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Encyclopedia > Ruby character

Ruby characters are small, annotative characters that can be placed above or to the right of a Chinese character (漢字; Chinese: Hànzì ㄏㄢ ˋㄗ ˋ, Japanese: Kanji かんじ) when writing logographic languages such as Chinese or Japanese to show the pronunciation. Typically called just ruby or rubi, such annotations are usually used as a pronunciation guide for relatively obscure characters. Mozilla was the official, public, original name of Mozilla Application Suite by the Mozilla Foundation, nowadays called SeaMonkey suite. ... 漢字 / 汉字 Chinese character in Hànzì, Kanji, Hanja, Hán Tá»±. Red in Simplified Chinese. ... A logogram, or logograph, is a single grapheme which represents a word or a morpheme (a meaningful unit of language). ...

Contents

Examples

Here is an example of Japanese ruby characters (called furigana) for Tokyo ("東京"): Japanese writing Kanji 漢字 Kana 仮名 Hiragana 平仮名 Katakana 片仮名 Uses Furigana 振り仮名 Okurigana 送り仮名 Rōmaji ローマ字 Category Furigana (Japanese: ふりがな), are a Japanese reading aid. ... This article or section does not adequately cite its references or sources. ...

hiragana katakana romaji
とう きょう
トウ キョウ
kyō

Note: The font size is increased to show details. Japanese writing Kanji Kana Hiragana Katakana Hentaigana Manyōgana Uses Furigana Okurigana Rōmaji Hiragana ) are a Japanese syllabary, one component of the Japanese writing system, along with katakana and kanji; the Latin alphabet is also used in some cases. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Japanese writing Kanji 漢字 Kana 仮名 Hiragana 平仮名 Katakana 片仮名 Uses Furigana 振り仮名 Okurigana 送り仮名 Romaji ローマ字 The title given to this article lacks diacritics because of certain technical limitations. ...


Most furigana (Japanese ruby characters) are written with the hiragana syllabary, but katakana and romaji are also occasionally used. Textbooks usualy write on-readings with katakana and kun-readings with hiragana.


Here is an example of the Chinese ruby characters for Beijing ("北京"):   (Chinese:  ; Pinyin: BÄ›ijÄ«ng; IPA: ), a metropolis in northern China, is the capital of the Peoples Republic of China (PRC). ...

zhuyin pinyin
ㄅㄟˇ ㄐㄧㄥ
běi jīng

Most Chinese ruby characters are written with the zhuyin (also known as bopomofo) syllabary, but pinyin is also occasionally used. Zhuyin fuhao (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Tongyong Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chu-yin fu-hao), or Symbols for Annotating Sounds, often abbreviated as Zhuyin, or known as Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ) after the first four letters of this Chinese phonemic alphabet (bo po mo fo), is the national phonetic system of the... It has been suggested that Pinyin method be merged into this article or section. ... Zhuyin fuhao (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Tongyong Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chu-yin fu-hao), or Symbols for Annotating Sounds, often abbreviated as Zhuyin, or known as Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ) after the first four letters of this Chinese phonemic alphabet (bo po mo fo), is the national phonetic system of the... It has been suggested that Pinyin method be merged into this article or section. ...


The following character 愛 (love) has nearly the same meaning and pronounciation in Japanese as it does in Chinese.

