[KS] Re: [Fwd: romanization '99]

B.C.A. Walraven walraven at letmail.let.LeidenUniv.nl
Wed Jun 9 11:02:21 EDT 1999

Two brief comments on Robert Fouser's message on romanization.

Robert quotes the remark on "the infortunate choice of the apostrophe to
mark aspiration." It seems to me that this choice only is unfortunate in
the eyes of linguists, who use the apostrophe for other purposes, but who
if the two systems are adopted (actually these are already in force) will
not have to worry about this. Because it should be our general principle to
change as little as possible (because every change may be a source of added
confusion) I am in favour of retaining the apostrophe (and solving the chh

I prefer the accent circonflex instead of the accent aigu. It is on more
basic keyboards worldwide (it is on every Dutch keyboard although it is not
needed to write Dutch, for instance), and more importantly, it does not
seem to have a very fixed value in most languages (in contrast to the
accent aigu, the "single tick"; it is also used much less), which will
alert more people who see it in transcriptions from Korean for the first
time more quickly that it is used for a special purpose, which does not
coincide with the use it has in their own language (if it has any).

Boudewijn Walraven


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