The Info List - Tibetan Alphabet

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Egyptian hieroglyphs
Egyptian hieroglyphs
32 c. BCE

32 c. BCE

Demotic 7 c. BCE

Meroitic 3 c. BCE

Proto-Sinaitic 19 c. BCE

Ugaritic 15 c. BCE Epigraphic South Arabian 9 c. BCE

Ge’ez 5–6 c. BCE

Phoenician 12 c. BCE

Paleo-Hebrew 10 c. BCE

Samaritan 6 c. BCE

3 c. BCE


Paleohispanic (semi-syllabic) 7 c. BCE Aramaic 8 c. BCE

4 c. BCE Brāhmī 4 c. BCE

Brahmic family
Brahmic family

E.g. Tibetan 7 c. CE Devanagari
13 c. CE

Canadian syllabics 1840

Hebrew 3 c. BCE Pahlavi 3 c. BCE

Avestan 4 c. CE

Palmyrene 2 c. BCE Syriac 2 c. BCE

Nabataean 2 c. BCE

Arabic 4 c. CE

N'Ko 1949 CE

Sogdian 2 c. BCE

Orkhon (old Turkic) 6 c. CE

Old Hungarian c. 650 CE

Old Uyghur

Mongolian 1204 CE

Mandaic 2 c. CE

Greek 8 c. BCE

Etruscan 8 c. BCE

Latin 7 c. BCE

Cherokee (syllabary; letter forms only) c. 1820 CE

Runic 2 c. CE Ogham
(origin uncertain) 4 c. CE

Coptic 3 c. CE Gothic 3 c. CE Armenian 405 CE Georgian (origin uncertain) c. 430 CE Glagolitic 862 CE Cyrillic c. 940 CE

Old Permic 1372 CE

1443 (probably influenced by Tibetan) Thaana
18 c. CE (derived from Brahmi numerals)

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Brahmic scripts

The Brahmic script and its descendants

Northern Brahmic

Gupta script

Bhaiksuki alphabet Tocharian alphabet Śāradā script

Laṇḍā scripts

Gurmukhī alphabet Khojki Khudabadi script Multani alphabet Mahajani


Takri alphabet Dogra

Tibetan alphabet

'Phags-pa script Pungs-chen Pungs-chung Marchen Marchung Horizontal square script Meithei script Lepcha alphabet Limbu alphabet

Siddhaṃ script


Bhujimol Ranjana script

Soyombo alphabet

Prachalit Nepal

Nāgarī script

Devanagari Nandinagari

Gujarati alphabet Modi alphabet Kaithi Sylheti Nagari


Assamese-Bengali Tirhuta Odia

Southern Brahmic


Vatteluttu alphabet


Tamil script Grantha alphabet

Malayalam script Tigalari alphabet Sinhala alphabet Dhives Akuru


Saurashtra alphabet Khmer alphabet

Lao alphabet Thai alphabet

Cham alphabet Ahom alphabet Kawi script

Balinese script Javanese script Baybayin Batak script Buhid alphabet Hanunó'o alphabet Tagbanwa alphabet Sundanese script Lontara script Makasar Rejang script Old Mon script Burmese script S'gaw Karen alphabet Chakma alphabet

Tai Tham alphabet

New Tai Lue alphabet

Tai Le alphabet Tai Viet alphabet

Bhattiprolu alphabet

Kadamba alphabet

Kannada alphabet Telugu script Pyu script

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The Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
is an abugida used to write the Tibetic languages such as Tibetan, as well as Dzongkha, Sikkimese, Ladakhi, and sometimes Balti. The printed form of the alphabet is called uchen script while the hand-written cursive form used in everyday writing is called umê script. The alphabet is very closely linked to a broad ethnic Tibetan identity, spanning across areas in Tibet, Bhutan, India, Nepal.[1] The Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
is of Indic origin and it is ancestral to the Limbu alphabet, the Lepcha alphabet,[2] and the multilingual 'Phags-pa script.[2]


