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New Model Alphabet [Feb. 22nd, 2006|11:29 pm]
Stephen Fry Book Discussion.
the_frybrary
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Being new to LiveJournal, my knowledge of how one introduces oneself upon posting for the first in such a community is scant at best. In lieu of an introduction to myself, then, I have come with a question and perhaps an opportunity for you to mine your resources of research, should you be as intrigued by the question as I am.

I should like to refer you to Moab Is My Washpot, pages 371-2 (in the Arrow Books paperback edition, in any event): our author refers to the publication of The Failiure Press and asserts that some of it was "written in the New Model Alphabet, which would take up far too much space [...] to explain, but which nearly always looked like this 'phaij phajboo ajbo jjjbo' and took a great deal of deciphering to the initiated".

Now this is most interesting indeed! Does anyone know anything about this New Model Alphabet? A search string on Google yields but straw, and a very scant amount of that, too. Was their publication truly written in this fashion? Or is all of this a jocular fabrication meant to tease the readership (in a manner perhaps not dissimilar to the game of Morningtion Crescent)? If it is real, how does one decipher it or compose messages in it? This has the distinct possibility of tying in rather neatly with the discussion on cyphers and the Enigma Machine in The Liar.
At the very least, if it is real, what does the quoted phrase mean, if anything?

Yours firstly,

     Adrian
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: norfolkian
2006-02-22 11:12 pm (UTC)
Unfortunately, I don't think I can help you; but I very much like the comparison with Mornington Crescent! I'd never really thought about this or questioned it before! Thank you for bringing it to my attention!
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From: hobnobofjoy
2007-10-20 11:12 am (UTC)
Wow, this is an incredibly old post that I just stumbled across!

There have been loads of alphabets like that. Every crackpot armchair linguist in the 19th century tried to better the language by reforming the alphabet in some way. I haven't heard of this one exactly, apart from what's in Moab, but I remember being intrigued by it at the time!
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