English Braille
American Edition



Definition of Braille

Rules of Braille
  1. Punctuation Signs
  2. Special Composition Signs
  3. Format
  4. Asterisk, Footnotes, References
  5. Accent Sign, Diphthongs, Foreign Languages
  6. Abbreviations
  7. Numbers and Roman Numerals
  8. Coinage, Weights, and Other Special Symbols
  9. Poetry, Scansion, and Stress
  10. General Use of Contractions
  11. One-cell whole-word contractions
  12. One-cell part-word contractions
  13. Lower Signs
  14. Initial-letter contractions
  15. Final-letter contractions
  16. Short-form words

  • Index
    Typical and Problem Words

  • Index
    BRL Courses
  • Intro to Braille
  • Braille Transcribers
  • Specialized Codes


    1. Asterisk: *" 99 This sign represents the asterisk or any other reference mark in print. A space is left before and after the asterisk sign except when it is followed by a footnote number, when no space should be left between the asterisk and the note number. List this sign on the special symbols page. (See App. A. 9.)

      1.  Where an asterisk or asterisks occur in a line of print, to denote a presumed omission, the ellipsis should be used in braille. (See §7.)

    2. Footnotes:  In general literature, the following methods of writing footnotes in prose, poetry or plays, or tabular material should be used.

      1. Prose:

        • (1)  Short notes of seven words or less should be inserted in the text following the word or words to which they refer, and should be enclosed in brackets.

        • (2)  In prose material, footnotes consisting of more than seven words should be inserted immediately following the paragraph in which reference to them occurs. The asterisk or numbered asterisk (if there are two or more notes in the paragraph) should be used in the text before the corresponding note. The note, preceded by its asterisk sign, should be written in paragraph form, starting in cell 7, with all runovers beginning in cell 5. No lines should be skipped before or after the note.

      2. Poetry and Plays: In poetry and plays, all footnotes should be placed at the end of the volume in which they occur, with reference to them in the text being indicated by consecutively numbered asterisks inserted in the text, beginning with #1 for each new volume. Immediately following the text, the notes section should begin a new page headed NOTES. In the note section, each note number, without an asterisk, should begin in the first cell of a new line, followed by the braille page and line numbers of the text where the corresponding reference occurs, followed by the note itself. (All lines on the braille page are counted, including blank lines.) If a note requires more than one braille line, all successive lines should be indented to cell 3. Ex:

        6. Page 70, line 15. It has been said, ...
        " #f p#gj l#ae ,x has be5
        " sd1 '''

      3. Tabular Material:  See App. A. 5.

    3. References:  When the meaning is obvious, references may be condensed as shown in the examples below. Where Roman numerals occur in references, Arabic numbers should be substituted for them. Ex:

      Chapter 4, page 50, line 5    " *#d p#ej l#e

      Volume I, pp. 9-15    " v#a p#i-ae

      Pages 8 and 21    " p#h & #ba

      Verses 6-10    " v#f-aj

      Heb. VI 9, or Heb. 6:9, or Heb. 6.9    " ,heb4#f#i

      Ruth II 6, or Ruth 2:6, or Ruth 2.6    " ,ru? #b#f

      Ruth 1:16, 2:4-10    
      " ,ru? #a#af1 #b#d-aj

      III John I:2    " #c ,john #a#b