1 History 2 Description

2.1 Basic alphabet 2.2 Consonant clusters

2.2.1 Head letters 2.2.2 Sub-joined letters

2.3 Vowel
marks and numerals 2.4 Modifiers

3 Extended use

3.1 Extended alphabet 3.2 Extended vowel marks and modifiers

4 Romanization and transliteration 5 Input method and keyboard layout

5.1 Tibetan 5.2 Dzongkha

6 Unicode 7 See also 8 Notes 9 References 10 External links

History[edit] The creation of the Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
is attributed to Thonmi Sambhota of the mid-7th century. Tradition holds that Thonmi Sambhota, a minister of Songtsen Gampo
Songtsen Gampo
(569-649), was sent to India
to study the art of writing, and upon his return introduced the alphabet. The form of the letters is based on an Indic alphabet of that period.[3] Three orthographic standardizations were developed. The most important, an official orthography aimed to facilitate the translation of Buddhist scriptures, emerged during the early 9th century. Standard orthography has not altered since then, while the spoken language has changed by, for example, losing complex consonant clusters. As a result, in all modern Tibetan dialects, in particular in the Standard Tibetan of Lhasa, there is a great divergence between current spelling (which still reflects the 9th-century spoken Tibetan) and current pronunciation. This divergence is the basis of an argument in favour of spelling reform, to write Tibetan as it is pronounced, for example, writing Kagyu
instead of Bka'-rgyud. In contrast, the pronunciation of the Balti, Ladakhi and Burig languages adheres more closely to the archaic spelling. Description[edit] Basic alphabet[edit] In the Tibetan script, the syllables are written from left to right. Syllables are separated by a tsek; since many Tibetan words are monosyllabic, this mark often functions almost as a space. Spaces are not used to divide words. The Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
has thirty basic letters, sometimes known as "radicals", for consonants.[2] As in other Indic scripts, each consonant letter assumes an inherent vowel; in the Tibetan script it is ཨ /a/. The alphabet ཨ /a/ is also the base for dependent vowels marks. Although some Tibetan dialects are tonal, the language had no tone at the time of the script's invention, and there are no dedicated symbols for tone. However, since tones developed from segmental features they can usually be correctly predicted by the archaic spelling of Tibetan words.

Unaspirated high Aspirated medium Voiced low Nasal low

Alphabet IPA Alphabet IPA Alphabet IPA Alphabet IPA

Guttural ཀ /ka/ ཁ /kʰa/ ག /ga/ ང /ŋa/

Palatal ཅ /tʃa/ ཆ /tʃʰa/ ཇ /dʒa/ ཉ /ɲa/

Dental ཏ /ta/ ཐ /tʰa/ ད /da/ ན /na/

Labial པ /pa/ ཕ /pʰa/ བ /ba/ མ /ma/

Dental ཙ /tsa/ ཚ /tsʰa/ ཛ /dza/ ཝ /wa/

low ཞ /ʒa/ ཟ /za/ འ /'a/ ཡ /ja/

medium ར /ra/ ལ /la/ ཤ /ʃa/ ས /sa/

high ཧ /ha/ ཨ /a/

Consonant clusters[edit] The unique aspect of the Tibetan script is that the consonants can be written either as radicals, or they can be written in other forms, such as subscript and superscript forming consonant clusters. To understand how this works, one can look at the radical ཀ /ka/ and see what happens when it becomes ཀྲ /kra/ or རྐ /rka/. In both cases, the symbol for ཀ /ka/ is used, but when the ར /ra/ is in the middle of the consonant and vowel, it is added as a subscript. On the other hand, when the ར /ra/ comes before the consonant and vowel, it is added as a superscript.[2] ར /ra/ actually changes form when it is above most other consonants; thus རྐ rka. However, an exception to this is the cluster རྙ /rnya/. Similarly, the consonants ཝ /wa/, ར /ra/, and ཡ /ja/ change form when they are beneath other consonants; thus ཀྭ /kwa/; ཀྲ /kra/; ཀྱ /kja/. Besides being written as subscripts and superscripts, some consonants can also be placed in prescript, postscript, or post-postscript positions. For instance, the consonants ག /kʰa/, ད /tʰa/, བ /pʰa/, མ /ma/ and འ /a/ can be used in the prescript position to the left of other radicals, while the position after a radical (the postscript position), can be held by the ten consonants ག /kʰa/, ན /na/, བ /pʰa/, ད /tʰa/, མ /ma/, འ /a/, ར /ra/, ང /ŋa/, ས /sa/, and ལ /la/. The third position, the post-postscript position is solely for the consonants ད /tʰa/ and ས /sa/.[2] Head letters[edit] The superscript position above a radical is reserved for the consonants ར /ra/, ལ /la/, and ས /sa/.

