The HTML supports the accentuated letters of the ISO Latin 1 norm (ISO-8859-1). This is not enough to write the slavic languages such as the roman language, and several diacritic signs are missing. However, most browser are now compliant with Unicode. So I used (February 2002) in this site the escape sequences that code the required unicode characters.
These are: Ă ă Ţ ţ Ş ş (character codes below are indicated as upper case/lower case).
This page is an annex of the Vlad Ţepeş journey log and contains by mean of graphic images the correct orthograph of the roman words used there, specially names.
We found in the litterature differences in spelling between the names of the same place. For example, the anciant capital of the Valachia can be written Târgoviste or Tîrgoviste (like in this big map).
As we study closer the roman language, we found differences in words as basic as bread which can be written pâine or pîine.
This difference between â and î comes from two political decisions.
When Sovietics managed to control the power of Romania after the war, the decided to insist upon the slavic origin of the language versus its latin origin. The â letter was of latin origin, but very close to a cyrillic character associated with i. They thus decided to transform all the â letters to î.
This sounds completely idiotic, but these are how things worked in socialist republics. Among all the horrible things the comunists made to the romanian people, this one was very slight. Romanians used to joke together:
- Do you know the difference between a bakery from before the war and a bakery of after the war?
- Before the war, there were pâine written on the front and some bread inside; now you have pîine written and the baker inside.
After the revolution of 1989, one of the first resolutions of the new government has been to reverse the reform to the old system again and make people using â instead of î; with exception on the words that start with this letter and keep the letter î.
Communists will forgive me if I follow the recommandations of the Roman Accademy and write pâine, Târgoviste, Mânăstirea and îngăduinţă (which means tolerance).