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Ed Heil scripsit:

> The vast vast majority of vowelless scripts write right-to-left.
>
> The vast vast majority of scripts with vowels write left-to-right.

I think the standard view, that this is essentially a coincidence,
is correct.  The alphabet developed at a certain time and place,
and was not independently reinvented elsewhere (unlike syllabic and
morpho-syllabic writing); it happened to descend from a vowelless
script.

RTL vs LTR reflects the way right-handers inscribe on stone or wood,
and write with pen and ink, respectively.  Normally the left hand
holds the chisel and the right hand the hammer, so it is natural
to start at the right end and work leftwards.  Right-handed writing
with a pen, though, is more easily done LTR, so that the letters are
not hidden or smudged.

Of the 65 scripts on the Unicode Roadmap, a mere 9 are RTL, and only
one of these (Arabic script) is at all widely used.

--
John Cowan                                   [log in to unmask]
       I am a member of a civilization. --David Brin