लिपींचे प्रकार

आणखी एक आर्टिकल

Almost all of the readers of this article are proficient in at least 2 scripts. One is the Roman alphabet (used for English language) and the other is Devnagari (used for Hindi / Marathi language). Are these two scripts similar?Let’s examine them.

How did you find this issue of the wall magazine? (Roman-English)

तुम्हाला वॉल मॅगझिनचा हा अंक आवडला का? (Devnagari-Marathi)

For starters, the characters of each of these scripts are written horizontally, from left to right and they represent only the pronunciation part and not the meaning part of the word. Now let’s dig deeper.

Let’s examine the word ‘wall’ in both scripts. ‘wall’ is made up of 4 characters, while ‘वॉल’ is made up of only 2 characters. If you look closely, you will find that roman characters represent only one sound- either a consonant or a vowel. Devnagari characters, on the other hand represent a cluster of consonant(s) and vowel. Thus, ‘w’ and ‘a’ get clubbed together in ‘वॉल’. This means that scripts differ in the segment of word they represent by one character. Based on this criterion, we can differentiate 5 types of scripts-

1- Logographic Scripts- characters of these scripts represent complete grammatical words i.e. each character in this script represents both meaning and pronunciation of an entire word. Chinese characters and Arabic numerals (1, 2 etc.) are examples of logographic scripts. Such scripts consist of vast number of characters, as each word must be represented by a distinct character, making the number of words and characters almost equal.

2- Syllabic Scripts- characters of these scripts represent syllables which are parts of words i.e. they represent both consonant(s) and vowel occurring in a syllable. The syllables containing the same consonant but different vowels (like ‘ka’ and ‘ku’) will be represented by completely different characters which will not resemble each other. Nushu and Hiragana are examples of syllabic scripts.

3- Abugidas- characters of these scripts represent entire syllables like the syllabic scripts. However, the syllables containing the same consonant but different vowels (like ‘ka’ and ‘ku’) will be represented by characters that are based on the same symbol (indicating the consonant) and contain additional diacritic marks to indicate different vowels. Devnagari is an example of Abugidas.

4- Alphabets- characters of these scripts represent individual sounds i.e. one character represents either one consonant or one vowel. IPA and Roman script are two examples of alphabets.

5- Abjads- these scripts contain a character for each consonant. In these scripts, vowels are not marked at all. Arabic script is an example of Abjads.

The last 4 types of scripts typically contain fewer characters than logographic scripts.

Scripts also differ in directionality i.e. the direction in which they are written. Devnagari is a horizontal script written from left to right. Another horizontal script- Arabic is written from right to left. Chinese characters are written vertically from top to bottom.

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5 प्रतिक्रिया (+add yours?)

  1. Anonymous
    जानेवारी 02, 2010 @ 08:39:48

    > Logographic Scripts- characters of these scripts represent complete grammatical words i.e. each character in this script represents both meaning and pronunciation of an entire word. Chinese characters and Arabic numerals (1, 2 etc.) are examples of logographic scripts. Such scripts consist of vast number of characters, as each word must be represented by a distinct character, making the number of words and characters almost equal.
    >———

    Does the number of distinct Chinese characters really equal (or ‘almost equal’) the number of words in the language? The whole point of a language is to use finite symbols (on paper and as pronounceable basic units) to generate several different words from their various combinations; no?

    Besides, while I do not know anything about Arabic numerals, it is difficult to imagine a numeral conveying both its meaning and pronunciation at the same time. To know what ‘3’ means is to understand the symbol ‘3’; so it is arguable that the symbol conveys its meaning as a number. But can an Indian who (say) knows only Hindi figure out from the symbol while learning English whether it should be pronounced as ‘three’ or ‘four’ or ‘rat’ or ‘cat’ when he may not even know that these words exist in English? If you tell him that the number means the same in English as in Devanagari, he can know its meaning without knowing its English pronunciation.

    Similarly, the meaning of I or II (Roman numeral) is clear, but can one know what ‘IX’ means from the symbol or its pronunciation without learning that X means ten, and then hearing and absorbing and thus understanding that a symbol (I) when it occurs before a symbol indicating bigger value than ‘1’ indicates subtraction, thus making IX indicate 9?

    It would help if you made the point about Logographic scripts by giving a few examples.

    उत्तर

    • Archana
      जानेवारी 03, 2010 @ 05:56:11

      Thanx for reading the article and commenting on it. I would not know whether the number of Chinese words really equals the number of chinese script characters as I am not a Chinese script /language expert. What you define as the whole point of a ‘language’ (the word ‘script’ is more appropriate here) holds true in case of some scripts but not all. Logographic scripts, as explained in the post, are made of innumerable characters, each representing a different word.

