Re: Corrections to Glagolitic

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Sat May 14 2005 - 11:27:34 CDT

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    At 09:13 -0500 2005-05-14, Alexander Kh. wrote:

    >I am glad to receive such a quick response from you.

    You're welcome.

    >Actually I did not expect it, so please excuse
    >my delay with graphical material. It will
    >probably take me whole weekend to prepare a
    >rough draft with complete list of glyphs and
    >their names.

    Please do NOT send me anything large until
    further notice. The Croagh Patrick Community
    Network broadband has not yet been set up and I
    am on 28.8 bps dialup at least for another

    >One thing that bothers me is the scornful
    >attitude expressed in the sentence "Discussion
    >with the convener of ISO/SC4/WG2 indicated that
    >in bibliographical contexts, probably most
    >current use transliterates Glagolitic to
    >Cyrillic in any case, and it is suggested that
    >the variant characters in ISO 6861:1996 be
    >unified with the basic letters."

    It is the opinion of the convener of ISO
    TC46/SC4/WG2, who is a professional librarian,
    that most bibliographical databases do not (did
    not at the time) use the Glagolitic characters in
    ISO 6861 at all, but rather transliterated them
    into Cyrillic or Latin. This is not scornful; it
    is just an observation of the use made (or not
    made) of ISO 6861.

    >By saying that you are totally destroying all
    >the imagery of this particular script,

    "Totally destroying" is saying a bit much, Alexander.

    >which is not just phonetic alphabet like such of
    >Latin is. Every letter in Glagolitsa has its
    >name and image, depengind on its position, and a
    >message written in this script can have a hidden

    Script mysticism is out of the scope of the Universal Character Set.

    >No one will argue that old Hebrew script has
    >this ability to store hidden messages. Why other
    >sacred scripts are not treated with respect?

    No script is sacred. I say this as an expert in
    the world's writing systems who has devoted my
    life to them. No script is sacred. Or, as the
    wonderful invention human beings have made to
    record language by means of little marks on
    paper, all scripts are sacred.

    >In Glagolitsa meaning of the whole text can depend on which "variant" of
    >the letter is used.

    Prove your case. This should be easy to do.
    "Face" and "faze" are different words; this is
    one way we know that "c" and "z" are different
    letters. We will probably encode a special
    "Visigothic z" for Latin before long, because it
    is distinct, in some medieval Portuguese texts,
    from "c" and "z" and "".

    >I know this is not a widely known fact, but if
    >you are talking about "old script", how can we,
    >contemporary people decide what is right and
    >what is wrong there? You don't go to library and
    >burn the books that are too old, right?
    >Hopefully... But THIS is the same thing.

    I can't say I understand what you are talking about.

    >Please don't get this personally.

    I don't.

    >Even if somebody uses Glagolitsa as a
    >fancy-looking Cyrillic font, I don't blame them.

    Fortunately, Glagolitic and Cyrillic are now
    encoded separately, so no one has to do that.

    >How about those using it to study history, like
    >me? There is much more about that script than a
    >phonetic transliteration.

    If you think there are characters missing and can
    make a case for them, they can be added.

    Michael Everson * * Everson Typography *  *

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