When ར /ra/, ལ /la/, and ས /sa/ are in superscript position with ཀ /ka/, ཅ /tʃa/, ཏ /ta/, པ /pa/ and ཙ /tsa/, there are no changes in the sound, they look and sound like:

རྐ /ka/, རྕ /tʃa/, རྟ /ta/, རྤ /pa/, རྩ /tsa/ ལྐ /ka/, ལྕ /tʃa/, ལྟ /ta/, ལྤ /pa/, ལྩ /tsa/ སྐ /ka/, སྕ /tʃa/, སྟ /ta/, སྤ /pa/, སྩ /tsa/

When ར /ra/, ལ /la/, and ས /sa/ are in superscript position with ག /kʰa/, ཇ /tʃʰa/, ད /tʰa/, བ /pʰa/ and ཛ /tsʰa/, they loose their aspiration and sounds change. They look and sound like:

རྒ /ga/, རྗ /d͡ʒa/, རྡ /da/, རྦ /ba/, རྫ /dza/ ལྒ /ga/, ལྗ /d͡ʒa/, ལྡ /da/, ལྦ /ba/, ལྫ /dza/ སྒ /ga/, སྗ /d͡ʒa/, སྡ /da/, སྦ /ba/, སྫ /dza/

When ར /ra/, ལ /la/, and ས /sa/ are in superscript position with ང /ŋa/, ཉ /ɲa/, ན /na/ and མ /ma/, the nasal sound gets high. They look and sound like:

རྔ /ŋa/, རྙ /ɲa/, རྣ /na/, རྨ /ma/ ལྔ /ŋa/, ལྙ /ɲa/, ལྣ /na/, ལྨ /ma/ སྔ /ŋa/, སྙ /ɲa/, སྣ /na/, སྨ /ma/

Sub-joined letters[edit] The subscript position under a radical is for the consonants ཡ /ja/, ར /ra/, ལ /la/, and ཝ /wa/. Vowel
marks and numerals[edit] The vowels used in the alphabet are ཨ /a/, ཨི /i/, ཨུ /u/, ཨེ /e/, and ཨོ /o/. While the vowel /a/ is included in each consonant or radical, the other vowels are indicated by marks; thus ཀ /ka/, ཀི /ki/, ཀུ /ku/, ཀེ /ke/, ཀོ /ko/. The vowels ཨི /i/, ཨེ /e/, and ཨོ /o/ are placed above consonants as diacritics, while the vowel ཨུ /u/ is placed underneath consonants.[2] Old Tibetan
Old Tibetan
included a reversed form of the mark for /i/, the gigu 'verso', of uncertain meaning. There is no distinction between long and short vowels in written Tibetan, except in loanwords, especially transcribed from the Sanskrit.

mark IPA Vowel
mark IPA Vowel
mark IPA Vowel
mark IPA

ི /i/ ུ /u/ ེ /e/ ོ /o/

Tibetan Numerals ༠ ༡ ༢ ༣ ༤ ༥ ༦ ༧ ༨ ༩

Arabic Numerals 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

Tibetan Numerals ༪ ༫ ༬ ༭ ༮ ༯ ༰ ༱ ༲ ༳

Arabic Numerals 0.5 1.5 2.5 3.5 4.5 5.5 6.5 7.5 8.5 9.5


Symbol/ Graphemes Name Function

༄ ཡིག་མགོ་ yig mgo marks beginning of text

༈ སྦྲུལ་ཤད་ sbrul shad separates sections of meaning equivalent to topics and sub-topics

༉ བསྐུར་ཡིག་མགོ་ bskur yig mgo list enumerator (Dzongkha)

