[b-greek] Re: [b-greek]transliteration

From: Carl W. Conrad (cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu)
Date: Thu Mar 28 2002 - 10:30:44 EST

Once unicode is up and working on all platforms with fonts available for
all operating systems, we'll very likely go that way, but things are not
quite that far along yet. For me as a Mac user Unicode only works with a
couple fonts in the OmniWeb browser.

At 9:25 AM -0600 3/28/02, Vincent M. Setterholm wrote:
>Why not just make unicode the B-Greek Standard? Unicode was designed for
>lists like this. No need to worry about which font someone is using - any
>font with the extended character set for polytonic greek will do (many of
>which are available for free download). Greek letters have bit values
>distinct from Englsih, so there is no transliteration being performed by the
>font, unlike ASCII. Windows 2000 and Windows XP users already have the
>keyboard maps for typing in polytonic greek (they are included in the OS) -
>and there are shareware (freeware?) and relatively innexpensive commercial
>options for those who want keyboard maps on a different OS. And many
>(most? all?) of the high end bible programs on the market will paste text in
>unicode (as long as the OS supports unicode) without any special keyboard
>Vincent Setterholm
>-----Original Message-----
>From: Carl W. Conrad [mailto:cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu]
>Sent: Thursday, March 28, 2002 6:17 AM
>To: Biblical Greek
>Cc: Biblical Greek
>Subject: [b-greek] Re: [b-greek]transliteration
>At 10:44 AM +0000 3/28/02, Maurice A. O'Sullivan wrote:
>>At 07:35 28/03/02, c stirling bartholomew wrote:
>>>Many of us, by the way, don't read the transliterated Greek in the posts
>>>anyway, we just open up the text in Accordance or whatever and read it
>But if that's the case, it's not because the transliterated Greek is
>unintelligible, whereas the copied & pasted Greek text depends very much
>upon the Greek fonts one has in one's computer's operating system, and
>that's very likely to come out as gobbledy-gook on screens of those who
>don't have the same system.
>>Good advice, which I strongly endorse.
>>Surely it is only in a few cases, such as textual variants, grammatical
>>queries involving differing forms, antecedents etc that transliteration is
>>required, and then only the relevant terms rather than chunks of text?
>>Should we not take it as a given on a list named B-GREEK that the text,
>>either in printed or electronic form, is to hand?
>That's fine, and I do that myself when I receive a BG message that doesn't
>cite the text, but in responding I (personally) cite the relevant parts of
>the text in our standard transliteration scheme; I prefer for my own part
>to have the text immediately in the message where I'm commenting or
>responding. Many indeed do send messages asking questions about a text
>which they don't cite--and sometimes it's not even clear that they're
>asking a question about the Greek text at all.
>In his off-list complaint to me about my complaint regarding this matter,
>Dave Willis cited that BG FAQ regarding transliteration schemes, pointing
>out the opening sentence in particular:
>>19. How do I transliterate Greek in messages sent to B-Greek?
>> B-Greek has from the beginning allowed every poster to use
>> any scheme he/she found comfortable, since we all could usually
>> figure out what text was meant. For those who wish some
>> guidance, a generally accepted scheme has evolved on the List,
>> with two or three matters still not fully settled.
>It is true that we haven't dictated use of one particular transliteration
>scheme over another, but from my perspective "Greek" text pasted into a
>message from a copied text composed in a Greek font is not a
>transliteration at all, and as I've said before and repeat, it's likely to
>appear as gobbledygook on most reader's screens.
>Ultimately I think that using a conventional transliteration scheme when
>citing Greek is a matter of courtesy in e-communication. The FAQ doesn't
>dictate use of one particular scheme; probably Beta-code is the most
>precise of all schemes; many use our conventional scheme with variants (X
>for Chi instead of C for Chi; TH for Theta instead of Q for theta; even C
>for Xi, probably because one has already used X for Chi).
>When I first started transliterating text for BG messages I DID have
>initial difficulties because the equivalencies are far different from those
>of the SMK GreeKeys fonts that I had used for years as a teacher in
>preparing materials for class, but the difficulties are not nearly as great
>as those we had when, though native users of a Roman alphabet, we were
>learning Greek for the first time and nowhere near difficult as those we
>had learning Hebrew.
>Perhaps we SHOULD require a single scheme of transliteration, although I'm
>not prepared at this point to urge it upon my co-moderators. Most new
>list-members have adapted to our conventional scheme without complaining
>about it, and those who have used lower-case characters instead of
>upper-case and have omitted breathing marks and subscripts (however helpful
>these are in recognition of morphological elements) have at least
>endeavored and have, I think, succeeded, in making their cited Greek
>intelligible to other list-members.
>I repeat that, in my own view, transliterating the Greek one cites or
>raises questions about or comments upon is a matter of courtesy to other
>list-members. I personally think that pasting from a Greek text into ASCII
>equivalents in a message implies either an expectation that the reader has
>the same font in one's own operating system or that one doesn't care
>whether others can readily read that text or not. I would personally rather
>see an authentically-transliterated text in a message than a pasted text,
>and I tend, like George Somsel, to ignore a text that doesn't use SOME
>intelligible transliteration scheme.
>Carl W. Conrad
>Co-Chair, B-Greek List
>Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
>cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu OR cwconrad@ioa.com
>WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/
>B-Greek home page: http://metalab.unc.edu/bgreek
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Carl W. Conrad
Department of Classics, Washington University (Emeritus)
Most months:: 1647 Grindstaff Road/Burnsville, NC 28714/(828) 675-4243
cwconrad@artsci.wustl.edu OR cwconrad@ioa.com
WWW: http://www.artsci.wustl.edu/~cwconrad/

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