hiragana katakana romaji
zhuyin pinyin
あい
ㄞ ˋ
アイ
ai
ài

This is not always the case. First of all, a Chinese character does not always have the same meaning in Chinese as it does in Japanese. Second of all, they do not always have the same pronunciation. This is particularly true of Japanese man'yōgana (万葉仮名 Man'yōgana?, まんようがな literally "Anthology of Myriad Leaves kana"). Man'yōgana are the basis for the modern Japanese writing system, as their Japanese simplified forms are modern kana, however, they are usually used in Japanese writing for their Japanese pronunciation, not their Chinese meaning. Theoretically, a person who reads Chinese could read and pronounce Japanese written in man'yōgana with Chinese ruby characters, in Chinese, but it would be mostly nonsense and only make sense in Japanese. Similarly, a person who reads Japanese could read and pronounce Chinese written in Traditional Chinese (正體字 Zhèngtǐzì ㄓㄥ ˋㄊㄧ ˇㄗ ˋ literally "Traditional Chinese characters") with Japanese ruby characters, in Japanese, but it would also be mostly nonsense and only make sense in Chinese. Thus, ruby characters are not usually used for translation, as the word meanings and pronunciations are usually different between languages, but there are exceptions. Japanese writing Kanji Kana Hiragana Katakana Hentaigana Manyōgana Uses Furigana Okurigana Rōmaji Hiragana ) are a Japanese syllabary, one component of the Japanese writing system, along with katakana and kanji; the Latin alphabet is also used in some cases. ... This article or section does not cite its references or sources. ... Japanese writing Kanji 漢字 Kana 仮名 Hiragana 平仮名 Katakana 片仮名 Uses Furigana 振り仮名 Okurigana 送り仮名 Romaji ローマ字 The title given to this article lacks diacritics because of certain technical limitations. ... Zhuyin fuhao (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Tongyong Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chu-yin fu-hao), or Symbols for Annotating Sounds, often abbreviated as Zhuyin, or known as Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ) after the first four letters of this Chinese phonemic alphabet (bo po mo fo), is the national phonetic system of the... It has been suggested that Pinyin method be merged into this article or section. ... Japanese writing Kanji Kana Hiragana Katakana Hentaigana Manyōgana Uses Furigana Okurigana Rōmaji Manyōgana (万葉仮名) is an ancient form of Japanese kana which uses Chinese characters to represent Japanese sounds. ... ManyōshÅ« , Collection of Ten Thousand Leaves) is the oldest existing, and most highly revered, collection of Japanese poetry, compiled sometime in the Nara or early Heian periods. ... Japanese writing Kanji 漢字 Kana 仮名 Hiragana 平仮名 Katakana 片仮名 Manyogana 万葉仮名 Uses Furigana 振り仮名 Okurigana 送り仮名 Rōmaji ローマ字 For other meanings of Kana, see Kana (disambiguation). ... Traditional Chinese characters are one of two standard sets of printed Chinese characters. ...


Uses of ruby

Ruby may be used for different reasons:

  • because the character is rare and the pronunciation unknown to many — personal name characters often fall into this category;
  • because the character has more than one pronunciation, and the context is insufficient to determine which to use;
  • because the intended readers of the text are still learning the language and are not expected to always know the pronunciation and/or meaning of a term;
  • because the author is using a nonstandard pronunciation for the characters — for example, comic books often employ ruby to emphasize puns dajare (駄洒落 dajare?, だじゃれ literally "wordplay").

Also, ruby may be used to show the meaning, rather than pronunciation, of a possibly-unfamiliar (usually foreign) or slang word. This is generally used with spoken dialogue and applies only to Japanese publications. The most common form of ruby is called furigana or yomigana and is found in Japanese instructional books, newspapers, comics and books for children. Dajare is a kind of typically Japanese wordplay which relies on the similarity of two different words pronunciations. ...


In Japanese, certain characters, such as the sokuon (促音 tsu?, 小さいつ literally "little tsu") (っ) that indicates a pause before the consonant it precedes, are normally written at about half the size of normal characters. When written as ruby, however, such characters are usually the same size as other ruby characters, however, advancements in technology now allow certain characters to render accurately.[1] Japanese writing Kanji Kana Hiragana Katakana Hentaigana Manyogana Uses Furigana Okurigana Rōmaji The sokuon (Japanese: ) is a Japanese symbol consisting of a small hiragana or katakana tsu. ...


In Chinese, the practice of providing phonetic cues via ruby is rare, but does occur systematically in grade-school level text books or dictionaries. The Chinese have no special name for this practice, as it is not as widespread as in Japan. In Taiwan, it is known as Zhuyin, from the name of the phonetic system employed for this purpose there. It is virtually always used vertically, because publications are normally in a vertical format, and Zhuyin is not as easy to read when presented horizontally. Where Zhuyin is not used, other Chinese phonetic systems like Hanyu Pinyin are employed. Zhuyin fuhao (Traditional Chinese: ; Simplified Chinese: ; Hanyu Pinyin: ; Tongyong Pinyin: ; Wade-Giles: Chu-yin fu-hao), or Symbols for Annotating Sounds, often abbreviated as Zhuyin, or known as Bopomofo (ㄅㄆㄇㄈ) after the first four letters of this Chinese phonemic alphabet (bo po mo fo), is the national phonetic system of the... Pinyin (拼音, Pīnyīn) literally means join (together) sounds (a less literal translation being phoneticize, spell or transcription) in Chinese and usually refers to Hànyǔ Pīnyīn (汉语拼音, literal meaning: Han language pinyin), which is a system of...


