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Re: Accents

From:Lars Henrik Mathiesen <thorinn@...>
Date:Tuesday, January 8, 2002, 18:28
> Date: Tue, 8 Jan 2002 12:55:37 -0500 > From: John Cowan <jcowan@...> > > Stephen Mulraney wrote: > > > BTW, why do Americans call # ('hash', 'octothorp') the 'pound symbol' ?? > > Because it used to be written *following* a number on bags full of > stuff to indicate their weight in pounds, thus: 20# = 20 pounds > weight.
My theory is that this use of the # sign is derived from the L B BAR SYMBOL at U-2114, or a script version of it. Older Danish cookbooks (and my grandmother's handwritten recipes) use a symbol for a pound that looks like a script lowercase u with the right tail going back across the legs --- that would be an intermediate stage. BTW, John, would that be a candidate for encoding in Unicode? It doesn't really look like either a NUMBER SIGN or an L B BAR SYMBOL. I don't know how the symbol came to be used for a number sign, though. Perhaps the current shape is really a merger of two different signs. Lars Mathiesen (U of Copenhagen CS Dep) <thorinn@...> (Humour NOT marked)


Joe Hill <joe@...>
John Cowan <jcowan@...>