Monday, June 13, 2011

My Georgia Monday: Georgian Alphabet

Georgian alphabet has 33 letters

Modern Georgian alphabet has 33 letters.  The Georgian alphabet is one of fourteen alphabets used in the world today.  Written Georgian goes back to the fifth century (a photo below shows a 5th century plate from Bolnisi, Georgia), and there is a rich medieval Georgian literature and extensive scholarly literature.

Georgian language is probably rooted in Aramaic; with collation (order of letters in the alphabet) closely resembling Greek collation.  The thirty-three letters in Georgian alphabet have their own corresponding thirty-three sounds.  There are only 5 vowels, which makes Georgian speech sound "harsh" with lots of throat consonants.  In the quick YouTube video below you can hear our 33 letters and their sounds (I admire this young man's passion, don't you?!). 

I despise the fact that I consider it necessary to mention here that the Georgian language and alphabet are not even slightly related to the Cyrillic.  This post is dedicated to an average reader who does not know much about Georgia.  Unfortunately, even today common assumption among average Americans is that Georgian is somehow related to Russian.  Such ignorant assumptions make me upset. However, I do not blame the people in their ignorance as that was the way they were taught in schools (trust me, being raised in the USSR, I know all about textbooks being misleading).  Besides, this is my observation: people from small countries are more aware, curious and knowledgeable about the world around them, than those from the large ones.

This post is not written by a linguist.  This post is based on my own dilettante research.  If you are seeking more in-depth study of world's alphabets, please refer to sites like this, this or this.
Happy Monday and have a double rainbow kind of week!!

double rainbow in our backyard from several weeks ago...


  1. This was educational.
    Cool post.

    The rainbow photo looks so cool. Great shot.

  2. I know what you mean! I am from Bangladesh and everyone assumes I am Indian and that we are the same country. But we have different ethnic makeups and speak a different language :)
    I also agree that people from smaller countries (especially those that have gone through struggle) are more likely to be aware of the world.
    Check out my post on the genocide in my country here:



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...