Mongolian script

The classical or traditional Mongolian script,[a] also known as the Qudum Mongγol bičig,[b][citation needed] was the first writing system created specifically for the Mongolian language, and was the most widespread until the introduction of Cyrillic in 1946. It is traditionally written in vertical lines Text direction TDright.svg Top-Down, right across the page. Derived from the Old Uyghur alphabet, Mongolian is a true alphabet, with separate letters for consonants and vowels. The Mongolian script has been adapted to write languages such as Oirat and Manchu. Alphabets based on this classical vertical script are used in Inner Mongolia and other parts of China to this day to write Mongolian, Xibe and experimentally, Evenki.

Mongolian script
ᠮᠣᠩᠭᠣᠯ ᠪᠢᠴᠢᠭ
Bosoo mongol bicig.png
Example text
Script type
CreatorTata-tonga
Time period
ca.1204 – present
Directiontop-to-bottom, left-to-right Edit this on Wikidata
LanguagesMongolian language
Manchu language (obsolete)
Daur language (obsolete)
Evenki language (experimentally)
Related scripts
Parent systems
Child systems
Manchu alphabet
Oirat alphabet (Clear script)
Buryat alphabet
Galik alphabet
Evenki alphabet
Xibe alphabet
ISO 15924
ISO 15924Mong, 145 Edit this on Wikidata, ​Mongolian
Unicode
Unicode alias
Mongolian
 This article contains phonetic transcriptions in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). For an introductory guide on IPA symbols, see Help:IPA. For the distinction between [ ], / / and ⟨ ⟩, see IPA § Brackets and transcription delimiters.

Computer operating systems have been slow to adopt support for the Mongolian script, and almost all have incomplete support or other text rendering difficulties.

HistoryEdit

 
The Stele of Yisüngge [ru], with the earliest known inscription in the Mongolian script.[1]: 33 

The Mongolian vertical script developed as an adaptation of the Old Uyghur alphabet for the Mongolian language.[2]: 545  From the seventh and eighth to the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries, the Mongolian language separated into southern, eastern and western dialects. The principal documents from the period of the Middle Mongol language are: in the eastern dialect, the famous text The Secret History of the Mongols, monuments in the Square script, materials of the Chinese–Mongolian glossary of the fourteenth century, and materials of the Mongolian language of the middle period in Chinese transcription, etc.; in the western dialect, materials of the Arab–Mongolian and Persian–Mongolian dictionaries, Mongolian texts in Arabic transcription, etc.[3]: 1–2  The main features of the period are that the vowels ï and i had lost their phonemic significance, creating the i phoneme (in the Chakhar dialect, the Standard Mongolian in Inner Mongolia, these vowels are still distinct); inter-vocal consonants γ/g, b/w had disappeared and the preliminary process of the formation of Mongolian long vowels had begun; the initial h was preserved in many words; grammatical categories were partially absent, etc. The development over this period explains why the Mongolian script looks like a vertical Arabic script (in particular the presence of the dot system).[3]: 1–2 

Eventually, minor concessions were made to the differences between the Uyghur and Mongol languages: In the 17th and 18th centuries, smoother and more angular versions of the letter tsadi became associated with [dʒ] and [tʃ] respectively, and in the 19th century, the Manchu hooked yodh was adopted for initial [j]. Zain was dropped as it was redundant for [s]. Various schools of orthography, some using diacritics, were developed to avoid ambiguity.[2]: 545 

Traditional Mongolian is written vertically from top to bottom, flowing in lines from left to right. The Old Uyghur script and its descendants, of which traditional Mongolian is one among Oirat Clear, Manchu, and Buryat are the only known vertical scripts written from left to right. This developed because the Uyghurs rotated their Sogdian-derived script, originally written right to left, 90 degrees counterclockwise to emulate Chinese writing, but without changing the relative orientation of the letters.[4][1]: 36 

The reed pen was the writing instrument of choice until the 18th century, when the brush took its place under Chinese influence.[5]: 422  Pens were also historically made of wood, reed, bamboo, bone, bronze, or iron. Ink used was black or cinnabar red, and written with on birch bark, paper, cloths made of silk or cotton, and wooden or silver plates.[6]: 80–81 

Mongols learned their script as a syllabary, dividing the syllables into twelve different classes, based on the final phonemes of the syllables, all of which ended in vowels.[7]

The script remained in continuous use by Mongolian speakers in Inner Mongolia in People's Republic of China. In the Mongolian People's Republic, it was largely replaced by the Mongolian Cyrillic alphabet, although the vertical script remained in limited use. In March 2020, the Mongolian government announced plans to increase the use of the traditional Mongolian script and to use both Cyrillic and Mongolian script in official documents by 2025.[8][9][10]

NamesEdit

The traditional Mongolian script is known by a wide variety of names. Because of its similarity to the Old Uyghur alphabet, it became known as the Uigurjin Mongol script.[c] During the communist era, when Cyrillic became the official script for the Mongolian language, the traditional script became known as the Old Mongol script,[d] in contrast to the New script,[e] referring to Cyrillic. The name Old Mongol script stuck, and it is still known as such among the older generation, who did not receive education in the new script.[citation needed]

OverviewEdit

The traditional or classical Mongolian alphabet, sometimes called Hudum 'traditional' in Oirat in contrast to the Clear script (Todo 'exact'), is the original form of the Mongolian script used to write the Mongolian language. It does not distinguish several vowels (o/u, ö/ü, final a/e) and consonants (syllable-initial t/d and k/g, sometimes ǰ/y) that were not required for Uyghur, which was the source of the Mongol (or Uyghur-Mongol) script.[4] The result is somewhat comparable to the situation of English, which must represent ten or more vowels with only five letters and uses the digraph th for two distinct sounds. Ambiguity is sometimes prevented by context, as the requirements of vowel harmony and syllable sequence usually indicate the correct sound. Moreover, as there are few words with an exactly identical spelling, actual ambiguities are rare for a reader who knows the orthography.

Letters have different forms depending on their position in a word: initial, medial, or final. In some cases, additional graphic variants are selected for visual harmony with the subsequent character.

The rules for writing below apply specifically for the Mongolian language, unless stated otherwise.

Sort ordersEdit

  • Traditional: n, q/k, γ/g, b, p, s, š, t, d, l, m, č...[11][12]: 7 
  • Modern: n, b, p, q/k, γ/g, m, l, s, š, t, d, č...[11][12]: 7 
  • Other modern orderings that apply to specific dictionaries also exist.[13]

Vowel harmonyEdit

Mongolian vowel harmony separates the vowels of words into three groups – two mutually exclusive and one neutral:

  • The back, male, masculine,[14] hard, or yang[15] vowels a, o, and u.
  • The front, female, feminine,[14] soft, or yin[15] vowels e, ö, and ü.
  • The neutral vowel i, able to appear in all words.

Any Mongolian word can contain the neutral vowel i, but only vowels from either of the other two groups. The vowel qualities of visually separated vowels and suffixes must likewise harmonize with those of the preceding word stem. Such suffixes are written with front or neutral vowels when preceded by a word stem containing only neutral vowels. Any of these rules might not apply for foreign words however.[3]: 11, 35, 39 [16]: 10 [17]: 4 [13]

Separated final vowelsEdit

 
Two examples of the two kinds of letter separation: with the suffix ‑un (   ) and the final vowel ‑a (   )

A separated final form of vowels a or e is common, and can appear at the end of a word stem, or suffix. This form requires a final-shaped preceding letter, and an inter-word gap in between. This gap can be transliterated with a hyphen.[note 1][3]: 30, 77 [18]: 42 [1]: 38–39 [17]: 27 [19]: 534–535 

The presence or lack of a separated a or e can also indicate differences in meaning between different words (compare ᠬᠠᠷ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ qar‑a 'black' with ᠬᠠᠷᠠ qara 'to look').[20]: 3 [19]: 535 

Its form could be confused with that of the identically shaped traditional dative-locative suffix ‑a/‑e exemplified further down. That form however, is more commonly found in older texts, and more commonly takes the forms of ᠲ᠋ᠤᠷ tur/tür or ᠳ᠋ᠤᠷ dur/dür instead.[16]: 15 [21][1]: 46 

Separated suffixesEdit

 
1925 logo of Buryat–Mongolian newspaper ᠪᠤᠷᠢᠶᠠᠳ ᠮᠣᠩᠭᠣᠯ ᠤᠨ ᠦᠨᠡᠨ᠃ Buriyad Mongγol‑un ünen 'Buryat-Mongol truth' with the suffix  ᠤᠨ⟨?⟩ ‑un.

