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Subject: Re: omitted diacritics in capitalization
From: Richard Weltz <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:TYPO-L Discussion of Type and Typographic Design <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Wed, 12 Aug 1998 15:53:20 EDT

text/plain (24 lines)

In a message dated 98-08-12 12:18:39 EDT, you write:

 This reminds me of Arabic, where it's common -and accepted- practice
 to ommit all "diacritcs" in "daily adult life". This is in spite of
 the fact that the resultant words can be seriously ambiguous. I guess
 readers are expected to actively use context to interpret words.

 It's a shortcut that relies on common sense. If you ever go to the
 middle east, you'll understand how such things come to be...

They are actually vowel marks, Hrant. In Arabic, as in Hebrew, they are
usually printed only in some liturgical material and in text meant for
beginner readers. Literate adults have no problem reading Arabic or Hebrew
without the vowels. An exception, though, is sometimes made when it is a
transliterated foreign word or for other special cases where the reader might
be expected not to know the correct vowel sounds for a word.

-- Dick Weltz, Spectrum Multilanguage Communications, NYC
    America's Premier Translators/Foreign Language Typographers
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