There are two types of hook accents which can appear under letters – the cedilla/cedille (French and other languages) and the ogonek (Polish and other languages). From a distance they appear similar, but the direction the hook faces is opposite in each case.
I’m writing about these two accents now because I did get myself tripped up this week when I was looking a character code. I think the best tip to remember is that ogoneks mostly appear on vowels (see below) and cedillas tend to appear on consonants
Origin of Ogonek
The term ogonek is a Polish term meaning “little tail” (actually a diminutive). It’s used to indicate a nasalized vowel in Polish and other Central European languages, but now the use of ogonek has spread to Native American spelling systems where the ogonek also indicated a nasal vowel.
FYI – nasal vowels are also found in languages like French (français = /frãse/) and Portugues (as in São), but their writing systems implemented different slutions.
Cedilla or Cedille?
Both are valid depending on context. The Unicode standard uses the term cedilla (as in “LATIN SMALL LETTER C WITH CEDILLA” (U+00E7)). On the other hand, I first encountered this accent in French, so I tend to use the French term cedille. In French it’s used with the letter “c” to indicate that the letter should be pronounced as /s/ and not /k/ (despite normal spelling convention).
The cedilla is used in other languages/letters such as Turkish where S-cedilla ş = // or the sound “sh” and Latvian where a cedilla consonant is palatalized. For whatever reasons though, cedillas are used with consonants.
Entering Ogonek and Cedilla into Text
If you’re on a Mac, you can use the U.S. Extended keyboard and enter cedilla by pressing Control+C plus the letter. Ogonek is Control+M plus the letter.
Some Entity Codes
Ogonek with Vowel
Below are the HTML entity codes for vowels with ogonek. The first code in each cell is the decimal version. The second the hexadecimal version which also corresponds with the Unicode code point.
Cedilla with Consonants
Note that letter E with cedilla does exist. Therefore the some vowels can have either a cedilla or an ogonek.
|Character Name||Character||Entity||Hex Entity|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER C WITH CEDILLA||Ç||Ç||Ç|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER C WITH CEDILLA||ç||ç||ç|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER D WITH CEDILLA||Ḑ||Ḑ||Ḑ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER D WITH CEDILLA||ḑ||ḑ||ḑ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER E WITH CEDILLA||Ȩ||Ȩ||Ȩ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER E WITH CEDILLA||ȩ||ȩ||ȩ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER G WITH CEDILLA||Ģ||Ģ||Ģ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER G WITH CEDILLA||ģ||ģ||ģ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER H WITH CEDILLA||Ḩ||Ḩ||Ḩ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER H WITH CEDILLA||ḩ||ḩ||ḩ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER K WITH CEDILLA||Ķ||Ķ||Ķ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER K WITH CEDILLA||ķ||ķ||ķ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER L WITH CEDILLA||Ļ||Ļ||Ļ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER L WITH CEDILLA||ļ||ļ||ļ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER N WITH CEDILLA||Ņ||Ņ||Ņ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER N WITH CEDILLA||ņ||ņ||ņ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER R WITH CEDILLA||Ŗ||Ŗ||Ŗ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER R WITH CEDILLA||ŗ||ŗ||ŗ|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER S WITH CEDILLA||Ş||Ş||Ş|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER S WITH CEDILLA||ş||ş||ş|
|LATIN CAPITAL LETTER T WITH CEDILLA||Ţ||Ţ||Ţ|
|LATIN SMALL LETTER T WITH CEDILLA||ţ||ţ||ţ|