All case suffixes, as well as any plural suffixes consisting of one or two syllables, are likewise separated by a preceding and hyphen-transliterated gap.[note 2] A maximum of two case suffixes can be added to a stem.[3]: 30, 73 [16]: 12 [21][22][17]: 28 [19]: 534 

Such single-letter vowel suffixes appear with the final-shaped forms of a/e, i, or u/ü,[3]: 30  as in ᠭᠠᠵᠠᠷ ᠠ⟨?⟩ γaǰar‑a 'to the country' and ᠡᠳᠦᠷ ᠡ⟨?⟩ edür‑e 'on the day',[3]: 39  or ᠤᠯᠤᠰ ᠢ⟨?⟩ ulus‑i 'the state' etc.[3]: 23  Multi-letter suffixes most often start with an initial- (consonants), medial- (vowels), or variant-shaped form. Medial-shaped u in the two-letter suffix  ᠤᠨ⟨?⟩ ‑un/‑ün is exemplified in the adjacent newspaper logo.[3]: 30 [19]: 27 

Compound namesEdit

In the modern language, proper names (but not words) usually forms graphic compounds (such as those of ᠬᠠᠰᠡᠷᠳᠡᠨᠢ Qas'erdeni 'Jasper-jewel' or ᠬᠥᠬᠡᠬᠣᠲᠠ Kökeqota – the city of Hohhot). These also allow components of different harmonic classes to be joined together, and where the vowels of an added suffix will harmonize with those of the latter part of the compound. Orthographic peculiarities are most often retained, as with the short and long teeth of an initial-shaped ö in ᠮᠤᠤ‍‍ᠥ᠌‍‍ᠬᠢᠨ Muu'ökin 'Bad Girl' (protective name). Medial t and d, in contrast, are not affected in this way.[3]: 30 [23]: 92 [1]: 44 [24]: 88 

Isolate citation formsEdit

Isolate citation forms for syllables containing o, u, ö, and ü may in dictionaries appear without a final tail as in ᠪᠣ bo/bu or ᠮᠣ᠋ mo/mu, and with a vertical tail as in ᠪᠥ᠋ / or ᠮᠥ᠋ / (as well as in transcriptions of Chinese syllables).[13][1]: 39 

Notes on letter tablesEdit

A dash indicates a non-applicable position for that letter.

Parentheses enclose glyphs or positions whose corresponding sounds are not found in native Mongolian words.

Palatalized phonemes have been excluded. These are conditioned by a following i.[18]: 178 

VowelsEdit

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 18 [2]: 546 
‑a a Transliteration[note 3]
[f] Alone
ᠠ᠋[g]
 [h]
ᠠ‍ Initial
‍ᠠ‍ Medial
‍ᠠ Connected final
᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩   Separated final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23 [2]: 546 
ba pa Transliteration
ᠪᠠ[i] ᠫᠠ Alone
ᠪᠠ‍ ᠫᠠ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠠ‍ ‍ᠫᠠ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠠ ‍ᠫᠠ Final
Separated suffixes[note 4]
‑a Transliteration
 ᠠ‍⟨?⟩   Initial
 ᠠ⟨?⟩   Whole
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ɑ/;[13][27] Khalkha /a/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter а.[28][25]
  • Medial and final forms may be distinguished from those of other tooth-shaped letters through: vowel harmony (e), the shape of adjacent consonants (see q/k and γ/g below), and position in syllable sequence (n, ng, q, γ, d).[21]
  • The final tail extends to the left after bow-shaped consonants (such as b, and p), and to the right in all other cases.
  • ‍ᠠ᠋‍ = medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • ‍ᠠ᠋⟨?⟩ ⟩ = connected galik final.[3]: 26–28 [1]: 38–39 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur aleph (𐽰), written twice for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with A using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 18–19 [2]: 546 
‑e e Transliteration
[g] Alone
 [h]
ᠡ‍ Initial
‍ᠡ‍ Medial
‍ᠡ Connected final
᠎ᠡ⟨?⟩   Separated final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23, 24–25 [2]: 546 
be pe ke, ge Transliteration
ᠪᠡ[i] ᠫᠡ ᠬᠡ[j] Alone
ᠪᠡ‍ ᠫᠡ‍ ᠬᠡ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠡ‍ ‍ᠫᠡ‍ ‍ᠬᠡ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠡ ‍ᠫᠡ ‍ᠬᠡ Final
Separated suffixes[note 5]
‑e Transliteration
 ᠡ‍ Initial
 ᠡ⟨?⟩   Whole
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ə/;[13][27] Khalkha /i/, /e/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter э.[28][25]
  • Medial and final forms may be distinguished from those of other tooth-shaped letters through: vowel harmony (a) and its effect on the shape of a word's consonants (see q/k and γ/g below), or position in syllable sequence (n, ng, d).[21]
  • The final tail extends to the left after bow-shaped consonants (such as b, p, k, and g), and to the right in all other cases.
  • ᠡ᠋‍ = a traditional initial form.[31]: 6 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur aleph.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with E using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 19 [2]: 546 
i Transliteration
Alone
ᠢ‍ Initial
‍ᠢ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
 [k] Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠢ Final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23, 24–25 [2]: 546 
bi pi ki, gi Transliteration
ᠪᠢ[l] ᠫᠢ ᠬᠢ[m] Alone
ᠪᠢ‍ ᠫᠢ‍ ᠬᠢ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠢ‍ ‍ᠫᠢ‍ ‍ᠬᠢ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠢ ‍ᠫᠢ ‍ᠬᠢ Final
Separated suffixes[note 6]
‑i Transliteration
 ᠢ‍⟨?⟩   Initial
 ᠢ⟨?⟩   Whole
  • Transcribes Chakhar /i/ or /ɪ/;[13][27] Khalkha /i/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter и.[28][25]
  • Today, often absorbed into a preceding syllable when at the end of a word.[citation needed]
  • Written medially with the single long tooth after a consonant, and with two after a vowel (with rare exceptions like ᠨᠠ‍ᠢ‍ᠮᠠ naima 'eight' or ᠨᠠ‍ᠢ‍ᠮᠠᠨ naiman 'eight'/tribal name).[3]: 31 [16]: 9, 39 [1]: 38 
  • ‍ᠢ᠋‍ = a handwritten Inner Mongolian variant on the sequence yi (as in ᠰᠠᠶ᠋ᠢᠨ / ᠰᠠᠶᠢᠨ sayin 'good' being written ᠰᠠᠢ᠋ᠨ sain).[16]: 58 [1]: 38 [32]: 346 
    • Also the medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur yodh (𐽶), preceded by an aleph for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with I using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 19–20 [2]: 546 
o Transliteration
[n] Alone
ᠣ‍ Initial
‍ᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠣ Final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23 [2]: 546 
bo po Transliteration
ᠪᠣ ᠫᠣ Alone
ᠪᠣ‍ ᠫᠣ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠣ‍ ‍ᠫᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠣ ‍ᠫᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ɔ/;[13][27] Khalkha /ɔ/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter о.[28][25]
  • Indistinguishable from u, except when inferred by its placement. It is only found in medial or final syllables if the initial syllable also carries it, or rarely when it carries the vowel i. Additionally, it cannot directly follow i.[3]: 11, 19 [16]: 9–10 
  • ‍ᠣ᠋ = the final form used in loanwords, as in ᠷᠠᠳᠢᠣ᠋ radio (радио radio).[28]: 48 [1]: 36 [33]
  • ‍ᠣ᠋‍ = medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur waw (𐽳), preceded by an aleph for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with W using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 19–20 [2]: 546 
u Transliteration
Alone
ᠤ‍ Initial
‍ᠤ‍ Medial
‍ᠤ Final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23 [2]: 546 
bu pu Transliteration
ᠪᠤ ᠫᠤ Alone
ᠪᠤ‍ ᠫᠤ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠤ‍ ‍ᠫᠤ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠤ ‍ᠫᠤ Final
Separated suffixes[note 7]
‑u ‑u ‑un ‑ud ‑uruγu Transliteration
   ᠤ⟨?⟩ Whole
   ᠤᠨ⟨?⟩  ᠤᠳ⟨?⟩
   ᠤᠷᠤᠭᠤ⟨?⟩
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ʊ/;[13][27] Khalkha /ʊ/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter у.[28][25]
  • Indistinguishable from o, except when inferred by its placement.[3]: 19 [16]: 9–10 
  • ‍ᠤ᠋‍ = medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur waw, preceded by an aleph for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with V using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 20 [2]: 546 
ö Transliteration
[o] Alone
ᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠥ᠋‍ Medial (word-initial syllable)
‍ᠥ‍ Medial (subsequent syllables)
‍ᠥ Final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23, 24–25 [2]: 546 
, Transliteration
ᠪᠥ ᠫᠥ ᠭᠥ⟨?⟩ (w/o tail)[p] Alone
ᠭᠥ᠋⟨?⟩ (w/ tail)
ᠪᠥ‍ ᠫᠥ‍ ᠭᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠥ‍ ‍ᠫᠥ‍ ‍ᠭᠥ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠥ ‍ᠫᠥ ‍ᠭᠥ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /o/;[13][27] Khalkha /o/[ɵ], /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ө.[28][25]
  • Indistinguishable from ü, except when inferred by its placement. It is only found in medial or final syllables if the initial syllable also carries it. Additionally, it cannot directly follow the vowel i.[3]: 11, 20 [16]: 9–10 
  • ‍ᠥ᠋ = an alternative final form; also used in loanwords.[1]: 39 
  • The syllable-initial medial form ‍ᠥ᠋‍ is also used in non-initial syllables in proper name compounds,[1]: 44  as well as in loanwords.[citation needed]
  • ‍ᠥ᠌‍ = medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur waw, followed by a yodh in word-initial syllables, and preceded by an aleph for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with O using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 20 [2]: 546 
ü Transliteration
[q] Alone
ᠦ‍ Initial
‍ᠦ᠋‍ Medial (word-initial syllable)
‍ᠦ‍ Medial (subsequent syllables)
‍ᠦ Final
Ligatures[3]: 22–23, 24–25 [2]: 546 
, Transliteration
ᠪᠦ ᠫᠦ ᠭᠦ⟨?⟩ (w/o tail)[p] Alone
ᠭᠦ᠋⟨?⟩ (w/ tail)
ᠪᠦ‍ ᠫᠦ‍ ᠭᠦ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠦ‍ ‍ᠫᠦ‍ ‍ᠭᠦ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠦ ‍ᠫᠦ ‍ᠭᠦ Final
Separated suffixes[note 8]
‑ü ‑ü ‑ün ‑ügei ‑üd Transliteration
   ᠦ⟨?⟩ Whole
   ᠦᠨ⟨?⟩  ᠦᠳ⟨?⟩
   ᠦᠭᠡᠢ⟨?⟩
  • Transcribes Chakhar /u/;[13][27] Khalkha /u/, /ə/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ү.[28][25]
  • Indistinguishable from ö, except when inferred by its placement.[3]: 20 [16]: 9–10 
  • ‍ᠦ᠋ = an alternative final form; also used in loanwords.[1]: 39  Additionally used in native and modern Mongolian ᠰᠦ᠋⟨?⟩ 'milk' (Classical Mongolian ᠰᠦ⟨?⟩   or ᠰᠦᠨ sün).[26]: 741, 744 [1]: 39 
  • The syllable-initial medial form ‍ᠦ᠋‍ is also used in non-initial syllables in proper name compounds,[1]: 44  as well as in loanwords.[citation needed]
  • ‍ᠦ᠌‍ = medial form used after the junction in a proper name compound.[1]: 44 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur waw, followed by a yodh in word-initial syllables, and preceded by an aleph for isolate and initial forms.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with U using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[1]: 38–39 
ē Transliteration[r]
Alone
ᠧ‍ Initial
‍ᠧ‍ Medial
‍ᠧ Final
Example ligatures
Transliteration
ᠹᠧ ᠺᠧ ᠻᠧ Alone
ᠹᠧ‍ ᠺᠧ‍ ᠻᠧ‍ Initial
‍ᠹᠧ‍ ‍ᠺᠧ‍ ‍ᠻᠧ‍ Medial
‍ᠹᠧ ‍ᠺᠧ ‍ᠻᠧ Final
  • Stands in for e in loanwords,[1]: 38 [27] such as in ᠧᠦ᠋ᠷᠣᠫᠠ ēüropa (Европ Yevrop).[28]: 48 [33] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter е.[28][25]
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+E using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Vowel combinationsEdit

