Old Uyghur alphabet

Old Uyghur alphabet
Old Uyghur alphabet
Uighur native name.svg
Type Abjad/Alphabet
Languages Uighur
Time period ca.700s AD – 1800s AD
Parent systems
Egyptian hieroglyphs
Child systems Mongolian
Clear script
Note: This page may contain IPA phonetic symbols.

The Old Uyghur alphabet was used for writing the Old Uyghur language, a variety of Old Turkic spoken in the Tarim basin, which is an ancestor of the modern Uyghur language. It was descendant of the Sogdian alphabet, used for texts with Buddhist, Manichaean and Christian content for 700–800 years in Uyghurstan. The last known manuscripts are dated to the 18th century. This was the prototype for the Mongolian and Manchu alphabets.

Like Sogdian writing but to an even greater extent, Old Uyghur writing tended to express with matres lectionis not only the long vowels but also the short ones. In fact, the practice of leaving short vowels unrepresented was almost completely abandoned in Uyghur.[1] Thus, while ultimately deriving from a Semitic abjad, the Uyghur script can be said to have been largely "alphabetized".[2]

Uighur vert.gif

See also


  1. ^ Clauson, Gerard. 2002. Studies in Turkic and Mongolic linguistics. P.110-111.
  2. ^ Houston, Stephen D. 2004. The first writing: script invention as history and process. P.59

External links

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