The Dehong Dai script developed from a script known as Old Dai, which
developed from a script called Baiyi. The Dehong script is used mainly by the
Tai Ne/Le people in the Dehong region in southwestern Yunnan province. It has
also been used on occasion by the Jingpo people.
Originally tones were not usually marked in the Dehong Dai script, and
there was no distinction between some vowel sounds. In 1956 a revised
version of the script with tones indicated by diacritics was officially
launched, and in 1988 in another revision the tone diacritics were
replaced by tone letters.
Type of writing system: syllabic alphabet in which each consonant has an
inherent vowel /a/. Other vowels are indicated by separate letters.
Direction of writing: left to right in horizontal lines.
Words are not separated by spaces. Instead spaces appear between clauses and sentences.
Used to write:
Dehong Dai, a Tai language with about 443,000 speakers mainly
in Dehong Prefecture of Yunnan province in the southwest of China. It is also
spoken in northern Vietnam, France, Laos, Myanmar, Switzerland, Thailand.
The language has many names, including Tai Nüa, Tai Neua, Tai Le, Chinese Shan
and Chinese Tai.