Academy of Saint Gabriel Members' Guide: Technical Details

Academy of Saint Gabriel Members' Guide

Some Technical Details


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Vocabulary and Abbreviations

We use a lot of specialized vocabulary in our discussions. Here is a list of some of the more common terms with definitions. These technical terms can be used in letters, but you must be careful that the meaning is either clear from context or given explicitly. For example:

We usually define heraldic terms only when we feel that the client won't understand them. If the client blazons his design in his letter, then we tend to assume that he understands basic blazonry. If not, we often describe arms in plain English as well as in blazon. Rare heraldic terms should be defined.

Here is some of our technical vocabulary. A list of common abbreviations follows. Abbreviations for common references are listed elsewhere. These lists do not include terms of blazon. You can find those in many standard heraldic references, including the online edition of Parker's Glossary of Terms used in Heraldry. A more Society-oriented Glossary of Heraldic Terms is also available.

Technical Terms

Ablative (abl.) The grammatical case that indicates the actor in a passive sentence, or the object of a preposition. See Grammatical Cases.
Accusative (abl.) The grammatical case that indicates the direct object of a sentence. See Grammatical Cases.
Byname An additional name added to the given name in order to distinguish the individual from others bearing the same given name. We typically use byname to mean non-hereditary, descriptive terms, including patronymics, locative and local bynames, metonymics and occupational bynames.
Dative (dat.) The grammatical case that marks the indirect object of a sentence. See Grammatical Cases.
Dental A sound formed with your tongue against your teeth, like d or t. See Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.
Deuterotheme See dithematic.
Dithematic A naming system in which any of a stock of first elements (protothemes) can be combined with any of a stock of second elements (deuterothemes) to form a name.
Fricative A sound produced by friction in the vocal tract, like th, sh, s, or z. It can be voiced or unvoiced (q.v.). See Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.
Genitive (gen.) The grammatical case that expresses possession, i.e. Peter's as opposed to Peter. In many languages, a patronym must be in the genitive case. See Grammatical Cases.
Hypocoristic A short or pet form of a given name, like Pete or Petey.
Inflect To change form in different grammatical contexts. English doesn't have much inflection. In nouns it distinguishes singular and plural, but not the various cases of German, Latin, or Russian, say, and not gender, as in French and German. It doesn't inflect adjectives: it's always good, for instance, while in German the corresponding adjective can appear as gut, guter, gute, gutes, gute, guten, guter, or gutem, depending on the grammatical context.

The English verbal system distinguishes present and past tense forms: 'run/ran', 'love/loved'. Verbs in the present tense have only two forms, one for the third person singular (e.g., 'he/she/it runs') and one for everything else ('I/you/we/they run'); verbs in the past tense have only one. In Old Norse, on the other hand, you have this in the present tense:

    ek vaki 'I stay awake'
    vakir 'you (singular) stay awake'
    hann/hn vakir 'he/she stays awake'
    vr vkum 'we stay awake'
    r vaki 'you (plural) stay awake'
    eir/r vaka 'they (masc./fem.) stay awake'

And in the past tense you have this:

    ek vakta
    vaktir
    hann/hn vakti
    vr vktum
    r vktu
    eir/r vktu

These changes in the form of the verb vaka 'to stay awake' are an example of inflection.

