Questions tagged [orthography]

Orthography is a set of rules that determine the correct way of writing in a certain language, including norms about spelling, punctuation and word breaks. Orthography is usually not considered part of natural language or grammar itself and therefore not strictly a subject of linguistics, but sometimes of interest in investigating individual languages' pronunciation and writing systems.

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Is plain orthographic transciption of speech recordings adequate for corpus creation?

NOTE: I am not a linguist, but my interest is in the Natural Language Processing (NLP) field. I am doing a research which is focused only on gathering new or distinct words on a recently described ...
Rod Maniego's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
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Were يانيه and یانیه interchangeable in Ottoman Turkish?

Copy/pasting from this official pdf from the Turkish government produces يانيه. Czech Wiki uses the same spelling. English Wikipedia and Wiktionary, however, both use the spelling یانیه. Those look ...
lly's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
681 views

How unpredictable must vowels be for a writing system to classify as an abjad?

I've been pondering a conlang with a rather unusual orthography. I'm only stating this because no natural language has this sort of writing system. Essentially, its a system that only writes ...
user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
151 views

Why is anekdota written with a "k" in Czech but a "g" in Polish (anegdota)?

So I decided to compare the languages Czech and Polish. The devolving of voiced consonants to voiceless consonants are pretty much the same. However, one of the differences were, words with [g] ...
Akshat Goswami's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
184 views

Orthography changes in Italian

How has the orthography of Italian changed in the 19th century? I’m trying to find an in-depth guide but I haven’t found any resources. Maybe it just hasn’t changed except for a few technical words?
Gatoo's user avatar
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-1 votes
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Why is the day of the week capitalized only in Germanic languages and not in Romance languages?

In English, it is written as Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday and January February March April May June July August September November December. On the other hand, in Romance ...
Arunabh Bhattacharya's user avatar
17 votes
1 answer
4k views

Why isn't there a letter for /b/ sound in Greek alphabet while they have the sound?

In Greek the letter B sounds /v/; for example we have Vanadium which is Βανάδιο in Greek which in turn is transliterated as Vanάdio in English. But what about when we have a /b/ sound? For example, we ...
Snack Exchange's user avatar
1 vote
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91 views

Are there any diacritics derived from superscripted "i" (and other letters)?

I know that umlaut (e.g. ä) derives from superscripted "e", ring (e.g. å) derives from superscripted "a", and tilde (e.g. ñ) derives from superscripted "n". Is there a ...
awe lotta's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
150 views

Closeness between written words and spoken words over different languages

In my understanding, the different languages exist in spoken form and (mostly) in written forms (what about sign languages?). Some languages have developed a close relationship between the written ...
gboffi's user avatar
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How did "y" come to represent the semi-vowel yod /j/ in French orthography?

I went down a bit of a rabbit hole trying to work out where the different sounds of the "y" in English came from. I quickly established that the semi-vowel was originally written with a yogh,...
Muzer's user avatar
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Could the Old Cyrillic Djerv and Coptic Janja be related?

I was browsing wikipedia when I encountered the lovely letter Djerv as part of Old Cyrillic: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Djerv Its shape is like that of an <h> with a horizontal stroke. ...
planettop92's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
383 views

What sound or letter does this Ogham letter represent? [closed]

The above images are of a modern metal pillar in Portlaoise, County Laois, Ireland (they both depict the same pillar, but from different angles), with an Ogham inscription. I deciphered it to the best ...
Quintus Caesius - RM's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
2k views

What is the difference between traditional and modern IPA?

I have recently come across this while researching the phonetic spelling for "love", and I have come across a website (the website) that had both traditional and modern IPA spellings (with ...
Beathan Mann's user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
141 views

How do I draw the Vietnamese ơ and ư characters?

How do I draw the Vietnamese ơ and ư characters? (Surprisingly, I can’t find this information via Google like I can for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean characters.) Specifically, how do I draw the horn ...
Patrick Dark's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
53 views

Orthographies that use diacritics to mark grammatical tone

Are there any orthographies that use diacritics to mark grammatical tone instead of lexical tone? Or a combination of both?
LDSQMUL's user avatar
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Letter “o” with Ogonek in Early Middle English Orthography?

Edit: looking at this again, I wonder if the editors of the Wikipedia article mentioned below (from which the transcription comes) just transcribed the manuscript incorrectly, and the “ogonek” I am ...
Avana Vana's user avatar
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Impact of spell checkers on prescriptive language reform

I had a story about prescriptive language reform, specifically about the Real Academia Española and its decision to change the spelling of puzzle (pronounced /ˈpuθle/ in Spain) in the 21st edition (...
Henry's user avatar
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1 answer
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Why do some Vietnamese words have the tone marking on the last letter?

