×
Sanskrit

By now, the Devanagari writing system has become the standard script for Sanskrit. On first sight, this compact, phonetic script with its focus on precise pronunciation appears quite complex. But Devanagari is easier than you might think...

In Devanagari script, upper and lower cases do not exist. In turn, though, Devanagari precisely reflects pronunciation. Below, you will find an explanation of the lines of individual letters.

In Devanagari script, we write from left to right and from top to bottom. As a last step, the letters are attached to a horizontal line above them. Even when we write an entire word, this horizontal line is drawn over the complete word.

Devanagari

Short vowels

Vowels are the best starting point when you want to learn the Devanagari script. Here, you will learn how to write or draw those artful letters.

Devanagari

Long vowels

The letters shown above stand for short vowels. For long vowels, the respective letters are extended.

Devanagari

Umlauts and vowel modifications

Diphtongs (umlauts or vowel mutations) are combinations of the basic vowels a, i and u. In this case, an a or ā is put in front of an i or u.

Devanagari

Guttural plosives

These are plosive consonants, which are formed gutturally (i.e. in the throat).

Devanagari

Palatal plosives

These are plosive consonants which are formed palatally, i.e. as the word indicates at the palate.

Devanagari

Retroflex plosives

These are plosive consonants which are formed in a retroflex way (i.e. with the tongue rolled back).

Devanagari

Dental plosives

These are plosive consonants which are produced dentally (i.e. at the teeth).

Devanagari

Labial plosives

These are plosive consonants which are produced labially (i.e. at the lips).

Devanagari

Semivowels

Half vowel, half consonant. Although semivowels are not produced with pressure of plosive sounds, they also do not form independent syllables in the way vowels do.

Devanagari

Fricatives

Sibilants and aspirates which are produced by a close contact at the place of articulation and the resulting friction.

Devanagari

Ligatures

When several consonants follow each other, they are linked to form one single letter. Even though these links appear quite artful and can differ from handwriting to handwriting, they still follow certain rules.

Devanagari

Figures

Of course, there are also figures in Devanagari script. Learn here how to read and write them.

Devanagari

Downloads

PDF files to learn Devanagari, the classic Sanskrit script. Have fun practicing!

Devanagari
The Devanagari Game - learn how to read Sanskrit texts in the original version! The Devanagari Game - learn how to read Sanskrit texts in the original version!

The Devanagari Game - learn how to read Sanskrit texts in the original version!

Play and learn all Devanagari letters at the same time. In doing so, you will soon be able to read the ancient yoga source texts in their original Sanskrit versions.