Labial A sound formed with one or both lips, like f or the German ü. See Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.
Lenition A grammatical change found in Gaelic. In some circumstances, the initial consonant of a word in a Gaelic phrase will soften, often by aspiration. For example, in a feminine patronymic, the patronym is always in the genitive case and lenited. Depending on the period, lenition may or may not be reflected in spelling. When it does effect spelling, it is often indicated by adding an h after the initial consonant. For example, if Domhnall had a daughter, she might be called inghean Dhomnaill. The added i puts the name into the genitive case.
Local Byname A byname that describes the place where a person lives or lived, e.g. by the Hill. This is to be contrasted with locative bynames, which refer to named places, e.g. of London.
Locative A byname that identifies the place where a person lives or lived. Technically, this term refers only to bynames based on toponyms, like of London, but we often use it loosely to include local bynames.
Metonymic Byname A byname that identifies a person by metonymy, i.e. by a single feature or object taken as a symbol for the whole. Metonymic bynames are usually occupational. For example, Pepir "pepper" is a metonymic byname for a spice merchant.
Metronymic Like a patronymic, but it identifies a person's mother. Sometimes also matronymic.
Nominative (nom.) The grammatical case that marks a word used as the subject of a sentence. See Grammatical Cases.
Normalized spelling A standard scholarly spelling based on attested forms which is occasionally modified to contain additional phonetic information not present in the original.
Occupational Byname A byname that identifies a person's occupation or trade, e.g. Smith.
Palatal A sound produced by putting the middle of the tongue near or on the roof of the mouth, like y in yeast or sh. See Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.
Patronymic A byname which identifies a person's father; also, a hereditary surname derived from such a byname. In languages like Gaelic where a patronymic is composed of two parts, the part that means son or daughter is called the patronymic particle; the part that actual includes the father's name is called the patronym.
Prototheme Also protheme. See dithematic.
Surname Technically synonymous to byname, but we generally use it to describe bynames that are fixed and hereditary, and therefore not necessarily descriptive of the individuals who use them.
Toponym A place name.
Unvoiced A sound pronounced without contribution from the vocal cords, like the th in thing. See voiced below and Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.
Vocative (voc.) The grammatical case marking a word (usually a name or title) used in direct address, as in Hey, George! or O, Lord. See Grammatical Cases.
Voiced A sound pronounced with contribution from the vocal cords, like the th in this. See unvoiced above and Tangwystyl's Linguistics for Heralds.

Abbreviations

See also notation for giving dates.

KWHS Known World Heraldic Symposium
ME Middle English
MHA Medieval Heraldry Archive
MNA Medieval Names Archive
MHG Middle High German
OE Old English
OFr Old French
OHG Old High German
ON Old Norse
s.n. sub nomine, Latin for under the name of. We sometimes use this abbreviation when referring to a particular entry in a name dictionary, e.g. Black s.n. MacLeod. Its plural is s.nn.
s.v. sub verbo, plural s.vv.. Latin under the word, used to refer to a heading in a dictionary.
WWD What We Do, usually referring to the form letter we often send to prospective clients when we're not sure whether they are interested in the kind of consultation we offer.


The Subject: line and other technical details

The progress of each client's question is tracked automatically by software that Arval has written. This software watches mail passing through the Academy mailing list, uses the Subject: line of the note to figure out which client it applies to, what stage the case has reached, and when the case is complete. It is therefore important that the Subject: line be properly formatted. It's up to the person writing the report to ensure that the Subject: line is correct; everyone else just has to use the same Subject: line on their own notes. In most mailers, using the reply function will automatically provide a valid Subject: line. However, if you are receiving the Academy digest, you'll need to take care that your subject line is correct: Your mailer's reply function will probably get it wrong.

The format of the Subject: line for a new client is:

where XXX is the client number, Name is the name that the moderator chose to identify the client, and [TAG1], etc. are tagsadded to the subject line to allow Academy members to sort their mail automatically. If Name ends with an asterisk (*), that means that the client has asked a question about armory (perhaps in addition to a question about names). A tilde (~) means the question is straightforward and could be answered with a quick reply based on past research and trivial research. A percent sign (%) means that the report will be easy to write, and is therefore a good choice for someone who wants to try his hand at writing reports. A octothorp (pound sign, #) means it is a non-Society question.

When the writer sends out a draft report, the format should be:

where Y is the draft number. Don't be stingy about using draft numbers: They are simply a convenience to allow us to keep track of the letter and the commentary. Even a very preliminary draft can be Draft 1. Any revision that you circulate to the Academy should get a new draft number. It's generally better to circulate a full draft rather than an excerpt showing the changes you've made: It gives people a chance to re-read the whole letter and spot typos, etc. Feel free to include comments at the top of the letter pointing out the most recent changes.

When the writer sends the final report, the format should be:

There is no such thing as a Final Draft; if the word Final appears in the subject line of a client letter, that note will be treated as the final report. Note: The subject line on a final report cannot begin with Re:, Fw:, or anything similar. If it does, the report will be treated as a regular comment. This allows comments on reports to be written more easily.

It's OK if comments on final reports have Subject: lines like

The filters won't be confused.

All mail to the Academy mailing list is automatically sent to all Academy members. It is not necessary to send a duplicate copy to the person who wrote the note to which you are replying. It won't get there any faster; it's just a waste of bandwidth.

Final reports are sent to the clients by a moderator after a few days (to make sure that there are no problems that the writer missed). Don't send a duplicate copy to the client.

