Request for variant subtag fr 16th-c 17th-c

Michael Everson everson at
Wed Dec 13 01:29:39 CET 2006

At 10:42 -0800 2006-12-12, Mark Davis wrote:
>I'm not fully convinced, but am somewhat sympathetic to the request. 
>One of the great advantages of BCP 47 is the generative nature.

Which makes programmers happy. I know that.

>I can have a code like en-GB to indicate the variant of English as 
>used in the UK, even if the actual range of usage doesn't exactly 
>match the boundaries of the UK; it may be considerably larger or 
>somewhat smaller (if one considers 'standard' variants).

And this is not at all like that, which is well-defined and narrowly delimited.

>Similarly, a variant subtag like '16thc' (although personally I'd 
>prefer '1500s') attached to any language can designate a language 
>variant used roughly within that span of time, even if it is not 
>precise, and may span a much larger or somewhat smaller range of 

What a nightmare. You think this is a *good* idea, to have this 
available to apply to just anything?

>It satisfies a general need of scholars, without requiring 
>interminable arguments as to the exact range of time within which 
>particular features of particular languages constituted 
>distinguishable variants.

I'm scholar. I use the tools and methods of scholars to write the 
proposals I write to get stuff encoded, and HONESTLY, as a scholar, 
this kind of ill-defined vague thing is not really "satisfactory" to 
a "general need". Centuries run from x00 to x99, and languages may 
easily range from x50 to y11.

Consider Old Cornish, Middle Cornish, Tudor Cornish, and Late 
Cornish. No round numbers there.
Michael Everson *

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