Venda orthography

The Tshivenda orthography (writing system) has five characters that contain diacritics ( Ṅ ṅ Ḓ ḓ Ḽ ḽ Ṋ ṋ Ṱ ṱ ). These characters do not appear on a standard keyboard. The fonts that come with Windows also do not support these characters. However, these characters are present in the Unicode character set, and thus can be entered on Unicode-enabled operating systems, such as Windows 2000/XP, Linux, and Mac OS. (Unicode is an international character set standard that supports most world languages.) By simply installing a font that includes these characters, these characters can be entered into a computer, and can also be displayed on a web page. Major word processing applications such as OpenOffice and Microsoft Word do support the entering of Unicode characters.

(Note that using Unicode provides the only "correct" way to represent these characters within documents; in the long-term, documents stored using other non-standard and/or proprietary methods will have to be specially converted later on, while documents encoded from the start using Unicode will continue to work, because Unicode is "the standard".)

To use the Venda diacritics, first download and/or install a font that supports them, e.g. Gentium. If you are using Windows, download the Windows version of the Gentium font, and unzip the files to your hard disk. Using Windows Explorer, copy the font files (.ttf files) into your system fonts directory ("C:\Windows\Fonts" for Windows XP, Windows 98 and Windows ME; "C:\WinNT\Fonts" for Windows 2000).


More information about TsiVenda diacritics :