Azerbaijani Alphabet
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Azerbaijani Alphabet

The Azerbaijani alphabet (Azerbaijani: Az?rbaycan ?lifbas?) of the Republic of Azerbaijan is a Latin-script alphabet used for writing the Azerbaijani language. This superseded previous versions based on Cyrillic and Arabic scripts.

In Iran, the Persian script is used to write the Azeri language. While there have been a few standardization efforts, the orthography and the set of letters used differs widely among Iranian Azeri writers, with at least two major branches, the orthography used by Behzad Behzadi and the Azari magazine, and the orthography used by the Varliq magazine (both are quarterlies published in Tehran).

In Russia, the Cyrillic alphabet is still used.[1]

History and development

From the nineteenth century there were efforts by some intellectuals like Mirza Fatali Akhundov and Mammad agha Shahtakhtinski to replace the Arabic script and create a Latin alphabet for Azeri. In 1929, a Latin alphabet was created by Soviet Union sponsored Yeni türk ?lifba komit?si (New Turkish Alphabet Committee; ? ? ) in Baku which hoped that the new alphabet would divide the Azerbaijanis in the USSR from those living in Iran.[2] An additional reason for the soviet regime's encouragement of a non-Arabic script was that they hoped the transition would work towards secularizing Azerbaijan's Muslim culture and since language script reform, proposed as early as the 19th century by Azeri intellectuals (e.g. Mirza Fatali Akhundov), had previously been rejected by the Azeri religious establishment on the grounds that Arabic script, the language of the Koran, was "holy and should not be tampered with"[3] there was some historical basis for the reform which received overwhelming support at the First Turcological Congress in Baku during 1926 where the reform was voted for 101 to 7. The Azeri poet Samad Vurgun declared "Azerbaijani people are proud of being the first among Oriental nations that buried the Arabic alphabet and adopted the Latin alphabet. This event is written in golden letters of our history"[4] As a result, in the Soviet Union in 1926 the Uniform Turkic Alphabet was introduced to replace the varieties of the Arabic script in use at the time.[5] In 1939, during the Red terror campaign, Joseph Stalin ordered that the Azeri script used in the USSR again be changed, this time to the Cyrillic script in order to sever the soviet Azerbaijanis ties with the people in the Republic of Turkey.[6]

At the same time that the leaders of the Soviet Union were attempting to isolate the Soviet population of Azeri speakers from the neighboring populations in Persia and Turkey, the Persian government of the Azeri speaking Qajar dynasty was overthrown by Reza Shah (1925-41) who quickly established the Pahlavi dynasty and banned the publication of texts in Azeri.

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991 and Azerbaijan gained its independence, one of the first laws passed in the new Parliament was the adoption of a new Latin-script alphabet.

  • From 1929 until 1939 (old alphabet defined using the Latin script):
    Aa, B?, Cc, Çç, Dd, Ee, ??, Ff, Gg, ??, Hh, Ii, ??, Jj, Kk, Qq, Ll, Mm, Nn, Oo, , Pp, Rr, Ss, ??, Tt, Uu, Vv, Xx, Yy, Zz,
  • From 1939 until 1958 (first version of the alphabet defined using the Cyrillic script):
    ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ??, ' (apostrophe)
  • From 1958 until 1991 (simplified version of the alphabet defined using the Cyrillic script and the letter borrowed from Latin):
    , , , , , , , , , , , , ??, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ' (apostrophe)
  • From 1991 until 1992 (first version of the modern alphabet defined using the Latin script):
    Aa, Ää, Bb, Cc, Çç, Dd, Ee, Ff, Gg, , Hh, Xx, I?, ?i, Jj, Kk, Qq, Ll, Mm, Nn, Oo, Öö, Pp, Rr, Ss, , Tt, Uu, Üü, Vv, Yy, Zz
  • Since 1992 (current version of the modern alphabet defined using the Latin script, replacing Ää with the historic for better sorting):
    Aa, Bb, Cc, Çç, Dd, Ee, , Ff, Gg, , Hh, Xx, I?, ?i, Jj, Kk, Qq, Ll, Mm, Nn, Oo, Öö, Pp, Rr, Ss, , Tt, Uu, Üü, Vv, Yy, Zz

The Azerbaijani alphabet is the same as the Turkish alphabet, except for , Xx, and Qq, the letters for sounds which do not exist as separate phonemes in Turkish. When compared to the historic Latin alphabet: has replaced the historic (which was represented in Cyrillic by the stroked ); the undotted I? (also used in Turkish) has replaced the historic soft sign; the dotted ?i (also used in Turkish) has replaced the historic soft-dotted Ii; Jj has replaced the historic ; Öö has replaced the historic ; Üü has replaced the historic ?y; and Yy has replaced the historic Jj.

Schwa (?)