Doubled vowels[3]: 10, 30 [16]: 59 [note 9]
ii oo uu üü Transliteration
ᠤᠤ⟨?⟩  [s] Alone
ᠣᠣ[t]
ᠤᠤ‍ Initial
‍ᠢᠢ‍ ‍ᠣᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠤᠤ[u] Final
  • The doubled vowels ii, uu, and üü mark these as long. Medial oo is instead both used in a few words to mark the vowel as short, and to distinguish it from u.[3]: 30 
Diphthongs[3]: 31–32 [16]: 58 [18]: 111 [1]: 41–42 
ai ei oi, ui öi üi Transliteration
ᠠᠢ[v] ᠡᠢ[w] ᠣᠢ[x] ᠥᠢ[y] Alone
ᠠᡳ᠌‍ ᠡᡳ᠌‍ ᠣᡳ᠌‍ ᠣᡳ᠌‍ Initial
‍ᠠᡳ᠌‍ ‍ᠣᡳ᠌‍ ‍ᠦᡳ᠌‍ Medial
‍ᠠᠢ ‍ᠣᠢ ‍ᠦᠢ Final
  • Most of the i's of these diphthongs derive from an earlier yi, but is no longer recognized as such. This can be seen in the doubled long teeth, and in words such as earlier ᠰᠠᠶᠢᠨ⟨?⟩ sayin 'good' having become ᠰᠠᠢᠨ⟨?⟩ sain.[16]: 9 
Diphthongs, continued[3]: 31–32 
au u‑a uu‑a Transliteration
ᠠᠤ‍ Initial
‍ᠠᠤ‍ Medial
‍ᠤ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩    [z] ‍ᠤᠤ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ Final

Native consonantsEdit

Consonant clustersEdit

Two medial consonants are the most that can come together in original Mongolian words. There are however, a few loanwords that can begin or end with two or more. Examples of such include: (dotless š) gšan 'moment' ( ), gkir 'dirt' ( ), or bodisdv 'Bodhisattva' ( ).[3]: 15, 32 [16]: 9 [26]: 385 

Edit

Letter[3]: 17, 20–21 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
n Transliteration
ᠨ‍ Initial
‍ᠨ᠋‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-initial)
‍ᠨ‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠨ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 8 
n‑a, n‑e na, ne ni no, nu , Transliteration
ᠨᠠ ᠨᠢ[aa] ᠨᠣ᠋ ᠨᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠨᠠ‍ ᠨᠢ‍ ᠨᠣ‍ ᠨᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠨᠠ‍ ‍ᠨᠢ‍ ‍ᠨᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠨ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠨᠠ ‍ᠨᠢ ‍ᠨᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 10]
‑na, ‑ne ‑nu, ‑nü Transliteration
 ᠨᠠ‍  ᠨᠤ‍ Initial
  • Transcribes Chakhar /n/;[13][27] Khalkha /n/, and /ŋ/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter н.[28][25]
  • Distinction from other tooth-shaped letters by position in syllable sequence.[citation needed]
  • Dotted before a vowel (attached or separated); undotted before a consonant (syllable-final) or a whitespace.[3]: 20 [2]: 546 [17]: 6 [13] Final dotted n is also found in modern Mongolian words.[1]: 37 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur nun (𐽺).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 114 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with N using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 15, 17 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
ng Transliteration[r]
Initial
Medial (syllable-initial)
‍ᠩ‍ Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠩ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ŋ/;[13][27] Khalkha /ŋ/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letters нг.[28][25]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur nun-kaph (𐽺 and 𐽷) digraph.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+N using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: (12), 17, 22 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
b Transliteration
ᠪ‍ Initial
‍ᠪ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠪ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 16 
ba, be bi bo, bu , Transliteration
ᠪᠠ[i] ᠪᠢ[l] ᠪᠣ ᠪᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠪᠠ‍ ᠪᠢ‍ ᠪᠣ‍ ᠪᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠪᠠ‍ ‍ᠪᠢ‍ ‍ᠪᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠪᠠ ‍ᠪᠢ ‍ᠪᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 11]
‑ban, ‑ben ‑bar, ‑ber Transliteration
 ᠪᠠᠨ  ᠪᠠᠷ Whole
  • Transcribes Chakhar /b/;[13][27] Khalkha /p/, /w/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter б.[28][25]
  • For Classical Mongolian, Latin v is used only for transcribing foreign words, so most в (v) in Mongolian Cyrillic correspond to б (b) in Classical Mongolian.[citation needed]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur pe (𐽼).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with B using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 12, 15, 17, 23 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
p Transliteration
ᠫ‍ Initial
‍ᠫ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
(‍ᠫ) Final
C-V syllables[28]: 46 
pa, pe pi po, pu , Transliteration
ᠫᠠ ᠫᠢ ᠫᠣ ᠫᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠫᠠ‍ ᠫᠢ‍ ᠫᠣ‍ ᠫᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠫᠠ‍ ‍ᠫᠢ‍ ‍ᠫᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠫᠠ ‍ᠫᠢ ‍ᠫᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /p/;[13][27] Khalkha //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter п.[28][25]
  • Only at the beginning of Mongolian words (although words with an initial p tend to be foreign).[20]: 5 [24]: 27 [13]
  • Galik letter, derived from Mongolian b.[1]: 35 
  • Produced with P using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

(1/2)Edit

Letter[3]: 14, 17, 21 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
q Transliteration
Initial
‍ᠬ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
Final
C-V syllables[3]: 15 [28]: 19 
q‑a qa qe, qi qo, qu , Transliteration
ᠬᠠ[ab] ᠬᠣ᠋ Alone
ᠬᠠ‍ ᠬᠣ‍ Initial
‍ᠬᠠ‍ ‍ᠬᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠬ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠬᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /x/;[13][27] Khalkha /x/.[citation needed] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter х.[28][25]
  • Distinction from other tooth-shaped letters by position in syllable sequence.[citation needed]
  • A separated isolate-shaped   ‑q appears in the Uyghur loan title ayaγ‑q‑a tegimlig 'worthy of respect; reverend'.[2]: 546 [23]: 43 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur merged gimel and heth (𐽲).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113–115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with H using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

(2/2)Edit

Letter[3]: 14, 17, 24–25 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
k Transliteration
  Initial
  Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
Final
C-V syllables[3]: 15 [28]: 19 
ka ke ki ko, ku , Transliteration
ᠬᠡ[j] ᠬᠢ[m] ᠬᠥ⟨?⟩ (w/o tail)[p] Alone
ᠬᠥ᠋⟨?⟩ (w/ tail)[ac]
ᠬᠡ‍ ᠬᠢ‍ ᠬᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠬᠡ‍ ‍ᠬᠢ‍ ‍ᠬᠥ‍ Medial
‍ᠬᠡ ‍ᠬᠢ ‍ᠬᠥ Final
Separated suffixes[note 12]
‑ki ‑kin Transliteration
 ᠬᠢ  ᠬᠢᠨ Whole
  • Transcribes Chakhar /x/;[13][27] Khalkha /x/.[citation needed] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter х.[28][25]
  • Syllable-initially indistinguishable from g.[3]: 15, 24 [16]: 9 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur kaph (𐽷).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113, 115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with H using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

(1/2)Edit

Letter[3]: 14, 17, 21–22 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
γ Transliteration[r]
Initial
‍ᠭ᠋‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-initial)
‍ᠭ‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠭ[ad] Final
C-V syllables[3]: 15 [28]: 21 
γ‑a γa γe, γi γo, γu γö, γü Transliteration
ᠭᠠ ᠭᠣ᠋ Alone
ᠭᠠ‍ ᠭᠣ‍ Initial
‍ᠭᠠ‍ ‍ᠭᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠭᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ɣ/;[13] Khalkha /ɢ/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter г.[28][25]
  • Dotted before a vowel (attached or separated); undotted before a consonant (syllable-final) or a whitespace.[3]: 21 [2]: 546 [17]: 5 [13]
  • May turn silent between two adjacent vowels, and merge these into a long vowel or diphthong.[3]: 36–37 [1]: 7  Qaγan (ᠬᠠᠭᠠᠨ) 'Khagan' for instance, is read as Qaan unless reading classical literary Mongolian. Some exceptions like tsa-g-aan 'white' exist.[citation needed]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur merged gimel and heth.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113–115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with G using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

