Andrew West (linguist)

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Andrew West
Andrew West at the Cloud Platform at Juyongguan, in front of a Tangut Buddhist inscription, December 2013
Andrew Christopher West

(1960-03-31) 31 March 1960 (age 64)
Nationality (legal)British
Academic background
ThesisQuest of the Urtext: The Textual Archaeology of 'The Three Kingdoms' (1993)
Doctoral advisorAndrew H. Plaks
Academic work
InstitutionsYale University

Andrew Christopher West (Chinese: 魏安; pinyin: Wèi Ān; born 31 March 1960) is an English Sinologist. His first works concerned Chinese novels of the Ming and Qing dynasties. His study of Romance of the Three Kingdoms used a new approach to analyse the relationship among the various versions, extrapolating the original text of that novel.[1][2]

West compiled a catalogue for the Chinese-language library of the English missionary Robert Morrison containing 893 books representing in total some 10,000 string-bound fascicules.[3][4]

His subsequent work is in the minority languages of China, especially Khitan, Manchu, and Mongolian. He proposed an encoding scheme for the 'Phags-pa script,[5] which was subsequently included in Unicode version 5.0.

West has also worked to encode gaming symbols and phonetic characters to the UCS, and has been working on encodings for Tangut and Jurchen.


  • 1996. Sānguó yǎnyì bǎnběn kǎo 三國演義版本考 [A study of the editions of Romance of the Three Kingdoms]. Shanghai: Shanghai Classics Publishing House. ISBN 7-5325-2023-4
  • 1998. Catalogue of the Morrison Collection of Chinese Books (馬禮遜藏書書目). London: SOAS. ISBN 0-7286-0292-X
  • 2012. "Musical Notation for Flute in Tangut Manuscripts". In Irina Fedorovna Popova (ed.), Тангуты в Центральной Азии: сборник статей в честь 80-летия проф. Е.И.Кычанова [Tanguts in Central Asia: a collection of articles marking the 80th anniversary of Prof. E. I. Kychanov pp. 443–453. Moscow: Oriental Literature. ISBN 978-5-02-036505-6
  • 2016. Gerard Clauson's Skeleton Tangut (Hsi Hsia) Dictionary: A facsimile edition. With an introduction by Imre Galambos. With Editorial notes and an Index by Andrew West. Prepared for publication by Michael Everson. Portlaoise: Evertype. ISBN 978-1-78201-167-5.


West is the developer of a number of software products and fonts for Microsoft Windows, including BabelPad and BabelMap.


BabelPad is a Unicode text editor with various tools for entering characters and performing text conversions such as normalization and Unicode casing.[6] BabelPad also supports a wide range of encodings, and has input methods for entering Chinese, Mongolian, Manchu, Tibetan, Uyghur and Yi text, as well as for entering individual Unicode characters by their hexadecimal code point value.[7]


BabelMap is a Unicode character map application that supports all Unicode blocks and characters, and includes various utilities such as pinyin and radical lookup tools for entering Chinese characters.[8]


  1. ^ Kimberly Ann Besio and Constantine Tung, Three Kingdoms and Chinese Culture (SUNY Press, 2007) p.163
  2. ^ Charles Horner, Rising China and its Postmodern Fate (University of Georgia Press, 2009) pp.94–95
  3. ^ Beatrice S. Bartlett, Review in China Review International vol.6 no.2 (Fall 1999) pp.553–554
  4. ^ T. H. Barrett, Review in Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies vol.62 Issue 2 (1999)
  5. ^ Andrew West Proposal to encode the Phags-pa script (SC2/WG2 N2622)
  6. ^ Jukka K. Korpela, Unicode Explained (O'Reilly, 2006) pp.114–115
  7. ^ Ken Lunde, CJKV Information Processing (O'Reilly, 2008) p.645
  8. ^ Yannis Haralambous and P. Scott Horne, Fonts & Encodings (O'Reilly, 2007) pp.161–163

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