Subject line tags

As mentioned above, we add tags to the Subject: line to allow Acadmey members to sort their mail. If you find that the volume of mail is too high or that you are really only interested in discussions of certain topics, these tags will allow you to filter out sub-sets of the mail that you don't want to see, or to direct mail to separate folders depending on its topic. We encourage everyone to read all the mail. You'll learn a lot by listening in on all the discussion.

These tags are added to client questions when they are accepted for Academy review. It is your responsibility to include them in the Subject: line in your comments and drafts. If you leave 'em out, your mail will be mis-filed and many people may not see it.

If you choose to filter out some mail, we strongly recommend that you set up your filters so that it will accept Academy mail that has no tag on the Subject: line or that has unrecognized tags. There's a lot of important internal discussion in the Academy, adminstrative announcements, and the like, that won't be tagged. Everyone should read these messages. If you have any interest at all in names discussion, you should accept messages with the [OTH] tag; it's our catch-all for unclassifiable messages and it may overlap with anyone's speciality.

Everyone should read anything with the tag [README], and I recommend also reading anything labeled [ADMIN] or [IQ] (internal question).

If you need help configuring your mail filter, please try to get help from your local help desk. There may be someone in the Academy who can help you, but please try that only as a last resort. Effrick has offered to help people configure Eudora, and Arval can help with procmail.

Here is a list of the tags we're using. If you think additional tags would be useful, suggest them on the mailing list.

We have a few special tags:
 
[IQ] internal research request
[ADMIN] adminstrative issues
[README] urgent adminstrative issues; Blaise or I should be the only people using this one
 
Every client-related message will have one or both of these tags:
 
[ARM] armory
[NAM] names
 
Every message will have one or more of these tags:
 
[ARA] Arabic
[BYZ] Byzantine
[ENG] English
[FIN] Finnish
[FRE] French
[GER] German
[IRI] Irish
[ITA] Italian
[JAP] Japanese
[JEW] Jewish
[LOW] Dutch, Frisian
[NOR] Old Norse/Icelandic
[ROM] Romany
[RUS] Russian
[EEU] Other Eastern European
[SCO] Scottish
[SPA] Spanish, Catalan, Portuguese
[SWE] Swedish, Danish, etc.
[TUR] Turkish
[WEL] Welsh
[OTH] Other
 
We also have created tags for some of our members who can't afford to read all the mail:
 
[EFFRICK] Effrick neyn Kenneoch
[MARI] Mari neyn Bryan
[ZENOBIA] Zenobia Naphtali


Giving Pronunciations

We often give pronunciations for names or other words. In general, we try to give a pronunciation when the standard American reading of a word differs significantly from its correct historical pronunciation.

Pronunciations are always shown between back-slashes, \like this\. We try to write pronunciations so that they make sense when read as standard American English: <icon> is pronounced \EYE-kahn\. Stressed syllables are capitalized. So, the pronunciation of <Sandy> could be given as \SAN-dee\. If any part of the pronunciation is ambiguous, then it should be explained the first time it is given in the letter:

We have settled on standard representations and descriptions for a few sounds, some of which don't occur in English. We try to be fairly consistent from one letter to the next, but it is more important that the explanations in each letter are clear and consistent within that letter. If that can be achieved while also using our standard symbols, we do. Symbols show below on a red background must always be explained when used. Parenthetical comments are additional information and should generally not be included in a letter.

For some sounds below, we include the ASCII IPA representation of the sound. IPA is a phonetic language for precisely describing sounds. It uses a variety of symbols difficult to represent in plain text, so online users developed ASCII IPA for that purpose. ASCII IPA representations appear in square brackets, like [o:].

We try to use symbols consistently for one type of sound or sound alteration. Some sounds which may not appear below can be readily understood as a similar alteration to listed sounds:

