OCS additions to Unicode’s Cyrillic block

Using Unicode to digitise an Old Church Slavonic document requires some truly unpleasant compromises, as anyone who has attempted to do so has sorely found out. For example, I’m perpetually irked by the fact that the Unicode Consortium refuses to assign a position for iotified Cyrillic A, telling people to use U+044F CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER YA, which is normally used for the modern Cyrillic letter that looks like a reversed Latin R (я). R.M. Cleminson, professor of Slavonic studies at the University of Portsmouth—who, incidentally, was instrumental in Unicode’s recent inclusion of Glagolitic—has decided to fight the power and is writing a proposal to the Unicode Technical Committee for the inclusion of these vitally needed characters. A draft of the proposal is available for viewing and Prof Cleminson welcomes comments from those who are clued up about historical Slavonic orthography and Unicode standards.

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