In my Vietnamese class at uni we learned that Vietnamese words have their tone marking on the second to last sound. However I've repeatedly run across cases where it appears on the last letter even if ...
bolzep's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
386 views

What is the origin of ⟨c⟩ for /ts/?

In several languages' romanizations or orthographies, the letter C is used to represent the /ts/ sound. Where does this come from? Wikipedia notes that ⟨c⟩ is used for Cyrillic ⟨ц⟩ in the ...
nearsighted's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
298 views

Does deep orthography decrease the collision entropy of a written language?

EDIT: For those of you who think this question is off-topic, I asked it on a forum about linguistics because I expected the answer to come from historical linguistics. I expected the answer to be ...
FlatAssembler's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
348 views

In english, what's the origin of pronouncing the `e` as /i/ or /e/?

As instance, the sentence let it be is pronounced /lɛt it bi:/ . And in general, the e seems to me pronounced just arbitrarily. Does it come from Germanic languages? During language evolution, did ...
blue_lama's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
217 views

How did so many Arabic letters converge to hold the same shape?

Here one can see that the letter groups خ ح ج and several others are identical if not for the dots. In this pair, two are vaguely H-sounding, the other was formerly some form of palatalised G, which I ...
murshad's user avatar
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12 votes
7 answers
5k views

Why doesn’t a language modernization initiative adopt pure phonetic spelling?

Given that there are language associations that work to standardize languages’ orthography, vocabulary, grammar, etc., why is it not more common to use phonetically accurate spelling?
Julius Hamilton's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
164 views

What is the nature of punctuation marks, are they paralinguistc features; where are they studied?

I am not sure I understand the distinction between paralinguistic and extralinguistic. Let's eat, grandma. Here, grandma is the adressee of the message, the actor (invited). Grandma is the one to eat. ...
George Ntoulos's user avatar
-6 votes
1 answer
349 views

Why was the letter K removed from the Welsh alphabet?

Honestly, why did they remove letter K from the alphabet?
Akshat Goswami's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
409 views

How did Chomsky conceive orthography and spelling?

I am curious to whether Chomsky has ever addressed anything about orthography, spelling or the impact of writing systems. The way I see it, orthography lies outside of Grammar in his theory. I couldn'...
Matt's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
226 views

does modern Hebrew have spelling pronunciations?

A spelling pronunciation is the pronunciation of a word according to its spelling when this differs from a longstanding standard or traditional pronunciation. Words that are spelled with letters that ...
noah johnson's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
134 views

Ways of classifying writing systems by appearance?

Are there any common groupings of writing systems by grapheme appearance? I'm currently writing about language identification and one specific goal I have as part of the work is to include steps for ...
Callum Booth's user avatar
18 votes
9 answers
8k views

Are there modern languages without standardized spelling? If not, why?

Historically, English did not have standardized spelling; see e.g. this paragraph from the Washington Post: At one point, English speakers lived in a world without standardized spelling. According to ...
dbmag9's user avatar
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19 votes
2 answers
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Ncuti Gatwa is, according to Wikipedia, pronounced /ˈʃuːti ˈɡætwɑː/ - where is the NC orthography derived from?

On trying to find the pronunciation of the name of Mizero Ncuti Gatwa, a Rwandan-Scottish actor who will be playing the Fourteenth Doctor, I noticed the NC pairing and its pronunciation is listed on ...
AncientSwordRage's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
202 views

With the use of diacritics, is the Arabic abjad a shallow orthography?

The Arabic script is an abjad. Without diacritics, short vowels are inferred and so pronunciation may be different to what is expected. But if diacritics are used, they signify exactly how each word ...
VideoCarp's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
177 views

Does English have any words that are only unambiguous when spoken?

In Latin there are many words that are ambiguous when written, but unambiguous when spoken. For example, palus with a long A and short U means a stake. But palus with a short A and long U means a ...
Tyler Durden's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
146 views

How is Urkesh spelled in cuneiform?

I can only find two cuneiform inscriptions mentioning "Urkesh", here. It seems to be spelled differently in the two tablets. Is it 𒌨𒄊? Is the second grapheme of "Urkesh" in ...
alexchandel's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
50 views

Why some triphthongs are retained orthographically in Arabic, but not others

According to Ahmad Al-Jallad's "A manual of the historical grammar of Arabic", a sound change from old to classical Arabic was the collapse of triphthongs. These triphthongs are sometimes ...
Quintus Caesius - RM's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
451 views

Why does lower case "a" look so different from capital "A"?