When the new Latin script was introduced on December 25, 1991, A-umlaut (Ä ä) was selected to represent the sound /æ/. However, on May 16, 1992, it was replaced by the grapheme schwa (? ?), used previously. Although use of Ä ä (also used in Tatar, Turkmen, and Gagauz) seems to be a simpler alternative as the schwa is absent in most character sets, particularly Turkish encoding, it was reintroduced; the schwa had existed continuously from 1929 to 1991 to represent Azeri's most common vowel, in both post-Arabic alphabets (Latin and Cyrillic) of Azerbaijan.

Comparison

This section contains the national anthem of Azerbaijan, in the current Latin, Cyrillic, Ja?alif, and Perso-Arabic alphabets.

1992- 1991-1992 1958-1991 (still used in Dagestan) 1939-1958 1933-1939 1929-1933 -1929 (still used in Iranian Azerbaijan)
Az?rbaycan! Az?rbaycan!
Ey q?hr?man övlad?n ?anl? V?t?ni!
S?nd?n ötrü can verm?y? cüml? haz?r?z!
S?nd?n ötrü qan tökm?y? cüml? qadiriz!
Üçr?ngli bayranla m?sud ya?a!
Üçr?ngli bayranla m?sud ya?a!
Minl?rl? can qurban oldu,
Sin?n h?rb? meydan oldu!
Hüququndan keç?n ?sg?r,
H?r? bir q?hr?man oldu!
S?n olasan gülüstan,
S?n? h?r an can qurban!
S?n? min bir m?h?bb?t
Sin?md? tutmu? m?kan!
Namusunu hifz etm?y?,
Bayran? yüks?ltm?y?
Namusunu hifz etm?y?,
Cüml? g?ncl?r mü?taqd?r!
?anl? V?t?n! ?anl? V?t?n!
Az?rbaycan! Az?rbaycan!
Az?rbaycan! Az?rbaycan!
Azärbaycan! Azärbaycan!
Ey qähräman övlad?n ?anl? Vätäni!
Sändän ötrü can vermäyä cümlä haz?r?z!
Sändän ötrü qan tökmäyä cümlä qadiriz!
Üçrängli bayranla mäsud ya?a!
Üçrängli bayranla mäsud ya?a!
Minlärlä can qurban oldu,
Sinän härbä meydan oldu!
Hüququndan keçän äsgär,
Härä bir qähräman oldu!
Sän olasan gülüstan,
Sänä här an can qurban!
Sänä min bir mähäbbät
Sinämdä tutmu? mäkan!
Namusunu hifz etmäyä,
Bayran? yüksältmäyä
Namusunu hifz etmäyä,
Cümlä gänclär mü?taqd?r!
?anl? Vätän! ?anl? Vätän!
Azärbaycan! Azärbaycan!
Azärbaycan! Azärbaycan!
?! ?!
? !
? ? ?!
? ? ?!
? ?!
? ?!
?,
?!
? ,
? ?!
,
? !
?
? !
? ,
? ,
? !
! !
?! ?!
?! ?!
?! ?!
? !
? ? ?!
? ? ?!
? !
? !
?,
?!
? ,
? ?!
,
? !
?
? !
? ,
? ,
? !
! !
?! ?!
?! ?!
Az?r?ajçan! Az?r?ajçan!
Ej q?hr?man ?vlad?n ?anl? V?t?ni!
S?nd?n ?try çan verm?j? çyml? haz?r?z!
S?nd?n ?try qan t?km?j? çyml? qadiriz!
Ycr?ngli ?ajranla m?sud ja?a!
Ycr?ngli ?ajranla m?sud ja?a!
Minl?rl? çan qur?an oldu,
Sin?n h?r mejdan oldu!
Hyququndan kec?n ?sg?r,
H?r? ?ir q?hr?man oldu!
S?n olasan gylystan,
S?n? h?r an çan qur?an!
S?n? min ?ir m?h?t
Sin?md? tutmu? m?kan!
Namusunu hifz etm?j?,
Bajran? jyks?ltm?j?
Namusunu hifz etm?j?,
Çyml? g?nçl?r my?taqd?r!
?anl? V?t?n! ?anl? V?t?n!
Az?r?ajçan! Az?r?ajçan!
Az?r?ajçan! Az?r?ajçan!
Az?rbajcan! Az?rbajcan!
Ej k?hr?man ?vladn ?anl V?t?ni!
S?nd?n ?tru can verm?j? cuml? hazrz!
S?nd?n ?tru kan t?km?j? cuml? kadiriz!
Uçr?n?li bajragnla m?syd ja?a!
Uçr?n?li bajragnla m?syd ja?a!
Minl?rl? can kyrban oldy,
Sin?n h?rb? mejdan oldy!
Hukykyndan keç?n ?sr,
H?r? bir k?hr?man oldy!
S?n olasan ?ulustan,
S?n? h?r an can kyrban!
S?n? min bir m?h?bb?t
Sin?md? tytmy? m?kan!
Namysyny hifz etm?j?,
Bajragn juks?ltm?j?
Namysyny hifz etm?j?,
Cuml? ncl?r mu?takdr!
?anl V?t?n! ?anl V?t?n!
Az?rbajcan! Az?rbajcan!
Az?rbajcan! Az?rbajcan!
!!
? ?
? ?
? ?
! ?
! ?
?
!? ?
?
!
! ?
! ?
?
! ?
? ?
? ?
! !
!!
!!

