[XeTeX] Mixed Roman and Indian alphabets for Sanskrit

Dominik Wujastyk wujastyk at gmail.com
Fri Feb 17 15:09:12 CET 2017

I'm not sure what more to say, Phil.  My comments arise out of my
orientation to end-users (including myself), not the internals of the OT
language or the "you can do anything" strengths of TeX.  I'm interested in
transparent terminology that makes it obvious to a user, for example, which
hyphenation table is active at any particular moment in a document.

The fact that Script=Gujarati means slightly different things in different
macros, for example, as Ulrika pointed out, is extremely unhelpful to
serious authors who aren't TeX hackers.


Professor Dominik Wujastyk <http://ualberta.academia.edu/DominikWujastyk>

Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Society and Polity

Department of History and Classics <http://historyandclassics.ualberta.ca/>
University of Alberta, Canada

South Asia at the U of A:


On 16 February 2017 at 10:57, Philip Taylor <P.Taylor at rhul.ac.uk> wrote:

> Dominik Wujastyk wrote:
> Yes, and it's this very assumption that is unhelpful, Phil, and leads to
> confusion.
> Now /I/ am confused (a not-uncommon state as my 70th birthday approaches
> with ever-increasing speed).  Are you saying (a) that my assumption is a
> common assumption, but is wrong (in which case, what /does/ Polyglossia
> mean by "\sanskritfont); or (b) that my assumption is correct (and if so,
> in what way is it  unhelpful ?).  I understand that one may wish to set
> Sanskrit in a number of fonts within a single text, but TeX is a dynamic
> language and one can (surely) re-define "\sanskritfont" just as often as
> one chooses, can one not ?  In my own work, I routinely re-define (e.g.,)
> "\romanfont", "\italicfont" and so on any number of times, to reflect what
> the intended expansion of those control sequences are at any particular
> point in the document.
> More importantly (IMHO) do you agree that the terminology originates not
> within Polyglossia but within the Opentype specification, in which case
> (just as with Unicode) we must surely learn to live with it rather than
> rail against its deficiencies.
> Also, it's common for academics to use multiple scripts for Sanskrit
> within a single document (typically Devanagari and Latin transliteration).
> I /think/ that this is covered by what I wrote above, but if I am wrong,
> please correct me.
> ** Phil.
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