Standaridized variation sequences for the Desert alphabet?

Michael Everson everson at
Wed Mar 22 19:03:44 CDT 2017

On 22 Mar 2017, at 21:39, David Starner <prosfilaes at> wrote:
> Does "Яussia" require a new Latin letter because the way R was written has a different origin than the normal R? 

But it doesn’t. It’s the Latin letter R turned backwards by a designer for a logo. We wouldn’t encode that, because it’s a logo. 

> There's huge variation in Latin script including all sorts of different glyphs, and I suspect Яussia is way more common than any use of the Deseret script.

In order to represent that logo, people use the Cyrillic letter Я, as you know. 

> There's the same characters here, written in different ways.

No, it’s not. Its the same diphthong (a sound) written with different letters. 

> The glyphs may come from a different origin, but it's encoding the same idea.

We don’t encode diphthongs. We encode the elements of writing systems. The “idea” here is represented by one ligature of �� + �� (1855 EW), one ligature of �� + �� (1859 EW), one ligature of �� + �� (1855 OI), and one ligature of �� + �� (1859 OI).

Those ligatures are not glyph variants of one another. You might as well say that Æ and Œ are glyph variants of one another. 

> If a user community considers them separate, then they should be separated, but I don't see that happening, and from an idealistic perspective, I think they're platonically the same.

I do not agree with that analysis. The ligatures and their constituent parts are distinct and distinctive. In fact, it might have been that the choice for revision was to improve the underlying phonology. In any case, there’s no way that the bottom pair in can be considered to be “glyph variants” of the top pair. Usage is one thing. Character identity is another. Æ is not Œ. A ligature of �� + �� is not a ligature of �� + ��. 

Michael Everson

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