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Kharosthi Kharoṣṭhī

The Kharosthi, or Kharoṣṭhī, script was invented sometime during the 3rd century BC and was possibly derived from the Aramaic script. It was used in Gandhara, an ancient kingdom in what is now the northwest of Pakistan, and the Jalalabad district of Afghanistan. Kharosthi texts have also been found along the Silk Road in Bactria, Kushan, Sogdia, and in parts of China.

By the 4th century AD the script was no longer used in Gandhara, but may have been used until the 7th centuries in places such as Khotan / Hotan (和田), in what is now Xinjiang in the northeast of China.

Kharosthi has no known descendants, although it is possible that the Old Turkic (Orkhon) script may have developed from Kharoshthi.

Kharoshti was deciphered during the 19th century by James Prinsep, Christian Lassen, C.L. Grotefend and Edwin Norris. Bilingual inscriptions in Gandhari and Greek on coins helped with the decipherment. Since then further material has been found and the script is now better understood.

Notable features

Used to write

Gandhari, of Gāndhārī, a Prakrit language used in inscriptions in the Kharosthi script between the 3rd century BC and the 4th century AD, and possibly until the 7th century AD.

Sanskrit (संस्कृतम्), a classical language of India, which is still used as a religious and ceremonial language, and as a spoken language to some extent.

Pali (पालि), the classical language of Theravada Buddhism that was first used in Sri Lanka during the 1st century BC.

Kharosthi script

Consonants

Kharosthi consonants

Kharosthi vowels, numerals and punctuation

Sample text

Kharosthi sample text

Links

Information about Kharosthi and Gandhara
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kharosthi
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gāndhārī_language
http://www.ancientscripts.com/kharosthi.html
https://www.ancient.eu/Kharosthi_Script/
http://www.ancientindia.co.uk/writing/explore/b_kharosthi.html
http://depts.washington.edu/ebmp/software.html
http://std.dkuug.dk/jtc1/sc2/wg2/docs/n2524.pdf
http://depts.washington.edu/ebmp/downloads/Glass_2000.pdf
https://depts.washington.edu/silkroad/texts/niyadocts.html

ALPHABETUM - a Unicode font specifically designed for ancient scripts, including classical & medieval Latin, ancient Greek, Etruscan, Oscan, Umbrian, Faliscan, Messapic, Picene, Iberian, Celtiberian, Gothic, Runic, Old & Middle English, Hebrew, Sanskrit, Old Nordic, Ogham, Kharosthi, Glagolitic, Old Cyrillic, Phoenician, Avestan, Ugaritic, Linear B, Anatolian scripts, Coptic, Cypriot, Brahmi, Old Persian cuneiform: http://guindo.pntic.mec.es/~jmag0042/alphabet.html

Some of the writing systems used to write Sanskrit


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