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Re: VMs: Voynichese as an Abugida

--- Koontz John E <John.Koontz@xxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> The Devanagari and other Brahmi-derived scripts of
> South Asia are the most
> familiar examples, think.  These scripts also
> include special characters
> for initial vowels, and often have a large number of
> more or less obscure
> ligatures for clusters.

Other scripts have been derived from the 
Devanagari, and have slightly different solutions
for the vowels. The idea is that the 'implied'
vowel (usually, if not always, "a") does not have
to be written, and in those cases where there
is a different vowel, it is indicated by a 
different symbol, occasionally also above or
below the string of consonants. This works well
for some Indian languages, where 'a' is by far
the most common vowel. 
Corollary: an abugida-like script could work
with far fewer symbols than one might expect.

The question about word-initial vowels can also
be approached in different ways. Some languages
employ a null-consonant to start the word (or
syllable), which in reality is like
a glottal stop. Just because we don't write these
in European languages doesn't mean that these
couldn't be "real consonants".

And here is also part of the point Dennis raised
about French being strung together. This also
happens often when French people (and some other
nationalities too) speak English or German.
French doesn't really require a glottal stop,
whereas in many Germanic languages it is used
even though it isn't written.

Usual apologies about the lack of proper linguistic
terms apply.

Cheers, Rene

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