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Thaana / ތާނަ‎ Thaana script

The Thaana script was developed during the 18th century by an unknown inventor. It first appeared in government documents in 1703 and replaced an older alphabet known as Dives akuru.

Some of the Taana letters were derived from Dives akuru, while others were modelled on Arabic numerals. Vowel indication is modelled on the Arabic system of diacritics.

Notable features

Used to write:

Maldivian (Dhivehi / ދިވެހި), an Indo-Aryan language spoken by about 350,000 people in the Maldives and and by about 10,000 in the island of Minicoy in the Union territory of Lakshadweep in India.

Major dialects of Maldivian are Malé, Huvadhu, Mulaku, Addu, Haddhunmathee and Maliku, with the Malé dialect of the Maldivian capital being considered the standard. In Mincoy the Maliku dialect is spoken and is known as Mahl.

Maldivian is closely related to, though not mutually intelligible with, Sinhalese. It has been influenced by and aborbed words from a number of languages, including Arabic, French, Persian, Portuguese, Urdu and English.

Thaana script

Thaana script

How to write and pronounce the Thaana alphabet

Letters used for transliterating Arabic words (thiki jehi thaana)

Top row: Thaana letters, bottom row: the Arabic letters on which they are modelled

Letters used for transliterating Arabic words (toko jehee taana)


the letter zaa is also used to write the English sound /ʒ/.

Download the script charts (Excel format)

Sample texts

Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Maldivian


Hurihaa insaanun ves ufanvanee, dharaja'aa'i ḥa'quthakuga'i minivankamaa'i hamahamakan libigenvaa ba'e'ge gothuga'eve. Emeehunnash heyo visnumaa'i, heyo bu'dheege baaru libigenva'ava. Adhi emeehan ekaku anekakaa medhu mu˂aamalaath kuranvaanee, ukhu'vaththeri kamuge rooḥe'ga'ava.


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)

Divehi sample text


al'la'ufedhey qaanoonu asaaseege himaayaïlibigen siyaaseepaateetha' hingeynegoïtha' hamajehifaïneïnama e'qaanoonuge misaalakee alifaanroavej'jenama salaamaïvaane sidie'neï ethake'bureege imaaraathe'ge misaaleve.


A newly formed constitution which does not give protection to political parties under it terms, is equivalent to a multi-storey building with no fire exits.

The sample text comes from the Maldivian news paper Sandhaanu, 15th August 2002

Sample video in Maldivian

Information about Maldivian | Phrases | Tower of Babel


Information about the Dhivehi language and Thaana script

Free Thaana fonts
http://www.saturn.in/foss/thanaunicode/ (Linux)

Dhivehi thaana - reading and writing the Maldivian language

Divehi phrases

Send email in the Thaana script

Haveeru Online - online version of a daliy newspaper in Divehi and English (uses dynamic fonts): http://www.haveeru.com.mv

Maldives websites

Indo-Aryan languages

Awadhi, Assamese, Bengali, Bhojpuri, Chakma, Dhivehi, Domari, Fiji Hindi, Garhwali, Gujarati, Hajong, Hindi, Kashmiri, Konkani, Kotia, Kutchi, Magahi, Maithili, Marathi, Marwari, Modi, Nepali, Odia, Palula, Punjabi, Rajasthani, Rohingya, Romani, Saraiki, Sarnámi Hindustani, Sindhi, Sinhala, Shina, Sourashtra, Sugali, Sylheti, Torwali, Urdu

Syllabic alphabets / abugidas

If you need to type in many different languages, the Q International Keyboard can help. It enables you to type almost any language that uses the Latin, Cyrillic or Greek alphabets, and is free.

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