ISO 639 decision: arc = Official Aramaic; Imperial Aramaic

Peter Constable petercon at
Tue Jun 5 21:25:35 CEST 2007

There will be identifiers for all of the different historical stages of Aramaic in ISO 639-3.


-----Original Message-----
From: ietf-languages-bounces at [mailto:ietf-languages-bounces at] On Behalf Of John Cowan
Sent: Tuesday, June 05, 2007 11:23 AM
To: Simon Montagu
Cc: ietf-languages at; John Cowan; Håvard Hjulstad; Doug Ewell
Subject: Re: ISO 639 decision: arc = Official Aramaic; Imperial Aramaic

Simon Montagu scripsit:

> So is there no specific language code for other forms of Aramaic? If I
> have pages that use "arc" for quotations from the Zohar, what should I
> use instead?

Until RFC 4646bis becomes effective, you are out of luck: at that time,
the code "tmr", which represents Jewish Babylonian Aramaic, will become
available.  (For that matter, nothing could stop you from using it now,
if this question happens to be actual rather than hypothetical.)

> the Aramaic Wikipedia with 412 articles at

Ouch.  Well, I have no idea which of the dozen or so modern Aramaic
languages is in use here, but 639-3 code elements for them exist.

John Cowan  cowan at
Female celebrity stalker, on a hot morning in Cairo:
"Imagine, Colonel Lawrence, ninety-two already!"
El Auruns's reply:  "Many happy returns of the day!"
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