Dutch-Colonies-L ArchivesArchiver > Dutch-Colonies > 1998-12 > 0915065396
From: Howard Swain< >
Subject: Re: Please explain symbol
Date: Wed, 30 Dec 1998 18:49:56 -0600 (CST)
At 06:34 PM 12/29/98 -0600, Betty Harris wrote:
>Being uninformed perhaps one of you can tell me what the symbol oe means in
>this list. Is it a symbol for guilders? Is there a certain key sequence
>that prints it for one.? sorry to be so dumb. Betty
Thanks for giving me the incentive to update a message I sent awhile back.
I assume you mean the character, , that appears in some of the wills that
Wayne is posting.
I spot check against the actual New York Historical Society pages shows that
it should be the British pound symbol, which should appear like this: £ if
all goes well. (Note in the will of Patience Ludlam recently posted that
shillings are mentioned as well.)
So what happened?
It turns out there are many character sets that extend what is available on
an American keyboard. My printer manual shows at least 20. My DOS manual
shows 2 and says there are 4 more available.
To enter one of these extra characters you can hold down the "Alt" key and
type a number code using the number pad on the right of the keyboard. Then
release the Alt key.
The problem is that not all character sets use the same code for the same
character. Eg. as Liz DuBois alterted me, in one of the main DOS sets, the
British pound symbol is Alt 0156. Here are some that use that code for £:
DOS US Code Page #437
DOS "Multilingual" Code Page #850
However, in many of the popular US Windows character sets, Alt 0156 is the
character, while Alt 0163 is the £ character. You can find the code for
various fonts using the Character Map application that comes with Windows.
So, you can see that if the source uses Alt 0156 for the £, a Windows
program used in the United States will probably interpret it as .
(Note: There can also be problems if somewhere along the line a system
sends a code requiring 8bits and a receiving system is not able to
handle that. I had previously thought this might be the problem.)
Just for fun, I Pasted one of the wills into MS Works and did a
Edit | Replace.
For "Find What" I did Alt 0156 (it showed up as a heavy vertical line
in whatever character set the dialog box uses.)
For "Replace With" I did Alt 0163
Then clicked on "Replace All"
And voilà, all the were replaced with £.