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Re: Why did Boustrophedon Disappear?

From:Benct Philip Jonsson <bpj@...>
Date:Wednesday, April 1, 2009, 9:43
David McCann skrev:
> On Tue, 2009-03-30 at 07:15 +0100, R A Brown wrote: > >> I'm told that right-handed people write Arabic in columns down the page >> which, when the page is turned 90 degrees clockwise gives the standard >> left-to-right cursive script. I don't know how true that is. > > It doesn't look as if anyone else here knows either, but it seems to > have been standard practice for Aramaic, Sogdian, and Uighur writers in > the Middle Ages. The Mongols, of course, don't turn the page round any > more, so the script is now vertical. > > The wear on a reed pen would probably make it more likely to stick when > moving in a different direction (that is certainly the case with a > quill), so that would be a factor in favour of a consistent direction. >
Is an Arabic broadpen cut straight or slanted for right-handed writers? That would be a clue, if anyone has seen an illutration. On a tangent: once on a lecture I sat next to a (probably) Persian man who had creased his A4s down the middle and wrote notes in Latin script LTR on the left column and notes in Arabic script RTL on the right column -- with a ballpoint of course. I don't know if the Persian jottings were all glosses of the "Latin" (Swedish and Englis) jottings, since I didn't ask, but he ended up with a lot more Persian than Latin on each page, and still he mostly stuck to his columns. Neat! I took to using the two-column model with Latin and Shorthand, although both written LTR; it is often hard to tell if a particular mark is a cursive <i> or a badly written Melin's shorthand <v>, or a badly written cursive <o> or a Melin's <per>, for example. /BP