Armenian Alphabet
This original script was created by the greatest Armenian enlightener Mesrop Mashtotz about 406 AD. The invention of the script was caused by the spreading of Christianity over Armenia in the 4th century, and by the necessity to create a writing for mystic literature in the Armenian language. The issue of exact origin and prototype of the script is still unclear. However, general style of the construction (direction from the left, symbols for vowels, using letters for numbers etc.) makes us think it was invented under the influence of the Greek alphabet. It is also probable that Mashtotz could use one of the Aramaic scripts or the Pehlevi cursive script.

The alphabet is phonetic. It originally consisted of 36 simple symbols, each of them denoting a sound. Combinations of letters, as well as the diacritic signs, are not used in Armenian, except for the sound [u], composed of [o] + [w], and [ev] (from [e] + [w]). Both these signs were absent in the original alphabet. In the 12th century two other letters were included in the script: for denoting [o] and [f]. The latter was introduced to reflect numerous borrowed words in Armenian which contained [f]. This was the ultimate form of the alphabet which is used nowadays.

The only thing thta changed a bit was the shape of letters. The modern Armenian alphabet is the descendant of the "round" variety, which was in use since the 12th century.

The scripts looking like Armenian are Georgian and several other ancient Caucasian alphabets.

Languages which use the script: Armenian only.


Sample text:

Oh to walk my way with kindness,
And not betray my life to a cloud of suspicions_
How I wish that someone would believe me,
How I wish that I could believe someone.
To triumph in an unequal battle,
To embrace with love both small and big,
How I wish that someone would beIieve me,
How I wish that I could believe someone.
Let the silence burst forth with fury,
And the eternal noise die down for good .
How I wish that someone would believe me,
How I wish that I could believe someone.

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