      My statement regarding the numerals should be considered in the right context. 0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 are the arabic numerals. These are used in conjunction with the Roman script (the script used for writing English language). If you teach a person that 1 is pronounced as ‘one’ and it means ‘one’ then the person will understand both the meaning and pronunciation of the symbol 1. Let us oppose this with ‘r’. like ‘1’, it is a single character. However, ‘r’ is pronounced as ‘aar’ and means nothing. The statement – “arabic numerals signify both meaning and pronunciation’ should be considered in this context. Any script has to be taught to someone first, so that that person will be able decipher it. If you teach a Hindi-speaking person that the numeral ‘5’ is pronounced as ‘five’ and means ‘paanch’ then he too will be able to pronounce the numeral 5. the statement- “arabic numerals signify both meaning and pronunciation’ does not mean that they signify both meaning and pronunciation to anyone who may or may not be taught those numerals.

      For answering your last point too, I must draw your attention to the fact that logographic scripts need to be learned for deciphering them. You will be able to understand the meaning of IX only when you know what X means. Logographic scripts are not universal scripts. You will not decipher them automatically at the first glance. You have to learn them. And I am also not sure whether roman numerals are logographic. I said that arabic numerals are logographic, i didnt say all the numerals are logographic.

      I have given two examples of Logographic scripts. I am not an expert on scripts, so I can not give you more examples. If you are interested, please read the script related books. You will find some on gigapedia.com.

      उत्तर

  2. Anonymous
    जानेवारी 04, 2010 @ 00:14:41

    अर्चनाताई : तुम्ही ‘r’ या अक्षराला अर्थ नसल्याचा उल्लेख केला. आता ए टू झेड सर्व २६ अक्षरांना अर्थ ज़ोडले गेलेत, अशी कल्पना करू. तरीही रोमन लिपी ‘लोगोग्राफिक’ म्हणता येणार नाही, कारण त्या लिपीत प्रत्येकच शब्दाला स्वत:च ‘चिह्‌न’ असायला हवं. म्हणूनच १ ते ९ आणि ० (शून्य) या दहा आकड्यांना स्वत:चा उच्चार आणि अर्थ असूनही त्याद्‌वारे फक्त दहाच संख्या कळतात. फारच तर आपण त्यांना logographic entity म्हणू शकू. दहापुढच्या संख्यांना स्वत:चं असं स्वतंत्र चिह्न नसतंच.

    चिनी अक्षरांचा तुम्ही या संदर्भात उल्लेख केला, याचंही मला नवल आहे. चिनी भाषा तिच्यात शेकडो चिह्‌न असल्यामुळे कठीण आहे, आणि चीनमधल्या भावी पिढ्यांच्या सोयीसाठी ती संख्या २००-३०० च्या घरातून शंभरखाली आणण्याचे प्रयत्न काही लोक करताहेत, असं मी वाचल्याचं आठवतं. ही संख्या २०० च्या घरात असो की ७००-८०० एवढी, पण ती मर्यादित आहे. आणि त्या भाषेतल्या अक्षरांइतकी नाही. मॅण्डॅरिन आणि कॅंटनीज या दोन्ही भाषांची लिपी एकच आहे, अशी माझी माहिती आहे.

    Logographic scripts अस्तित्वात असूच शकत नाहेत, असा माझा दावा नाही. पण त्यांची कल्पना करणं कठीण आहे. अरबी संख्या हे त्याचं अत्यंत मर्यादित अर्थानी उदाहरण असेलही; पण ते उदाहरण पाहिल्यावर शंकासमाधान होण्याऐवजी मनातला गोंधळ वाढतो.

    – डी एन

    उत्तर

  3. Anonymous
    जानेवारी 08, 2010 @ 07:46:34

    याआधीच सुचायला हवा असूनही उशीरा लक्षात आलेला मुद्‌दा हा की कुठलीही भाषा संख्यादर्शनाचा अक्षरांद्‌वारे किंवा/आणि अंकांद्‌वारे प्रयत्न करतेच. आणि आकडे असंख्य असल्यामुळे प्रत्येक शब्दासाठी स्वतंत्र चिह्‌न वापरू पाहणार्‍या लोगोग्राफिक लिपींवर त्यासम्बन्धात मर्यादा येणारच.

    – नानिवडेकर

    उत्तर

  4. la full
    जानेवारी 17, 2010 @ 05:10:50

    Very informative blog. I have bookmarked it as my favorite. Thanks.

    उत्तर

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