=?iso-8859-1?Q?Re: [b-hebrew] Hebrew with Aramaic, Phoenician etc in scholarlypublications?=

Karl Randolph kwrandolph at email.com
Fri Jul 18 15:14:56 EDT 2003

Are you sure that I am the first person in 2,000 years to read the Bible in paleo-Hebrew glyphs? That thought never crossed my mind when I started until you mentioned it, and now that I have completed at least one time through I find I prefer those glyphs to the modern ones. However, as being something special, I view it as no different than reading an unpointed text, and plenty of people have done that, unless I’m mistaken. All I’ve done is to print modern Hebrew to the screen in paleo-Hebrew glyphs.

As far as practical, again no different than an unpointed text. However, when self-important theologians come up and they are going to show this untrained layman a thing or two, seeing the text in paleo-Hebrew glyphs takes the air out of them.

Presently, unicode encodes the sofit letters, which should be merely alternate glyphs, as separate letters. The same is true of the vowels. Thus, even if I make the glyphs print to screen as paleo-Hebrew, the underlying code will not be what I see. What I want is for the underlying code to be the same as what I see. (Online Bible uses their own unique encoding system, such that they can encode the sofit letters without it messing up the search function in word processors or in their own program. But the sin and shin are different.) Thus, while humans have no problem seeing them merely as different glyphs for the same letters, the computer is too dumb to do the same.

If Moses wrote the Torah as tradition avers, then the Phoenecians learned the alphabet from the Hebrews, not the other way around.

Thanks for the references. I’m following them up.

Karl W. Randolph.

----- Original Message -----
From: Peter Kirk <peter.r.kirk at ntlworld.com>

> On 17/07/2003 16:16, Karl Randolph wrote:
> >Actually, I have something similar on my Macintosh at home. I downloaded the Online Bible consonant only text and made a quick reconstruction of a paleo Hebrew font to fit it. It looks sort of like what such a manuscript may have looked like: the sin and shin look the same and the sofit glyphs are the same as the non-sofit glyphs, but the underlying code is still modern.
> >
> >As far as I know, the Online Bible is the only version that has the option of a consonant only text, at least for the Macintosh. The main thing keeping me from taking that text and re-encoding it in paleo-Hebrew is that there is no such encoding in unicode yet.
> >
> >Karl W. Randolph.
> >
> >  
> >
> >
> Well, it's debatable in Unicode whether paleo-Hebrew should be 
> considered a variety of Phoenician which will (see 
> http://www.unicode.org/roadmaps/smp/) probably sometime be encoded in 
> the block 00010930-0001094F  (and it's pretty certain that in that case 
> the order of characters will be very like the proposal 
> http://www.evertype.com/standards/plane-1/ph.html), or whether it is 
> considered a variety of Hebrew in which case the paleo-Hebrew letters 
> are considered glyph variants of the modern Hebrew ones. The latter is 
> certainly the safer choice at present. Perhaps you can get together with 
> Jim West to re-encode his paleo-Hebrew font, see 
> http://web.infoave.net/~jwest/fonts.html, with the appropriate Unicode 
> encoding. If you simply assign zero width blank glyphs to all the 
> vowels, cantillation marks etc, any Unicode Hebrew text (e.g. the 
> cantillated Bible text from http://www.mechon-mamre.org/) will 
> automatically come out how you want it. You may even become the first 
> person for more than 2000 years to actually read the Bible in this 
> script. Exciting, but I'm not sure how practical.
> -- 
> Peter Kirk
> peter.r.kirk at ntlworld.com
> http://web.onetel.net.uk/~peterkirk/
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