^
(~ in older letters)
follows a palatalized consonant. This is sometimes also shown by \y\ or \(y)\.
~ indicates the nasalization of the previous sound.
( ) indicates a lightly pronounced consonant. This is sometimes also shown by a lower case letter imbedded in a stressed syllable (see (y) below).
Pronunciation Symbols
\a\ the sound of <a> in <act> and <cat>.
\ay\ the sound of <a> in <take>, <ai> in <aid>, and <ay> in <way>.
\ah\ the sound of <ah> in <bah>, <a> in <father>, and <o> in <lock>.
\aw\ the sound of <aw> in <law> and <awl>, and the <au> in <audit>.
\bh\ A voiced bilabial fricative used in Spanish <lobo> 'wolf' and <uva> 'grape'. It is the sound made by positioning your lips to say a \b\, but relaxing them slightly so that the air escapes. This sound does not occur in English.
\ch\ the soft <ch> sound in German <ich> 'I', and German <nicht> 'not' or Scots <nicht> 'night'.
\dh\ voiced \th\, the sound of <th> in <this>, <thy> and <bathe>, but not in <thistle>, <thigh>, and <bath>. (The \dh\ sound can be the pronunciation of either of the letters edh or thorn, depending on the language and the letter's position in the word. Any letter using these characters should be reviewed by an expert on the language in question before publication.)
\dj\ the sound of <j> in <just> and <g> in <gem>.
\ee\ the sound of <ee> in <feed> and <ea> in <team>.
\eh\ the sound of <e> in <neck> and <vend>. (This symbol is usually used when there is no consonant in the syllable; <neck> would be given as \NEK\ rather than \NEHK\.)
\ey\ the sound of <igh> in <high>, <y> in <fly> and <ey> in <eye>. (Sometimes given as \eye\ when there is no consonant in the syllable.)
\g\ the sound of <g> in <give> and <go>.
\gh\ voiced \kh\, related to \kh\ exactly as \g\ is to \k\, \z\ is to \s\, or \v\ to \f\. This sound can be described in several ways. It is the sound made by saying the <ch> in Scottish <loch> while vibrating your vocal cords. Alternatively (but not a good choice to explain it to clients): Shape your mouth to say \@\, but sing it instead. While continuing to sing it, raise the back of your tongue to create a bit of a constriction back where you normally block off the air-flow to say \g\. This sound is not found in English.
\i"\ The high central unrounded vowel between \ee\ and \u*\, represented by ASCII IPA [i"] and IPA barred-i.
\ih\ the sound of <i> in <pig> and <swim>. (This symbol is usually used when there is no consonant in the syllable; <pig> would be given as \PIG\ rather than \PIHG\.)
\kh\ the rasping sound of <ch> in Scottish <loch> 'lake' or German <ach> 'oh' and <Bach>. This sound is made by bringing the tongue into the position for the \k\ sound as in 'cool' while pronouncing a strong, rasping \h\. This sound is not found in English.
\l^\ (\l~\ in older letters) a palatalized <l>, the sound of <lli> in the French word <million> 'million' and Italian <degli> 'of the'. This sound does not occur in native English words. (Many Americans will find this sound similar to \ly\; however, it is a single sound that cannot be split between two syllables. Thus, French <million> is closer to \mee-LYOH~\ than to \meel-YOH~\.)
\mh\ a nasalized version of the sound of b in Spanish lobo 'a wolf' and of v in Spanish uva 'a grape'. To make this sound, set yourself to say \b\, but relax your lips slightly so that the air can escape between them with a sort of buzzing sound. It's rather like blowing out a candle, except that your vocal cords are vibrating. Since the sound is nasalized, some air should also escape through your nose.
\n^\ (\n~\ in older letters) the sound of ny in nyah-nyah, of n-tilde in Spanish <sen~or> 'mister', and <gn> in French <montagne> 'mountain' and Italian <lasagna>. This sound almost never occurs in native English words. Use the example nyah-nyah when the sound occurs at the beginning of a syllable, montagne and lasagna when it occurs at the end of a word. Many Americans will find this sound similar to \ny\ pronounced as a consonant blend; however, \n^\ is in fact a single sound, a palatalized \n\. Thus, Spanish <sen~or> is closer to \seh-NYOR\ than to \sen-YOR\. However, we often approximate this sound at a syllable boundary by splitting it across the syllables.
\o"\ represents either:
  • German o-umlaut as in <schön> 'beautiful' or <eu> in French <feu> 'fire'. More precisely, it is the vowel you get by pronouncing the <a> in <able> with your lips positioned to pronounce the <o> in <over>. This sound is not found in English; or

