Brahmic scripts

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Brahmic family of scripts)
Jump to: navigation, search
Not to be confused with the Brahmi script.

The Brahmic scripts are a family of abugida writing systems. They are used throughout South Asia (excluding Pakistan and Afghanistan), Southeast Asia, and parts of Central and East Asia, and are descended from the Brāhmī script of the ancient India. They are used by languages of several language families: Indo-European, Dravidian, Tibeto-Burman, Mongolic (Soyombo alphabet), Austroasiatic, Austronesian, Tai. They were also the source of the dictionary order of Japanese kana.

History[edit]

Brahmic scripts are descended from the Brahmi script. Brahmi is clearly attested from the 3rd century BC during the reign of Ashoka, who used the script for imperial edicts, but there are some claims of earlier epigraphy found on pottery in South India and Sri Lanka. The most reliable of these were short Brahmi inscriptions dated to the 4th century BC and published by Coningham et al.,[1] but scattered press reports have claimed both dates as early as the 6th century BC and that the characters are identifiably Tamil Brahmi, though these latter claims do not appear to have been published academically.[dubious ] Northern Brahmi gave rise to the Gupta script during the Gupta period, which in turn diversified into a number of cursives during the Middle Ages, including Siddham, Sharada and Nagari.

The Siddham script was especially important in Buddhism, as many sutras were written in it. The art of Siddham calligraphy survives today in Japan. The syllabic nature and dictionary order of the modern kana system of Japanese writing is believed to be descended from the Indic scripts, most likely through the spread of Buddhism.[2]

Southern Brahmi evolved into Old-Kannada, Pallava and Vatteluttu scripts, which in turn diversified into other scripts of South India and Southeast Asia.

Bhattiprolu was a great centre of Buddhism during 3rd century BCE and from where Buddhism spread to east Asia. The present Telugu script is derived from Bhattiprolu Script or 'Kannada-Telugu script' or Kadamba script, also known as 'old Telugu script', owing to its similarity to the same.[3][4]

Initially, minor changes were made which is now called Tamil Brahmi which has far fewer letters than some of the other Indic scripts as it has no separate aspirated or voiced consonants.

Characteristics[edit]

Some characteristics, which may not be present in all the scripts, are:

  • Each consonant has an inherent vowel which is usually short 'a' (in Bengali, and Assamese, it is short 'ô' due to sound shifts). Other vowels are written by adding to the character. A mark, known in Sanskrit as a virama/halant can be used to indicate the absence of an inherent vowel.
  • Each vowel has two forms, an independent form when not part of a consonant, and a dependent form, when attached to a consonant. Depending on the script, the dependent forms can be either placed to the left of, to the right of, above, below, or on both the left and the right sides of the base consonant.
  • Consonants (up to 4 in Devanagari) can be combined in ligatures. Special marks are added to denote the combination of 'r' with another consonant.
  • Nasalization and aspiration of a consonant's dependent vowel is also noted by separate signs.
  • The alphabetical order is: vowels, velar consonants, palatal consonants, retroflex consonants, dental consonants, bilabial consonants, approximants, sibilants, and other consonants. Each consonant grouping had four consonants (with all four possible values of voicing and aspiration), and a nasalised consonant.

Comparison[edit]

Below are comparison charts of several of the major Indic scripts, organised on the principle that glyphs in the same column all derive from the same Brahmi glyph. Accordingly:

  • The charts are not comprehensive. Glyphs may be unrepresented if they don't derive from any Brahmi character, but are later inventions.
  • The pronunciations of glyphs in the same column may not be identical. The pronunciation row is only representative; the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) pronunciation is given for Sanskrit where possible, or another language if necessary.

The transliteration is indicated in ISO 15919.

