GLOSSARY OF TOPONYMIC TERMINOLOGY

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data A representation of facts or concepts in a formalized manner suit­able for communica­tion, interpretation or processing by man or machine. Complementa­ry term in computer usage: program.
data base (also database), digital Comprehensive, sometimes exhaustive, collection of computer files and/or computer records pertaining to a specific subject. Example: the collec­tion of computer records for all hydrographic features in a country.
data base, digital topo­nymic A digital data base containing (all) toponyms in a specific region, with or without accompanying data, in computer-readable form.
data base management sys­tem A collection of software required for using a digital data base so as to enable independent users to access this data base.
data dictionary Catalog of definitions of the contents of a digital data base, includ­ing data element reference labels, file formats, internal reference codes and text entry, as well as their relationships.
data directory See data dictionary.
data element Description of a basic unit of identifiable and definable information to occupy a specific data field in a computer record. Example: `Date of ratification of name by the names authority'.
data field Space for a specific data element in a computer record. Exam­ple: the fields for the coordinates in a place name computer record.
data interchange, trans­lingual Data exchange (especially by computer) via standardized codes and/or terminol­ogy not bound to a particular language.
data item Value or content of a particular data element in a specific com­put­er re­cord. Example: 01.01.97 in the data field for `date'.
data portability The possibility of running and/or using the same data on different computer systems.
default value In computer processing, an option chosen by the computer automati­cally in the absence of explicit instructions by the human operator.
defective alphabetic script See script, defective alphabetic.
descriptive term A word (usually a common noun, an adjective or a phrase) e.g. printed in a map, which designates a topographic feature by its proper­ties, but which does not constitute a toponym. Examples: airfield, canal; water tower; perennial, seasonal (for streams).
designation See descriptive term.
diacritic A sign, usually small, placed above, below or across a letter or group of letters in order to change the phonemic value of the original letter(s), or to denote stress or tone, or to distinguish between two words. Examples: German , , ; š and _ in the romanization of Russian Cyrillic; in the romanization of Hebrew; Polish _; Romanian _; French o (where) as against ou (or). See also marker.
diacritical mark, diacritical sign See diacritic.
dialect Regionally or socially distinctive variety of a language, character­ised and identified by a particular set of words, grammatical struc-tu­res and pronunciation. The distinction between dialect and lan­guage is sometimes difficult to establish. See also diglossia; ver­nac­ular.
dictionary, geographical List of geographical terms and/or names, usually arranged in al­pha­betical order, providing definitions, explanatory information or descriptive data for each item.
digital data base See data base, digital.
digital toponymic data base See data base, digital toponymic.
diglossia A relatively stable linguistic situation in which two different variet­ies of a single language co-occur in a linguistic community, one (the `high' variety) usually being the more formal and presti­gious; the other (the `low') variety being used in more informal settings, chiefly in conversation. Examples: Greek Katharvousa (`high') and Dhimo­tiki (`low'); Arabic al-fua and al-`amm_yah; in Swiss Ger­man: Hochd­eu­tsch and Schwyzerd­tsch. In a wider sense also a co-occur­rence of two unrelated lan­guages such as Spanish and Guarani in Para­guay.
diglossic Referring to diglossia.
digraph Sequence of two letters, which represent a single phoneme. Examples: for /ò/, sj in Dutch, ch in French, sh in English. In some languages, certain digraphs are listed sepa­rately in the alpha­betic sequence, e.g. ll in Spanish, ch in Czech and Slovak. See also ligature.
diphthong Combination of two (or three, in triphthong) vocalic elements in a single syllable. Examples: for /a_/, ei in German 'bei', i in English 'time'.
donor language See language, source.
donor script See script, source.
endonym Name of a geographical feature in one of the languages occurring in that area where the feature is situated. Examples: V_r_nas_ (not Benares); Aachen (not Aix-la-Chapel­le); Krung Thep (not Bang­kok); al-Uq_ur (not Luxor); Teverya (not Tiberias).
endonym, standardized Endonym sanctioned by a names authority. Example: among the allonyms Hull and Kingston upon Hull (England), the latter is the standardized form.
entity, topographic See topographic feature.
eponym Name of a person or group of persons after or for whom a place is named. Examples: Iago (James) in Santiago; Everest in Mount Everest; M_sa (Moses) in W_d_ M_sa. The corresponding term in French is ethnonym.
epotoponym A toponym which constitutes the basis or origin of a common noun. Examples: Jerez (for sherry); Olympía (for Olympiad); al-Burtugh_l, the Arabic name of Portugal (for Burtuq_l, also Burtuq_n, i.e. an orange in Arabic).
exonym Name used in a specific lan­guage for a geographical feature situat­ed outside the area where that language has official status, and differ­ing in its form from the name used in the official language or languages of the area where the geographical feature is situated. Exam­ples: Warsaw is the English exonym for Warszawa; Londres is French for London; Mailand is German for Milano. The official­ly romanized endonym Moskva for M_____ is no exonym, nor is the Pinyin form Beijing, while Peking is an exonym. The United Nations recommend minimizing the use of exonyms in international usage. See also name, traditional.
extraterrestrial feature See feature, extraterrestrial.
extraterrestrial name See name, extraterrestrial.