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Forum Home > The Language Room > D'ni punctuation

Korov’ev
Member
Posts: 160

The D’ni full stop symbol is generally assumed to be the equivalent of the roman full stop, except marking the beginning of a sentence, so much so that sometimes, in transliterations, people have used ?others !punctuation marks for the sake of readability. However, I’ve started to suspect it is actually an embellishment (like the curls in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Schriftzug_Urkunde.jpg) and the texts we have really have no punctuation. If that’s the case, then marks could be added in a D’ni transliterated sentence the way we do, at the end.

As a sidenote, I wonder which is the proper spacing between the ‘full stop’ and the following letter, as the two most used fonts differs significantly in that aspect:


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  46116   —  D’ní notesFontsGoodies
.fa  mEstav  Kat  Kenen  xanril  fUru

February 8, 2015 at 12:14 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Carolyn
Member
Posts: 6

On the subject of spacing, I'd say that Dnifont is most likely correct, since it was created by RAWA, whereas D'ni Script is fan-created. (If you're talking IC, Kadish's note and Kenen Gor both use the spacing found in Dnifont).


Also, the 'full stop' character generally isn't used in titles (eg. Kenen Gor, the titles of the prayers on the gateroom walls, meD'ní bretalío, etc.) nor in signatures (eg. tel nava Kadish). It's also left out before "Avo" at the start of Atrus's Prayer, and is not used at all on the chalkboard in the schoolroom in Riven. And then there's also the 'hyphen/dash' character, which as far as I'm aware has only been used in Atrus's prayer, with several uses - once in place of an apostrophe, once to split a word across lines, and twice in the same sentance as dashes, creating parentheses. However, I somewhat doubt that any of these uses of '-' are actually correct.


Has RAWA ever stated anything regarding the supposed hyphen? Or, indeed, the full stop?

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February 8, 2015 at 3:16 PM Flag Quote & Reply

KathTheDragon
Site Owner
Posts: 381

I suspect that the full stop symbol does in fact mark the beginning of a sentence, and that its omission in things like titles is paralleled by the equivalent omission of the full stop in English titles. The operative word, then, would be sentence: as titles are not really sentences, they do not get marked as such. Additionally, if they are not there to separate sentences, why are they there at all? To my knowledge, all scripts that mark word boundaries also mark sentence boundaries in some manner.

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February 8, 2015 at 5:01 PM Flag Quote & Reply

Korov’ev
Member
Posts: 160

Sentences in most european languages are also marked by capitalizing the first letter, and this to my knowledge is not considered punctuation. Some roman calligraphic scripts have capitals that look like decorated minuscules; D’ni might do the same, if in a more minimalistic way. If the ‘full stop’ marks a majuscule (or maybe an emphasis), then D’ni doesn’t really have a full stop the way we intend it, even though it mostly have the same function. By the way, classic latin inscriptions do only separate words, e.g. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Appiuscaecusstele01.jpg

Nevertheless, assuming the existence of other punctuation marks (particularly the interrogative one), until we actually see them it cannot be taken for granted that they are all placed at the beginning of the sentence (see e.g. the peculiar rules of Spanish punctuation).

And even if they are, it would not be wrong to ‘translate’ punctuation in transliteration, as it is often done with surface languages anyway.

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  46116   —  D’ní notesFontsGoodies
.fa  mEstav  Kat  Kenen  xanril  fUru

February 9, 2015 at 12:29 PM Flag Quote & Reply

KathTheDragon
Site Owner
Posts: 381
To be honest, majuscules are very unusual in scripts, and are largely confined to Europe, afaik. But unless your proposed majuscules have some additional function, there is no reason at all to view them as anything other than a full stop.
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Moula KI: 00005310
DI KI: 00205116
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tumblr: kaththedragon

Grand Master of the Guild of Linguists


February 10, 2015 at 2:49 AM Flag Quote & Reply

Korov’ev
Member
Posts: 160

Examples of additional functions:


1. An old habit from a period in which writing tools were not that good, to ensure a proper start to words; initially used before every word, then with better tools it became limited to sentences.


2. Part of a more complex system of word modifiers (similar perhaps to medieval manuscript annotations) used in Writing – I still think garohevtí are both specialized words not used in everyday writing AND a partially different writing system.


3. To me the D’ni script mostly resembles the Arabic script, with its mostly uninterrupted flow. The most decorative of the various calligraphic styles of Arabic add many strokes that are just ornaments, without semantic function. As I said, D’ni might be more minimalistic, but still have some flowering.

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  46116   —  D’ní notesFontsGoodies
.fa  mEstav  Kat  Kenen  xanril  fUru

February 13, 2015 at 3:00 PM Flag Quote & Reply

KathTheDragon
Site Owner
Posts: 381

Ah, I meant attested functions. Speculation is all well and good, but amounts to nothing without any kind of support.

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Moula KI: 00005310
DI KI: 00205116
deviantART: kathaveara
tumblr: kaththedragon

Grand Master of the Guild of Linguists


February 14, 2015 at 5:01 AM Flag Quote & Reply

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