(2/2)Edit

Letter[3]: 14–15, 17, 24–25 [2]: 546 [35]: 212–213 
g Transliteration
(⟨ ⟩) Initial
‍ᠭ᠍‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠭ᠋⟨?⟩  [ad] Final
C-V syllables[3]: 15 [28]: 21 
ga ge gi go, gu , Transliteration
ᠭᠡ[j] ᠭᠢ[m] ᠭᠥ⟨?⟩ (w/o tail)[p] Alone
ᠭᠥ᠋ (w/ tail)
ᠭᠡ‍ ᠭᠢ‍ ᠭᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠭᠡ‍ ‍ᠭᠢ‍ ‍ᠭᠥ‍ Medial
‍ᠭᠡ ‍ᠬᠢ ‍ᠭᠥ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /g/;[13][27] Khalkha /g/.[citation needed] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter г.[28][25]
  • Syllable-initially indistinguishable from k.[3]: 15, 24 [16]: 9  When it must be distinguished from k medially, it can be written twice (as in ᠥᠭᠭᠦᠭᠰᠡᠨ öggügsen 'given', compared with ᠦᠬᠦᠭᠰᠡᠨ ükügsen 'dead').[16]: 59 [33]
  • The final form is also found written like the bow-shaped Manchu final ‍ᡴ᠋ k.[1]: 39 
     
    Emblem of the Inner Mongolian People's Revolutionary Party using bow-shaped final g in bičig
  • May turn silent between two adjacent vowels, and merge these into a long vowel or diphthong.[3]: 36–37 [1]: 7  Deger for instance, is read as deer. Some exceptions like ügüi 'no' exist.[citation needed]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur kaph.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113, 115 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with G using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 24 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
m Transliteration
ᠮ‍ Initial
‍ᠮ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠮ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 8 
m‑a, m‑e ma, me mi mo, mu , Transliteration
ᠮᠠ[ae] ᠮᠢ ᠮᠣ᠋ ᠮᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠮᠠ‍ ᠮᠢ‍ ᠮᠣ‍ ᠮᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠮᠠ‍ ‍ᠮᠢ‍ ‍ᠮᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠮ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠮᠠ ‍ᠮᠢ ‍ᠮᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /m/;[13][27] Khalkha /m/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter м.[28][25]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur mem (𐽹).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with M using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
l Transliteration
(ᠯ‍) Initial
‍ᠯ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠯ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 8 
l‑a, l‑e la, le li lo, lu , Transliteration
ᠯᠠ[af] ᠯᠢ ᠯᠣ᠋ ᠯᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠯᠠ‍ ᠯᠢ‍ ᠯᠣ‍ ᠯᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠯᠠ‍ ‍ᠯᠢ‍ ‍ᠯᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠯ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠯᠠ ‍ᠯᠢ ‍ᠯᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 13]
‑lu, ‑lü Transliteration
 ᠯᠤ‍ Initial
  • Transcribes Chakhar /l/;[13][27] Khalkha /ɮ/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter л.[28][25]
  • Not occurring word-initially in native words.[16]: 10 
  • Forms a ligature with a preceding bow-shaped consonant in loanwords such as ᠪᠯᠠᠮ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ blam-a 'lama' from Tibetan བླ་མ་ Wylie: bla-ma.[3]: 15, 32 [1]: 36 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur hooked resh (𐾁).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with L using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 23 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
s Transliteration
ᠰ‍ Initial
‍ᠰ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠰ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 41 
s‑a, s‑e[36] sa, se si so, su , Transliteration
ᠰᠠ[ag] ᠰᠢ ᠰᠣ᠋ ᠰᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠰᠠ‍ ᠰᠢ‍ ᠰᠣ‍ ᠰᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠰᠠ‍ ‍ᠰᠢ‍ ‍ᠰᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠰ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠰᠠ ‍ᠰᠢ ‍ᠰᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /s/, or /ʃ/ before i;[16]: 58 [13] Khalkha /s/, or /ʃ/ before i. Before a morpheme boundary, however, there is no change of s to /ʃ/ before an i.[16]: 84  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter с.[28][25]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur merged samekh and shin (𐽻 and 𐽿).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with S using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 23 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
š Transliteration
ᠱ‍ Initial
‍ᠱ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
(‍ᠱ) Final
C-V syllables[28]: 41 
ša, še ši šo šu šö, šü Transliteration
ᠱᠠ[ah] ᠱᠢ ᠱᠣ᠋ ᠱᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠱᠣ[ai]
ᠱᠠ‍ ᠱᠢ‍ ᠱᠣ‍ ᠱᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠱᠠ‍ ‍ᠱᠢ‍ ‍ᠱᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠱᠠ ‍ᠱᠢ ‍ᠱᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ʃ/;[13][27] Khalkha /ʃ/.[citation needed] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ш.[28][25]
  • Final š is only found in modern Mongolian words.[3]: 15 [1]: 37 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur merged samekh and shin.[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113–114 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with X using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 23 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
t Transliteration
ᠲ‍ Initial
‍ᠲ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
Final
C-V syllables[28]: 31 
ta, te ti to, tu , Transliteration
ᠲᠠ[aj] ᠲᠢ ᠲᠣ᠋ ᠲᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠲᠠ‍ ᠲᠢ‍ ᠲᠣ‍ ᠲᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠲᠠ‍ ‍ᠲᠢ‍ ‍ᠲᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠲᠠ ‍ᠲᠢ ‍ᠲᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 14]
‑ta, ‑te ‑tu, ‑tü Transliteration
 ᠲᠤ Whole
 ᠲᠠ‍  ᠲᠤ‍ Initial
  • Transcribes Chakhar /t/;[13][27] Khalkha /t/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter т.[28][25]
  • Syllable-initially indistinguishable from d in native words.[3]: 23 [16]: 9 [13]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur taw (𐾀, initial) and lamedh (𐽸, medial).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Positional variants on tawᠲ‍/‍ᠲ᠋‍/‍ᠲ⟩ are used consistently for t in foreign words.[3]: 23 [1]: 37 
  • Produced with T using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 23 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
d Transliteration
ᠳ‍ Initial
‍ᠳ᠋‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-initial)
‍ᠳ‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠳ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 31 
da, de di do, du , Transliteration
ᠳᠠ[aj] ᠳᠢ ᠳᠣ᠋ ᠳᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠳ᠋ᠣ᠋ ᠳ᠋ᠥ᠋
ᠳᠠ‍ ᠳᠢ‍ ᠳᠣ‍ ᠳᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠳᠠ‍ ‍ᠳᠢ‍ ‍ᠳᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠳᠠ ‍ᠳᠢ ‍ᠳᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 15]
‑d ‑da, ‑de ‑du, ‑dü Transliteration
   ᠳᠤ⟨?⟩ Whole
 ᠳᠠ‍⟨?⟩  ᠳᠤ‍⟨?⟩ Initial
  • Transcribes Chakhar /d/;[13][27] Khalkha /t/, and //.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter д.[28][25]
  • Syllable-initially indistinguishable from t in native words.[3]: 23 [16]: 9 [13] When it must be distinguished from t medially, it can be written twice, and with both medial forms (as in ᠬᠤᠳᠳᠤᠭ qudduγ 'well', compared with ᠬᠤᠲᠤᠭ qutuγ 'holy').[16]: 59 [33] Alternatively, a dot is sometimes used to the right of the letter in 19th and 20th century manuscripts.[3]: 26 
  • The belly-tooth-shaped form is used before consonants (syllable-final), the other before vowels.[16]: 58 [17]: 5 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur taw (initial, belly-tooth-shaped medial, and final) and lamedh (other medial form).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Positional variants on lamedhᠳ᠋‍/‍ᠲ‍/‍ᠳ᠋⟩ are used consistently for d in foreign words.[3]: 23  (As in ᠳ᠋ᠧᠩ dēng / дэн den, ᠳᠡᠳ᠋ ded / дэд ded, or ᠡᠳ᠋ ed / эд ed).[33]
  • Produced with D using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
č Transliteration
ᠴ‍ Initial
‍ᠴ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
(‍ᠴ) Final
C-V syllables[28]: 38 
ča, če či čo, ču čö čü Transliteration
ᠴᠠ ᠴᠢ[ak] ᠴᠣ᠋ ᠴᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠴᠣ[al] ᠴᠦ[al]
ᠴᠠ‍ ᠴᠢ‍ ᠴᠣ‍ ᠴᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠴᠠ‍ ‍ᠴᠢ‍ ‍ᠴᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠴᠠ ‍ᠴᠢ ‍ᠴᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /t͡ʃ/;[13][27] Khalkha /t͡ʃʰ/, and /t͡sʰ/ (Mongolian Cyrillic ч, and ц, respectively).[13]: § 1.2 [20]: 2  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ч.[28][25]
  • In Buryat, a derived letter with two dots on the right ⟨;  ⟩ is used in places where č is pronounced as š.[37]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur (through early Mongolian) tsade (𐽽).[16]: 59 [2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with Q using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13, 17, 24 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
ǰ Transliteration[r]
ᠵ‍ Initial
‍ᠵ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
(‍ᠵ) Final
C-V syllables[28]: 28 
ǰ‑a, ǰ‑e ǰa, ǰe ǰi ǰo ǰu ǰö, ǰü Transliteration
ᠵ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩    [am] ᠵᠠ[an] ᠵᠢ[ao] ᠵᠣ᠋ ᠵᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠵᠣ[ap]
ᠵᠠ‍ ᠵᠢ‍ ᠵᠣ‍ ᠵᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠵᠠ‍ ‍ᠵᠢ‍ ‍ᠵᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠵᠠ ‍ᠵᠢ ‍ᠵᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /d͡ʒ/;[13][27] Khalkha /d͡ʒ/, and d͡z (Mongolian Cyrillic ж, and з, respectively).[13]: § 1.2 [20]: 2  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ж.[28][25]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur yodh (initial), and Old Uyghur (through early Mongolian) tsade (medial).[16]: 59 [2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with J using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 14, 17, 24 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
y Transliteration
ᠶ‍ Initial
‍ᠶ‍⟨?⟩   Medial (syllable-initial)
‍ᠶ᠋‍⟨?⟩  
Medial (syllable-final)
Final
C-V syllables[28]: 25 
y‑a, y‑e ya, ye yi yo, yu , Transliteration
ᠶᠠ ᠶᠢ ᠶᠣ᠋ ᠶᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠶᠠ‍ ᠶᠢ‍ ᠶᠣ‍ ᠶᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠶᠠ‍ ‍ᠶᠢ‍ ‍ᠶᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠶ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠶᠠ ‍ᠶᠢ ‍ᠶᠣ Final
Separated suffixes[note 16]
‑y ‑yi ‑yin ‑yuγan ‑yügen Transliteration
   ᠶᠢ⟨?⟩  ᠶᠢᠨ⟨?⟩ Whole
   ᠶᠤᠭᠠᠨ  ᠶᠦᠭᠡᠨ⟨?⟩
  • Transcribes Chakhar /j/;[13][27] Khalkha /j/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter й.[28][25]
  • The unhooked ᠶ᠋‍ initial and medial forms are older ones.[2]: 545, 546 [1]: 40 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur yodh, through borrowed Manchu hooked yodh.[2]: 545 [16]: 59 
  • Produced with Y using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[3]: 13–14, 17 [2]: 546 [35]: 212, 214 
r Transliteration
(ᠷ‍) Initial
‍ᠷ‍ Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠷ Final
C-V syllables[28]: 14 
r‑a, r‑e ra, re ri ro, ru , Transliteration
ᠷᠠ ᠷᠢ ᠷᠣ᠋ ᠷᠥ᠋ Alone
ᠷᠠ‍ ᠷᠢ‍ ᠷᠣ‍ ᠷᠥ‍ Initial
‍ᠷᠠ‍ ‍ᠷᠢ‍ ‍ᠷᠣ‍ Medial
‍ᠷ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩     ‍ᠷᠠ ‍ᠷᠢ ‍ᠷᠣ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /r/;[13][27] Khalkha /r/.[18]: 40–42  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter р.[28][25]
  • Not occurring word-initially except in loanwords.[3]: 14  Transcribed foreign words usually get a vowel prepended; transcribing Русь (Russia) results in ᠣᠷᠤᠰ Oros.[citation needed]
  • Derived from Old Uyghur resh (𐽾).[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with R using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Foreign consonantsEdit

