Origin of Alphasyllabaries (was: Why so much emoji nonsense?)

Philippe Verdy via Unicode unicode at unicode.org
Fri Feb 16 04:42:51 CST 2018

2018-02-16 1:59 GMT+01:00 Richard Wordingham via Unicode <
unicode at unicode.org>:

> On Wed, 14 Feb 2018 21:49:57 +0100
> Philippe Verdy via Unicode <unicode at unicode.org> wrote:
> > The concept of vowels as distinctive letters came later, even the
> > letter A was initially a representation of a glottal stop consonnant,
> > sometimes mute, only written to indicate a word that did not start by
> > a consonnant in their first syllable, letter. This has survived today
> > in abjads and abugidas where vowels became optional diacritics, but
> > that evolved as plain diacritics in Indic abugidas.
> OK.
> > The situation is even more complex because clusters of consonnants
> > were also represented in early vowel-less alphabets to represent full
> > syllables (this has formed the base of todays syllabaries when only
> > some glyph variants of the base consonnant was introduced to
> > distinguish their vocalization;
> The only syllabary where what you say might be true is the Ethiopic
> syllabary, and I have grave doubts as to that case.
> I hope you are aware that most syllabaries do not derive from
> alphabets, abjads or abugidas.

I said the opposite: the alphabets, abjads, abugidas and today's full
syllabaries derive from early simplified syllabaries, themselves derived
from simplified pictograms (ideograms becoming phonograms).
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