Trisha Shetty (Editor)

Cuneiform Numbers and Punctuation

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Plane  SMP
Assigned  116 code points
Scripts  Cuneiform
Range  U+12400..U+1247F (128 code points)
Symbol sets  Numeric signs Fractions Punctuation
Unused  12 reserved code points

In Unicode, the Sumero-Akkadian Cuneiform script is covered in three blocks in the Supplementary Multilingual Plane (SMP):


  • U+12000–U+1237F Cuneiform
  • U+12400–U+1247F Cuneiform Numbers and Punctuation
  • U+12480–U+1254F Early Dynastic Cuneiform
  • The sample glyphs in the chart file published by the Unicode Consortium show the characters in their Classical Sumerian form (Early Dynastic period, mid 3rd millennium BCE). The characters as written during the 2nd and 1st millennia BCE, the era during which the vast majority of cuneiform texts were written, are considered font variants of the same characters.


    The final proposal for Unicode encoding of the script was submitted by two cuneiform scholars working with an experienced Unicode proposal writer in June 2004. The base character inventory is derived from the list of Ur III signs compiled by the Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative of UCLA based on the inventories of Miguel Civil, Rykle Borger (2003), and Robert Englund. Rather than opting for a direct ordering by glyph shape and complexity, according to the numbering of an existing catalogue, the Unicode order of glyphs was based on the Latin alphabetic order of their 'main' Sumerian transliteration as a practical approximation.

    Cuneiform Numbers and Punctuation block

    See also list of cuneiform signs.

    The following table allows matching of Borger's 1981 and 2003 numbering with Unicode characters The "primary" transliteration column has the glyphs' Sumerian values as given by the official glyph name, slightly modified here for legibility by including traditional assyriological symbols such as "x" rather than "TIMES". The exact Unicode names can be unambiguously recovered by prefixing, "CUNEIFORM [NUMERIC] SIGN", replacing "TIMES" for "x", "PLUS" for "+" and "OVER" for "/", "ASTERISK" for "*", "H" for "Ḫ", "SH" for "Š", and switching to uppercase.


    Cuneiform Numbers and Punctuation Wikipedia

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