Galik charactersEdit

In 1587, the translator and scholar Ayuush Güüsh (Аюуш гүүш) created the Galik alphabet (Али-гали Ali-gali), inspired by the third Dalai Lama, Sonam Gyatso. It primarily added extra characters for transcribing Tibetan and Sanskrit terms when translating religious texts, and later also from Chinese. Some of those characters are still in use today for writing foreign names (as listed below).[39]

 
A KFC in Hohhot, the capital of Inner Mongolia, China, with a trilingual sign in Chinese, Mongolian and English
 
From left to right : Phagspa, Lantsa, Tibetan, Mongolian, Chinese and Cyrillic

Edit

Letter[1]: 38 [28]: 44–45 
w Transliteration[r]
ᠸ‍[aq] Initial
‍ᠸ‍[ar] Medial (syllable-initial)
Medial (syllable-final)
‍ᠸ⟨?⟩ ‍ᠧ[as] Final
C-V syllables[28]: 45 
w‑a, w‑e[at] Transliteration
‍ᠸ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩    [au] Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /w/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter в.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for v in Sanskrit /va/). Transcribes /w/ in Tibetan ཝ /wa/;[40]: 254 [3]: 28 [29]: 113  Old Uyghur and Chinese loanwords.[1]: 34–35 
  • Derived from Old Uyghur bet (𐽱),[2]: 539–540, 545–546 [29]: 111, 113  and waw (before a separated vowel).[citation needed]
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+W using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 45 
f Transliteration
ᠹ‍[av] Initial
‍ᠹ‍ Medial
‍ᠹ Final
Ligatures[28]: 45 
fa fi fo Transliteration
ᠹᠠ ᠹᠧ ᠹᠢ ᠹᠣ ᠹᠦ᠋ Alone
ᠹᠠ‍ ᠹᠧ‍ ᠹᠢ‍ ᠹᠣ‍ ᠹᠦ‍ Initial
‍ᠹᠠ‍ ‍ᠹᠧ‍ ‍ᠹᠢ‍ ‍ᠹᠣ‍ ‍ᠹᠦ᠋‍ Medial
‍ᠹᠠ ‍ᠹᠧ ‍ᠹᠢ ‍ᠹᠣ ‍ᠹᠦ᠋ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /f/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ф.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words.
  • Transcribes /pʰ/ in Tibetan /pʰa/.[40]: 96, 247 [3]: 28 
  • Galik letter, derived from Mongolian b.[1]: 35 
  • Produced with F using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter
g Transliteration[r]
ᠺ‍ Initial
‍ᠺ‍ Medial
‍ᠺ Final
Ligatures
ga gi go Transliteration
ᠺᠠ ᠺᠧ ᠺᠢ ᠺᠣ ᠺᠦ᠋⟨?⟩ (w/ tail)[aw] Alone
ᠺᠠ‍ ᠺᠧ‍ ᠺᠢ‍ ᠺᠣ‍ ᠺᠦ‍ Initial
‍ᠺᠠ‍ ‍ᠺᠧ‍ ‍ᠺᠢ‍ ‍ᠺᠣ‍ ‍ᠺᠦ᠋‍⟨?⟩ (w/ yodh)[ax] Medial
‍ᠺᠠ ‍ᠺᠧ ‍ᠺᠢ ‍ᠺᠣ ‍ᠺᠦ᠋⟨?⟩ (w/ tail)[ay] Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /k/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter к.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for g in Tibetan /ga/; Sanskrit /ga/).[40]: 87, 244, 251 [3]: 28 
  • Galik letter.[16]: 59–60 
  • Produced with K using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 46 
k Transliteration[r]
ᠻ‍ Initial
‍ᠻ‍ Medial
‍ᠻ Final
Ligatures[28]: 46 
ka ki ko Transliteration
ᠻᠠ ᠻᠧ ᠻᠢ ᠻᠣ ᠻᠦ᠋ Alone
ᠻᠠ‍ ᠻᠧ‍ ᠻᠢ‍ ᠻᠣ‍ ᠻᠦ‍ Initial
‍ᠻᠠ‍ ‍ᠻᠧ‍ ‍ᠻᠢ‍ ‍ᠻᠣ‍ ‍ᠻᠦ᠋‍ Medial
‍ᠻᠠ ‍ᠻᠧ ‍ᠻᠢ ‍ᠻᠣ ‍ᠻᠦ᠋ Final
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for in Tibetan /kʰa/; Sanskrit /kha/).[40]: 86, 244, 251 [3]: 28  Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter к.[28][25]
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+K using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 46 
c Transliteration
ᠼ‍[az] Initial
‍ᠼ‍[ba] Medial
‍ᠼ[bb] Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /t͡s/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ц.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for tsʰ in Tibetan /tsʰa/; Sanskrit /cha/).[40]: 89, 144, 245, 254 [3]: 28 
  • Galik letter, derived from Pre-classical Mongolian tsade č/ǰ‍ᠴ‍~‍ᠵ‍.[1]: 35 
  • Produced with C using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 46 
z Transliteration
ᠽ‍[bc] Initial
‍ᠽ‍[bd] Medial
‍ᠽ[be] Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /d͡z/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter з.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for dz in Tibetan /dza/; Sanskrit /ja/).[40]: 89, 144, 245, 254 [3]: 28 
  • Galik letter, derived from Pre-classical Mongolian tsade č/ǰ‍ᠴ‍~‍ᠵ‍.[1]: 35 
  • Produced with Z using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 47 
h Transliteration
ᠾ‍[bf] Initial
‍ᠾ‍ Medial
‍ᠾ‌ Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /h/[x];[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter х.[28][25]
  • Used to transcribe foreign words (originally for h in Tibetan /ha/, /-ha/; Sanskrit /ha/).[40]: 69, 102, 194, 244–249, 255 [3]: 27–28 [16]: 59 
  • Galik letter, borrowed from the Tibetan alphabet, and preceded by an aleph for initial form.[16]: 59–60 [2]: 545–546 [1]: 35 
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+H using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 47 
ž Transliteration
ᠿ‍[bg] Initial
Medial
Final
  • Transcribes Chakhar /ʐ/;[13][27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ж.[28][25]
  • Transcribes Chinese r /ɻ/ ([ɻ ~ ʐ];[bh] as in Ri), and used in Inner Mongolia. Always followed by an i.[27]
  • Transliterates /ʒ/ in Tibetan /ʒa/.[40]: 254 (紗) 
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+R using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter[28]: 47 
lh Transliteration
ᡀ‍ Initial
‍ᡀ‍ Medial
Final
  • Transcribes Tibetan lh (as in ᡀᠠᠰᠠ Lhasa).[28]: 48 [27][42] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letters лх.[28][25]
  • Digraph composed of l and h.[24]: 30  Transcribes /lh/ in Tibetan ལྷ /lha/.[40]: 220 [3]: 27 
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+L using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter
zh Transliteration
ᡁ‍ Initial
Medial
Final
  • Transcribes zh in the Chinese syllable zhi only, and used in Inner Mongolia.[1]: 39 [27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter з.[28][25]
  • Galik letter, borrowed from the Tibetan alphabet.[1]: 35 
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+Z using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

