5 shorthand symbols no one ever used

Chinuk pipa” shorthand officially had its own set of numerals, but they were confusing (see here how they were identical to alphabet letters!) Aboriginal writers never used them.

Here are 5 number symbols of Chinook shorthand that are so rare, they may have been published only once.

shorthand numerals (2)

Kamloops Wawa #136 (January 1896), page 10

Needless to say, the accidental omission of these from the Unicode standard for this historic BC alphabet is no great issue 🙂

The four highest of these numerals violate the principles of Chinuk pipa, in that you have to lift your pencil & write each of them with multiple, non-cursively-connected strokes.  See my dissertation for the rules of the shorthand.

And what’s the point of having separate symbols for each multiple of ten??

In actual practice in Aboriginal communities and the Kamloops Wawa newspaper alike, people typically wrote out in shorthand the words for numbers bigger than 99.  These were recent English loans: handid [and spelling variants of that], tawsan, and the literary word milian.

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