Word features for Indic languages

The features described in this Help topic are only available if support for the appropriate Indic language is enabled through Microsoft Office Language Settings.

Working with Indic language text and files

ShowEditing text

The Indic languages supported in Microsoft Word require special text editing considerations not generally necessary in other languages. This language attribute requires additional techniques to perform standard editing functions and to change a character's associated markings.

In addition, in the Indic languages such as Hindi, new characters can be formed when markings are added or removed from existing text. Depending on what marking is changed, the new character may or may not be a legitimate character according to language convention.

To assist you in determining the legitimacy of a sequence of Indic language characters, Word can check the sequence for you. Also, you can have Word make logical substitutions for you.

The editing methods used to insert and delete Indic language characters are based on the progression that forms characters with their associated diacritics, tone marks, and accents.

ShowDeleting text

You can use the BACKSPACE key to remove an individual marking or use the DELETE key to delete the entire character (cluster).

ShowChecking spelling

Microsoft Word with Indic languages enabled checks the spelling of Indic language words and other words automatically as it encounters them. You do not need to perform a separate spelling check for each language.

ShowChecking the correct sequence of characters

Indic languages follow stringent grammatical rules that dictate which textual character elements are allowed next to one another in the composition of words. To compound the complexity of correctly entering Indic language characters, text includes both simple characters and characters that include one or more markings such as vowels.

To assist you in correctly entering characters in your document that prescribe to the grammar rules for the enabled Indic language, Microsoft Word can automatically check the text for you. Also, you can have Word make logical substitutions for you by using Type and Replace, a complementary feature.

Sequence checking can be used by itself or in combination with Type and Replace. When sequence checking only is selected, Word will not allow an invalid character to be typed at the insertion point. If Type and Replace is also selected, Word will insert or replace an existing character to make a valid sequence.

 Note   The first time you type a character that is not sequentially valid, Word will display a Help box that provides access to topics on sequence checking and automatically inserting or replacing characters. This box will be displayed each time you start Word and an invalid character is typed unless you choose otherwise.

ShowSpecifying font characteristics

You can determine separate font characteristics for Latin and Indic language text.

 Note   The default font for all runs (run: A contiguous piece of text or string of characters sharing the same attributes. All characters in a run have the same directional properties.) in Indic languages is: Hindi (Mangal, 10 point). Documents opened from earlier versions of Microsoft Word will retain their default settings.

ShowFinding and replacing special characters

Some Indic languages may not take full advantage of the search options in Microsoft Word. For example, the Sounds like and Find all word forms options will not work with Indic language text, but these options will find matching criteria in other types of text in the document.

ShowFile compatibility with previous versions

There is no Hindi version of Microsoft Word 6.0/95 or Word 97.

Using numbers, dates, and time

ShowNumber formats

Indic language number formats are used in several circumstances in Microsoft Word documents. Most can be divided into two general categories: list formats, such as page numbering and sequential numbering, and date and time formats.

ShowNumbered lists

The Indic languages offer several choices for displaying numbers in lists. Hindi provides formats based on its native numbering, its alphabet (Hindi has both vowel-based and consonant-based formats), and a descriptive form that spells out the numbers.

ShowDate and time formats and calendars

The calendar you choose determines the date and time format used for each Indic language. The list of calendars available to you is based on the languages you have enabled and what operating system language setting you have selected in Regional Settings or Regional Options in Microsoft Windows Control Panel.

When a Indic language is the installed language, the predominate Indic language calendar for that language will be the default calendar used by Microsoft Word — for example, for Hindi, Western is the default calendar.

Depending on the Indic language you have enabled, you can choose between the Saka Era (Hindi only) and Gregorian (Indic) calendars.

 Note   The Gregorian calendar used with Indic languages is based on U.K. English.

Applies to:
Word 2003