Edit

Letter
ch Transliteration
ᡂ‍ Initial
Medial
Final
  • Transcribes ch in the Chinese syllable chi (as in Chī), and used in Inner Mongolia.[40]: 91, 145, 153, 246 [3]: 28 [27] Transliterated into Cyrillic with the letter ч.[28][25]
  • Produced with ⇧ Shift+C using the Windows Mongolian keyboard layout.[30]

PunctuationEdit

 
Example of word-breaking the name Oyirad 'Oirat', 1604 manuscript

When written between words, punctuation marks use space on both sides of them. They can also appear at the very end of a line, regardless of where the preceding word ends.[23]: 99  Red (cinnabar) ink is used in many manuscripts, either to symbolize emphasis or respect.[23]: 241  Modern punctuation incorporates Western marks: parentheses; quotation, question, and exclamation marks; as well as precomposed and .[19]: 535–536 

Punctuation[26]: 106, 168, 203 [3]: 28 [43]: 30 [23]: 99 [25]: 3 [19]: 535–536 [33]
Form(s) Name Function(s)
Birga: ᠪᠢᠷᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ birγ‑a (бярга byarga) Marks start of a book, chapter, passage, or first line
᠀᠋
᠀᠌
᠀᠍
[...]
'Dot': ᠴᠡᠭ čeg (цэг tseg) Comma
'Double-dot': ᠳᠠᠪᠬᠤᠷ ᠴᠡᠭ dabqur čeg (давхар цэг davkhar tseg) Period / full stop
'Four-fold/quadripartite dot': ᠳᠥᠷᠪᠡᠯᠵᠢᠨ ᠴᠡᠭ dörbelǰin čeg (дөрвөлжин цэг dörvöljin tseg) Marks end of a passage, paragraph, or chapter
'Dotted line': ᠴᠤᠪᠠᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩/ᠴᠤᠪᠤᠭ᠎ᠠ ᠴᠡᠭ⟨?⟩ čubaγ‑a/čubuγ‑a čeg (цуваа цэг tsuvaa tseg) Ellipsis
Хос цэг khos tseg[citation needed] Colon
'Spine, backbone': ᠨᠢᠷᠤᠭᠤ niruγu (нуруу nuruu) Mongolian soft hyphen
Mongolian non-breaking hyphen, or stem extender

NumeralsEdit

Examples of numbers 10 and 89: written horizontally on a stamp and vertically on a hillside, respectively

Mongolian numerals are either written from left to right, or from top to bottom.[3]: 54 [28]: 9 

0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9

ComponentsEdit

Listed in the table below are letter components (graphemes, or in Mongolian: ᠵᠢᠷᠤᠯᠭ᠎ᠠ ǰirulγ‑a / зурлага zurlaga) commonly used across the script. Some of these are used with several letters, and others to contrast between them. As their forms and usage may differ between § writing styles however, examples of these can be found under this section below.

Common components[26][28]: 4–5 [43]: 29–30, 205 [45][23]: 82–83 [1]: 36 [12]: 1 [46][47]: 20 [35]: 211–212 [48]: 10–11 [49][50][33]
Form Name(s) Used with
ᠡ‍ 'Crown': ᠲᠢᠲᠢᠮ titim (тит(и/э)м tit(i/e)m) all initial vowels (a, e, i, o, u, ö, ü, ē), and some initial consonants (n, m, l, h, etc).
᠊ᠡ‍ 'Tooth': ᠠᠴᠤᠭ ačuγ (ацаг atsag) a, e, n, ng, q, γ, m, l, d, etc; historically also r.
'Tooth': ᠰᠢᠳᠦ sidü (шүд shüd)
᠊᠊ 'Spine, backbone': ᠨᠢᠷᠤᠭᠤ niruγu (нуруу nuruu) the vertical line running through words.
‍᠊ᠠ 'Tail': ᠰᠡᠭᠦᠯ segül (сүүл süül) a, e, n, etc. A final connected flourish/swash pointing right.
‍᠊ᠰ᠋ 'Short tail': ᠪᠣᠭᠤᠨᠢ ᠰᠡᠭᠦᠯ boγuni segül (богино/богонь сүүл bogino/bogoni süül) final q, γ, m, and s
᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩   [...]: ᠣᠷᠬᠢᠴᠠ orkiča (орхиц orkhits) separated final a or e.
'Sprinkling, dusting': ᠴᠠᠴᠤᠯᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ čačulγ‑a (цацлага tsatslaga) lower part of final a or e; the lower part of final g.
‍ᡳ᠌ 'Hook': ᠳᠡᠭᠡᠭᠡ degege (дэгээ degee) final i and d.
ᠵ‍ 'Shin, stick': ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ silbi (шилбэ shilbe) i; initial ö and ü; the upper part of final g; ǰ and y, etc.
'Straight shin': ᠰᠢᠯᠤᠭᠤᠨ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ siluγun silbi (шулуун шилбэ shuluun shilbe)
'Long tooth': ᠤᠷᠲᠤ ᠰᠢᠳᠦ urtu sidü (урт шүд urt shüd)
ᠶ‍ 'Shin with upturn': ᠡᠭᠡᠲᠡᠭᠡᠷ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ egeteger silbi (э(э)тгэр шилбэ e(e)tger shilbe) y.
ᠸ‍ Shin with downturn: ᠮᠠᠲᠠᠭᠠᠷ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ mataγar silbi (матгар шилбэ matgar shilbe) ē and w.
ᠷ‍ Horned shin: ᠥᠷᠭᠡᠰᠦᠲᠡᠢ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ örgesütei silbi (өргөстэй шилбэ örgöstei shilbe) r, and historically also the upper part of final g and separated a.
ᠳ᠋‍ 'Looped shin': ᠭᠣᠭᠴᠤᠭᠠᠲᠠᠢ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ γoγčuγatai silbi (гогцоотой шилбэ gogtsootoi shilbe) t and d.
ᡁ‍ 'Hollow shin': ᠬᠥᠨᠳᠡᠢ ᠰᠢᠯᠪᠢ köndei silbi (хөндий шилбэ khöndii shilbe) h and zh.
‍ᠢ 'Bow': ᠨᠤᠮᠤ numu (нум num) final i, oü, and r; ng, b, p, k, g, etc.
‍᠊ᠣ‍ 'Belly, stomach,' loop, contour: ᠭᠡᠳᠡᠰᠦ gedesü (гэдэс gedes) the enclosed part of oü, b, p, initial t and d, etc.
ᠲ‍ 'Hind-gut': ᠠᠷᠤ ᠶᠢᠨ ᠭᠡᠳᠡᠰᠦ⟨?⟩ aru‑yin gedesü (арын гэдэс aryn gedes) initial t and d.
‍᠊ᠹ‍ Flaglet, tuft: ᠵᠠᠷᠲᠢᠭ ǰartiγ (зартиг zartig Wylie: 'jar-thig) the left-side diacritic of f and z.
‍ᠽ‍
[...]: [...] (ятгар зартиг yatgar zartig) initial q and γ.
‍᠊ᠮ‍ 'Braid, pigtail': ᠭᠡᠵᠢᠭᠡ geǰige (гэзэг gezeg) m.
'Horn': ᠡᠪᠡᠷ eber (эвэр ever)
‍᠊ᠯ‍ 'Horn': ᠡᠪᠡᠷ eber (эвэр ever) l.
'Braid, pigtail': ᠭᠡᠵᠢᠭᠡ geǰige (гэзэг gezeg)
‍᠊ᠰ‍ 'Corner of the mouth': ᠵᠠᠪᠠᠵᠢ ǰabaǰi (зав(и/ь)ж zavij) s and š.
‍ᠴ‍ [...]: ᠰᠡᠷᠡᠭᠡ ᠡᠪᠡᠷ serege eber (сэрээ эвэр seree ever) č.
'Fork': ᠠᠴᠠ ača (ац ats)
‍ᠵ‍ [...]: [...] (жалжгар эвэр jaljgar ever) ǰ.
'Tusk, fang': ᠰᠣᠶᠤᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ soyuγ‑a (соёо soyoo)

ExamplesEdit

Writing stylesEdit

As exemplified in this section, the shapes of glyphs may vary widely between different styles of writing and choice of medium with which to produce them. The development of written Mongolian can be divided into the three periods of pre-classical (beginning – 17th century), classical (16/17th century – 20th century), and modern (20th century onward):[26][3]: 2–3, 17, 23, 25–26 [16]: 58–59 [2]: 539–540, 545–546 [28]: 62–63 [29]: 111, 113–114 [18]: 40–42, 100–101, 117 [1]: 34–37 [51]: 8–11 [35]: 211–215 

Cursive sample in (pre-classical) Middle Mongol: Uridu maqam‑un qaǰiun medekü
  • Rounded letterforms tend to be more prevalent with handwritten styles (compare printed and handwritten arban 'ten').
Block‑printed Pen-written form Modern brush‑​written​ form Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. form semi-modern forms
        arban 'ten'
 
