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◌̆
Breve
Some typefaces differentiate Cyrillic style (top) and Latin style breve (bottom)
Some typefaces differentiate Cyrillic style (top) and Latin style breve (bottom)

A breve (/ˈbrv/ BREEV, less often /ˈbrɛv/ BREV, neuter form of the Latin brevis "short, brief") is the diacritic mark ◌̆, shaped like the bottom half of a circle. As used in Ancient Greek, it is also called brachy, βραχύ. It resembles the caron (◌̌, the wedge or háček in Czech, mäkčeň in Slovak) but is rounded, in contrast to the angular tip of the caron. In many forms of Latin, ◌̆ is used for a shorter, softer variant of a vowel, such as "Ĭ", where the sound is nearly identical to the English /i/. (See: Latin IPA)

Breve vs. caron
Breve Ă ă Ĕ ĕ Ĭ ĭ Ŏ ŏ Ŭ ŭ Y̆ y̆
Caron Ǎ ǎ Ě ě Ǐ ǐ Ǒ ǒ Ǔ ǔ Y̌ y̌

Length

The breve sign indicates a short vowel, as opposed to the macron (◌̄), which indicates long vowels, in academic transcription. It is often used that way in dictionaries and textbooks of Latin, Ancient Greek, Tuareg and other languages. However, there is a frequent convention of indicating only the long vowels. It is then understood that a vowel with no macron is short. If the vowel length is unknown, a breve as well as a macron are used in historical linguistics (Ā̆ ā̆ Ē̆ ē̆ Ī̆ ī̆ Ō̆ ō̆ Ū̆ ū̆ Ȳ̆ ȳ̆). In Cyrillic script, a breve is used for Й. In Belarusian, it is used for both the Cyrillic Ў (semivowel U) and in the Latin (Łacinka) Ŭ. Ў was also used in Cyrillic Uzbek under the Soviet Union. The Moldovan Cyrillic alphabet uses a breve on Ӂ to represent a voiced postalveolar affricate /d͡ʒ/ (corresponding to ⟨g⟩ before a front vowel in the Latin script for Moldovan). In Chuvash, a breve is used for Cyrillic letters Ӑ (A-breve) and Ӗ (E-breve). In Itelmen orthography, it is used for Ӑ, О̆ and Ў. The traditional Cyrillic breve differs in shape and is thicker on the edges of the curve and thinner in the middle, as opposed to the Latin one,[1] but the Unicode encoding is the same.

Contrastive use of Cyrillic kratka (for consonant [j]) and Latin breve (for short vowel [ĭ]) above и in Russian-Nenets dictionary

In Emilian, ĕ ŏ are used to represent [ɛ, ɔ] in dialects where also long [ɛː, ɔː] occur.

In Esperanto, u with breve (ŭ) represents a non-syllabic u in diphthongs //, analogous to Belarusian ў.

In the transcription of Sinhala, the breve over an m or an n indicates a prenasalized consonant; for example, n̆da is used to represent [ⁿda].

In the International Phonetic Alphabet, a breve over a phonetic symbol is used to indicate extra-shortness.

Other uses

In other languages, it is used for other purposes.

Letters with breve

Breve below

The breve below is diacritic with the same appearance as the conventional breve, except that it is placed under the letter (or space) to be marked. There are just two precomposed character code-points: U+1E2A LATIN CAPITAL LETTER H WITH BREVE BELOW and U+1E2B LATIN SMALL LETTER H WITH BREVE BELOW. For other uses, it is rendered as a combining character, U+032E ◌̮ COMBINING BREVE BELOW.

Traditional editions of Spanish vocal sheet music use the 'breve below' to indicate elision. Modern editions tend to use a (freestanding) underscore.

Encoding

Unicode and HTML code (decimal numeric character reference) for breve characters.

