The Variation Selectors range was introduced with version 3.2 of the Unicode Standard, and is located in Plane 0, the Basic Multilingual Plane. Further selectors can be found in the Variation Selectors Supplement range.
Most Unicode characters can be represented by a wide variety of glyphs, and in rich text a particular glyph can be indicated by choosing a particular font or style. This mechanism is not available in plain text, and so variation selectors have been introduced as a way of indicating that the glyphs applicable to a particular character should be changed or restricted. The base character is followed by the variation selector, the combination being called a variation sequence. This is not intended to be general-purpose mechanism, and the only permitted variation sequences are those defined in the Standardized Variants file, which forms part of the Unicode Character Database.
You can find some or all of the characters in this range in the Windows Unicode fonts Code2000, Charis SIL, DejaVu Sans, DejaVu Sans Condensed, DejaVu Serif, DejaVu Serif Condensed, Doulos SIL, EversonMono and YOzFontN.
The characters in this range are not applicable in HTML, and therefore only the code points and names are shown in the following table. You can see a graphical display of the characters at http://www.unicode.org/charts/PDF/UFE00.pdf.
Copyright © 2002–2010 Alan Wood
The hexadecimal numbers and the character names in the above table are taken from the Unicode 3.2 Character Database, Copyright © 1991–2002 Unicode, Inc., as contained in UnicodeData.txt on the Unicode Web site (http://www.unicode.org/Public/UNIDATA/) in April 2002.
Created 22nd April 2002 Last updated 12th September 2010
Send comments or questions to Alan Wood