Talk:Peter T. Daniels

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Peter may have popularized the term "abugida", but he certainly cannot claim to have "coined" it, since that very term (for precisely the same thing) has been used in Ethiopia for centuries...! All references to his "coining" the term therefore need be changed. Codex Sinaiticus 5 July 2005 05:30 (UTC)

Perhaps it would be most correct, to say that he gave the term a new meaning? IMHO his "invention" was the use of the terms abjad and abugida to create a categorization system for alphabetic writing systems. Both terms were in use before, but not exactly for that purpose. --Pjacobi July 5, 2005 09:02 (UTC)

Again, that is precisely the same meaning Ethiopian scholars have attributed to this Ethiopian word for centuries. But it seems like in the Western view there is no such thing as an "Ethiopian scholar" so therefore the "credit" must go to a Westerner... I'm not exactly sure what he "invented" or did that was new, other than to adopt or borrow the term into English from Amharic or Geez (and then it can even be argued whether he was the first to use the word in English). Codex Sinaiticus 5 July 2005 14:27 (UTC)

I'm only speculating out of ignorance. So, the term "abugida" was also used to classify together Indic scripts, Ge'ez, [[Meroitic script], and others? That would be a very interesting addition we can make to the Abugida article. Is there anything we can give as reference or source for this? --Pjacobi July 5, 2005 14:31 (UTC)


I was translating this article to Catalan, and when I realised, I was edited my text over the English article. I hope to have restablished correctly the original article. Sorry for my rudimentary English too.

Is he really so imporant?[edit]

Is Peter T. Daniels really so important that he merits a whole page? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talkcontribs) 09:39, 27 July 2006

Heh, well, I guess he wouldn't be sorry if it went away; he said once,
It [the Wikipedia article on me] was quoted to me once, and yes, it had some “accurate facts” in it.
Tamfang 17:51, 13 August 2006 (UTC)

There are lots of scholars in lots of fields that are at least as important as Daniels, but who don't have their own page on Wikipedia. The real reason why he's better known than them is not so much his scholarship, but his self-important, I'm-so-much-smarter-than-all-those-jerks-around-here attitude on Usenet and elsewhere. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:54, 12 April 2009 (UTC)

So start some articles for those more-deserving scholars. —Tamfang (talk) 19:12, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Sure, there are plenty of people more famous, but those could be added as well. It's not like there's a shortage of space. Now, regarding the article, I have a low opinion of it. However, I don't believe it's so sinful as to merit my attention beyond this comment. Nehmo (talk) 15:13, 19 September 2015 (UTC)

Indeed, there's a tendency to squeeze his opinion in every page on alphabet in Wikipedia by his online minions. (talk) 05:49, 5 January 2017 (UTC)

He is the most important scholar in many aspects of writing systems. People may gripe about what others have posted about him, but that does not detract from the fact that the person who is the topic of the article is important in his field. Pete unseth (talk) 13:26, 5 January 2017 (UTC)

More info[edit]

Is he alive is he dead, when was he born etc.--HalaTruth(ሀላካሕ) 14:54, 23 December 2006 (UTC)

Well, he was alive as of November 27. —Tamfang 09:03, 21 January 2007 (UTC)

Rm'd external link[edit]

I removed the external link to a page by (about?) him at, because it was broken. I searched for, but could not find, any other page about him. In particular, he does not appear to have a page at Cornell. It would be nice for someone to correct me on this! Mcswell (talk) 21:59, 29 March 2011 (UTC)

rant removed[edit]

I reverted the addition of this passage:

Of course, one wonders why a person capable of earning an advanced degree would perceive a need to "introduce" a term for "an 'alphabet' with no vowel letters" when NONE of the original alphabets had vowel letters (the issue of matres lectionis aside). The word alphabet comes from semitic languages without vowel symbols (like Hebrew) whose first two letters are a variation of "aleph" and "beit". A person moved by logic would comprehend that the very term "alphabet" derives from languages that do not have grapheme symbols for vowels. To then come along thousands of years after the fact and decide that the namesake of written language systems is not worthy of the name that was generated by its very fabric, is not in the least bit is something quite the opposite. What is needed is a name for systems with graphemic vowels. Mr. Daniels should probably cast about for a suitable name for such systems so that he doesn't go down in history solely as the progenitor of a gross linguistic misnomer (which would likely be embarrassing for a linguist, or so one would think). Non-vowels systems already have generated a name for themselves...and that name, in English, is ALPHABET.

Some of the points made here might be appropriate, if they could be put in a less blatantly opinionated way. — While the words alpha and beta are of course ultimately Semitic, the compound alphabet was (so far as I know) first used in Greek, for the first full alphabet (with vowels); apparently Arabic uses the word abjad. So this criticism is precisely backward, unless evidence can be shown of the use of aleph-beit (or a cognate) as a noun in a Semitic language before such language began borrowing from Greek. —Tamfang (talk) 19:11, 16 June 2009 (UTC)

Cryptic crosswords[edit]

Someone removed the line about Daniels' interest in cryptic crosswords as "not relevant". I don't see why that's so bad as a brief biographical mention; it would seem to have a bearing on his general linguistic interests. Equinox (talk) 17:10, 12 January 2016 (UTC)