Ruby characters are not usually used for word-for-word translations between languages, even for identical traditional Chinese characters, since all natural languages include idioms (where combinations of words have a different meaning than the individual words), the relationship of non-adjacent words is often hard to capture, and usually there is no exact and unique translation for a given word. There are also challenges if the original and translated languages have a different direction (e.g., English reads left to right, but Hebrew reads right to left). A common example of this use involves the Christian bible, which was originally written in Koine Greek, Hebrew, and some Aramaic. Only a small percentage of people can read these original languages proficiently. Thus, many publications of the Christian bible in its original languages incorporate ruby text with word-by-word translations to another language, such as English, as an aid. Such documents are often termed interlinear documents (where the emphasis is on providing translated text "between the lines"), and often they also include a separate full translation of the text, rather than only using ruby characters, but, again, there are exceptions. Koine redirects here. ... Hebrew redirects here. ... Aramaic is a group of Semitic languages with a 3,000-year history. ...


Ruby annotation can also be used in handwriting.


History

Ruby was originally the name of a British 5.5-point font originally used for annotations in printed documents. In Japanese, rather than referring to the name of a font, the word came to refer to typeset furigana. When translated back into English, the word was rendered in some texts as "rubi" (the typical romanization of the Japanese word ルビ). However, the spelling "ruby" has become more common since a W3C recommendation for ruby markup was published. In linguistics, romanization (or Latinization, also spelled romanisation or Latinisation) is the representation of a word or language with the Roman (Latin) alphabet, or a system for doing so, where the original word or language uses a different writing system. ... The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) is a consortium that produces standards—recommendations, as they call them—for the World Wide Web. ... There is more than one usage of the word markup. ...


In the U.S., it had been called "agate" at least before the 1950s: // Recovering from World War II and its aftermath, the economic miracle emerged in West Germany and Italy. ...

agate An old name for a size of type slightly smaller than five and one-half points, ... . Called ruby in England.

– Marjorie E. Skillin, et el., Words into Type, 1948, p. 538

Ruby in Unicode

Unicode and its companion standard, the Universal Character Set, support ruby via these interlinear annotation characters: Unicode is an industry standard designed to allow text and symbols from all of the writing systems of the world to be consistently represented and manipulated by computers. ... The international standard ISO/IEC 10646 defines the Universal Character Set (UCS) as a character encoding. ...

  • Code point FFF9 (hex) - Interlinear annotation anchor - marks start of annotated text
  • Code point FFFA (hex) - Interlinear annotation separator - marks start of annotating character(s)
  • Code point FFFB (hex) - Interlinear annotation terminator - marks end of annotated text

Unicode Technical Report #20 clarifies that these characters are not intended to be exposed to users of markup languages and software applications. It suggests that ruby markup be used instead, where appropriate. In mathematics and computer science, hexadecimal, base-16, or simply hex, is a numeral system with a radix, or base, of 16, usually written using the symbols 0–9 and A–F, or a–f. ...


Ruby markup

In 2001, the W3C published the Ruby Annotation specification for supplementing XHTML with ruby markup. Ruby markup is not a standard part of HTML 4.01 or any of the XHTML 1.0 specifications (XHTML-1.0-Strict, XHTML-1.0-Transitional, and XHTML-1.0-Frameset), but was incorporated into the XHTML 1.1 specification. Ruby is a W3C recommendation markup for inline annotation of text, often to provide pronunciation hints or other annotation above or below the main text. ... 2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... The Extensible HyperText Markup Language, or XHTML, is a markup language that has the same depth of expression as HTML, but a stricter syntax. ...


