Archive for the Category: Writing

Writing Systems of the World Comparison Chart

Today we have a guest post by Matt Baker I remember the day when, as a child, I first discovered a writing system other than English. I was flipping through an encylopedia (this was the 1980’s, pre-Google) and noticed that, at the beginning of the “A” section, there was a little chart that showed the […]

Also posted in English, Language 1 Comment

A postcard view

Last night I went to an interesting talk about postcards at the local history society. Various people, including my mum, have collections of postcards of Silverdale and/or sent from Silverdale, and there was a project at Lancaster University to scan, transcribe and study the cards. There is also a book entitled Old Silverdale: The Loveliest […]

Also posted in English, General, Language 2 Comments

World Museum

Last Sunday I went to Liverpool for a polyglot meet-up. Before the meet-up I went to the World Museum, which is fascinating and well worth a visit. Among the artifacts and exhibits, there are examples of languages and scripts from around the world, including Cuneiform tablets from Sumeria, a Mayan codex and other artifacts with […]

Also posted in English, Language, Travel Comments Off on World Museum

The Right To Read, The Right To Write

Today we have a guest post by Tim Brookes of the Endangered Alphabets Project As those of us in the United States head into the long weekend that celebrates the country’s independence from colonial authority (yes, as a Brit I have to accept my birth country’s history!), the Endangered Alphabets’ Mother Tongue initiative is especially […]

Also posted in Endangered languages, English, Language Comments Off on The Right To Read, The Right To Write


Did you know that the practice of putting spaces between words was started by Irish monks writing in Latin? This is what I discovered from an episode of the Allusionist – apparently when Christianity arrived in Ireland in the 6th century and people started writing in Latin, they put spaces between the words to make […]

Also posted in English, Irish, Language, Latin 4 Comments


Whenever I see a well-written text with a good layout, it really appeals to me and I find myself staring at it and admiring it. I also admire particularly well-made fonts, and beautiful handwriting and calligraphy. On the other hand, texts can be marred for me by a poor choice of font and/or layout, and […]

Also posted in English, Language 1 Comment

Schrijfrichting / Scriptpath

Last week a visitor to Omniglot asked me whether there is a single word in English that means writing direction, i.e. the direction in which writing systems are written. The Latin alphabet, for example, is written from left to right in horizontal lines, as are many other writing systems, while writing systems like Arabic and […]

Also posted in Dutch, English, German, Language, Words and phrases 8 Comments

Pibeqɛdæ – new con-script

Here’s a script, called Pibeqɛdæ, that I constructed this afternoon based on the letter p, mainly. It has most of the phonemes used in English, and could be further extended. I put it together just to demonstate to a visitor to Omniglot how you might make a con-script. It turned out quite well, I think. […]


Emergent con-scripts

A while ago I had an idea for trying to construct a script with symbols based on representations of natural phenomena – animals, birds, plants, features of the landscape, etc – which would be linked to the sounds via acrophony. Then to simplify the images a number of times until I have a set of […]


Iban alphabet

I thought that almost all the world’s writing systems were on Omniglot, but today I discovered another one: the Iban alphabet, which was invented in 1947 by Dunging Anak Gunggu. It’s a partly syllabic, partly alphabetic script that never really caught on, mainly because there was no tradition of writing among the Iban-speaking community. During […]

Also posted in Language 3 Comments
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