  • Final letterforms with a right-pointing tail (such as those of a, e, n, q, γ, m, l, s, š, and d) may have the notch preceding it in printed form, written in a span between two extremes: from as a more or less tapered point, to a fully rounded curve in handwriting.
  • The long final tails of a, e, n, and d in the texts of pre-classical Mongolian can become elongated vertically to fill up the remainder of a line. Such tails are used consistently for these letters in the earliest 13th to 15th century Uyghur Mongolian style of texts.
Examples of lengthened letterforms d and n in ‑daγan (left), and their regular equivalents (right)
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Modern brush‑​written​ forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
        ‑ača/‑eče
 
        ‑un/‑ün
 
        ‑ud/‑üd
 
        ba 'and'
  • A hooked form of yodh was borrowed from the Manchu alphabet in the 19th century to distinguish initial y from ǰ. The handwritten form of final-shaped yodh (i, ǰ, y), can be greatly shortened in comparison with its initial and medial forms.
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Modern brush‑​written​ forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
        ‑i
 
        ‑yi
        ‑yin
 
        sain/sayin 'good'
 
        yeke 'great'
  • The definite status or function of diacritics was not established prior to classical Mongolian. As such, the dotted letters n, γ, and š, can be found sporadically dotted or altogether lacking them. Additionally, both q and γ could be (double-)dotted to identify them regardless of their sound values. Final dotted n is also found in modern Mongolian words. Any diacritical dots of γ and n can be offset downward from their respective letters (as in ᠭᠣᠣᠯ   γool and ᠭᠦᠨ ᠢ⟨?⟩   n‑i).
  • When a bow-shaped consonant is followed by a vowel in Uyghur style text, said bow can be found to notably overlap it (see bi). A final b has, in its final pre-modern form, a bow-less final form as opposed to the common modern one:[1]: 39 
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Modern brush‑​written​ forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
        ‑u/‑ü
        bi 'I'
        ab (intensifying particle)
  • As in  /  kü, köke, ǰüg and separated a/e, two teeth can also make up the top-left part of a kaph (k/g) or aleph (a/e) in pre-classical texts. In back-vocalic words of Uyghur Mongolian, qi was used in place of ki, and can therefore be used to identify this stage of the written language. An example of this appears in the suffix   ‑taqi/‑daqi.[18]: 100, 117 
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Modern brush‑​written​ forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
        ‑a/‑e
 
 
 
        ‑luγ‑a
        köke 'blue'
köge 'soot'
        ǰüg 'direction'
  • In pre-modern Mongolian, medial ml (‍ᠮᠯ‍) forms a ligature:  .
  • A pre-modern variant form for final s appears in the shape of a short final n ‍ᠰ᠋, derived from Old Uyghur zayin (𐽴). It tended to be replaced by the mouth-shaped form and is no longer used. An early example of it is found in the name of Gengis Khan on the Stele of Yisüngge: ᠴᠢᠩᠭᠢᠰ᠋ Činggis. A zayin-shaped final can also appear as part of final m and γ.
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
      es(‑)e 'not, no', (negation)
 
      ulus 'nation'
 
      nom 'book'
      čaγ 'time'
   
  • Initial taw (t/d) can, akin to final mem (m), be found written quite explicitly loopy (as in nom 'book' and toli 'mirror'). The lamedh (t or d) may appear simply as an oval loop or looped shin, or as more angular, with an either closed or open counter (as in daki/deki or dur/dür). As in metü, a Uyghur style word-medial t can sometimes be written with the pre-consonantal form otherwise used for d. Taw was applied to both initial t and d from the outset of the script's adoption. This was done in imitation of Old Uyghur which, however, had lacked the phoneme d in this position.
Block‑printed Pen-written forms Modern brush‑​written​ forms Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. forms semi-modern forms
    [...]   toli 'mirror'
      [...] ‑daki/‑deki
      [...] ‑tur/‑tür
      ‑dur/‑dür
      [...] metü 'as'
 
The word čiγšabd in an Uyghur Mongolian style: exemplifying a dotted syllable-final γ, and a final bd ligature
  • Following the late classical Mongolian orthography of the 17th and 18th centuries, a smooth and angular tsade (‍ᠵ‍ and ) has come to represent ǰ and č respectively. The tsade before this was used for both these phonemes, regardless of graphical variants, as no ǰ had existed in Old Uyghur:
Block‑printed Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. form semi-modern form
    čečeg 'flower'
Block-printed semi-modern form Pen-written form Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
    qačar/γaǰar 'cheek/place'
  • As in sara and ‑dur/‑dür, a resh (of r, and sometimes of l) can appear as two teeth or crossed shins; adjacent, angled, attached to a shin and/or overlapping.
Block‑printed Pen-written form Modern brush‑​written​ form Trans­lit­er­a­tion(s) & 'trans­la­tion'
Uyghur Mong. form semi-modern forms
        sar(‑)a 'moon/month'
 
Wikipedia slogan
Manuscript Type Unicode Transliteration
(first word)
    ᠸᠢᠺᠢᠫᠧᠳᠢᠶ᠎ᠠ᠂
ᠴᠢᠯᠦᠭᠡᠲᠦ ᠨᠡᠪᠲᠡᠷᠬᠡᠢ ᠲᠣᠯᠢ ᠪᠢᠴᠢᠭ ᠪᠣᠯᠠᠢ᠃
ᠸᠢ‍ wi/vi
‍ᠺᠢ‍ gi/ki
‍ᠫᠧ‍ /
‍ᠲ‍ᠢ‍ di
‍‍ᠶ᠎ᠠ ya
  • Transliteration: Wikipēdiya čilügetü nebterkei toli bičig bolai.
  • Cyrillic: Википедиа чөлөөт нэвтэрхий толь бичиг болой.
  • Transcription: Vikipedia chölööt nevterkhii toli bichig boloi.
  • Gloss: Wikipedia free omni-profound mirror scripture is.
  • Translation: Wikipedia is the free encyclopedia.

GalleryEdit

Child systemsEdit

The Mongol script has been the basis of alphabets for several languages. First, after overcoming the Uyghur script ductus, it was used for Mongolian itself.

Clear script (Oirat alphabet)Edit

In 1648, the Oirat Buddhist monk Zaya-pandita Namkhaijamco created this variation with the goals of bringing the written language closer to the actual pronunciation of Oirat and making it easier to transcribe Tibetan and Sanskrit. The script was used by the Kalmyks of Russia until 1924, when it was replaced by the Cyrillic alphabet. In Xinjiang, China, the Oirat people still use it.

Manchu alphabetEdit

The Manchu alphabet was developed from the Mongolian script in the early 17th century to write the Manchu language. A variant is still used to write Xibe. It is also used for Daur. Its folded variant may for example be found on Chinese Qing seals.

Vagindra alphabetEdit

Another alphabet, sometimes called Vagindra or Vaghintara, was created in 1905 by the Buryat monk Agvan Dorjiev (1854–1938). It was also meant to reduce ambiguity, and to support the Russian language in addition to Mongolian. The most significant change, however, was the elimination of the positional shape variations. All letters were based on the medial variant of the original Mongol alphabet. Fewer than a dozen books were printed using it.[citation needed]

Evenki alphabetEdit

The Qing dynasty Qianlong Emperor erroneously identified the Khitan people and their language with the Solons, leading him to use the Solon language (Evenki) to "correct" Chinese character transcriptions of Khitan names in the History of Liao in his "Imperial Liao Jin Yuan Three Histories National Language Explanation" (欽定遼金元三史國語解/钦定辽金元三史国语解 Qīndìng Liáo Jīn Yuán Sānshǐ Guóyǔjiě) project. The Evenki words were written in the Manchu script in this work.

In the 1980s, an experimental alphabet for Evenki was created.

UnicodeEdit

Mongolian script was added to the Unicode standard in September 1999 with the release of version 3.0. However, there are multiple design issues in Mongolian Unicode that have not been fixed until now.[when?][52] The model is extremely unstable[53] and the user group dislike the 1999 design.

  • The 1999 Mongolian script Unicode codes are duplicated and not searchable.
  • The 1999 Mongolian script Unicode model has multiple layers of FVS (free variation selectors), MVS, ZWJ, NNBSP, and those variation selections conflict with each other, which create incorrect results.[54] Furthermore, different vendors understood the definition of each FVS differently, and developed multiple applications in different standards.[55]
  • The Mongolian User Group is in a panic, and over 10,000 users signed up in 10 days in 2019 April to request local authority to fundamentally review the 1999 Unicode model.

BlocksEdit

The Unicode block for Mongolian is U+1800–U+18AF. It includes letters, digits and various punctuation marks for Hudum Mongolian, Todo Mongolian, Xibe (Manchu), Manchu proper, and Ali Gali, as well as extensions for transcribing Sanskrit and Tibetan.

Mongolian[1][2]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+180x FV
 S1 
FV
 S2 
FV
 S3 
 MV 
S
FV
 S4 
U+181x
U+182x
U+183x
U+184x
U+185x
U+186x
U+187x
U+188x
U+189x
U+18Ax
Notes
1.^ As of Unicode version 14.0
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points

The Mongolian Supplement block (U+11660–U+1167F) was added to the Unicode Standard in June, 2016 with the release of version 9.0:

Mongolian Supplement[1][2]
Official Unicode Consortium code chart (PDF)
  0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 A B C D E F
U+1166x 𑙠 𑙡 𑙢 𑙣 𑙤 𑙥 𑙦 𑙧 𑙨 𑙩 𑙪 𑙫 𑙬
U+1167x
Notes
1.^ As of Unicode version 14.0
2.^ Grey areas indicate non-assigned code points

Rendering issuesEdit

 
Mongolian Wikipedia preview. A representation of what mn.wiki would look like if Mongolian script support was properly implemented. Mn.wiki already exists, but support has not been implemented. Not all text is "real Mongolian" — only the text and name of the article are, the rest of the text being English written in Mongolian script.

