Why do the Hebrew Alphabetic Presentation Forms Exist

Anshuman Pandey pandey at umich.edu
Tue Jun 9 01:10:34 CDT 2020

> On Jun 8, 2020, at 9:57 PM, Asmus Freytag via Unicode <unicode at unicode.org> wrote:
> On 6/8/2020 2:02 PM, Mark E. Shoulson via Unicode wrote:
>> Down to one sentence: until you can talk about which LAMEDs in the Torah are bent and which are straight, I would expect this to be a non-starter.
> The meta issue: how to ensure that texts that have such features (i.e. layout-specific or scribe-specific choice of shapes) can be widely represented in interchangeable digital representations - even if that representation isn't plain text.
> A./

You hit the nail on the head: dealing with this issue for alternate terminals for Old Uyghur letters. Scribes made a choice to use either vertical or a curved stroke. The shape of the terminal itself doesn’t change the semantic value of the letter, but it carries pragmatic value.


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