[texhax] hebrew help?

Joel C. Salomon joelcsalomon at gmail.com
Sun Nov 1 02:36:24 CET 2009

David M. Dubin, MD wrote:
> In Biblical texts, there are multiple markings (such as diacritical
> marks, vowels and musical notation) which appear above & below letters
> (sometimes 3 or 4 per letter!).  While there are scholarly fonts that
> can handle this, I want to split several characters to eliminate
> ambiguity, and Unicode doesn’t allow such innovation.
> For example, the Hebrew vowel called schva (the origin of schwa in
> English) either connotes no sound or a short schwa sound after the
> letter it appears under.  I would like to have two different glyphs to
> connote the two sounds. I would like to split some other symbols into as
> many as three, each of which would have a *bold* & regular glyph.

Unicode supports just about all these points, including the multiple
combinations (niqqud, taam, and upper & lower punctum extraordinaire).
SBL Hebrew (and, I think, SIL Ezra) support even the new separate qamats
qatan glyph.  I don’t know of any font that has a bold sheva na, and
Unicode does not encode it.

What other variant points are you looking for?

—Joel Salomon

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