  • German o-umlaut as in <Hölle> 'Hell' or <eu> in French <peuple> 'people'. More precisely, it is the vowel you get by pronouncing the <e> in <let> with your lips positioned to pronounce <o> as in <over>. This sound is not found in English.
\oh\ [O], the sound of <o> in <more>.
\oh~\ a nasalized vowel, as in the French <bon> 'good'. This sound is not found in English.
\oa\, \o\ [o:], the sound of <oa> in <boat>. Use \oa\ to represent this sound when it is in the middle of a syllable, followed by a consonant, like \BOAT\; but use \o\ when it is at the end of a syllable, like \BO\.
\oo\ represents either:
  • the sound of <oo> in <cool> and <moon>; or

  • the sound of <oo> in <book> and <good>.
\ow\ the sound of <ow> in <how> and <ou> in <loud>, not <ow> in <low>.
\ph\ A sound similar to \f\ but made with the two lips rather than with the lower lip and upper teeth. The result is rather like the sound of blowing out a candle. This sound is used in Japanese. The symbol must be explained.
\(r)\ an unvoiced trilled <r>, used in Old Norse as a nominative case suffix. For example, <Grimmr> is represented as \GREEM(r)\. This sound is not found in English.
\t^\ (\t~\ in older letters) palatalized \t\, found in the Gaelic name <Temair> or Russian <teper> 'now'. This sound is not found in English, but can be explained as falling somewhere between \tch\ and \ts\.
\tch\ the sound of <ch> in <church> and <tch> in <pitch>.
\th\ voiceless \th\, the sound of <th> in <thistle>, <thigh>, and <bath>, but not in <this>, <thy> and <bathe>. (The \th\ sound can be the pronunciation of either of the letters edh or thorn, depending on the language and the letter's position in the word. Any letter using these characters should be reviewed by an expert on the language in question before publication.)
\uh\ the sound of <u> in <hum> and <gun>. (This symbol is usually used when there is no consonant in the syllable; <hum> would be given as \HUM\ rather than \HUHM\.)
\u*\ the sound of the letters <ao> in late period Gaelic (as in <maol> 'devotee'). More precisely, it is the vowel you get by pronouncing the <oo> in <cool> with your lips positioned as if you were saying <ee> as in <feel>. This sound is not found in English, though in some dialects it is similar to the sound of <i> in <children> or the <u> in <push>. We have previously used \#\ for this sound, or \u\ with an explanation that we mean the <u> in <push>.
\u"\ either:
  • the sound of u-umlaut as in German <fu:hlen> 'to feel' and <u> as in French <sur> 'on'. More precisely, it is the vowel you get by pronouncing the <ee> in <feel> with your lips positioned as if you were saying <oo> as in <cool>. This sound is not found in English; or

  • the sound of u-umlaut as in German <fu:llen> 'to fill'. More precisely, it is the vowel you get by pronouncing the sound of the <i> in <bit> with your lips positioned as if you were saying <oo> as in <cool>. This sound is not found in English.
\v\ sometimes a nasalized, voiced bilabial fricative, i.e., a nasalized version of the Spanish \v\ in <Havana>. You can produce it by saying \m\, but opening your lips slightly to let some of the air 'buzz' out between them. This sound is not found in English.
\(w)\ a lightly pronounced \w\ sound; early Gaelic <ui/> 'of' is pronounced \(w)ee\. This sound is not found in English.
\(y)\ a very slight consonantal \y\ sound combined with the consonant directly preceding it into a single sound. This sound is not found in English. (The same sound is sometimes presented by using a lower case <y> embedded in an all-caps (stressed) syllable, for example, \KyENN\.)
\zh\ a voiced \sh\, the sound of the <s> in <vision>, <g> in <mirage>, and <j> in French <je> 'I'.
\@\ the sound of <a> in <about> and <soda>. (This sound is called schwa.)
\#\ We previously have used this symbol for \u*\. We have decided not to use it any more.


Quotation marks, italics, and the like

When a letter gives a name, name element, blazon, or translation of any term, these words should be set off from the rest of the text so it is clear that we are talking about the words themselves. Consider: This sentence can be confusing, since it is not immediately clear that the subject of the sentence is the word Peter rather than some particular person named Peter. We avoid this problem by marking such words with quotation marks or angle brackets: Either quotation marks or angle brackets are fine; but you should use one or the other consistently in a particular letter. We don't insist on any particular convention for usage of quotation marks (e.g., does punctuation go inside the quotations marks or outside), just on consistency. However, if you want a convention to follow, see below.