Transliteration

The Arabic, Latin, and Cyrillic alphabets each have a different sequence of letters. The table below is ordered according to the latest Latin alphabet:

Azerbaijani alphabet transliteration table
Arabic Cyrillic Latin IPA
-1929 1939-1958 1958-1991 1922-1933 1933-1939 1991-1992 1992-
? ? ? A a [?]
? ? ? B b B ? B b [b]
? ? ? C c Ç ç C c [d?]
? ? ? Ç ç C c Ç ç [t?]
? ? ? D d [d]
? ? ? E e [e]
? ? ? ? ? Ä ä ? ? [æ]
? ? ? F f [f]
? ? ? ? ? G g [?]
? ? ? G g ? ? ? ? [?]
?,‎ ? ? ? H h [h]
? ? ? X x [x]
? ? ? Latin capital letter I with descender Latin small letter dotless I with descender ? ? I ? [?]
? ? ? I i ? i [?]
? ? ? ? ? J j [?]
? ? ? Q q K k [c], [ç], [k]
? ? ? K k Q q [?]
? ? ? L l [l]
? ? ? M m [m]
? ? ? N n [n]
? ? ? O o [o]
? ? ? ? ? Ö ö [oe]
? ? ? P p [p]
? ? ? R r [r]
?,‎ ?,‎ ? ? ? S s [s]
? ? ? ? ? ? ? [?]
?,‎ ? ? ? T t [t]
? ? ? Y y U u [u]
? ? ? U u Y y Ü ü [y]
? ? ? V v [v]
? ? ? ? ? J j Y y [j]
? ? j? YA ya [j?]
? ?1 ?E ?e YE ye [je]
? ?1 ? ? E e [e]
?O ?o YO yo [jo]
? ? JY jy ?U ?u YU yu [ju]
?,‎ ?,‎ ?,‎ ? ? ? Z z [z]

1 - in the beginning of a word and after vowels

The Azeri Perso-Arabic alphabet also contains the letter ?. Originally ? stood for the sound [?], which then merged with [n]. Initial versions of the Azeri Latin alphabet contained the letter , which was dropped in 1938.

The letter , intended for the sound [ts] in loanwords, was used in Azerbaijani Cyrillic until 1951. In Azerbaijani, the sound [ts] generally becomes [s].

Sources

References

  1. ^ http://derbend.ru/
  2. ^ Script change in Azerbaijan: acts of identity, Lynley Hatcher, International Journal of the Sociology of Language. Volume 2008, Issue 192, Pages 105-116, ISSN (Online) 1613-3668, ISSN (Print) 0165-2516, doi:10.1515/IJSL.2008.038, July 2008, page 106, http://www.degruyter.com/dg/viewarticle.fullcontentlink:pdfeventlink/$002fj$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.pdf?t:ac=j$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.xml
  3. ^ Alakbarov, Farid (2000). Mirza Fatali Akhundov: alphabet reformer before his time. Azer-baijan International, 8(1), 53
  4. ^ Wright, Sue (2004), Language Policy and Language Planning, Basingstokes: Palgrave MacMillan.
  5. ^ Clement, Victoria (2005). The politics of script reform in Soviet Turkmenistan: alphabet and national identity formation. Unpublished doctoral thesis, Ohio State University, cited in "Script change in Azerbaijan: acts of identity", Lynley Hatcher, International Journal of the Sociology of Language. Volume 2008, Issue 192, Pages 105-116, ISSN (Online) 1613-3668, ISSN (Print) 0165-2516, doi:10.1515/IJSL.2008.038, July 2008, page 106, http://www.degruyter.com/dg/viewarticle.fullcontentlink:pdfeventlink/$002fj$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.pdf?t:ac=j$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.xml
  6. ^ Script change in Azerbaijan: acts of identity, Lynley Hatcher, International Journal of the Sociology of Language. Volume 2008, Issue 192, Pages 105-116, ISSN (Online) 1613-3668, ISSN (Print) 0165-2516, doi:10.1515/IJSL.2008.038, July 2008, page 106, http://www.degruyter.com/dg/viewarticle.fullcontentlink:pdfeventlink/$002fj$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.pdf?t:ac=j$002fijsl.2008.2008.issue-192$002fijsl.2008.038$002fijsl.2008.038.xml

External links


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