Despite my best efforts, I can not find the answer specifically for "a" online. For the rest of the letters of the Latin alphabet, I can see the connection between the different forms (...
Quintus Caesius - RM's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
242 views

Do other languages using the Latin alphabet borrow diacritics from one another?

I've always found the convention of borrowing diacritics on foreign names and occasionally words (although the latter is less standard) from other languages with Latin alphabets in written English to ...
Thomas Anton's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
375 views

Why was 'u' invented?

In the history of the letter 'v', Wikipedia mentions the origin of 'u' but unfortunately doesn't describe why it was created in the first place: During the Late Middle Ages, two minuscule glyphs ...
minseong's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
272 views

Why does the pronoun and verb order vary in Polish language?

My go nie lubimy - we do not like him On nie kocha mnie - he does not love me Why in the first example go is followed by nie lubimy, but in the second sentence we have the opposite: nie kocha followed ...
mercury0114's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
128 views

Why is the Croatian word "pjena" (foam) spelt with "je" as if it were from Slavic yat, rather than "i", as it is from Slavic "y"?

Why is the Croatian word "pjena" (foam) spelt with "je" as if it were from Slavic yat, rather than "i", as it is from Slavic "y"? We know it is from Slavic &...
FlatAssembler's user avatar
-3 votes
1 answer
94 views

What language (if it is a language) is it? [closed]

It looks close to Arabic, but it isn't. I wasn't able to identify which language is it using different scanning tools (including Google Translate app). Thanks. Edit: if this isn't clear - I'm asking ...
kK-Storm's user avatar
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0 votes
2 answers
119 views

Is there a name for the idea of having grammatical rules for the purpose of easy pronunciation?

For instance, in German you'll have Der Mann singular, Die Männer plural, instead of, say, Die Männen. It seems this is because you don't want to over-expose the speaker to the "n" sound. ...
user avatar
4 votes
3 answers
511 views

How many sibilants did Old Akkadian cuneiform distinguish?

According to fdb's answer to another question: It is believed that Old Akkadian (at least) still retained the Semitic distinction of s₁, s₂ and s₃ and used different signs for syllables containing ...
Draconis's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
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Why does shallow orthographic depth clearly not signify allophonic?

I'm asking merely about the first reason below that I colored in grey. How's "allophonic" "clearly not meant here", in the context of shallow orthographic depth? 9.7 Orthographic ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
152 views

How do you tell a spelling mistake from a grammar mistake?

How do you tell a spelling mistake from a grammar mistake? For example: Your the best. This iz the end. I likes music. She preatend to be asleep. One method is to read the erroneous sentence aloud (...
Géry Ogam's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
108 views

What linguistics degree(s) would best equip someone to develop written languages from oral ones?

If one wants to work with people-groups that have an oral language but no written language and develop a written language for those people-groups, what linguistics degree(s) would best equip that ...
levininja's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
148 views

What is the best romanization of ח?

I have seen ח represented as ch, gh, kh, H (capitalized), x, h with diacritics, etc. Personally, I like using x, because it is a single letter and does not require special diacritic markings, etc ... ...
Brian Landberg's user avatar
13 votes
2 answers
4k views

Why are J, U, W considered part of the basic Latin Alphabet?

J, U, W are included in ISO basic Latin alphabet which consists of 26 letters. However, The classic Latin has only 23 letters, and J was only used as a variant of I as σ do to ς. J, U were not ...
Schezuk's user avatar
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-4 votes
2 answers
178 views

Non-standard English spelling and other things in 18th century writing -- how much due to quill pens?

I was just thinking how even in books and newspapers prior to the computer age, like in the 1950s and before, there were a lot of errors that are glaring now but I am sure were accepted then. So I ...
releseabe's user avatar
  • 529
3 votes
1 answer
123 views

How can one fill out the quadrat when a word consists of a single uniliteral?

In Egyptian hieroglyphic writing, glyphs are commonly arranged into quadrats (blocks) to minimize empty space. And I was taught that it's good style not to have a word boundary within a single quadrat....
Draconis's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
239 views

What was the original pronounciation of the Thai consonant symbols?

The Thai language was devised to serve two main purposes: to write Thai words and to write Sanskrit (or Pali) words. For this reason, the Thai alphabet has one consonant symbol for each Sanskrit sound ...
snew's user avatar
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