Request: Add retired tag "eml" to the IANA registry
cowan at ccil.org
Sun Dec 13 20:22:12 CET 2009
Randy Presuhn scripsit:
> > Only a few of the 639-3 retired codes have this problem. Almost all
> > of them represent either splits (multiple languages were incorrectly
> > treated as dialects of the same language) or mergers (dialects of
> > a single language were incorrectly treated as multiple languages).
> This last case is, absent appropriate variant subtags, effectively a
> case of "identical semantics", inasmuch as whatever the difference
> was, it was felt to be insignificant for purposes of 639-3.
Saying that two codes represent the same *language* does not mean they
have the same *denotation*. Consider the case of Musi 'mui', Lematang
'lmt', Palembang 'plm', Penesak 'pem', and Rawas 'rws'. These are
distinct varieties spoken along the Musi River in Sumatra, and were
originally listed as distinct languages.
Further evidence shows that they are reasonably mutually intelligible, so
the codes 'lmt', 'plm', 'pem', and 'rws' were retired in favor of using
'mui' alone. However, the four codes still mean what they meant before --
"Retired code elements remain part of the code set and retain their
identifier *and denotation*" (emphasis added).
So 'lmt' still means Lematang, although that now counts as a dialect
rather than a language; however, 'mui' has had its denotation widened,
so it is not possible in 639-3 to discriminate between Musi the dialect
and Musi the language. (In other cases, new codes have been created,
or a code has been promoted to macrolanguage scope.)
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