Name Letter Unicode
Breve (spacing) ˘ U+02D8 ˘ BREVE
Combining breve ◌̆ U+0306 ◌̆ COMBINING BREVE
Combining breve below ◌̮ U+032E ◌̮ COMBINING BREVE BELOW
Combining double breve ◌͝◌ U+035D ◌͝ COMBINING DOUBLE BREVE
Combining double breve below ◌͜◌ U+035C ◌͜ COMBINING DOUBLE BREVE BELOW
Breve with inverted breve (spacing) U+AB5B MODIFIER BREVE WITH INVERTED BREVE
Latin
A-breve Ă
ă
U+0102 Ă LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE
U+0103 ă LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE
E-breve Ĕ
ĕ
U+0114 Ĕ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER E WITH BREVE
U+0115 ĕ LATIN SMALL LETTER E WITH BREVE
I-breve Ĭ
ĭ
U+012C Ĭ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER I WITH BREVE
U+012D ĭ LATIN SMALL LETTER I WITH BREVE
O-breve Ŏ
ŏ
U+014E Ŏ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER O WITH BREVE
U+014F ŏ LATIN SMALL LETTER O WITH BREVE
U-breve Ŭ
ŭ
U+016C Ŭ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER U WITH BREVE
U+016D ŭ LATIN SMALL LETTER U WITH BREVE
Azerbaijani, Tatar, Turkish
G-breve Ğ
ğ
U+011E Ğ LATIN CAPITAL LETTER G WITH BREVE
U+011F ğ LATIN SMALL LETTER G WITH BREVE
Vietnamese
A-sắc-breve
U+1EAE LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND ACUTE
U+1EAF LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND ACUTE
A-huyền-breve
U+1EB0 LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND GRAVE
U+1EB1 LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND GRAVE
A-hỏi-breve
U+1EB2 LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND HOOK ABOVE
U+1EB3 LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND HOOK ABOVE
A-ngã-breve
U+1EB4 LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND TILDE
U+1EB5 LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND TILDE
A-nặng-breve
U+1EB6 LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND DOT BELOW
U+1EB7 LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE AND DOT BELOW
Cyrillic
A-breve Ӑ
ӑ
U+04D0 Ӑ CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER A WITH BREVE
U+04D1 ӑ CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER A WITH BREVE
Ye-breve Ӗ
ӗ
U+04D6 Ӗ CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER IE WITH BREVE
U+04D7 ӗ CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER IE WITH BREVE
Zhe-breve Ӂ
ӂ
U+04C1 Ӂ CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER ZHE WITH BREVE
U+04C2 ӂ CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER ZHE WITH BREVE
Short I Й
й
U+0419 Й CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER SHORT I
U+0439 й CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER SHORT I
O-breve О̆
о̆
U+041E О CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER O U+0306 ̆ COMBINING BREVE
U+043E о CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER O U+0306 ̆ COMBINING BREVE
Short U Ў
ў
U+040E Ў CYRILLIC CAPITAL LETTER SHORT U
U+045E ў CYRILLIC SMALL LETTER SHORT U
Greek
Alpha with brachy
U+1FB8 GREEK CAPITAL LETTER ALPHA WITH VRACHY
U+1FB0 GREEK SMALL LETTER ALPHA WITH VRACHY
Iota with brachy
U+1FD8 GREEK CAPITAL LETTER IOTA WITH VRACHY
U+1FD0 GREEK SMALL LETTER IOTA WITH VRACHY
Upsilon with brachy
U+1FE8 GREEK CAPITAL LETTER UPSILON WITH VRACHY
U+1FE0 GREEK SMALL LETTER UPSILON WITH VRACHY
Arabic, Hittite, Akkadian, Egyptian transliteration[3]
H-breve below
U+1E2A LATIN CAPITAL LETTER H WITH BREVE BELOW
U+1E2B LATIN SMALL LETTER H WITH BREVE BELOW
Hebrew transliteration[3]
E-cedilla-breve
U+1E1C LATIN CAPITAL LETTER E WITH CEDILLA AND BREVE
U+1E1D LATIN SMALL LETTER E WITH CEDILLA AND BREVE

In LaTeX the controls \u{o} and \breve{o} put a breve over the letter o.

See also

Notes

  1. ^ Бреве кириллическое, "кратка" [Cyrillic breve ("kratka")] (in Russian). ParaType.
  2. ^ For example, that word 한글 han-geul is romanized in McCune-Reischauer as han'gŭl. The spelling han-geul is based on South Korea's Revised Romanization of Korean adopted in 2000 in part for ease in computer use, not on McCune-Reischauer. It is common, for convenience, to omit writing all diacritical marks in McCune-Reishchauer including breves, in which case the word is spelled hangul not han'gŭl. North Korea uses a variant of McCune-Reischauer that also utilizes breves for those two vowels.
  3. ^ a b "Code chart for Latin Extended Additional (U+1E00–U+1EFF)" (PDF). The Unicode Standard. Retrieved 2016-11-12.