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Duployan shorthand

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Duployan shorthand
Script type
light-line geometric stenographic alphabet
CreatorÉmile Duployé
1868 (Pernin: 1877; Sloan: 1883; Ellis: 1888; LeJeune: 1891)
Time period
1860 — present
Statushistoric and hobbyist usage
DirectionLeft-to-right Edit this on Wikidata
LanguagesFrench, English, German, Spanish, Romanian, Chinook Jargon, Lillooet, Thompson, Okanagan
Related scripts
Child systems
Malone's Script Phonography
ISO 15924
ISO 15924Dupl (755), ​Duployan shorthand, Duployan stenography
Unicode alias
U+1BC00–U+1BC9F Duployan
U+1BCA0–U+1BCAF Shorthand Format Controls[1]
Adaptations: Pernin (+ reporters'), Perrault, Sloan-Duployan (+ reporters'), Romanian stenography, Duployan metagraphie, and Chinook writing

The Duployan shorthand, or Duployan stenography (French: Sténographie Duployé), was created by Father Émile Duployé in 1860 for writing French. Since then, it has been expanded and adapted for writing English, German, Spanish, Romanian, Latin, Danish, and Chinook Jargon.[2] The Duployan stenography is classified as a geometric, alphabetic stenography and is written left-to-right in connected stenographic style. The Duployan shorthands, including Chinook writing, Pernin's Universal Phonography, Perrault's English Shorthand, the Sloan-Duployan Modern Shorthand, and Romanian stenography, were included as a single script in version 7.0 of the Unicode Standard / ISO 10646[2][3][4]

Typology and structure[edit]

Duployan is classified as a geometric stenography, in that the prototype for letterforms are based on lines and circles, instead of ellipses. It is alphabetic, with both consonant and vowel signs in equal prominence. Writing is in a left-to-right direction, proceeding down the page, as in common European writing. Most Duployan letters will attach to adjacent letters, allowing a word (or words) to be written in a single stroke, without lifting the pen.[2]


Consonant characters come in two basic styles: line consonants and arc consonants. All consonants have a shape, size, and stroke direction that do not change based on the surrounding characters. Both types of consonants are contrasted by orientation, length, and the presence of ancillary dots and dashes on or near the letter.

The line consonants come in five orientations: vertical, horizontal, left-to-right falling, left-to-right rising, and right-to-left falling; and in three lengths: short, long, and extended. Variations of some line consonants will have dots adjacent to the center of the line.

Arc consonants come in two arc lengths: half circle, and quarter circle. The half circle arcs have four orientations: left, right, top, and bottom half; and two lengths: regular and extended. Variations of the half circle arc consonants have dots inside and outside of the bowl, and dashes across the middle. The quarter arc consonants also have four orientations corresponding to the four quadrants of a circle, with both upwards and downwards strokes, and come in regular and extended lengths. The only variant quarter arc consonant is the addition of a dot (Duployan letter H) to the Duployan letter W to make the Duployan letter Wh.[2]

Émile Duployé


Vowels characters also come in two basic styles: circle vowels, and orienting vowels. Vowels have only a general shape and size, but their orientation and exact appearance are usually dictated by the adjacent characters.

Circle vowels are written by creating a loop that starts from the preceding character acting as a tangent, continuing around the circle until reaching the tangent point of the following character, at which point the following letterform is written, with the two adjacent characters crossing to complete the "circle". Variants of the circle vowels have dots in the middle of the circle, or a protuberance in from the circle. Circle vowels may also take standard diacritic marks when used to write some languages.