Consonants[edit]

ISO k kh g gh c ch j jh ñ ṭh ḍh t th d dh n p ph b bh m y r l v ś s h
Oriya ନ଼ ର଼ ଳ଼
Assamese        
Bengali          
Devanagari
Gujarati      
Gurmukhi     ਲ਼   ਸ਼  
Tibetan                  
Brahmi Brah k.svg Brah kh.svg Brah g.svg Brah gh.svg Brah ng.svg Brah c.svg Brah ch.svg Brah j.svg Brah jh.svg Brah ny.svg Brah t1.svg Brah th1.svg Brah d1.svg Brah dh1.svg Brah n1.svg Brah t.svg Brah th.svg Brah d.svg Brah dh.svg Brah n.svg   Brah p.svg Brah ph.svg Brah b.svg Brah bh.svg Brah m.png Brah y.png Brah r.png   Brah l.png Brah l1.svg   Brah v.png Brah sh.png Brah s1.png Brah s.png Brah h.png
Telugu    
Kannada  
Sinhala      
Malayalam ഩ*
Tamil         ஜ*                     ஶ* ஷ* ஸ* ஹ*
Burmese က ဉ/ည    
Khmer      
Thai      
Lao                              
Balinese        
Javanese * * * * * * * * * * *       * *
Sundanese                                      
Lontara                                      
Baybayin                                              
  • Malayalam. Malayalam nna implemented in Unicode 6.0. May not be rendered correctly.
  • Tamil. Letters not used in actual Tamil, but for transcribing foreign names.
  • Javanese. Letters used in Old Javanese. They are now obsolete, but are used for honorifics in contemporary Javanese orthography.

Vowels[edit]

Vowels are presented in their independent form on the left of each column, and in their corresponding dependent form (vowel sign) combined with the consonant k on the right. A glyph for ka is an independent consonant letter itself without any vowel sign, where the vowel a is inherent. When used to write their own languages, Khmer and Thai script can have either an a or an o as the inherent vowel, following the rules of their respective orthographies. Thai and Lao script do not have independent vowel forms, for syllables starting with a vowel sound, a zero consonant, อ and ອ respectively, is used as a placeholder.

ISO a ā æ ǣ i ī u ū e ē ai o ō au r̥̄ l̥̄
Oriya କା ଅଽ କଽ     କି କୀ କୁ କୂ     କେ କୈ     କୋ କୌ କୃ କୃ୍ କ୍ଲୃ କ୍ଳୃ
Assamese কা অ্যা ক্যা     কি কী কু কূ     কে কৈ     কো কৌ কৃ কৄ কৢ কৣ
Bengali কা অ্যা ক্যা     কি কী কু কূ কে     কৈ কো কৌ কৃ কৄ কৢ কৣ
Devanagari का अॅ कॅ कॉ कि की कु कू कॆ के कै कॊ को कौ कृ कॄ कॢ कॣ अं कं अः कः
Gujarati કા         કિ કી કુ કૂ     કે કૈ     કો કૌ કૃ કૄ કૢ કૣ
Gurmukhi ਕਾ         ਕਿ ਕੀ ਕੁ ਕੂ     ਕੇ ਕੈ     ਕੋ ਕੌ                
Tibetan ཨཱ ཀཱ         ཨི ཀི ཨཱི ཀཱི ཨུ ཀུ ཨཱུ ཀཱུ     ཨེ ཀེ ཨཻ ཀཻ     ཨོ ཀོ ཨཽ ཀཽ རྀ ཀྲྀ རཱྀ ཀཷ ལྀ ཀླྀ ལཱྀ ཀླཱྀ
Brahmi Brah a.svg Brahmi letter Ka.svg Brah aa.svg Brahmi letter Kā.svg         Brah i.svg Brahmi letter Ki.svg Brah ii.svg Brahmi letter Kī.svg Brah u.svg Brahmi letter Ku.svg Brah uu.svg Brahmi letter Kū.svg     Brah e.svg Brahmi letter Ke.svg Brah ai.svg Brahmi letter Kai.svg     Brah o.svg Brahmi letter Ko.svg Brahmi letter Au.svg Brahmi letter Kau.svg                
Telugu కా         కి కీ కు కూ కె కే కై కొ కో కౌ కృ కౄ కౢ కౣ అం కం అః కః
Kannada ಕಾ         ಕಿ ಕೀ ಕು ಕೂ ಕೆ ಕೇ ಕೈ ಕೊ ಕೋ ಕೌ ಕೃ ಕೄ ಕೢ ಕೣ
Sinhala කා කැ කෑ කි කී කු කූ කෙ කේ කෛ කො කෝ කෞ කෘ කෲ කෟ කෳ
Malayalam കാ         കി കീ കു കൂ കെ കേ കൈ കൊ കോ കൗ കൃ കൄ കൢ കൣ അം കം അഃ കഃ
Tamil கா         கி கீ கு கூ கெ கே கை கொ கோ கௌ                
Burmese က အာ ကာ         ကိ ကီ ကု ကူ ကေ အေး ကေး     ကော     ကော် ကၖ ကၗ ကၘ ကၙ
Khmer កា         កិ កី កុ កូ     កេ កៃ     កោ កៅ ក្ឫ ក្ឬ ក្ឭ ក្ឮ
Thai     กา           กิ   กี   กุ   กู       เก   ไก/ใก       โก   เกา/กาว กฤ ฤๅ กฤๅ กฦ ฦๅ กฦๅ
Lao   ກັ   ກາ           ກິ   ກີ   ກຸ   ກູ       ເກ   ໄກ/ໃກ       ໂກ   ເກົາ/ກາວ                
Balinese ᬓᬵ         ᬓᬶ ᬓᬷ ᬓᬸ ᬓᬹ ᬓᬾ     ᬓᬿ ᬓᭀ     ᬓᭁ ᬓᬺ ᬓᬻ ᬓᬼ ᬓᬽ
Javanese ꦄꦴ ꦏꦴ         ꦏꦶ ꦏꦷ ꦏꦸ ꦈꦴ ꦏꦹ ꦏꦺ     ꦏꦻ ꦏꦺꦴ     ꦎꦴ ꦏꦻꦴ ꦏꦽ ꦉꦴ ꦏꦽꦴ    
Sundanese             ᮊᮤ     ᮊᮥ     ᮊᮦ         ᮊᮧ                        
Buginese                 ᨕᨗ       ᨕᨘ       ᨕᨙ           ᨕᨚ                        
Baybayin               ᜃᜒ     ᜃᜓ     ᜃᜒ         ᜃᜓ                        

