The Samaritan alphabet was derived from the Paleo-Hebrew alphabet. According
to the Bible, the Samaritans came originally from Mesopotamia, then moved to Palestine
at the beginning of the 1st millennium BC and adopted the Jewish religion and culture.
The Samaritans themselves claim descent from the northern tribes of Israel. Evidence
from recent DNA tests supports this claim and shows they are related to the Israelites
through the paternal line.
The Samaritan alphabet is still used by Samaritans in the city of Nablus and
in the Samaritan quarter of Holon. There are currently just over 700 Samaritans.
- Type of writing system: abjad / consonant alphabet. Vowels indicated with diacritics.
- Direction of writing: right to left in horizontal lines.
Used to write
Samaritan Hebrew, a descendant of Biblical Hebrew used by Samaritans as a liturgical language.
Samaritan Aramaic, a dialect of Aramaic used by the Samaritans in their sacred and scholarly literature.
Sample texts in the Samaritan alphabet
All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They
are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another
in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)
Information about the Samaritan script and language
Information about the Samaritan people
Free Samaritan font
Proto-Sinaitic / Proto-Canaanite,