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|Unicode range||U+FE70 to U+FEFF|
Shahmukhi (شاہ مکھی, meaning literally "from the King's mouth") is one of two alphabets used to write the Punjabi language, the other being Gurmukhi. It is based on the Perso-Arabic script, and is generally written in Nastaʿlīq hand.
The Shahmukhi alphabet was first used by the Sufi poets of the Punjab; it became the conventional writing style for the Muslim populace of the Pakistani province of Punjab following the Partition of India, while the largely Sikh province of Punjab, India adopted the Gurmukhi script to record the Punjabi language. Shahmukhi is written from right to left, while but Gurmukhi is written from left to right. Below is the comparison of the two scripts:
- The Gurumukhi sounds ñ (ਞ), ng (ਙ), ṇ (ਣ), nh (ੰ/ં) are all written with :ں : nun ghunna (nun without dot). In initial and medial positions, the dot is retained.
- ے (Bari ye) is only found in the final position, when writing the sounds e (ਏ) or æ (ਐ), and in initial and medial positions, it takes the form of ی.
- There are three signs used when indicating a short vowel: َ (ਅ), ُ (ਉ), ِ (ਇ): a, u, i.
Examples: قَلَم (ਕ਼ਲਮ) qalam-pen گھُپ (ਘੁਪ) ghup-dense لِحاظ (ਲਿਹਾਜ਼) lihāż-consideration
- at the beginning of a word, short vowels are written as follows: اَ, اُ, اِ
- Long vowels are expressed with ا, ی, ے and و as follows:
Initial- آ (ਆ): ā اَے (ਏ ਐ): e, æ اُو (ਊ): ū اِی (ਈ): ī اَو (ਔ ਓ): au, o Medial-َﺎ َﻴ ُﻮ ِﻴ َﻮ Final- َﺎ َﮯ ُﻮ ِﯽ َﻮ
- Consonants are doubled with ّ (ੱ) ex: ﷲ (ਅੱਲਾਹ): Allāh كَچَّا (ਕੱਚਾ): Kachchā: unripe
There are a few additional letters that are occasionally used. This unicode is approved in 2006. They are:
ٻ bbe -ਬ
ڄ jje -ਜ
ڋ ḍḍe -ਡ
ڰ ggaf -ਗ
ڻ rnoonh -ਣ
In Punjabi there are many Arabic and Persian loanwords. There are some sounds in these words which were not previously found in South Asian languages before the influence of Arabic and Persian, and these are therefore represented by introducing dots beneath specific Gurumukhi characters. Since the Gurmukhi alphabet is phonetic, any loanwords which contained pre-existing sounds were more easily transliterated without the need for characters modified with subscript dots beneath.
ﺫ – ਜ਼
ﺹ – ਸ
ﺽ – ਜ਼
ﻁ – ਤ
ﻅ – ਜ਼
ﻍ – ਗ਼
ﺡ – ਹ
ﺙ – ਥ
گ – ਗ
چ – ਚ
پ – ਪ
ژ – ਜ਼
ﺥ – ਖ਼
ﺯ – ਜ਼
ﻑ – ਫ਼
ﻕ – ਕ਼
ﻉ – this is often transliterated in many ways due to its changing sound in various Arabic/Persian words.
- Shahmukhi to Gurmukhi Transliteration System: A Corpus based Approach
- The Western Panjabi Alphabet
- Learn Shahmukhi
- Likhari in Shahmukhi
- Kalam-e-Baba Nanak
- Punjabi and Punjab
- E-Book on Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi
- PDF on Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi