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Setting up your own international dating service

Diacritical marks may appear above or below a letter, or in some other position such as within the letter or between two letters.The main use of diacritical marks in the Latin script is to change the sound-values of the letters to which they are added.The shape of the diacritic developed from initially resembling today's acute accent to a long flourish by the 15th century.

Modern computer technology was developed mostly in English-speaking countries, so data formats, keyboard layouts, etc.

were developed with a bias favoring English, a language with an alphabet without diacritical marks.

This varies from language to language, and may vary from case to case within a language.

In some cases, letters are used as "in-line diacritics", with the same function as ancillary glyphs, in that they modify the sound of the letter preceding them, as in the case of the "h" in the English pronunciation of "sh" and "th".

Different languages use different rules to put diacritic characters in alphabetical order.

French treats letters with diacritical marks the same as the underlying letter for purposes of ordering and dictionaries.The Scandinavian languages, by contrast, treat the characters with diacritics ä, ö and å as new and separate letters of the alphabet, and sort them after z.Usually ä is sorted as equal to æ (ash) and ö is sorted as equal to ø (o-slash).Examples are the diaereses in the borrowed French words naïve and Noël, which show that the vowel with the diaeresis mark is pronounced separately from the preceding vowel; the acute and grave accents, which can indicate that a final vowel is to be pronounced, as in saké and poetic breathèd; and the cedilla under the "c" in the borrowed French word façade, which shows it is pronounced .In Gaelic type, a dot over a consonant indicates lenition of the consonant in question.Also, aa, when used as an alternative spelling to å, is sorted as such.Other letters modified by diacritics are treated as variants of the underlying letter, with the exception that ü is frequently sorted as y.In the Wali language of Ghana, for example, an apostrophe indicates a change of vowel quality, but occurs at the beginning of the word, as in the dialects ’Bulengee and ’Dolimi.Because of vowel harmony, all vowels in a word are affected, so the scope of the diacritic is the entire word.The tilde, dot, comma, titlo, apostrophe, bar, and colon are sometimes diacritical marks, but also have other uses.Not all diacritics occur adjacent to the letter they modify.

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