Jawacaraka (ꦗꦮꦕꦫꦏ)

Jawacaraka is a way to write Indonesian and Malay with the Javanese script devised by Allison Powell. The word "Jawacaraka" is a play on hanacaraka, the Javanese word that refers to the traditional arrangement of the letters in the Javanese alphabet, and derived from the Indonesian words jawa meaning Javanese and caraka meaning carrier or messenger, which in Javanese referred to the way the writing system conveyed and presented the messages expressed through the Javanese script.

Given the fact that the Javanese script once held the esteemed position of being the dominant native script of Indonesia from the 15th to mid 20th century it makes perfect sense to use it to write Indonesian - the modern lingua franca of Indonesia. In fact, one of the hopes Allison has is that by reviving this script to write Indonesian, it could trigger a revival in writing the original intended language for this script which also just so happens to be the second-most widely spoken language and most widely spoken native language of Indonesia - the Javanese language itself.

From Allison's understanding, one of the reasons why many Javanese speakers forgo writing their own language in Javanese script is due to the fact that Indonesian, the official language of Indonesia, is written with the Latin script (rumi), leading to biased preference for the Latin script out of sheer convenience. This is certainly a major loss as the Javanese script is one of the most ornate, captivating and aesthetically stunning scripts in the world. Perhaps if more people started writing Indonesian language in the Javanese script, the script itself would experience a revival in other languages of Indonesia traditionally written in this script like Javanese.

Notable features



The appearance of each letter in pasangan form using the letter ꦏ as a base. In each of these examples, the pasangan letter would silence the preceding vowel in the ꦏ. For example, ꦏ꧀ꦭ would be pronounced [kla].


Download an alphabet chart for Jawacaraka (Excel)


Sample text in Jawacaraka (Indonesian)

ꦱꦼꦩꦸꦮ ꦎꦫꦁ ꦢꦶꦭꦲꦶꦂꦏꦤ꧀ ꦩꦼꦂꦢꦺꦏ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦩꦼꦩ꧀ꦥꦸꦚꦻ ꦩꦂꦠꦧꦠ꧀ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦲꦏ꧀꧇꧒꧇ ꦪꦁ ꦱꦩ꧉ ꦩꦼꦫꦺꦏ ꦢꦶꦏꦫꦸꦪꦆ ꦄꦏꦭ꧀ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦲꦠꦶ ꦤꦸꦫꦤꦶ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦲꦼꦤ꧀ꦢꦏ꧀ꦚ ꦧꦼꦂꦒꦻꦴꦭ꧀ ꦱꦠꦸ ꦱꦩ ꦭꦆꦤ꧀ ꦢꦭꦀ ꦱꦼꦩꦔꦠ꧀ ꦥꦼꦂꦱꦈꦢꦫꦄꦤ꧀꧉


Semua orang dilahirkan merdeka dan mempunyai martabat dan hak-hak yang sama. Mereka dikaruniai akal dan hati nurani dan hendaknya bergaul satu sama lain dalam semangat persaudaraan.

Sample text in Jawacaraka (Malay)

ꦱꦼꦩꦸꦮ ꦩꦤꦸꦱꦶꦪ ꦢꦶꦭꦲꦶꦂꦏꦤ꧀ ꦧꦺꦧꦱ꧀ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦱꦩꦫꦠ ꦢꦫꦶ ꦱꦼꦒꦶ ꦏꦼꦩꦸꦭꦶꦄꦴꦤ꧀ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦲꦏ꧀꧇꧒꧇꧉ ꦩꦼꦫꦺꦏ ꦩꦼꦩ꧀ꦥꦸꦚꦆ ꦥꦼꦩꦶꦏꦶꦫꦤ꧀ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦥꦼꦫꦱꦄꦤ꧀ ꦲꦠꦶ ꦢꦤ꧀ ꦲꦼꦤ꧀ꦢꦏ꧀ꦭꦃ ꦧꦼꦂꦠꦶꦤ꧀ꦢꦏ꧀ ꦢꦶ ꦄꦤ꧀ꦠꦫ ꦱꦠꦸ ꦱꦩ ꦭꦆꦤ꧀ ꦢꦼꦔꦤ꧀ ꦱꦼꦩꦔꦠ꧀ ꦥꦼꦂꦱꦈꦢꦫꦄꦤ꧀꧉


Semua manusia dilahirkan bebas dan samarata dari segi kemuliaan dan hak-hak. Mereka mempunyai pemikiran dan perasaan hati dan hendaklah bertindak di antara satu sama lain dengan semangat persaudaraan.

Translation (of both texts)

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 Indonesian | Phrases | Numbers | Family words | Tower of Babel | Articles | Learning materials

Information about Malay | Phrases | Numbers | Tower of Babel | Learning materials

Adapted scripts by Allison Powell

Bhalabali, Głagolicy, Inglisuraya, Jawacaraka, Nasema, Qurditsuraya

Constructed scripts for: Ainu | Arabic | Chinese languages | Dutch | English | Hawaiian | Hungarian | Japanese | Korean | Lingala | Malay & Indonesian | Persian | Tagalog / Filipino | Russian | Sanskrit | Spanish | Taino | Turkish | Vietnamese | Welsh | Other natural languages | Colour-based scripts | Tactile scripts | Phonetic/universal scripts | Constructed scripts for constructed languages | Adaptations of existing alphabets | Fictional alphabets | Magical alphabets | A-Z index | How to submit a constructed script


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