In Russian

Scripts Adopted by Türkic People




During the millenniums of their history on the expanses of Eurasia, the Türkic-speaking people used also adopted systems of writing. The most widespread, during the last seven centuries of the present era, was the use of the Arabic alphabet, adopted with the spread of Islam among Türks. In the last century the Arabic alphabet was mostly replaced by the Latin-derived alphabets, and now the Arabic alphabet is used by the Türks only in the countries where it is a national script: Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Pakistan, Syria. In the countries controlled by the USSR, the Latin script was rapidly replaced by a variety of the mutually almost incomprehensible Cyrillic-derived scripts. In the territory controlled by the PRC, the Latin script was introduced for two decades, and then Arabic script was re-institutionalized.

The following collection illustrates the scripts in use prior to the adoption of the Arabic script as a lingua franca between the Turkic people.


Slavic Writing




800 - 1000 AD

Danube Bolgaria

Proto-Bulgarian Inscriptions With Glagolic And Cyrillic Letters

Peter Dobrev



Syriac Writings and Turkic Language

1200 - 1350 AD

C. Asia


Syriac Writings and Turkic Language according to Central Asian Tombstone Inscriptions

Wassilios Klein





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                                                                                                                                Hunnic Writing