You can also set off text by putting it on a separate line and indenting it. If you do that, then you don't need to quote it as well:

When you discuss a fragment of a name, it should be similarly set off and you should also mark whether it is a prefix, suffix, or infix:

Here's one convention for how to quote different sorts of text:


Notation for giving dates

In giving dates, we use some special notation:

a. 1000 After 1000
c. 1000 Circa (around) 1000
1000-1010 In several examples ranging from 1000 to 1010
1000x1010 In one example between 1000 and 1010


Citing References

It is very important that our letters contain complete and correct references. These letters may be submitted to the College of Arms as documentation. They may be read years from now, copied and handed round. It is important that each letter stand on its own as a complete piece of research, with all relevant information contained within the final report without need to refer to any earlier correspondence for clarification. Whenever we make a statement of fact that isn't trivial or obvious, or cite an example of a historical name, we should give a reference. Here is a brief description of how we reference our sources and where you can find bibliographical information.

In general, our letters should give the facts and then give references to our sources. The text of the letter should not discuss sources unless the sources themselves are very relevant to our answer. Thus, we should not write

Instead, we prefer

If a paragraph cites information from several sources, it is acceptable to reference all the sources at the end of the paragraph, like this [1, 2, 5].

At the end of the letter, after the signature, there should be a separation, the header References or Bibliography, and a list of references. I strongly recommend that you fill in the references as you draft the letter, rather than waiting for the final draft to add the references. We've sent out letters in the past with incorrect or missing references because no one had a chance to catch the errors.

Each source in the reference list should be given in a standard bibliographic form. We do not use one particular style for bibliographical references. Any style will do; just be consistent and give the necessary information.. Most of the references we have used in the past are listed on the web in an appropriate format. When you cite WWW articles, you should give the following information:

When we cite an article published in the Society, we usually use the Society name of the author. Past Academy reports can be cited in the following fashion:

Academy of Saint Gabriel Report #3000
http://www.s-gabriel.org/3000

Just substitute the correct report number for '3000' in the title and the URL.

Most of the references that we use frequently are listed on the web. The most common sources are often referred to by the author's surname (e.g., Ekwall is Eilert Ekwall, The Concise Oxford Dictionary of English Place-names); you can find these listings in our working bibliography. We often refer to the very most common sources with shorthand or abbreviations, and these abbreviations are included in the bibliography entries for convenient searching.

ACR The manuscript Aberdeen Council Registers, Volumes 8 - 20, (1501-1551)
ASC Anglo-Saxon Chronicle
Aspilogia I Wagner, Anthony Richard, Aspilogia I: A Catalogue of English Mediaeval Rolls of Arms
Aspilogia II Wagner, Anthony Richard, Aspilogia II: Rolls of Arms: Henry III
Aspilogia III Brault, Gerald J., The Rolls of Arms of Edward I
AyS Antroponimia y Sociedad
D&R Albert Dauzat & Ch. Rostaing, Dictionnaire Etymologique des Noms de Lieux de la France
DBA I Dictionary of British Arms: Medieval Ordinary, vol. 1
DBA II Dictionary of British Arms: Medieval Ordinary, vol. 2
DGP Danmarks Gamle Personnavne
DIL Dictionary of the Irish Language
D&G Leslie Dunkling and William Gosling, The New American Dictionary of First Names
OED The Oxford English Dictionary
MNW J. Verdam, Middelnederlandsch Handwoordenboek
Morgan & Morgan T.J. & Prys Morgan, Welsh Surnames
NPL Kristoffer Kruken, Norsk personnamnleksikon
O'C&M Donnchadh Ó Corráin and Fidelma Maguire, Irish Names
R&W Reaney, P. H., & R. M. Wilson, A Dictionary of English Surnames
SMP Sveriges Medeltida Personnamn
SSNO S{l/}ownik Staropolskich Nazw Osobowych
Withy E. G. Withycombe, The Oxford Dictionary of English Christian Names


Diacritical Marks and Other Special Characters

Not all our potential readers will be able to display extended ASCII characters. In any case, the HTML character set doesn't include all of the special characters that we need, so we have developed a system for representing these characters using simple ASCII. Here is our basic notation: Some characters have special representations: The first time one of these notations is used in a letter, it should be explained with a parenthetical comment or footnote. It is preferable not to insert this comment in the middle of a sentence, but rather to place it after the sentence or even a sentence or two later to preserve the flow of the discussion. For example:


Maintained by Arval and Aryanhwy; last updated 21 November 2008.