Note: Glyphs for r̥̄, , l̥̄ and a few other glyphs are obsolete or very rarely used.

Numerals[edit]

Hindu-Arabic 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
Oriya
Assamese
Bengali
Devanagari
Gujarati
Gurmukhi
Tibetan
Brahmi
Telugu
Kannada
Malayalam
Tamil
Burmese
Khmer
Thai
Lao
Balinese
Javanese
Sundanese

List of Brahmic scripts[edit]

Scripts derived from Brahmi.

Historical[edit]

The Brahmi script was already divided into regional variants at the time of the earliest surviving epigraphy around the 3rd century BC. Cursives of the Brahmi script began to diversify further from around the 5th century AD and continued to give rise to new scripts throughout the Middle Ages. The main division in antiquity was between northern and southern Brahmi. In the northern group, the Gupta script was very influential, and in the southern group the Vatteluttu and Old-Kannada/Pallava scripts with the spread of Hinduism sent Brahmic scripts throughout Southeast Asia.

Contemporary[edit]

script derivation period of derivation usage notes ISO 15924 Unicode range sample
Balinese Old Kawi 11th century Balinese language Bali U+1B00–U+1B7F ᬅᬓ᭄ᬲᬭ ᬩᬮᬶ
Baybayin Old Kawi 14th century Tagalog, other Philippine languages Tglg U+1700–U+171F ᜊᜌ᜔ᜊᜌᜒᜈ᜔
Buhid Old Kawi 14th century Buhid language Buhd U+1740–U+175F ᝊᝓᝑᝒᝇ
Burmese Pallava grantha 11th century Burmese language, numerous modifications for other languages including Chakma, Eastern and Western Pwo Karen, Geba Karen, Kayah, Mon, Rumai Palaung, S'gaw Karen, Shan Mymr U+1000–U+109F မြန်မာအက္ခရာ
Cham Pallava grantha 8th century Cham language Cham U+AA00–U+AA5F ꨌꨠ
Devanagari Nagari 13th century Numerous Indo-Aryan languages, including Sanskrit, Hindi, Marathi, Nepali, Bhili, Konkani, Angika, Bhojpuri, Magahi, Maithili, Kurukh, Nepal Bhasa and sometimes Sindhi and Kashmiri. Formerly used to write Gujarati. Sometimes used to write or transliterate Sherpa Deva U+0900–U+097F देवनागरी
Eastern Nagari script Siddham 11th century Assamese language (Assamese script variant), Bengali language (Bengali script variant), Bishnupriya Manipuri Beng U+0980–U+09FF
  • অসমীয়া লিপি
  • বাংলা লিপি
Gujarati Nagari 17th century Gujarati language, Kutchi language Gujr U+0A80–U+0AFF ગુજરાતી લિપિ
Gurmukhi Sharada 16th century Punjabi language Guru U+0A00–U+0A7F ਗੁਰਮੁਖੀ
Hanunó'o Old Kawi 14th century Hanuno'o language Hano U+1720–U+173F ᜱᜨᜳᜨᜳᜢ
