I'm trying to write a function that will return the name of a Greek vowel: alpha or epsilon etc. I was hoping this could be done by extracting it from the second group in the following regexp (in a function that determines whether a character is a Greek vowel), but I don't know how, if at all, that is possible.

(defun greek-vowel-p (l)
  (eql (string-match "GREEK \\(SMALL\\|CAPITAL\\) LETTER \
                     (get-char-code-property l 'name))
  • How about?: (car (last (split-string (get-char-code-property ?α 'name)))) – lawlist Jul 2 '18 at 21:05
  • @lawlist, the name is not necessarily the last word. – Toothrot Jul 2 '18 at 21:08
  • The most common pattern for extracting whole matches or subgroups thereof is (and (string-match ...) (match-string ...)); see (elisp) Searching and Matching. – Basil Jul 2 '18 at 21:19
  • @Basil, thanks, I tried something like this, but missed the in-string bit. – Toothrot Jul 2 '18 at 21:33
  • In your case @Basil's comment translates to something like (defun my-greek-vowel (char) (and (greek-vowel-p char) (match-string 2 (get-char-code-property char 'name)))). Please write up an answer and accept it if you have a working version. BTW I am not so sure that I would use greek-vowel-p at all if that function is not made by myself. If the code of that function changes it may break your code. Example for a breaking change: Adding a save-match-data to greek-vowel-p. – Tobias Jul 2 '18 at 23:36

Based on comments,

(defun greek-vowel-name (c)
  "Return the name of the Greek vowel character C as a symbol.
The same name is returned regardless of case and diacritics.
If the argument is not a Greek vowel, the value is nil.
The semi-vowel rho is considered a vowel."
  (let ((u (get-char-code-property c 'name)))
    (and (string-match "GREEK \\(?:SMALL\\|CAPITAL\\) LETTER \
         (intern (downcase (match-string 1 u))))))
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