Although the Mongolian script has been defined in Unicode since 1999, there was no native support for Unicode Mongolian from the major vendors until the release of the Windows Vista operating system in 2007 and fonts need to be installed in Windows XP and Windows 2000 to show properly, and so Unicode Mongolian is not yet widely used. In China, legacy encodings such as the Private Use Areas (PUA) Unicode mappings and GB18030 mappings of the Menksoft IMEs (espc. Menksoft Mongolian IME) are more commonly used than Unicode for writing web pages and electronic documents in Mongolian. In addition, unlike the usual vertical format, computers tend to show the script in right-to-left lines by default.

The inclusion of a Unicode Mongolian font and keyboard layout in Windows Vista has meant that Unicode Mongolian is now gradually becoming more popular,[citation needed] but the complexity of the Unicode Mongolian encoding model and the lack of a clear definition for the use variation selectors are still barriers to its widespread adoption, as is the lack of support for inline vertical display. As of 2015 there are no fonts that successfully display all of Mongolian correctly when written in Unicode. A report published in 2011 revealed many shortcomings with automatic rendering in all three Unicode Mongolian fonts the authors surveyed, including Microsoft's Mongolian Baiti.[56]

Furthermore, Mongolian language support has suffered from buggy implementations: the initial version of Microsoft's Mongolian Baiti font (version 5.00) was, in the supplier's own words, "almost unusable",[57] and as of 2011 there remain some minor bugs with the rendering of suffixes in Firefox.[58] Other fonts, such as Monotype's Mongol Usug and Myatav Erdenechimeg's MongolianScript, suffer even more serious bugs.[56]

 
bičig as it should appear (without FVS; ᠪᠢᠴᠢᠭ)

In January 2013, Menksoft released several OpenType Mongolian fonts, delivered with its Menksoft Mongolian IME 2012. These fonts strictly follow Unicode standard, i.e. bichig is no longer realized as "B+I+CH+I+G+FVS2" (incorrect) but "B+I+CH+I+G" (correct), which is not done by Microsoft and Founder's Mongolian Baiti, Monotype's Mongol Usug, or Myatav Erdenechimeg's MongolianScript.[59] However, due to the impact of Mongolian Baiti, many still use the Microsoft defined incorrect realization "B+I+CH+I+G+FVS2", which results in an incorrect rendering in correctly-designed fonts like Menk Qagan Tig.

Mongolian script can be represented in LaTeX with the MonTeX package.[60]

Sometimes even if a font is installed the script may display as horizontal rather than vertical depending on the operating system or font.

SamplesEdit

The text samples below should resemble their image counterparts. This ensures that a text in Mongolian script is being rendered somewhat properly. Note that in some browsers, letters are rotated 90° counterclockwise. If an isolate letter a () resembles a 'W' and not a 'Σ', rotate the letters 90° clockwise.

Separated final vowels
Image Text Transliteration(s)
  ᠭᠡᠨ᠎ᠡ gen
  (‑a) / ‑e
Separated suffixes
Image Text Transliteration(s)
   ᠶᠢᠨ yin
   ᠢᠶᠠᠷ iyar / ‑iyer
   ᠳᠦᠷ dur / ‑r
Vowel harmony dependent pairs q/k and γ/g
Image Text Transliteration
  ᠪᠢᠯᠢᠭ bilig
Particles
Image Text Transliteration(s)
  ᠵ᠎ᠠ ǰ‑a
  ᠪᠦᠦ buu / büü
  ᠦᠦ uu / üü

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ In Mongolian script: ᠮᠣᠩᠭᠣᠯ ᠪᠢᠴᠢᠭ   Mongγol bičig; in Mongolian Cyrillic: Монгол бичиг Mongol bichig
  2. ^ In Mongolian script: ᠬᠤᠳᠤᠮ ᠮᠣᠩᠭᠣᠯ ᠪᠢᠴᠢᠭ; Mongolian Cyrillic: Khalkha: Худам Монгол бичиг, Khudam Mongol bichig, Buryat: Худам Монгол бэшэг, Khudam Mongol besheg, Kalmyk: Хуудм Моңһл бичг, Huudm Moñḥl bichg
  3. ^ Mongolian: Уйгуржин монгол бичиг Uigurjin mongol bichig
  4. ^ Mongolian: Хуучин монгол бичиг Khuuchin mongol bichig
  5. ^ Mongolian: Шинэ үсэг Shine üseg
  6. ^ As in the interjection a (аа aa) 'a!, oh!, well!'.[26]: 1 
  7. ^ a b As in the exclamation ᠠ᠋/  a/e (аа/ээ/оо/өө aa/ee/oo/öö), or interjection e (ээ ee) 'oh!'.[26]: 1, 284 
  8. ^ a b As in the exclamation ᠠ᠋/  a/e (аа/ээ/оо/өө aa/ee/oo/öö).[26]: 1 
  9. ^ a b c As in ᠪᠠ ba (ба ba) 'and'.[26]: 64 [3]: 22 
  10. ^ a b c As in ᠬᠡ/ᠬᠡᠭᠡ/ᠬᠡᠭᠡᠨ ke/kege/kegen (хээ khee) 'pattern, piping, design, stamp'.[26]: 438, 442 
  11. ^ Stand-in for the correct (context-sensitive only) glyph.
  12. ^ a b As in ᠪᠢ bi (би bi) 'I'.[26]: 101 [3]: 22 
  13. ^ a b c See the  ᠬᠢ ‑ki suffix.[26]: 462 
  14. ^ As in о (оо oo) 'powder' in general; 'face powder'.[26]: 598, 625 
  15. ^ As in /ᠥᠭᠡ ö/öge (өө öö) 'fault; roughness, unevenness'.[26]: 627, 630 
  16. ^ a b c d As in the strengthening (emphatic) ᠭᠦ⟨?⟩ (хүү khüü) particle,[26]: 494 [16]: 46  or ᠬᠥ⟨?⟩/ᠬᠥᠭᠡ kö/köge (хөө khöö) 'soot; obstacle, hindrance; trouble', or 'ring of mail'.[26]: 475, 478 
  17. ^ As in ᠡᠭᠦᠦ/ egüü/ü (үү üü) 'wart; excrescence'.[26]: 303, 995 
  18. ^ a b c d e f g Alternative scholarly transliterations include those of native ng (ŋ), γ (ɣ), ǰ (j), and those of galik ē (é), w (v), g (k), and k (kh).[25]
  19. ^ Interrogative uu/üü particle (subject to vowel harmony; уу/үү/юу/юү uu/üü/yuu/yuü) used after the predicate.[26]: 437, 889, 1014 [3]: 172 [16]: 38 [1]: 53 [24]: 183  The positional variant ᠶᠤᠤ yuu/yüü (юу/юү yuu/yuü) is only used in the modern language.[26]: 0437 [1]: 53 
  20. ^ As in ᠣᠣ/ᠠᠭᠤᠤ uu/aγuu (—/агуу —/aguu) 'vast, great[ly]' etc.[26]: 18, 889 
  21. ^ As in the prohibitive particle ᠪᠤᠤ ( ) buu/büü (бүү büü) 'don't'.[26]: 141, 153 [3]: 166 [16]: 38  Compare with the conjunction ᠪᠤᠶᠤ ( ): xiii  buyu (буюу buyuu) 'or',[26]: 132 [16]: 44  and ᠬᠦᠦ küü (хүү khüü) 'son, young boy'.[26]: 509 [28]: 37 
  22. ^ As in ᠠᠢ ai (ай ai) 'category; sound, noise', or an pity/sympathy/worry-expressing interjection.[26]: 19 
  23. ^ As in ᠡᠢ ei (ий ii), an compassion/sorrow/fright/disgust-expressing interjection.[26]: 303 
  24. ^ As in ᠣᠢ oi (ой oi) 'woods, forest, grove; mind, intellect; memory',[26]: 603–604  or ᠤᠢ ui (уй ui) 'mourning, sorrow'.[26]: 866 
  25. ^ As in ᠥᠢ/ᠥᠶᠢ öi/öyi (өөе ööye), an exclamatory interjection meaning 'hello', 'I say', or 'look here',[26]: 633 [33] or ᠦᠢ ᠲᠦᠮᠡᠨ üi (үй üi) tümen 'multitude; innumerable'.[26]: 999 
  26. ^ As in the final diphthongs u-a and uu-a.[3]: 31 
  27. ^ As in ᠨᠢ ni (нь ni), a modern form used in place of ᠠᠨᠤ anu 'their' and ᠢᠨᠤ inu 'his'.[26]: 46–47, 412, 577 [3]: 139 
  28. ^ As in ᠬᠠ/ᠬᠠᠮᠢᠭ᠎ᠠ⟨?⟩ qa/qamiγ‑a (хаа khaa) 'where'.[26]: 895, 923 
  29. ^ As in /хөө.[33]
  30. ^ a b For the two looks of the particle ᠰᠢᠭ᠋⟨?⟩/ᠰᠢᠭ⟨?⟩ siγ/sig (шиг shig) 'similar to, similarly, like' etc, the choice between final γ or g is dependent on whether it occurs after a masculine or a feminine word, respectively.[26]: 699 [24]: 201 
  31. ^ As in the exclamation ᠮᠠ/ᠮᠠᠢ ma/mai (ма(й) ma(i)) 'here, take it'.[26]: 519, 522 
  32. ^ As in the intensifying ᠯᠠ / ᠡᠯᠡ la/le / ele (