Apices and other diacritics


Vowels carrying apices or other diacritics, occasionally other letters marked with diacritical and other non-alphabetic glyphs as part of the writing system (as opposed to marks of abbreviation, numerical marks, metrical or musical symbols, marginal notes, etc.).


Characters, principally in Latin inscriptions, marked with the apex character that general indicates a long vowel. Less commonly used over the letter ‘I’, which would tend to be written longa. This diacritic may look very similar to, but from context is usually treated as distinct from, tonos or acute (see below).

Krummrey/Panciera 1980 IV.1 (p. 210): á, é, í, ó, ú

<hi rend="apex">a</hi>,
<hi rend="apex">e</hi>,
<hi rend="apex">i</hi>,
<hi rend="apex">o</hi>,

<hi rend="apex">u</hi>

Panciera 1991 C IV (p. 14): á

<hi rend="apex">a</hi>

Standard Greek diacritics

Occasionally Ancient Greek inscriptions and papyri (particularly those from later than the classical period) will have diaeresis or other diacriticals written over some of the vowels. Very often these have a different appearance, function and position than the modern ‘katherevousa’ diacriticals used in editions of ancient texts. Classical corpora such as the Duke Databank of Documentary Papyri therefore prefer to separate the modern, purely editorial diacriticals of the standard edition, from the rarer, possibly inconsistent, ancient disacriticals in the diplomatic text itself. In the case, as in the examples below, the text is transcribed using the Unicode characters for Greek and modern diacritics as per expected and interpreted spelling, and the ancient diacritics are encoded purely as XML markup, considered to be highlighting the vowel in question.

Sosin 2011Leiden+ Documentation: Diacriticals http://papyri.info/docs/leiden_plus#diacriticals: υἱ(¨)οῦ

υ<hi rend="diaeresis"></hi>οῦ

Sosin 2011Leiden+ Documentation: Diacriticals http://papyri.info/docs/leiden_plus#diacriticals: ὧ(῾)

<hi rend="asper"></hi>

Responsibility for this section

  1. Gabriel Bodard, author

EpiDoc version: 9.2

Date: 2020-10-13