Some circle vowels

Orienting vowels are written by rotating the vowel to match the incoming angle of the preceding character, then mirrored along the axis of that character to avoid the following character crossing. They come in two varieties, defined by whether they will tend toward the right or left if the adjacent characters will allow either. Nasal vowels are considered a special case of an orienting vowel, and will act as orienting vowels, except in the Chinook script, where nasals can appear as diacritics.[2]

Affixes and word signs[edit]

Many Duployan shorthands use small unattached marks, as well as various crossing and touching strokes, as markers for common prefixes and suffixes. Individual letters and letterlike symbols are also used in many Duployan shorthands to stand for common words and phrases. Overlapping two or more letters and signs can be used in some shorthands as word signs and abbreviations.[2]


Most Duployan scripts do not make use of true ligatures that are not just one of its constituent letters with a distinguishing mark. The Romanian stenography is fairly unusual in having a number of vowel ligatures, especially with the Romanian U.[2]

Connecting letters[edit]

Most Duployan letters cursively connect to any adjacent letters. Circle vowels will sometimes reduce to as small as a semi-circle in order to accommodate the incoming and outgoing strokes of adjacent letters, and orienting vowels will rotate to meet the preceding letter at a straight angle, while mirroring to present themselves to the following letter.

+ + =
P + A + T = pat
+ + = * E would normally sit on the left side of P, except that it must sit on the right to join with the T.
P + E + T = pet
+ + + =
J + A + I + N = shine
+ + + + + =
P + E + Lh + T + E + N = pelten (Chinook)

Alphabetical order[edit]

Duployan does not have a widely agreed alphabetical order. A precursory order for the alphabet was invented for the Unicode script proposal, however, and this order can basically be found in the order of the Unicode allocation (see Table of characters). This order places consonants before vowels, with similar type and size letters grouped roughly together.

Table of characters[edit]

This table lists the characters used in all of the Duployan shorthands along with their Unicode code points.[5][6] A basic alphabetization can be derived from the order of the letters. Letters with a name otherwise identical to a more universal letter will have a parenthetical denoting its shorthand of use: (Per) for Pernin's Universal Phonography, (Rom) for Romanian stenography, and (Sl) for Sloan-Duployan shorthand.

Spacing and line consonants[edit]

spacing consonants short line consonants
Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter
Name Name Name Name Name Name Name
1BC00 1BC01 1BC02 1BC03 1BC04 1BC05 1BC06
long line consonants extended line consonants
1BC07 1BC08 1BC09 1BC0A 1BC0B 1BC0C 1BC0D 1BC0E 1BC0F 1BC10
variant line consonants
1BC11 1BC12 1BC13 1BC14 1BC15 1BC16 1BC17 1BC18
Th Dh (Sl) Dh Kk J (Sl) hL Lh Rh

Arc consonants[edit]

half arc consonants half arc consonants (cross variants)
Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter
Name Name Name Name Name Name Name Name
1BC19 1BC1A 1BC1B 1BC1C 1BC1D 1BC1E 1BC1F 1BC20
half arc consonants (dotted variants) large variant half arc consonants
1BC21 1BC22 1BC23 1BC24 1BC25 1BC26 1BC2F 1BC30 1BC31
M + dot N + dot J + dot J + dots S + dot S + dot below JS + dot JN JNS
large half arc consonants large half arc consonants (cross variants)
1BC27 1BC28 1BC29 1BC2A 1BC2B 1BC2C 1BC2D 1BC2E
downslope quarter arc consonants large downslope quarter arc consonants
1BC32 1BC33 1BC34 1BC35 1BC36 1BC37 1BC38 1BC39 1BC3A
upslope quarter arc consonants large upslope quarter arc consonants
1BC3B 1BC3C 1BC3D 1BC3E 1BC3F 1BC40


circle vowels I / E
Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter Code Letter
Name Name Name Name Name Name Name
1BC41 1BC42 1BC43 1BC44 1BC45 1BC46 1BC47
A Ow (Sl) OA O Aou I E
non-orienting I/E variants I/E variants
1BC48 1BC49 1BC4A 1BC4B 1BC4C 1BC4D 1BC4E 1BC4F 1BC50
Ie short I Ui Ee Eh (Sl) I (Rom) Ee (Sl) Long I Ye
quarter circle vowels Other 'U' vowels
1BC51 1BC52 1BC53 1BC54 1BC55 1BC56 1BC57 1BC58 1BC59
U Eu Xw / Uh UN Long U U (Rom) Uh U (Sl) Ooh
dotted circle vowels compound W-vowels
1BC5A 1BC5B 1BC5C 1BC5D 1BC5E 1BC5F 1BC60
Ow Ou Wa Wo Wi Wei Wow
basic nasal vowels variant nasal vowels
1BC61 1BC62 1BC63 1BC64 1BC65 1BC66 1BC67 1BC68 1BC69 1BC6A
Un On In An An (Per) Am (Per) En (Sl) An (Sl) On (Sl) uM

