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The E-Sylum:  Volume 9, Number 34, August 20, 2006, Article 21

WRITING STYLE IN NUMISMATICS

David F. Fanning writes: "Yossi Dotan had asked for advice on typography
and numerals. One of his examples suggested that there should not be
a space between the digit and a metric unit:

-- The 11-mile (17km)-long Vasco da Gama bridge was opened in 1998.
[ Hyphen between number and the unabbreviated word "mile"; no hyphen
and no space between number and the lower-case abbreviated "km"; hyphen
between the length and the word "long."

This is one of my pet peeves (of which I've plenty). I am the editor
of a technical journal in engineering and use SI (the International
System of Units, scientific metric) all the time. The standard for SI
(ASTM/IEEE
SI-10) clearly states that there must be a space between the digit and
the unit. Just as one wouldn't type "it was fourmeters long," you
shouldn't type "it was 4m long."

Dick Johnson writes: "Yossi Dotan should not worry about hyphenating
in his book, mentioned in last week's E-Sylum. As long as it is a
UNIFORM style throughout your book, it should be satisfactory.

Numismatic writers should have a Style Rule book for all of the
numismatic field. (I am attempting to fulfill that desire for over
1800 terms in my encyclopedia of coin and medal technology, currently
nearing completion. I am down to the last "dirty dozen" entries.)

Until then the best thing available is the Style Rules published a
number of years ago by Coin World. This was an excellent compilation,
being the guide for everything published in CW. By extension it solves
most all the problems that might arise in all numismatic writing. If
this hasn't been reprinted, it should be. Ask Beth Deisher for a copy.

I agree with all the style rules stated therein, save one rule -- the
spelling of "mintmark." Half the languages in the world have this as
one word, half as two words. Coin World style rule is to capitalize
the M, as "Mint mark."

Sorry, I initiated that style rule when I was editor of Coin World 45
years ago, and it stuck. Now I am convinced it should be one word, and
without the capital M. (I was enamored with the word at the time, I
wanted to make it special, thus the capital M; now I feel it should
be a stand-alone single word.)"

  Wayne Homren, Editor

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