་ ཙེག་ tsek morpheme delimiter

། ཚིག་གྲུབ་ tshig-grub full stop (marks end of a section of text)

༎ དོན་ཚན་ don-tshan full stop (marks end of a whole topic)

༴ བསྡུས་རྟགས་ bsdus rtags repetition

༺ གུག་རྟགས་གཡོན་ gug rtags g.yon left bracket

༻ གུག་རྟགས་གཡས་ gug rtags g.yas right bracket

༼ ཨང་ཁང་གཡོན་ ang khang g.yon left bracket used for bracketing with a roof over

༽ ཨང་ཁང་གཡས་ ang khang g.yas right bracket used for bracketing with a roof over

Extended use[edit]

A text in Tibetan script suspected to be Sanskrit
in content. From the personal artifact collection of Donald Weir.

The Tibetan alphabet, when used to write other languages such as Balti and Sanskrit, often has additional and/or modified graphemes taken from the basic Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
to represent different sounds. Extended alphabet[edit]

Alphabet Used in Romanization & IPA

ཫ Balti kka /qa/

ཬ Balti rra /ɽa/

གྷ Sanskrit gha /ɡʱ/

ཛྷ Sanskrit jha /ɟʱ, d͡ʒʱ/

ཊ Sanskrit ṭa /ʈ/

ཋ Sanskrit ṭha /ʈʰ/

ཌ Sanskrit ḍa /ɖ/

ཌྷ Sanskrit ḍha /ɖʱ/

ཎ Sanskrit ṇa /ɳ/

དྷ Sanskrit dha /d̪ʱ/

བྷ Sanskrit bha /bʱ/

ཥ Sanskrit ṣa /ʂ/

ཀྵ Sanskrit kṣa /kʂ/

In Balti, consonants ka, ra are represented by reversing the letters ཀ ར (ka, ra) to give ཫ ཬ (ka, ra). In Sanskrit, "cerebral consonants" ṭa, ṭha, ḍa, ṇa, ṣa are represented by reversing the letters ཏ ཐ ད ན ཤ (ta, tha, da, na, sha) to give ཊ ཋ ཌ ཎ ཥ (Ta, Tha, Da, Na, Sa). In Sanskrit, It is a classic rule to transliterate ca, cha, ja, jha, to ཙ ཚ ཛ ཛྷ (tsa, tsha, dza, dzha), respectively. Nowadays, ཅ ཆ ཇ ཇྷ (ca, cha, ja, jha) can also be used.

Extended vowel marks and modifiers[edit]

Mark Used in Romanization & IPA

ཱ Sanskrit ā /ā/

ཱི Sanskrit ī /ī/

ཱུ Sanskrit ū /ū/

ཻ Sanskrit ai /ai/

ཽ Sanskrit au /au/

ྲྀ Sanskrit ṛ /ṛi/

ཷ Sanskrit ṝ /ṛī/

ླྀ Sanskrit ḷ /ḷi/

ཹ Sanskrit ḹ /ḷī/

ཾ Sanskrit aṃ /ṃ/

ྃ Sanskrit aṃ /ṃ/

ཿ Sanskrit aḥ /ḥ/

Symbol/ Graphemes Name Used in Function

྄ srog med Sanskrit suppresses the inherent vowel sound

྅ paluta Sanskrit used for prolonging vowel sounds

Romanization and transliteration[edit] Romanization and transliteration of the Tibetan script is the representation of the Tibetan script in the Latin script. There are various ways of Romanization and transliteration systems created in recent years, but failed to represent the true phonetic sound.[4] While the Wylie transliteration
Wylie transliteration
system is widely used to romanize Standard Tibetan, others include the Library of Congress system and the IPA-based transliteration (Jacques 2012). Below is a table with Tibetan alphabets and different Romanization and transliteration system for each alphabet, listed below systems are: Wylie transliteration
Wylie transliteration
(W), Tibetan pinyin (TP), Dzongkha
phonetic (DP), ALA-LC Romanization (A)[5] and THL Simplified Phonetic Transcription (THL).

