Suriyani Malayalam

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Suriyani Malayalam (സുറിയാനി മലയാളം, ܣܘܼܝܲܢܝܼ ܡܲܠܲܝܵܠܲܡ), also known as Karshoni or Syriac Malayalam, is a dialect of Malayalam written in a variant form of Syriac script which was popular among the Saint Thomas Christians (also known as Syrian Christians or Nasranis) of Kerala in India.[1][2][3][4] It uses Malayalam grammar, the East Syriac script with special orthographic features, and vocabulary from Malayalam and East Syriac. This originated in the South Indian region of the Malabar Coast (modern-day Kerala). Until the 19th century, the script was widely used by Syrian Christians in Kerala.

Writing[edit]

There were many problems in writing Malayalam using the script of Syriac, a Semitic language. Only 22 letters were available from East Syriac orthography to render over 53 phonemes of Malayalam. These problems were overcome by creating additional letters.[5] Basic Syriac ʾĀlap̄ Bēṯ based on Maḏnḥāyā form with corresponding Malayalam letters

ܕ ܓ ܒ ܐ
ദ് ഗ് ബ്, വ്
ܚ ܙ ܘ ܗ
ഹ് സ് വ് ഹ്
ܠ ܟ ܝ ܛ
ല് ക്, ക്ക് യ് ത്
ܥ ܣ ܢ ܡ
സ് ന് മ്
ܪ ܩ ܨ ܦ
റ് ഖ് സ് പ്, വ്
ܬ ܫ
ത്, സ് ശ്

Additional Malayalam letters

SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-TTA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-NYA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-JA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-NGA.png
ട് ഞ് ജ് ങ്
SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-RA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-BHA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-NNNA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-NNA.png
ര് ഭ് ഩ* ണ്
SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-SSA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-LLLA.png SYRIAC-LETTER-MALAYALAM-LLA.png
ഷ് ഴ് ള്
  • alveolar nasal corresponding to U+OD29

Vowels

ܘ݁ ܹ ܸ ܘ݂ ܝ݂ ܵ ܲ
ഒ, ഓ ഉ, ഊ ഇ, ഈ
ܟܘ݁ ܟܹ ܟܸ ܟܘ݂ ܟܝ݂ ܟܵ ܟܲ
കൊ, കോ കേ കെ കു, കൂ കി, കീ കാ

Unicode[edit]

The additional letters for Suriyani Malayalam were added to the Unicode Standard in June, 2017 with the release of version 10.0.

The Unicode block for Syriac Supplement is U+0860–U+086F:

Syriac Supplement[1][2]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+086x
Notes
1.^ As of Unicode version 10.0
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points

Loanwords[edit]

Over the centuries, the Malayalam language borrowed several East Syriac words. A few of them are given below:

Original Syriac Suriyani Malayalam Meaning
Emma[1][6] Amma Mother
Aba Appan Father
Nasraya, Nasrani Nasrani Christian
Pesħa[4] Pesaha Passover
Malakha[3] Malakha Angel
Qudasha[3] Kudasha Sacrament
Mamoditha[3][4] Mamodisa Baptism
Sliva Sliva/Sleeba Cross
Isho'[3] Isho Jesus
Qurbana[3] Qurbana Eucharist (for Holy Mass)
M'shiħa[3][4] Mishiha Anointed
Dukhrana Dukrana Remembrance
Qasisha Kathanar/Kasnar Syrian priest
Mar Mar Lord, Sir
Ruħa Ruha Holy Spirit
Shliħa Shliha Apostle

Literature[edit]

Vedatharkam written by Kariattil Mar Ousep is one of the famous books written in Suriyani Malayalam.[2] Large number of documents written in Suriyani Malayalam are found among the Saint Thomas Christians or Nasranis of Kerala.[2]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "City Youth Learn Dying Language, Preserve It". The New Indian Express. May 9, 2016. Retrieved May 9, 2016. 
  2. ^ a b c Suriyani Malayalam, Nasrani Foundation
  3. ^ a b c d e f g A sacred language is vanishing from State, The Hindu
  4. ^ a b c d Prayer from the Past, India Today
  5. ^ "Proposal to Encode Syriac Letters for Garshuni Malayalam" (PDF). 
  6. ^ Mar Thomma Margam by Fr. Varghese Pathikulangara