Abugida is a language where consonant and vowels form a unit of some form, and are typical in South Asia.

Now, the Korean language isn't related to those languages, of course. But the Korean language is also formed of characters which have parts representing consonants, and parts representing vowels.

I'm not really familiar with any Abugida script, but I always wondered why Hangul isn't considered one. It's usually credited as an "artifical script", which is true I guess, but feels like somewhat unrelated to the typical categorization of scripts.

So, why isn't Hangul considered an Abugida?

  • 2
    It's definitely a conscript, and an alphabetic one at that. It just has rather complex and unusual kerning rules. – Jeff Zeitlin Apr 28 at 9:54
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    The key feature of an abugida seems to be that each glyph has a characteristic consonant, plus an inherent vowel, and modifications alter only the inherent vowel. Hangul doesn't work that way; the components (jamo) are individual phonemes that are assembled into the syllable blocks.The individual jamo are not themselves modified to signal any phonemic changes. – Jeff Zeitlin Apr 28 at 9:58
  • For an example of an abugida script, solve this puzzle about the Nagari writing system (used for Sanskrit in this case). – jlawler Apr 29 at 17:08

Because it isn't.

When one takes the arrangement of the Hangul jamos to syllables in square fields apart, it is a fully alphabetic writing system with separate and independent symbols for vowels and consonants.

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