Alphabet W TP DP A THL Alphabet W TP DP A THL Alphabet W TP DP A THL Alphabet W TP DP A THL

ཀ ka g ka ka ka ཁ kha k kha kha kha ག ga k kha ga ga ང nga ng nga nga nga

ཅ ca j ca ca cha ཆ cha q cha cha cha ཇ ja q cha ja ja ཉ nya ny nya nya nya

ཏ ta d ta ta ta ཐ tha t tha tha ta ད da t tha da da ན na n na na na

པ pa b pa pa pa ཕ pha p pha pha pa བ ba p pha ba ba མ ma m ma ma ma

ཙ tsa z tsa tsa tsa ཚ tsha c tsha tsha tsa ཛ dza c tsha dza dza ཝ wa w wa wa wa

ཞ zha x sha zha zha ཟ za s sa za za འ 'a - a 'a a ཡ ya y ya ya ya

ར ra r ra ra ra ལ la l la la la ཤ sha x sha sha sha ས sa s sa sa sa

ཧ ha h ha ha ha ཨ a a a a a

Input method and keyboard layout[edit] Tibetan[edit]

Tibetan keyboard layout

The first version of Microsoft Windows to support the Tibetan keyboard layout is MS Windows Vista. The layout has been available in Linux since September 2007. In Ubuntu 12.04, one can install Tibetan language support through Dash / Language Support / Install/Remove Languages, the input method can be turned on from Dash / Keyboard Layout, adding Tibetan keyboard layout. The layout applies the similar layout as in Microsoft Windows. Mac OS-X introduced Tibetan Unicode
support with OS-X version 10.5 and later, now with three different keyboard layouts available: Tibetan-Wylie, Tibetan QWERTY and Tibetan-Otani. Dzongkha[edit]

keyboard layout

Main article: Dzongkha
keyboard layout The Dzongkha
keyboard layout scheme is designed as a simple means for inputting Dzongkha
text on computers. This keyboard layout was standardized by the Dzongkha
Development Commission (DDC) and the Department of Information Technology (DIT) of the Royal Government of Bhutan
in 2000. It was updated in 2009 to accommodate additional characters added to the Unicode
& ISO 10646 standards since the initial version. Since the arrangement of keys essentially follows the usual order of the Dzongkha
and Tibetan alphabet, the layout can be quickly learned by anyone familiar with this alphabet. Subjoined (combining) consonants are entered using the Shift key. The Dzongkha
(dz) keyboard layout is included in the XFree86 distribution. Unicode[edit] Main article: Tibetan ( Unicode
block) Tibetan was originally one of the scripts in the first version of the Unicode
Standard in 1991, in the Unicode
block U+1000–U+104F. However, in 1993, in version 1.1, it was removed (the code points it took up would later be used for the Burmese script
Burmese script
in version 3.0). The Tibetan script was re-added in July, 1996 with the release of version 2.0. The Unicode
block for Tibetan is U+0F00–U+0FFF. It includes letters, digits and various punctuation marks and special symbols used in religious texts:

Tibetan[1][2][3] Official Unicode
Consortium code chart (PDF)

