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Ā, lowercase ā, is a grapheme, a Latin A with a macron, used in several orthographies. Ā is used to denote a long A. Examples are the Baltic languages, Polynesian languages, some romanizations of Japanese, Persian, Pashto, Assyrian Neo-Aramaic (which represents a long A sound) and Arabic, and some Latin texts (especially for learners). In Romanised Mandarin Chinese (pinyin) it is used to represent A spoken with a level high tone (first tone). It has also been accepted in IPA in 2018. It is used in some orthography-based transcriptions of English to represent the diphthong // (see Vowel length § Traditional long and short vowels in English orthography).
In the International Alphabet of Sanskrit Transliteration, Ā represents the open back unrounded vowel, आ, not to be confused with the similar Devanagari character for the mid central vowel, अ.
In the languages other than Sanskrit, Ā is sorted with other A's and is not considered a separate letter. The macron is only considered when sorting words that are otherwise identical. For example, in Māori, tāu (meaning your) comes after tau (meaning year), but before taumata (hill).
|Unicode name||LATIN CAPITAL LETTER A WITH MACRON||LATIN SMALL LETTER A WITH MACRON|
|UTF-8||196 128||C4 80||196 129||C4 81|
|Numeric character reference||Ā
|Named character reference||Ā||ā|
- "Sanskrit Online Dictionary". Sanskrit Documents Collection. Retrieved 3 October 2012.