Support for ruby markup in web browsers is limited, as XHTML 1.1 is not yet widely implemented. Ruby markup is partially supported by Microsoft Internet Explorer (5.0+) for Windows and Macintosh, but is not supported by Mozilla, Firefox, Safari/Konqueror or Opera. Microsoft is one of few companies engaging itself in the console wars Where they are up against sony, nintendo, and of course sharps new console which may cause a threat. ... It has been suggested that Internet Explorer 7 be merged into this article or section. ... Microsoft Windows is the name of several families of proprietary software operating systems by Microsoft. ... The first Macintosh computer, introduced in 1984, upgraded to a 512K Fat Mac. The Macintosh or Mac, is a line of personal computers designed, developed, manufactured, and marketed by Apple Computer. ... Mozilla was the official, public, original name of Mozilla Application Suite by the Mozilla Foundation, nowadays called SeaMonkey suite. ... Mozilla Firefox (abbreviated as Fx, fx (prescribed[2]), or FF) is a graphical web browser developed by the Mozilla Corporation. ... Safari is a web browser developed by Apple Inc. ... Konqueror is a file manager, web browser and file viewer, which was developed as part of the K Desktop Environment (KDE) by volunteers and runs on most Unix-like operating systems. ... Opera is an Internet suite which handles common internet-related tasks, including visiting web sites, sending and receiving e-mail messages, managing contacts, and online chat. ...


For these browsers, Ruby support is most easily added by using CSS rules such as can be found on the web [1].


Ruby markup support can also be added to some browsers that support custom extensions. For example, an unofficial extension allows Netscape 7, Mozilla, and Firefox to properly render ruby markup under certain circumstances. This extension is freely available for users of these browsers [2].


Ruby markup is structured such that a fallback rendering, consisting of the ruby characters in parentheses immediately after the main text, will appear if the browser does not have support for ruby.


Ruby markup examples

The hiragana and Zhuyin examples from above are usually repeated below, using ruby markup.


The markup is shown first, and the rendered markup is shown next. Your browser will either render it with the correct size and positioning as shown in the table-based examples above, or will use the fallback rendering with the ruby characters in parentheses:

 <ruby><rb>東</rb><rp>(</rp><rt>とう</rt><rp>)</rp></ruby> <ruby><rb>京</rb><rp>(</rp><rt>きょう</rt><rp>)</rp></ruby> 

(とう) (きょう)

 <ruby><rb>北</rb><rp>(</rp><rt>ㄅㄟˇ</rt><rp>)</rp></ruby> <ruby><rb>京</rb><rp>(</rp><rt>ㄐㄧㄥ</rt><rp>)</rp></ruby> 

(ㄅㄟˇ) (ㄐㄧㄥ)


Complex ruby markup is also possible in which additional ruby text is placed below the main text. It is not supported by Wikipedia; see the linkeddialog page for an example.


References

  1. ^ [Marcin Sawicki|(until 10 October, 1999)]; Michel Suignard, Microsoft, Masayasu Ishikawa (石川 雅康 Ishikawa Masayasu?, いしかわ まさやす literally "Ishikawa elegance healthy"), W3C, Martin Dürst, W3C, and Tex Texin, Progress Software Corp. (2001-05-31). Ruby Annotation (HTML). W3C Recommendation 1. World Wide Web Consortium. Archived from the original on 2001-05-31. Retrieved on 2007-02-14.

2001 (MMI) was a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar. ... May 31 is the 151st day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (152nd in leap years), with 214 days remaining. ... 2007 (MMVII) is the current year, a common year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar and the Anno Domini (common) era. ... February 14 is the 45th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. ...

External links

  • W3C: Ruby Annotation specification
  • W3C article: What is Ruby?
  • W3C tutorial: Ruby Markup and Styling
  • W3C: CSS3 Ruby Module
  • W3C: XHTML 1.1 Specification
  • Web Specifications supported in Opera
  • CSS Ruby Support — Works in all modern browsers
  • XHTML Ruby Support — An extension to add ruby markup support to Netscape 7, Mozilla, and Firefox

  Results from FactBites:
 
Ruby character - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (1126 words)
Ruby characters are small, annotative characters that can be placed above or to the side of a character when writing logographic languages such as Chinese or Japanese to show the pronunciation.
Ruby is sometimes used to provide word-for-word translations of a document to aid a reader who may not know the original language well, but can read another language well.
Ruby markup is structured such that a fallback rendering, consisting of the ruby characters in parentheses immediately after the main text, will appear if the browser does not have support for ruby.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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