Saturday, September 16, 2017

Kazakhstan is changing the script for Kazakh language from Cyrillic to Latin

Kazakhstan is changing the script for Kazakh language from Cyrillic to Latin

In the past, different scripts were used for Kazakh language or its predecessors. Currently, the Cyrillic script is used. An example text is: "Қазақ тілі — Қазақстан Республикасының мемлекеттік тілі, сонымен қатар Ресей, Өзбекстан, Қытай, Моңғолия және т.б. елдерде тұратын қазақтардың ана тілі.".

In 2017, a new standard for usage of Latin script is under development. In September 2017, basic transliteration scheme was published. The Latin Kazakh is not going to use any diacritics, just the plain letters a-z will be used. The letter "x" is not used for native Kazakh words. There are 8 digraphs for specific Kazakh sounds.

The conversion table is:

Cyrillic: а,б,ц,д,е,ф,г,х,һ,i,и,й,к,л,м,н,о,п,қ,р,с,т,ұ,в,у,ы,з,ә,ө,ү,ң,ғ,ч,ш,ж


There are going to be more details known later. For example, the Cyrillic script uses "я" or "э" and no mapping has been published yet.


Panlatin browser extension version 1.6 can transliterate existing html Cyrillic Kazakh texts into currently planned Latin script. See also the screen shot with Russian texts below.
The steps are as follows:
1. Add the extension “Panlatin” to Chrome or Firefox browser.
2. Select the “Options” button in “Manage Extensions”.
3.1 Click the language abbreviation “kk" for Kazakh language.
3.2 Change the value of “Showing romanization examples while selecting language” to “yes”.
3.3 Change the value of “Conversion” to “enabled”.

The example window show the transliteration to “Qаzаq tili — Qаzаqstаn Respwblikаsynyng memlekettik tili, sonymen qаtаr Resej, Оеzbekstаn, Qytаj, Monggholija zhаеne t.b. elderde turаtyn qаzаqtаrdyng аnа tili.”.

The next web pages with defined Kazakh language by attribute “lang” in <html> element are converted to Latin script. Some web sites don't define attribute “lang”. For such sites, the language needs to be defined below as already done for site “”. The site (domain, computer, and optional path) is before the colon “:”. After the colon, the language abbreviation “kk” is specified.

To disable the conversion, change the “enabled” back to “disabled”.

There is more information on Panlatin extension at Panlatin Browser Extension for Romanization and Detailing.

See also the Russian version of this text.

Jože Fabčič

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