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Language of a HTML doc

From: Carrasco Benitez Manuel <manuel.carrasco@emea.eudra.org>
Date: Wed, 19 Nov 1997 12:43:15 -0000
Message-Id: <5DFB753C1329D1119DEC00805F15C342D924@WS015>
To: "'www-international@w3.org'" <www-international@w3.org>
The "redraw" seems to be moving to "how to indicate the language in an
HTML document".

This was discussed at the begining of the year on the list and during
Unicode Conference
at Mainz in March 1997 and there was a rough consensus.  A resume
follows.

The recommended place to indicate the language is

  <META HTTP-EQUIV="Content-Language"  Content="fr">

More than one language could be indicated, but the first one was the
default.  If more than
one language was present, the other are just an indication that more
languages are in the
document but they must be identify with LANG.  Otherwise the default is
assumed.

<HTML LANG=xx> is just a modification of <META ...>, a <BODY LANG=xx> is
a modification of
<HTML LANG=xx>, etc.

One of the reason to recommend <META ...> was that it could accomodate
multilingual
documents (and bilingual documents in particular, common case in Canada)
as more than
one language can be indicated.  <HTML> allows only for one language.

Browsers reading the docs directly, as oppose to getting them from a
server, should use the
language indication in the docs.

Regards
Tomas
Received on Wednesday, 19 November 1997 07:45:15 GMT

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