My father's first language was Russian, and his neat English handwriting
used overscores for [m] and [n]. I adopted that practice, because the
clockwise stroke for handwriting that creates the curved top(s) seems to
require extra exertion and practice; I try to use the overscore only for
notes to myself, though. Nevertheless, rather surprisingly, it seems not
to confuse people.

After he passed on, I later noticed that (iirc) Bulgarian and (definitely)
Serbian script (even typeset text?) uses the overscore for (m), at least
sometimes. Considering that the Cyrillic [n], when typeset, looks like an
H, I'm not sure which I was looking at, but it seemed that an overscore
was also used for Cyrillic [n].

I think that thorough representations of alphabets and the like should
include oblique ("italic") glyphs when they are different. Cyrillic has
what looks like a small reversed S, but is not, and a small T that looks
like an [m], very distinct compared with a regular small [m]. One looks
like a small-cap. M, and the other like our small [m], but I forget which.

Concerning overscores, I recall my days ('77 to '79) as an assoc. editor
at Electronic Design magazine, when we occasionally needed to typeset a
Boolean logic expression that used a vinculum (?) (overscore) that
extended over several characters. It tended to cause significant
consternation for the typesetters, as I recall.

Apparently, a vinculum/overscore was popular in the 19th century for
grouping terms in algebra, but has fallen into disuse, except as part of a
square root symbol (which was originally much like a check mark, without a
horizontal stroke to the right). Of course, these days, we use
parentheses, afaik exclusively.

Casual matter, but when I saw "cilati" as a descriptive term for
"reverse-tilted" (CCW) oblique, I thought it was quite amusing.

I'm none too sure of much of the content of this message, and welcome
corrections and comments.

Nicholas Bodley /*|*\ Waltham, Mass.
The curious hermit -- autodidact and polymath
Modern science education in the USA:
Why doesn't the water from the ocean
fall off the edges of the Earth?
Answer: Because it's God's will that it not do so.