U+16C8 RUNIC LETTER PERTHO PEORTH P

U+16C8 was added to Unicode in version 3.0 (1999). It belongs to the block Runic in the Basic Multilingual Plane.

This character is a Other Letter and is mainly used in the Runic script.

The glyph is not a composition. It has a Neutral East Asian Width. In bidirectional context it acts as Left To Right and is not mirrored. In text U+16C8 behaves as Alphabetic regarding line breaks. It has type OLetter for sentence and ALetter for word breaks. The Grapheme Cluster Break is Any.

The Wikipedia has the following information about this codepoint:

is the rune denoting the sound p (voiceless bilabial stop) in the Elder Futhark runic alphabet, in the Anglo-Saxon rune poem named peorð. It does not appear in the Younger Futhark. In the poem, it is glossed with the enigmatic:

peorð byþ symble plega and hlehter / wlancum [on middum], ðar wigan sittaþ / on beorsele bliþe ætsomne
"Peorð is a source of recreation and amusement to the great, where warriors sit blithely together in the banqueting-hall."

The name is not comprehensible from Old English, i.e. no word similar to peorð is known in this language. According to a 9th-century manuscript of Alcuin (Codex Vindobonensis 795), written in Britain, in the Gothic alphabet, the letters p (based on a Greek Π) and q (an inverted Π) are called "pairþra" and "qairþra", respectively. One of these names clearly is derived from the other. However, the names are not comprehensible in Gothic either, and it is not clear which is derived from which, except that we know that the Elder Futhark had a p, but no q rune. In any case, it seems evident that peorð is related to pairþra. The Anglo-Saxon futhorc adopted exactly the same approach for the addition of a labiovelar rune, ᛢ cweorð, in both shape and name based on peorð, but unfortunately, we do not know if the Gothic runes already had a similar variant rune of p, or if the labiovelar letter was a 4th-century creation of Ulfilas.

The Common Germanic name could be referring to a pear-tree (or perhaps generally a fruit-tree). Based on the context of "recreation and amusement" given in the rune poem, a common speculative interpretation is that the intended meaning is "pear-wood" as the material of either a woodwind instrument, or a "game box" or game pieces made from wood.

From peorð, Proto-Germanic forms *perðu, *perþō or *perþaz may be reconstructed on purely phonological grounds. The expected Proto-Germanic term for "pear tree" would be *pera-trewô (*pera being, however, a post-Proto-Germanic loan, either West Germanic, or Common Germanic, if Gothic pairþra meant "pear tree", from Vulgar Latin pirum (plural pira), itself of unknown origin). The Ogham letter name Ceirt, glossed as "apple tree", may in turn be a loan from Germanic into Primitive Irish.

The earliest attestation of the rune is in the Kylver Stone futhark row (ca. AD 400). The earliest example in a linguistic context (as opposed to an abecedarium) is already in futhorc, in the Kent II, III and IV coin inscriptions (the personal names pada and æpa/epa), dated to ca. AD 700. On St. Cuthbert's coffin (AD 698), a p rune takes the place of Greek Ρ. The Westeremden yew-stick (ca. AD 750) has op hæmu "at home" and up duna "on the hill".

Looijenga (1997) speculates that the p rune arose as a variant of the b rune, parallel to the secondary nature of Ogham peith. The uncertainty surrounding the rune is a consequence of the rarity of the *p phoneme in Proto-Germanic, itself due to the rarity of its parent-phoneme *b in Proto-Indo-European.

The rune is discontinued in Younger Futhark, which expresses /p/ with the b rune, for example on the Viking Age Skarpåker Stone,

iarþ sal rifna uk ubhimin

for Old Norse

Jörð skal rifna ok upphiminn.
"Earth shall be rent, and the heavens above."