  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F

U+0F0x ༀ ༁ ༂ ༃ ༄ ༅ ༆ ༇ ༈ ༉ ༊ ་ ༌  NB  ། ༎ ༏

U+0F1x ༐ ༑ ༒ ༓ ༔ ༕ ༖ ༗ ༘ ༙ ༚ ༛ ༜ ༝ ༞ ༟

U+0F2x ༠ ༡ ༢ ༣ ༤ ༥ ༦ ༧ ༨ ༩ ༪ ༫ ༬ ༭ ༮ ༯

U+0F3x ༰ ༱ ༲ ༳ ༴ ༵ ༶ ༷ ༸ ༹ ༺ ༻ ༼ ༽ ༾ ༿

U+0F4x ཀ ཁ ག གྷ ང ཅ ཆ ཇ

ཉ ཊ ཋ ཌ ཌྷ ཎ ཏ

U+0F5x ཐ ད དྷ ན པ ཕ བ བྷ མ ཙ ཚ ཛ ཛྷ ཝ ཞ ཟ

U+0F6x འ ཡ ར ལ ཤ ཥ ས ཧ ཨ ཀྵ ཪ ཫ ཬ


ཱ ི ཱི ུ ཱུ ྲྀ ཷ ླྀ ཹ ེ ཻ ོ ཽ ཾ ཿ

U+0F8x ྀ ཱྀ ྂ ྃ ྄ ྅ ྆ ྇ ྈ ྉ ྊ ྋ ྌ ྍ ྎ ྏ

U+0F9x ྐ ྑ ྒ ྒྷ ྔ ྕ ྖ ྗ

ྙ ྚ ྛ ྜ ྜྷ ྞ ྟ

U+0FAx ྠ ྡ ྡྷ ྣ ྤ ྥ ྦ ྦྷ ྨ ྩ ྪ ྫ ྫྷ ྭ ྮ ྯ

U+0FBx ྰ ྱ ྲ ླ ྴ ྵ ྶ ྷ ྸ ྐྵ ྺ ྻ ྼ

྾ ྿

U+0FCx ࿀ ࿁ ࿂ ࿃ ࿄ ࿅ ࿆ ࿇ ࿈ ࿉ ࿊ ࿋ ࿌

࿎ ࿏

U+0FDx ࿐ ࿑ ࿒ ࿓ ࿔ ࿕ ࿖ ࿗ ࿘ ࿙ ࿚




1.^ As of Unicode
version 10.0 2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points 3.^ Unicode
code points U+0F77 and U+0F79 are deprecated in Unicode 5.2 and later

See also[edit]

Tibetan calligraphy Tibetan Braille Dzongkha
Braille Tibetan typefaces Wylie transliteration Tibetan pinyin THDL Simplified Phonetic Transcription Tise - input method for Tibetan script Limbu script


^ Chamberlain 2008 ^ a b c d e f Daniels, Peter T. and William Bright. The World’s Writing Systems. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996. ^ Which specific Indic script
Indic script
inspired the Tibetan alphabet
Tibetan alphabet
remains controversial. Recent study suggests Tibetan script was based on an adaption from Khotan of the Indian Brahmi and Gupta scripts taught to Thonmi Sambhota
Thonmi Sambhota
in Kashmir (Berzin, Alexander. A Survey of Tibetan History - Reading Notes Taken by Alexander Berzin from Tsepon, W. D. Shakabpa, Tibet: A Political History. New Haven, Yale University Press, 1967: http://studybuddhism.com/web/en/archives/e-books/unpublished_manuscripts/survey_tibetan_history/chapter_1.html). ^ See for instance [1] [2] ^ [https://www.loc.gov/catdir/cpso/romanization/tibetan.pdf ALA-LC Romanization of Tibetan script (PDF)


Asher, R. E. ed. The Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics. Tarrytown, NY: Pergamon Press, 1994. 10 vol. Beyer, Stephan V. (1993). The Classical Tibetan Language. Reprinted by Delhi: Sri Satguru. Chamberlain, Bradford Lynn. 2008. Script Selection for Tibetan-related Languages in Multiscriptal Environments. International Journal of the Sociology of Language 192:117–132. Csoma de Kőrös, Alexander. (1983). A Grammar of the Tibetan Language. Reprinted by Delhi: Sri Satguru. Csoma de Kőrös, Alexander (1980–1982). Sanskrit-Tibetan-English Vocabulary. 2 vols. Reprinted by Delhi: Sri Satguru. Daniels, Peter T. and William Bright. The World’s Writing Systems. New York: Oxford University Press, 1996. Das, Sarat Chandra: "The Sacred and Ornamental Characters of Tibet". Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, vol. 57 (1888), pp. 41–48 and 9 plates. Das, Sarat Chandra. (1996). An Introduction to the Grammar of the Tibetan Language. Reprinted by Delhi: Motilal Banarsidass. Jacques, Guillaume 2012. A new transcription system for Old and Classical Tibetan, Linguistics of the Tibeto-Burman Area, 35.3:89-96. Jäschke, Heinrich August. (1989). Tibetan Grammar. Corrected by Sunil Gupta. Reprinted by Delhi: Sri Satguru.

