Balinese is a Malayo-Polynesian language spoken by about 3.3 million people
mainly in Bali in Indonesian, and also in nothern Nusa Penida, western
Lombok and eastern Java. According to the Bali Cultural Agency a million
or so people use Baliense in their every day lives, and in urban areas
Balinese-speaking parents speak Indonesian to their children.
Balinese alphabet (Aksara Bali)
The Balinese alphabet or Aksara Bali descended ultimately from the
from Brahmi script of ancient India by way of the
Pallava and Old Kawi scripts. The oldest known inscriptions in the Balinese
alphabet date from the 11th century AD, but they are thought to be reproductions
of texts originally written on palm leaves at an earlier date.
The Balinese alphabet is still used to this day, although very few
people are familiar with it and it is mainly used for religious works.
Generally a version of the Latin alphabet is used
instead, although what little Balinese printed material exists in the Latin
alphabet consists mainly of school books, religious works and a few books
of stories. Balinese children are taught to read and write Balinese in
the Latin alphabet at primary school, though few read or write it in
Type of writing system: syllabic alphabet / abugida.
Direction of writing: left to right in horizontal lines.
Each consonant has an inherent vowel. Other vowels can be indicated using
diacritics which appear above, below, in front of or after the consonant.
If the vowels appear in the middle of a word, the vowel signs are attached
to the syllable ha. Independent vowel letters are used when a word begins
with a vowel.
Each consonant has an appended form (Pangangge Akśara)
which is used when one consonant follows another without a vowel in between.
There are no spaces between words.
Balinese consonants (Akśara Wreşāstra)
The appended forms (Pangangge Akśara) are shown in red.
Additional Balinese consonants (Akśara Şwalalita)
There consonants are used for writing words from the Kawi (Old Javanese) language.
The final consonants are shown in red.
Balinese vowels (Akśara Suara)
Balinese vowel diacrtics
Balinese semi vowels
Balinese sound killers (Pangangge Tengenan)
These symbols are used at the ends of syllables to add a consonant sound or to
mute the inherent vowel.
Miscellaneous Balinese symbols
The Balinese font used on this page was created by Jason Glavy
Balinese sample text (Balinese alphabet)
Makasami manusane kaembasin mahardika lan pateh. sajeroning kahanan lan kuasa.
ipun kanugrahin wiweka lan budi. pantaraning manusa mangdane paras-paros masemetonan. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
Translation by Tri Ediwan
Another version of this text
Sami manusane sane nyruwadi wantah merdeka tur maduwe kautamaan lan
hak-hak sane pateh. Sami kalugrain papineh lan idep tur mangdane pada
masawitra melarapan semangat pakulawargaan.
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood. (Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)