Portal:Writing

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Introduction

Medieval writing desk.jpg

Writing may refer to two activities: the inscribing of characters on a medium, with the intention of forming words and other lingual constructs that represent language and record information, or the creation of information to be conveyed through written language. (There are some exceptions; for example, the use of a typewriter to record information is generally called typing, rather than writing.) Writing refers to both activities equally, and often both activities occur simultaneously; however one may write while doing only one of the activities.

Writing is the representation of language in a textual medium through the use of a set of signs or symbols (known as a writing system). Writing may use abstract characters that represent phonetic elements of speech, as in Indo-European languages, or it may use simplified representations of objects or concepts, as in east-Asian and ancient Egyptian pictographic writing forms. However, it is distinguished from illustration, such as cave drawing and painting, and non-symbolic preservation of language via non-textual media, such as magnetic tape audio.

Writing is a distinctly human activity in which text is created on a medium such as a tablet or vellum in the form of signs, symbols or letters. These characters then go together to form words and larger texts which convey meaning and information.

The art of writing, known as calligraphy, has played a huge part in cultures around the world and is still enjoyed by many people today.

Selected article

Tugra Mahmuds II.gif
Pictured left:The stylized signature (tughra) of Sultan Mahmud II of the Ottoman Empire was written in an expressive calligraphy. It reads Mahmud Khan son of Abdulhamid is forever victorious.

Islamic calligraphy is the art of writing, and by extension, of bookmaking. This art has most often employed the Arabic script, throughout many languages. Calligraphy is especially revered among Islamic arts since it was the primary means for the preservation of the Qur'an.

Throughout Islamic history, the work of calligraphers was collected and appreciated. Consideration of figurative art as idolatrous led to calligraphy and abstract figures becoming the main methods of artistic expression in Islamic cultures.

Arabic, Persian and Ottoman Turkish calligraphy is associated with geometric Islamic art (the Arabesque) on the walls and ceilings of mosques as well as on the page. Contemporary artists in the Islamic world draw on the heritage of calligraphy to use calligraphic inscriptions or abstractions in their work.


Selected picture

Calligraphy.malmesbury.bible.arp.jpg

Calligraphy in a Latin Bible of AD 1407 on display in Malmesbury Abbey, Wiltshire, England. The Bible was hand written in Belgium, by Gerard Brils, for reading aloud in a monastery.

Selected biography

Andrew Robinson, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.jpg
W. Andrew Robinson (born 1957) is a British author[1][2] and former newspaper editor.[3]

Andrew Robinson was educated at the Dragon School, Eton College where he was a King's Scholar, University College, Oxford where he read Chemistry and finally the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. He is the son of Neville Robinson, an Oxford physicist. He is based in London and is currently a full-time writer.

Robinson has written several books about the history of writing, including:

  • The Story of Writing: Alphabets, Hieroglyphs and Pictograms. Thames and Hudson (2000). ISBN 0-500-28156-4.[4]
  • Lost Languages: The Enigma of the World's Great Undeciphered Scripts. McGraw-Hill (2002). ISBN 0-07-135743-2.[5][6]
  • Writing and Script. Oxford University Press (2009). ISBN 9780199567782.[3][7][8]


Did you know...

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...that screenwriter Richard Baer's writing credits for television included twenty-three episodes of Bewitched and five episodes of The Munsters?
Other "Did you know" facts...

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WritingCalligraphyPenmanshipWriting implementsInksAlphabetic writing systemsAbjadAbugidaKanjiLogographic writing systemsWriting systemsCyrillic alphabetsHellenic scriptsScript typefaces

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