External links[edit]

Tibetan Calligraphy—how to write the Tibetan script. Elements of the Tibetan writing system. Unicode
area U0F00-U0FFF, Tibetan script (162KB) Encoding Model of the Tibetan Script in the UCS Digital Tibetan Tibetan Scripts, Fonts & Related Issues— THDL articles on Unicode font issues; free cross-platform OpenType fonts— Unicode
compatible. Free Tibetan Fonts Project Ancient Scripts: Tibetan

v t e

Tibetan language topics

Tibetic languages Old Tibetan  Classical Tibetan Standard Tibetan  Grammar

Script: Umê (Zhuza, Bêcug), Uchen (Chuyik/Khyungyik), Bamyik Braille Regional (Joyig, Monyig and Lhoyig)

Transcription: Wylie, Tibetan pinyin, THL Transcription

v t e

Types of writing systems


History of writing Grapheme


Writing systems

undeciphered inventors constructed

Languages by writing system / by first written accounts






Arabic Pitman shorthand Hebrew

Ashuri Cursive Rashi Solitreo

Tifinagh Manichaean Nabataean Old North Arabian Pahlavi Pegon Phoenician


Proto-Sinaitic Psalter Punic Samaritan South Arabian

Zabur Musnad

Sogdian Syriac

ʾEsṭrangēlā Serṭā Maḏnḥāyā

Teeline Shorthand Ugaritic




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

Uchen Umê

Tirhuta Tocharian Zanabazar Square Zhang-Zhung

Drusha Marchen Marchung Pungs-chen Pungs-chung


Ahom Balinese Batak Baybayin Bhattiprolu Buhid Burmese Chakma Cham Grantha Goykanadi Hanunó'o Javanese Kadamba Kannada Karen Kawi Khmer Kulitan Lanna Lao Leke Lontara Malayalam Maldivian

Dhives Akuru Eveyla Akuru Thaana

Mon Old Makassarese Old Sundanese Pallava Pyu Rejang Rencong Sinhala Sundanese Tagbanwa Tai Le Tai Tham Tai Viet Tamil Telugu Thai Tigalari Vatteluttu

Kolezhuthu Malayanma



Boyd's syllabic shorthand Canadian syllabics

Blackfoot Déné syllabics

Fox I Ge'ez Gunjala Gondi Japanese Braille Jenticha Kayah Li Kharosthi Mandombe Masaram Gondi Meroitic Miao Mwangwego Sorang Sompeng Pahawh Hmong Thomas Natural Shorthand



Abkhaz Adlam Armenian Avestan Avoiuli Bassa Vah Borama Carian Caucasian Albanian Coorgi–Cox alphabet Coptic Cyrillic Deseret Duployan shorthand

Chinook writing

Early Cyrillic Eclectic shorthand Elbasan Etruscan Evenki Fox II Fraser Gabelsberger shorthand Garay Georgian

Asomtavruli Nuskhuri Mkhedruli

Glagolitic Gothic Gregg shorthand Greek Greco-Iberian alphabet Hangul Hanifi IPA Kaddare Latin

Beneventan Blackletter Carolingian minuscule Fraktur Gaelic Insular Kurrent Merovingian Sigla Sütterlin Tironian notes Visigothic

Luo Lycian Lydian Manchu Mandaic Medefaidrin Molodtsov Mongolian Mru Neo-Tifinagh New Tai Lue N'Ko Ogham Oirat Ol Chiki Old Hungarian Old Italic Old Permic Orkhon Old Uyghur Osage Osmanya Pau Cin Hau Runic

Anglo-Saxon Cipher Dalecarlian Elder Futhark Younger Futhark Gothic Marcomannic Medieval Staveless

Sidetic Shavian Somali Tifinagh Vagindra Visible Speech Vithkuqi Wancho Zaghawa


Braille Maritime flags Morse code New York Point Semaphore line Flag semaphore Moon type


