Why incomplete subscript/superscript alphabet ?

Gael Lorieul glorieul at coanda-deviation.info
Fri Sep 30 04:57:15 CDT 2016

Hello all,

I wonder why only a subset of the alphabet is available as subscript
and/or superscript ?

This is well illustrated on the table in the following Wikipedia page:


Is there a reason for this ?

I would love to have these characters available because I often use
Unicode to write equations as comments of a source code. For instance:

     class Term_diff_rotDivStressTensor_splitted
      * Computes:
      *     μ       ⎛μ⎞        ⎡1              ⎤
      *     —.Δω + ∇⎜—⎟×Δu + ∇×⎢—.(∇u + ∇uᵀ)·∇μ⎥
      *     ρ       ⎝ρ⎠        ⎣ρ              ⎦
         [...] (class definition)

or a more problematic example:

      *                    ⌠tᵉⁿᵈ
      *     q(tᴺ) ← q(t⁰) +⎮   rhs(q,t) dt  +   (tᵉⁿᵈ - tˢᵗᵃʳᵗ)
      *                    ⌡tˢᵗᵃʳᵗ

Here "end" and "start" would have been better as subscripts, but I could
not do so because letter "d" is not available as a subscript…

As you can see, having only some letters available as subscript (&
superscript) is sometimes a pain…

Gaël Lorieul

PhD student in Computational Fluid Dynamics
at Université catholique de Louvain

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