Correct dates for Middle French?

Doug Ewell dewell at
Sun Jul 3 20:00:54 CEST 2005

I've just found an inconsistency in the tables listed on the ISO
639-2/RA site for the code element "frm".  These tables are linked from
the page located at

In the tables sorted by English name of language and French name of
language (both HTML and plain text), the associated language name is:

French, Middle (ca.1400-1600)

In the tables sorted by ISO 639-2 alpha-3 code (both HTML and two
plain-text versions), the language name is:

French, Middle (ca.1400-1800)

In other words, the difference is between 1600 and 1800 as the ending
date for "Middle French."

Intuitively, 1600 seems more correct, and this is the version that has
been used in the ISO/DIS 639-3 draft tables.  However, the Initial
Language Subtag Registry at
currently lists 1800, since it was generated from the ISO 639-2 table
sorted by alpha-3 code.

>From the LTRU and ietf-languages people, I would like confirmation that
1600 is the correct ending date, not 1800 as currently shown, and that
this should be corrected in the registry.

>From the ISO 639-2 people, I would like to request that the official
tables be made consistent with each other, displaying the same
association between codes and language names regardless of how the list
is sorted.

Doug Ewell
Fullerton, California

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