Adinkra Aztec Blissymbol Dongba Ersu Shaba Emoji IConji Isotype Kaidā Míkmaq Mixtec New Epoch Notation Painting Nsibidi Ojibwe Hieroglyphs Siglas poveiras Testerian Yerkish Zapotec


Chinese family of scripts

Chinese Characters

Simplified Traditional Oracle bone script Bronze Script Seal Script

large small bird-worm

Hanja Idu Kanji Chữ nôm Zhuang


Jurchen Khitan large script Sui Tangut


Akkadian Assyrian Elamite Hittite Luwian Sumerian

Other logo-syllabic

Anatolian Bagam Cretan Isthmian Maya Proto-Elamite Yi (Classical)


Demotic Hieratic Hieroglyphs


Hindu-Arabic Abjad Attic (Greek) Muisca Roman



Celtiberian Northeastern Iberian Southeastern Iberian Khom


Espanca Pahawh Hmong Khitan small script Southwest Paleohispanic Zhuyin fuhao


ASLwrite SignWriting si5s Stokoe Notation


Afaka Bamum Bété Byblos Cherokee Cypriot Cypro-Minoan Ditema tsa Dinoko Eskayan Geba Great Lakes Algonquian syllabics Iban Japanese

Hiragana Katakana Man'yōgana Hentaigana Sogana Jindai moji

Kikakui Kpelle Linear B Linear Elamite Lisu Loma Nüshu Nwagu Aneke script Old Persian Cuneiform Vai Woleai Yi (Modern) Yugtun

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1829 braille International uniformity ASCII braille Unicode
braille patterns


French-ordered scripts (see for more)

Albanian Amharic Arabic Armenian Azerbaijani Belarusian Bharati

(Hindi  / Marathi  / Nepali) Bengali Punjabi Sinhalese Tamil Urdu etc.

Bulgarian Burmese Cambodian Cantonese Catalan Chinese (Mandarin, mainland) Czech Dutch Dzongkha
(Bhutanese) English (Unified English) Esperanto Estonian Faroese French Georgian German Ghanaian Greek Guarani Hawaiian Hebrew Hungarian Icelandic Inuktitut (reassigned vowels) Iñupiaq IPA Irish Italian Kazakh Kyrgyz Latvian Lithuanian Maltese Mongolian Māori Navajo Nigerian Northern Sami Persian Philippine Polish Portuguese Romanian Russian Samoan Scandinavian Slovak South African Spanish Tatar Taiwanese Mandarin (largely reassigned) Thai & Lao (Japanese vowels) Tibetan Turkish Ukrainian Vietnamese Welsh Yugoslav

Reordered scripts

Algerian Braille

Frequency-based scripts

American Braille

Independent scripts

Japanese Korean Two-Cell Chinese

Eight-dot scripts

Luxembourgish Kanji Gardner–Salinas braille codes (GS8)

Symbols in braille

music Canadian currency marks Computer Braille
Code Gardner–Salinas braille codes (GS8/GS6) International Phonetic Alphabet
International Phonetic Alphabet
(IPA) Nemeth braille code


e-book Braille
embosser Braille
translator Braille
watch Mountbatten Brailler Optical braille recognition Perforation Perkins Brailler Refreshable braille display Slate and stylus Braigo


Louis Braille Charles Barbier Valentin Haüy Thakur Vishva Narain Singh Sabriye Tenberken William Bell Wait


Institute of America Braille
Without Borders Japan Braille
Library National Braille
Association Blindness organizations Schools for the blind American Printing House for the Blind

Other tactile alphabets

Decapoint Moon type New York Point Night writing Vibratese

Related topics

Accessible publishing Braille
literacy RoboBraille

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Electronic writing systems

Emoticons Emoji iConji Leet Unicode

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Internet slang
Internet slang

3arabizi Alay (Indonesia) Denglisch Doge Fingilish (Persian) Greeklish Gyaru-moji (Japan) Jejemon (Philippines) Leet
("1337") Lolspeak / LOLspeak / Kitteh Martian language (Chinese) Miguxês (Portuguese) Padonkaffsky jargon
Padonkaffsky jargon
(Russian) Translit Volapuk

See also English internet slang (at Wiktionary) SMS language

Authority control