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    Long s character in old text
    From: Paul Hirose
    Date: 2009 Dec 30, 22:58 -0800

    Back in October there was a thread on how we ought to transcribe the 
    "long s" in old text. For example, the 1788 Nautical Almanac says, 
    "Whereas the Publication of Nautical Almanacs conſtructed by proper 
    Perſons, under the Direction of the ſaid Commiſſioners.." 
    (http://books.google.com/books?id=f_cNAAAAQAAJ&pg=PP8.)
    
    I thought surely Unicode would have that character (it seems to have 
    everything else), but I found nothing. I should have looked harder. 
    While idly browsing an unrelated topic on the Web today, I discovered 
    Unicode's "Latin small letter long s". Look again at my quote from the 
    Almanac. The long s should look different from the lower case F.
    
    This information was (indirectly) in the October thread, via a link to a 
    Wikipedia article (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_s). But it's one 
    little paragraph in the article, and at the time I didn't notice it.
    
    In Windows, you can find long s in Character Map among the Latin 
    letters. Copy it and paste it into your text. Of course your email 
    software must be configured to write messages in Unicode. You'll 
    probably see several encodings available. I recommend UTF-8. It's 
    economical of bandwidth because all ASCII characters encode as one byte. 
    Also, any halfway modern software will automatically handle UTF-8 in 
    received emails. This even includes a late 1990s version of Netscape 
    under Windows 98 (I've tested that).
    
    George Huxtable's position was that the modern reader is best served by 
    translating ſ to s. I won't argue with that. However, purists will be 
    pleased that a literal rendition is also possible, even in plain text 
    messages.
    
    -- 
    I filter out messages with attachments or HTML.
    
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