International SignWriting Alphabet
Used in 2-dimensional clusters to write signs.
Handshapes from over 40 Sign Languages are placed in 10 groups based on the numbers 1-10 in American Sign Language.
Contact symbols, small finger movements, straight arrows, curved arrows and circles are placed into 10 groups based on planes: The Front Wall Plane includes movement that is "parallel to the front wall" and the Floor Plane includes movement that is "parallel to the floor".
Dynamics Symbols are used to give the "feeling" or "tempo" to movement. They provide emphasis on a movement or expression, and combined with Punctuation Symbols become the equivalent to Exclamation Points. The Tension Symbol, combined with Contact Symbols, provides the feeling of "pressure", and combined with facial expressions can place emphasis or added feeling to an expression. Timing symbols are used to show alternating or simultaneous movement.
Starting with the head and then from the top of the face and moving down.
Torso movement, shoulders, hips, and the limbs are used in Sign Languages as a part of grammar, especially when describing conversations between people, called Role Shifting, or making spatial comparisons between items on the left and items on the right.
Used in ordered lists as annotation outside of the written cluster. Not used for everyday writing.
Detailed Location symbols used in the SignSpelling Sequence may be useful for sorting large dictionaries, refining animation, simplifying translation between scripts and notation systems, and for detailed analysis of location sometimes needed in linguistic research.
Always used alone
Punctuation Symbols are used when writing complete sentences or documents in SignWriting.
|ISWA 2010 symbols|
designed by Valerie Sutton
Symbol Lessons Online
Hand photos by Adam Frost
|ISWA 2010 HTML Reference|
Stephen E Slevinski Jr.
Except where otherwise noted,
this work is licensed under
Creative Commons Attribution
|Unicode PUA |
January 12th, 2012