>> resembles that made between Hiragana and Katakana in Japanese. In
>> both cases the underlying systems of the corresponding scripts are
>> essentially the same; yet it seems impossible to read the other
>> script without further instruction and exercise; and in both
>> languages one script is used primarily for inherited, and the other
>> for foreign words.
> Just to clarify: Antiqua in Fraktur text was by far not used for all
> foreign words, but only for few. The guidelines for this differed, but
> my Duden (the most important German dictionary) from 1926 advises that
> only words that were (a) from Romance languages (including Latin), (b)
> still clearly foreign words (and, e.g., not inflected) and (c) neither
> a name for geography nor a person should be set in Antiqua. In the
> dictionary part, you can find Horsd’œuvre, Midſhipman, São Thomé,
> Perpetuum mobile, Oſzillograph, Oxymoron and Feuilleton in Fraktur,
> just to give some examples.
much lower % of text than katakana but the basic analogy isn't that far off.

the alpbets being smaller than the kana sets means less instruction
needed, but a bit of practice for fluency.
Received on Thu Sep 12 2013 - 04:04:22 CDT

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