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Hans, you're an expert, but I have a question...

Hello Jim,
Now the story about the ij, ei and y is this: as I told
you our Dutch ij is one character and as far as I know it is
only used in Dutch. Typewriters have a special key for this character.
It is not supported by ascii or by any extended single byte character
set but it IS supported by unicode set Latin Extended-A, latin
capital ligature IJ and latin small ligature ij, hex codes U+0132
and U+0133. Both ij and ei sound the same and we call ij "lange
ij" (=long) and ei "korte ei" (=short). If we
have to type this long ij on a computer keyboard we always substitute
it by typing I+J or i+j and never Y or y. The y is called in
Dutch "Griekse y" (=Greek y) or y-Grec and is primarily
used in foreign words. If one uses the ÿ character instead of
the ij character it really looks very odd to us because it would
mean something completely different. The Dutch "trema"
(ë) is used when the pronunciation of a set of vowels differs
from what would be expected. For instance "idee" (=idea)
has plural "ideeën" (=ideas) and is pronounced "ee-day-yen"
instead of "ee-dane" so the trema splits the "ee"
and the "e" sounds.
About that dinner. I already have an appointment for dinner
but I'll try to move that to another day. If I'm able to meet
you I'll give you a call sunday morning.
Tot ziens.


RE: ........ and this computerstuff is exactly why nearly all modern experts on Dutch spelling have giving up this letter. In about all Dutch dictionaries the letter is nowadays spelled as ij.Bohannon is not so far of if he uses the y instead, since in medieval time the ij-letter did not exist yet and was spelled with the latin y. The ij-letter is a 18th century creation which is allready nearly dead.Only people close-and-over-40 will remind the letter as today it is not teached at school anymore.John
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