Representations

System Representation
5832
UTF-8 E1 9B 88
UTF-16 16 C8
UTF-32 00 00 16 C8
URL-Quoted %E1%9B%88
HTML-Escape ᛈ
Wrong windows-1252 Mojibake ᛈ

Elsewhere

Complete Record

Property Value
Age (age) 3.0
Unicode Name (na) RUNIC LETTER PERTHO PEORTH P
Unicode 1 Name (na1)
Block (blk) Runic
General Category (gc) Other Letter
Script (sc) Runic
Bidirectional Category (bc) Left To Right
Combining Class (ccc) Not Reordered
Decomposition Type (dt) None
Decomposition Mapping (dm) ᛈ
Lowercase (Lower)
Simple Lowercase Mapping (slc) ᛈ
Lowercase Mapping (lc) ᛈ
Uppercase (Upper)
Simple Uppercase Mapping (suc) ᛈ
Uppercase Mapping (uc) ᛈ
Simple Titlecase Mapping (stc) ᛈ
Titlecase Mapping (tc) ᛈ
Case Folding (cf) ᛈ
ASCII Hex Digit (AHex)
Alphabetic (Alpha)
Bidi Control (Bidi_C)
Bidi Mirrored (Bidi_M)
Bidi Paired Bracket (bpb) ᛈ
Bidi Paired Bracket Type (bpt) None
Cased (Cased)
Composition Exclusion (CE)
Case Ignorable (CI)
Full Composition Exclusion (Comp_Ex)
Changes When Casefolded (CWCF)
Changes When Casemapped (CWCM)
Changes When NFKC Casefolded (CWKCF)
Changes When Lowercased (CWL)
Changes When Titlecased (CWT)
Changes When Uppercased (CWU)
Dash (Dash)
Deprecated (Dep)
Default Ignorable Code Point (DI)
Diacritic (Dia)
East Asian Width (ea) Neutral
Extender (Ext)
FC NFKC Closure (FC_NFKC) ᛈ
Grapheme Cluster Break (GCB) Any
Grapheme Base (Gr_Base)
Grapheme Extend (Gr_Ext)
Hex Digit (Hex)
Hangul Syllable Type (hst) Not Applicable
Hyphen (Hyphen)
ID Continue (IDC)
Ideographic (Ideo)
ID Start (IDS)
IDS Binary Operator (IDSB)
IDS Trinary Operator and (IDST)
InMC (InMC)
Indic Positional Category (InPC) NA
Indic Syllabic Category (InSC) Other
ISO 10646 Comment (isc)
Joining Group (jg) No_Joining_Group
Join Control (Join_C)
Jamo Short Name (JSN)
Joining Type (jt) Non Joining
Line Break (lb) Alphabetic
Logical Order Exception (LOE)
Math (Math)
Noncharacter Code Point (NChar)
NFC Quick Check (NFC_QC) Yes
NFD Quick Check (NFD_QC) Yes
NFKC Casefold (NFKC_CF) ᛈ
NFKC Quick Check (NFKC_QC) Yes
NFKD Quick Check (NFKD_QC) Yes
Numeric Type (nt) None
Numeric Value (nv) NaN
Other Alphabetic (OAlpha)
Other Default Ignorable Code Point (ODI)
Other Grapheme Extend (OGr_Ext)
Other ID Continue (OIDC)
Other ID Start (OIDS)
Other Lowercase (OLower)
Other Math (OMath)
Other Uppercase (OUpper)
Pattern Syntax (Pat_Syn)
Pattern White Space (Pat_WS)
Quotation Mark (QMark)
Radical (Radical)
Sentence Break (SB) OLetter
Simple Case Folding (scf) ᛈ
Script Extension (scx) Runic
Soft Dotted (SD)
STerm (STerm)
Terminal Punctuation (Term)
Unified Ideograph (UIdeo)
Variation Selector (VS)
Word Break (WB) ALetter
White Space (WSpace)
XID Continue (XIDC)
XID Start (XIDS)
Expands On NFC (XO_NFC)
Expands On NFD (XO_NFD)
Expands On NFKC (XO_NFKC)
Expands On NFKD (XO_NFKD)