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An official script is a writing system that is specifically designated to be official in the constitutions or other applicable laws of countries, states, and other jurisdictions. Akin to an official language, an official script is much rarer. It is used primarily where an official language is in practice written with two or more scripts. As, in these languages, use of script often has cultural or political connotations, proclamation of an official script is sometimes criticised as having a goal of influencing culture or politics or both. Desired effects also may include easing education, communication and some other aspects of life.
List of official scripts
Below is a partial list of official scripts used in different countries. Those in italics are states that have limited international recognition.
- Abkhazia – Cyrillic-based Abkhaz alphabet
- Azerbaijan – Azeri Latin alphabet
- Bangladesh – Bengali script
- Brunei – Rumi script (Latin) and Jawi script
- Ethiopia – Ge'ez script
- Bosnia and Herzegovina:
- China, People's Republic of (mainland China) – Simplified Chinese
- Hong Kong – Traditional Chinese (de facto) After the announcement of Simplified Chinese in mainland China, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau didn't follow the change, making Traditional Chinese the de facto official script. (Hong Kong and Macau were still colonies at that time, and their current constitutions don't state whether Tradition Chinese or Simplified Chinese is to be used. Both places continued to use Traditional Chinese after handover.)
- Macau – Traditional Chinese (de facto)
- Inner Mongolia – Mongolian alphabet
- Tibet Autonomous Region – Tibetan alphabet
- Xinjiang – Uyghur Ereb Yéziqi and Uyghur Latin Yéziqi
- Guangxi – Zhuang Latin alphabet
- China, Republic of (Taiwan) – Traditional Chinese (de facto)
- Croatia – Croatian alphabet
- Georgia – Georgian alphabet
- India – Devanagari
- Hindi, Marathi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Bhojpuri, Bhili, Magahi, Kurukh, Dogri, Konkani – Devanagari
- Gujarati – Gujarati alphabet
- Kashmiri – Perso-Arabic script, Devanagari
- Kannada – Kannada alphabet
- Kutchi language – Gujarati alphabet
- Punjabi – Gurmukhi
- Malayalam – Malayalam alphabet
- Bengali – Bengali alphabet
- Oriya – Oriya alphabet
- Assamese language – Assamese script
- Maithili – Devanagari
- Tamil – Tamil alphabet
- Telugu – Telugu alphabet
- Tulu language – Kannada alphabet
- Konkani language – Devanagari, Kannada alphabet
- Lepcha language – Lepcha script
- Limbu language – Limbu script
- Manipuri language – Bengali alphabet, Meitei Mayek script
- Urdu – Perso-Arabic script
- Kazakhstan – Cyrillic
- Korea (both) – Hangul and hanja (South Korea)
- Macedonia – Macedonian alphabet
- Malaysia – Rumi script (Latin), Jawi script is recognised.
- Moldova – Latin alphabet
- Mongolia – Mongolian Cyrillic alphabet and Mongolian script
- Montenegro – Cyrillic and Latin script
- Nagorno-Karabakh – Armenian alphabet
- Philippines – Latin script (de facto) Baybayin (traditional)
- Russian Federation – Russian alphabet; see below
- Serbia – Cyrillic (Serbian Cyrillic script)
- South Ossetia – Cyrillic
- Transnistria – Moldovan Cyrillic alphabet
- Turkey – Turkish Latin alphabet
- Vietnam – Vietnamese alphabet
In Russian, the designation of Cyrillic as an official script (2001) has the consequence that the official languages of national Republics of Russia have to be written in the Cyrillic script in all official institutions and education. The passing of the law was met with particular resistance and criticism in the Republic of Tatarstan, as it replaced the Turkish Latin alphabet which the local government tried to promote in education after the dissolution of USSR.
- In the USSR, numerous languages were Latinised during the 1920s–1930s. In the late 1930s the Latinisation campaign was canceled and all newly romanized languages were converted to Cyrillic.
- Constitution of Croatia, Article 12: "Basic Provisions". Croatian Parliament. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
The Croatian language and the Latin script shall be in official use in the Republic of Croatia.
- "Official Language Act - Official Language: Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India". socialjustice.nic.in. Retrieved 2016-02-25.
- Constitution of Macedonia, Article 7: "Constitution of the Republic of Macedonia". Assembly of the Republic of Macedonia. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
The Macedonian language, written using its Cyrillic alphabet, is the official language in the Republic of Macedonia.
- "National Language Acts 1963/67".
The script of the national language shall be the Rumi script: provided that this shall not prohibit the use of the Malay script, more commonly known as the Jawi script, of the national language.
- Constitution of Moldova, Article 13: "Title I. General Principles". Official Website of the President of Moldavia. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
(1) The national language of the Republic of Moldova is Moldovan, and its writing is based on the Latin alphabet.
- "Official Documents to be in Mongolian Script" (in Chinese). UB Post. 2011-06-21. Archived from the original on 1 November 2011. Retrieved 2010-07-11.
- "Vlada Crne Gore". www.vlada.me. Retrieved 2016-02-25.
- Norman de los Santos. "SAVING ENDANGERED PHILIPPINE NATIVE SCRIPTS IN A MODERN DIGITAL WORLD THROUGH TYPOGRAPHY, TECHNOLOGY, AND STANDARDIZATION" (PDF). Lingdy.aacore.jp. Retrieved 2015-10-30.
- "Baybayin Buhayin: National Script Act". Baybayinbuhayin.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2015-10-30.
- Constitution of Serbia, Article 10: "I Constitution Principles". Government of Serbia. Retrieved 26 August 2011.
Serbian language and Cyrillic script shall be in official use in the Republic of Serbia.