Ondra Ondra - 7 months ago 31
HTML Question

Partially colored Arabic word in HTML

I don't speak Arabic, but I need specific support for Arabic on our web. I need parts of Arabic words to be in a

<span>
with a different style than the rest of word. When I type two characters
ش
and
س
, they are composed into word
شس
, but when I use HTML markup

<span>ش</span>س


these letters are not concatenated right in the output.

enter image description here

In the picture, desired output is on second line, actual output is on first line.

EDIT: It works on Firefox, but does not work in Chrome/Safari.

Answer

Insert a zero-width joiner (e.g. using the entity reference &zwj;) at the end of the span element content: <span>ش&zwj;</span>س.

More generally, the zero-width joiners at the start and end of each span element as well as (just to be more sure) before and after each span element, in situations where the text should have cursive (joining) behavior and span may break it.

The issue is discussed and illustrated on the Bidirectional text page by Andreas Prilop.

Update: Unfortunately, it seems that even &zwj; does not help on current versions of WebKit browsers. They seem to treat HTML markup as breaking joining behavior, no matter what.

Update 2: As described in @NasserAl-Wohaibi’s comment, the new problem can be solved by using &zwj; twice. However, in current Safari (5.1.7) for Windows, it does not help; in fact, it displays even ش&zwj;س wrong whereas without the joiner, it shows شس correctly.