Re: Rendering Isolated Syriac characters

From: Patrick Andries (
Date: Thu May 18 2000 - 21:41:14 EDT

----- Original Message -----
From: "Patrick Andries" <>

> Tim wrote :
> > The isolated form looks the same as the sequences kaph kaph, mim mim,
> > nun nun respectively.
> I have the same impression. I have a source (in French,
> that indicates the same kind
> of glyph variant in modern-day West Syriac (Serto) for isolated nun and
> kaph. It does not use it in the name « nun » found in the alphabet table
> where it uses the "nominal" nun (after waw which is right-joining).
> when the same letters are not surrounded by any other letters they then
> the « isolated » shape (see the phonetic table). I suspect therefore that
> the same phenomenon takes place in Serto and modern Aramaic (though mim is
> not mentioned in my source). Five different glyph types, then ? Another
> trick ?

I have checked another source (R. Duval's Treatise on the Syriac Grammar)
and I have noticed that:

  -- he never uses the distinct isolated form of the nun (nunnun)
  -- he uses the kaphkaph form (isolated) in his alphabet table and phonetic
table (see, lower 3 images are
from Duval's treatise) but not as a final letter after a right-joining one
(see b'rakh -- "he knelt").

So, I just wonder how obligatory those isolated forms are and whether they
depend on the context (early texts as opposed to modern ones, Eastern vs.
Western Syriac).

Any help welcome.

Patrick Andries
Dorval (Québec)

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.2 : Tue Jul 10 2001 - 17:21:02 EDT