Affixes, marks, punctuation, and others[edit]

invariant attached affixes
Code Affix Code Affix Code Affix Code Affix Code Affix Code Affix
1BC70 1BC71 1BC72 1BC73 1BC74 1BC75
orienting attached affixes
1BC76 1BC77 1BC78 1BC79 1BC7A 1BC7B 1BC7C
high affixes
1BC80 1BC81 1BC82 1BC83 1BC84 1BC85 1BC86 1BC87 1BC88
low affixes
1BC90 1BC91 1BC92 1BC93 1BC94 1BC95 1BC96 1BC97 1BC98 1BC99
Other marks and symbols
Code Symbol Code Symbol Code Symbol
Name Name Name
Chinook Likalisti (eucharist) sign Double Mark Chinook punctuation mark
Invisible Unicode format characters
Code Name Code Name Code Name Code Name Code Name
1BC9D Duployan Thick
Letter Selector
1BCA0 Shorthand Format
Letter Overlap
1BCA1 Shorthand Format
Continuing Overlap
1BCA2 Shorthand Format
Down Step
1BCA3 Shorthand Format
Up Step

French Duployan[edit]

The use of French Duployan shorthand has historically been heavier in areas of southern France and Switzerland, with the Prévost-Delaunay and Aimé-Paris shorthands more common in northern France and the Paris area.

French Duployan makes use of an extensive list of letter words, combined consonants, and affix marks, but does not cross letters to make abbreviations. Like most European shorthands, French Duployan omits vowels that can be guessed by a fluent speaker.[7][8]

Chinook writing[edit]

Introduction to the Wawa shorthand

The Chinook writing, or Wawa shorthand, or Chinuk pipa, was developed by Father Jean-Marie-Raphaël Le Jeune in the early 1890s for writing in Chinook Jargon, Lillooet, Thompson, Okanagan, Latin, and English, with the intended purpose of bringing literacy and church teaching to the first nations in the Catholic Diocese of Kamloops. The result was three decades' publication of the Chinook Jargon language Kamloops Wawa.[9]

The Chinook writing is notable by the absence of affixes and word signs, the phonological rigor – vowels were not omitted, even when predictable – and its use of W-vowels. Chinook writing is also notable in splitting a word into nominally syllabic units as well as using the only non-joining consonant characters in Duployan.[10][11]

Romanian stenography[edit]

The Romanian stenography was developed by Margaretta Sfințescu in the 1980s. Like French Duployan, Romanian stenography uses a large number of affix marks and word signs.[12]

English shorthands[edit]

Several adaptations of Duployan were developed for writing English, including those by Helen Pernin, J. Matthew Sloan, Denis Perrault, Carl Brandt, and George Galloway. The Pernin, Perrault, and Sloan shorthands are distinguished from other Duployan shorthands by the presence of the quarter-arc compound consonants. They also make use of affix marks, and omit redundant vowels.[clarification needed][13][14][15] Galloway and Brandt shorthands are not included in the Duployan Unicode proposal.[2]

Unlike other Duployan shorthands, Sloan-Duployan uses a thick, or heavy, stroke to indicate the addition of an "R" sound to a letter. Although not found in the other Duployan shorthands, contrastive thick and thin strokes are common in other shorthands, such as Pitman shorthand, where a heavy stroke would indicate a voiced consonant, and thin the unvoiced version of the same consonant.[13]


Duployan shorthand was added to the Unicode Standard in June 2014 with the release of version 7.0.

Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+1BC0x 𛰀 𛰁 𛰂 𛰃 𛰄 𛰅 𛰆 𛰇 𛰈 𛰉 𛰊 𛰋 𛰌 𛰍 𛰎 𛰏
U+1BC1x 𛰐 𛰑 𛰒 𛰓 𛰔 𛰕 𛰖 𛰗 𛰘 𛰙 𛰚 𛰛 𛰜 𛰝 𛰞 𛰟
U+1BC2x 𛰠 𛰡 𛰢 𛰣 𛰤 𛰥 𛰦 𛰧 𛰨 𛰩 𛰪 𛰫 𛰬 𛰭 𛰮 𛰯
U+1BC3x 𛰰 𛰱 𛰲 𛰳 𛰴 𛰵 𛰶 𛰷 𛰸 𛰹 𛰺 𛰻 𛰼 𛰽 𛰾 𛰿
U+1BC4x 𛱀 𛱁 𛱂 𛱃 𛱄 𛱅 𛱆 𛱇 𛱈 𛱉 𛱊 𛱋 𛱌 𛱍 𛱎 𛱏
U+1BC5x 𛱐 𛱑 𛱒 𛱓 𛱔 𛱕 𛱖 𛱗 𛱘 𛱙 𛱚 𛱛 𛱜 𛱝 𛱞 𛱟
U+1BC6x 𛱠 𛱡 𛱢 𛱣 𛱤 𛱥 𛱦 𛱧 𛱨 𛱩 𛱪
U+1BC7x 𛱰 𛱱 𛱲 𛱳 𛱴 𛱵 𛱶 𛱷 𛱸 𛱹 𛱺 𛱻 𛱼
U+1BC8x 𛲀 𛲁 𛲂 𛲃 𛲄 𛲅 𛲆 𛲇 𛲈
U+1BC9x 𛲐 𛲑 𛲒 𛲓 𛲔 𛲕 𛲖 𛲗 𛲘 𛲙 𛲜 D T
 L S 
𛲞 𛲟
1.^ As of Unicode version 15.1
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points
Shorthand Format Controls[1][2]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+1BCAx  𛲠‎   𛲡‎   𛲢‎   𛲣‎ 
1.^ As of Unicode version 15.1
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points


  1. ^ Final Accepted Script Proposal
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Anderson, Van (2010-09-24). "N3895: Proposal to include Duployan script and Shorthand Format Controls in UCS" (PDF).
  3. ^ Anderson, Van; Michael Everson (2011-05-30). "Resolving chart and collation order for the Duployan script" (PDF).
  4. ^ "Resolutions of WG 2 meeting 58" (PDF). Retrieved 2011-06-10.[permanent dead link]
  5. ^ "Duployan, Range: 1BC00–1BC9F" (PDF). The Unicode Standard. Unicode Consortium. 2016.
  6. ^ "Shorthand Format Controls, Range: 1BCA0–1BCAF" (PDF). The Unicode Standard. Unicode Consortium. 2016.
  7. ^ Hautefeuille and Ramaude. Cours de Sténographie Duployé Fondamentale.
  8. ^ "Stenographie Integrale" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-04-19.
  9. ^ LeJeune, Jean Marie. "How the Shorthand was Introduced among the Indians".
  10. ^ LeJeune, Jean Marie Raphael. "Chinook Rudiments". Archived from the original on 2008-05-09.
  11. ^ LeJeune, Jean Marie Raphael (April 1895). "Origin of the Chinook Jargon". Kamloops Wawa. Vol. 4, no. 4. p. 50.
  12. ^ Sfinţescu, Margaretta (1984). Curs De Stenografie.
  13. ^ a b Sloan, J.M. (1882). Modern Shorthand. the Sloan-Duployan Phonographic Instructor. Ramsgate, England; St. John's, NL; Brisbane, QLD.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  14. ^ Perrault, Denis R. (1918). Perrault-Duployan Complete Elementary Course of Stenography in Six Lessons. Montreal. ISBN 9780659907516.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  15. ^ Pernin, Helen M. (1902). Pernin's Universal Phonography. Detroit, MI.{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)