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Kawi alphabet  Aksara Kawi

The Kawi alphabet (Aksara Kawi) originated in Java and was first used in the Singhasari Kingdom in eastern Java during the 8th century AD. After that it spread to across parts of south east Asia and was used until the 16th century AD, particularly in Borneo, Java, Bali and Sumatra.

The Kawi alphabet developed from the Pallava script, which was brought to that region by traders from the Pallava dynasty in south India. It was used mainly to write Sanskrit and Old Javanese, and is the ancestral script of Javanese, Balinese, Baybayin and other scripts of Indonesia and the Philippines.

Notable features

The Kawi alphabet

Vowels and vowel diacritics

Kawi vowels and vowel diacritics

Consonants and consonant ligatures

Kawi consonants and consonant ligatures

The red letters are ligatures that are used for the second consonant when there are two consonants without a vowel between them. The finals are used at the ends of words.


Kawi punctuation


Kawi numerals

Sample text

Kawi sample text



Information about the Kawi alphabet

Syllabic alphabets / abugidas

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