Grapheme


Grapheme

In typography, a grapheme is the fundamental unit in written language. Graphemes include alphabetic letters, Chinese characters, numerals, punctuation marks, and all the individual symbols of any of the world's writing systems.

In a phonemic orthography, a grapheme corresponds to one phoneme. In spelling systems that are non-phonemicndash such as the spellings used most widely for written Englishndash multiple graphemes may represent a single phoneme. These are called digraphs (two graphemes for a single phoneme) and trigraphs (three graphemes). For example, the word "ship" contains four graphemes ("s", "h", "i", and "p") but only three phonemes, because "sh" is a digraph.

Different glyphs can represent the same grapheme, meaning they are allographs. For example, the minuscule letter "a" can be seen in two variants, with a hook at the top , and without <ɑ>. Not all glyphs are graphemes in the phonological sense; for example the logogram ampersand ("&amp;") represents the Latin word "et" (English ‘and’), which contains two phonemes.

ee also

*Allography
*Digraph (orthography)
*Character (computing)
*Glyph
*Letter (alphabet)
*Sign (semiotics)
*Trigraph (orthography)


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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Grapheme — Graphème Cet article ne doit pas être confondu avec l’article graphène. L écriture Concepts : Lettre Graphème Morphogra …   Wikipédia en Français

  • graphème — [ grafɛm ] n. m. • 1913; de graphie, d apr. phonème ♦ Ling. La plus petite unité distinctive et significative de l écriture, lettre ou groupe de lettres correspondant à un phonème ou à un repère morphologique, étymologique (ex. ch en français [ ʃ …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • grapheme — graph eme n. (Linguistics) a written symbol that is used to represent speech. Syn: character, graphic symbol. [WordNet 1.5] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • grapheme — (n.) 1937, American English, from GRAPH (Cf. graph) letter, symbol (see GRAPHY (Cf. graphy)) + EME (Cf. eme) unit of language structure …   Etymology dictionary

  • grapheme — ☆ grapheme [graf′ēm΄ ] n. [graph, a spelling, occurrence of an allograph (< GRAPH) + EME] Linguis. a class consisting of all the allographs representing a given unit of a writing system, or all those representing a given phoneme graphemic adj …   English World dictionary

  • Graphème —  Ne doit pas être confondu avec graphène. Le graphème est l’unité de l écrit correspondant à l unité orale qu est le phonème[1]. Contrairement à l unité lettre , le graphème correspond ainsi mieux à la phonologie d une langue. Ceci est… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • grapheme — UK [ˈɡræfiːm] / US [ˈɡræfɪm] noun [countable] Word forms grapheme : singular grapheme plural graphemes linguistics a written letter, group of letters, number, or symbol that represents a single sound in speech …   English dictionary

  • grapheme —  Element abstrait d un systeme d ecriture qui se realise par des formes dites allographes dont le trace depend des autres element du systeme : le grapheme correspond donc, dans l ecriture alphabetique, a la lettre, les allographes etant les… …   Glossaire de linguistique computationnelle

  • grapheme — noun Etymology: graph + eme Date: 1932 1. a unit (as a letter or digraph) of a writing system 2. the set of units of a writing system (as letters and letter combinations) that represent a phoneme • graphemic adjective • graphemically adverb …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • grapheme — graphemically, adv. /graf eem/, n. Ling. 1. a minimal unit of a writing system. 2. a unit of a writing system consisting of all the written symbols or sequences of written symbols that are used to represent a single phoneme. [1935 40; GRAPH +… …   Universalium


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