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The Gupta script
Gupta script
(sometimes referred to as Gupta Brahmi Script or Late Brahmi Script[2]) was used for writing Sanskrit
Sanskrit
and is associated with the Gupta Empire
Gupta Empire
of India
India
which was a period of material prosperity and great religious and scientific developments. The Gupta script
Gupta script
was descended from Brahmi and gave rise to the Nāgarī, Sharada and Siddham scripts. These scripts in turn gave rise to many of the most important scripts of India, including Devanagari
Devanagari
(the most common script used for writing Sanskrit
Sanskrit
since the 19th century), the Gurmukhi script for Punjabi Language, the Bengali-Assamese script, and the Tibetan script.

Contents

1 Origins and Classification 2 Inscriptions 3 Alphabet 4 Gupta Numismatics 5 Gallery 6 See also 7 References 8 External links

Origins and Classification[edit]

Brahmi and its descendent scripts.

The Gupta Script was descended from the Ashokan Brahmi script, and is a crucial link between Brahmi and most other scripts in the Brahmic family of Scripts, a family of alphasyllabaries or abugidas. This means that while only consonantal phonemes have distinct symbols, vowels are marked by diacritics, with /a/ being the implied pronunciation when the diacritic is not present. In fact, the Gupta script works in exactly the same manner as its predecessor and successors, and only the shapes and forms of the graphemes and diacritics are different. Through the 4th century, letters began to take more cursive and symmetric forms, as a result of the desire to write more quickly and aesthetically. This also meant that the script became more differentiated throughout the Empire, with regional variations which have been broadly classified into three, four or five categories;[3][4] however, a definitive classification is not clear, because even on a single inscription, there may be variation in how a particular symbol is written. In this sense, the term Gupta script should be taken to mean any form of writing derived from the Gupta period, even though there may be a lack of uniformity in the scripts. Inscriptions[edit] The surviving inscriptions of the Gupta script
Gupta script
are mostly found on iron or stone pillars, and on gold coins from the Gupta Dynasty. One of the most important was the Allahabad Prasasti. Composed by Harishena, the court poet and minister of Samudragupta, it describes Samudragupta’s reign, beginning from his accession to the throne as the second king of the Gupta Dynasty and including his conquest of other kings. Alphabet[edit]

a i u ṛ e o

ā

au

k kh g gh ṅ

c ch j jh ñ

ṭ ṭh ḍ ḍh ṇ

t th d dh n

p ph b bh m

y r l v

ś ṣ s h

Gupta Numismatics[edit] The study of Gupta coins began with the discovery of a hoard of gold coins in 1783. Many other such hoards have since been discovered, the most important being the Bayana
Bayana
( situated in Bharatpur district of Rajasthan) hoard, discovered in 1946, which contained more than 2000 gold coins issued by the Gupta Kings.[5] Many of the Gupta Empire’s coins bear inscriptions of legends or mark historic events. In fact, it was one of the first Indian Empires to do so, probably as a result of its unprecedented prosperity.[3] Almost every Gupta king issued coins, beginning with its first king, Chandragupta I. The scripts on the coin are also of a different nature compared to scripts on pillars, due to conservatism regarding the coins that were to be accepted as currency, which would have prevented regional variations in the script from manifesting on the coinage.[3] Moreover, space was more limited especially on their silver coins, and thus many of the symbols are truncated or stunted. An example is the symbol for /ta/ and /na/, which were often simplified to vertical strokes. Gallery[edit]

The 5th- or 6th-century Gupta script
Gupta script
Gopika Cave Inscription
Gopika Cave Inscription
in Sanskrit
Sanskrit
about goddess Durga

Gupta script
Gupta script
decipheration table

See also[edit]

Brahmic scripts Lipi
Lipi
– writing scripts in Buddhist, Hindu and Jaina texts

Similar scripts

Bhattiprolu script Kadamba script Telugu-Kannada script Pallava script

References[edit]

^ Gazetteer of the Bombay Presidency, p. 30, at Google Books, Rudradaman’s inscription from 1st through 4th century CE found in Gujarat, India, Stanford University Archives, pages 30-45 ^ Sharma, Ram. 'Brahmi Script' . Delhi: BR Publishing Corp, 2002 ^ a b c Srivastava, Anupama. 'The Development of Imperial Gupta Brahmi Script' . New Delhi: Ramanand, 1998 ^ Fischer, Steven Roger. 'A History of Writing' . UK: Reaktion, 2004 ^ Bajpai, KD. 'Indian Numismatic Studies. ' New Delhi: Abhinav Publications 2004

Carl Faulmann (1835–1894), Das Buch der Schrift, Druck und Verlag der Kaiserlichen Hof-und Staatsdruckerei, 1880

External links[edit]

(in Spanish) The Gupta Alphabet AncientScripts.com entry on the Gupta Script An eastern variety of the post-Gupta script: Akṣara List of theManuscripts of the Mūlamadhyamakakārikā and Buddhapālita's Commentary, c. the 550-650, Collection of Sanskrit
Sanskrit
Mss. Formerly Preserved in the China Ethnic Library

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Types of writing systems

Overview

History of writing Grapheme

Lists

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undeciphered inventors constructed

Languages by writing system / by first written accounts

Types

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ʾEsṭrangēlā Serṭā Maḏnḥāyā

Teeline Shorthand Ugaritic

Abugidas

Brahmic

Northern

Asamiya (Ôxômiya) Bānglā Bhaikshuki Bhujinmol Brāhmī Devanāgarī Dogri Gujarati Gupta Gurmukhī Kaithi Kalinga Khojki Khotanese Khudawadi Laṇḍā Lepcha Limbu Mahajani Meitei Mayek Modi Multani Nāgarī Nandinagari Odia 'Phags-pa Newar Ranjana Sharada Saurashtra Siddhaṃ Soyombo Sylheti Nagari Takri Tibetan

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Southern

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large small bird-worm

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Semi-syllabaries

Full

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Redundant

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Syllabaries

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Devanagari
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Persons

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Related topics

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Internet slang
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Leet
("1337") Lolspeak / LOLspeak / Kitteh Martian language (Chinese) Miguxês (Portuguese) Padonkaffsky jargon
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(Russian) Translit Volapuk

See also English internet slang (at Wiktio

.