Javanese Old Kawi 16th century Javanese language, Sundanese language, Madurese language Java U+A980–U+A9DF ꦄꦏ꧀ꦱꦫ ꦗꦮ
Kannada Kadamba 12th century Kannada language, Konkani language, others Knda U+0C80–U+0CFF ಕನ್ನಡ ಅಕ್ಷರಮಾಲೆ
Khmer Pallava grantha 11th century Khmer language Khmr U+1780–U+17FF, U+19E0–U+19FF អក្សរខ្មែរ
Lao Khmer 14th century Lao language, others Laoo U+0E80–U+0EFF ອັກສອນລາວ
Lepcha Tibetan 18th century Lepcha language Lepc U+1C00–U+1C4F
Limbu Lepcha 18th century Limbu language Limb U+1900–U+194F ᤛᤡᤖᤡᤈᤨᤅ
Lontara Old Kawi 17th century Buginese language, others; mostly extinct, restricted to ceremonial use Bugi U+1A00–U+1A1F ᨒᨚᨈᨑ
Malayalam Grantha 12th century Malayalam language, Sanskrit language, Tulu language, Konkani language, Mlym U+0D00–U+0D7F മലയാളലിപി
Oriya Kalinga 10th century Oriya language Orya U+0B00–U+0B7F ଉତ୍କଳାକ୍ଷର
Rejang script Old Kawi 18th century Rejang language, mostly obsolete Rjng U+A930–U+A95F ꥆꤰ꥓ꤼꤽ ꤽꥍꤺꥏ
Saurashtra Grantha 20th century Saurashtra language, mostly obsolete Saur U+A880–U+A8DF ꢱꣃꢬꢵꢰ꣄ꢜ꣄ꢬꢵ
Sinhala Grantha 12th century Sinhala language Sinh U+0D80–U+0DFF ශුද්ධ සිංහල
Sundanese script Old Kawi 14th century Sundanese language Sund U+1B80–U+1BBF ᮃᮊ᮪ᮞᮛ ᮞᮥᮔ᮪ᮓ
Tai Le Pallava grantha? Tai Nüa language Tale U+1950–U+197F ᥖᥭᥰᥖᥬᥳᥑᥨᥒᥰ
New Tai Lue Tai Tham 1950s Tai Lü language Talu U+1980-U+19DF ᦟᦲᧅᦎᦷᦑᦺ
Tai Tham Mon Script 13th Century Northern Thai language, Tai Lü language, Khün language Lana U+1A20–U+1AAF ᨲᩫ᩠ᩅᨾᩮᩬᩥᨦ
Tagbanwa Old Kawi 14th century various languages of Palawan, nearly extinct Tagb U+1760–U+177F ᝦᝪᝨᝯ
Tamil Chola-Pallava alphabet 8th century Tamil language Taml U+0B80–U+0BFF தமிழ் அரிச்சுவடி
Telugu Bhattiprolu script 13th Century Telugu language Telu U+0C01–U+0C6F తెలుగు లిపి
Thai Khmer 13th century Thai language Thai U+0E00–U+0E7F อักษรไทย
Tibetan Siddham 8th century Tibetan language, Dzongkha language, Ladakhi language Tibt U+0F00–U+0FFF དབུ་ཅན་
Tai Viet Thai? Tai Dam language Tavt U+AA80–U+AADF ꪼꪕꪒꪾ

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Coningham, R.A.E.; Allchin, F.R.; Batt, C.M.; Lucy, D. (1996), "Passage to India? Anuradhapura and the Early Use of the Brahmi Script", Cambridge Archaeological Journal 6 (1): 73–97, doi:10.1017/S0959774300001608 
  2. ^ "Font: Japanese". Monotype Corporation. Retrieved 2010-02-09. 
  3. ^ "Telugu is 2,400 years old, says ASI". The Hindu. 2007-12-20. 
  4. ^ "Evolution of Telugu Character Graphs". Engr.mun.ca. Retrieved 2012-06-22. 

External links[edit]