This script is an adaptation of the Latin alphabet for the Thai language devised by Tristan an Arzhig upon realising that Thai lacks a phonologically thorough and universally agreed-upon transcription system in the Latin alphabet. The Thai script is famously complex to read, and figuring out a syllable's tone requires knowing the initial consonant's class, determining the syllable's type, looking at the vowel's length, and intepreting a non-univocal tone sign. Therefore, Thai learners would greatly benefit from a straighforward transcription system. The name 'Sa̱tthā'a̱ksɔ́ɔ́n Thaj' means Thai Phonetic Alphabet.
The ISO 11940 standard proposes a one-to-one, reversible transliteration of Thai consonants, vowels and tone signs, which includes many inconsistent diacritics and special characters, and isn't any easier to interpret than the original script, as the same principles apply in order to determine the tones. The Royal Thai General System of Transcription (RTGS) and the ISO 11940-2 standard both disregard tones as well as vowel length, which are essential to Thai phonology.
This transcription aims at providing a system which is both thorough in representing all the phonemes of Thai and its tones, and easy and straightforward to read without any prior knowledge of the language or its writing system. Therefore, it is not a reflection of Thai orthography.
Download an alphabet chart for Sa̱tthā'a̱ksɔ́ɔ́n Thaj (Excel)
Raw thūk khon kə̱ə̱t maa ja̱a̱ng i̱t'sa̱ra̱. Raw thūk khon mii khwaam khīt lɛ̄ khwaam khàwcaj pen khɔ́ɔ́ng raw eeng. Raw thūk khon khuan dààj rāp kaan pa̱'ti̱ba̱t naj thaang diawkan.
raw˧ tʰuk̚˦˥ kʰon˧ kɤːt̚˨˩ maː˧ jaːŋ˨˩ ʔit̚˨˩.sa˨˩.raʔ˨˩ raw˧ tʰuk̚˦˥ kʰon˧ miː˧ kʰwaːm˧ kʰit̚˦˥ lɛʔ˦˥ kʰwaːm˧ kʰaw˥˩.t͡ɕaj˧ pen˧ kʰɔːŋ˩˩˦ raw˧ ʔeːŋ˧ raw˧ tʰuk̚˦˥ kʰon˧ kʰua̯n˧ daːj˥˩ rap̚˦˥ kaːn˧ pa˨˩.ti˨˩.bat̚˨˩ naj˧ tʰaːŋ˧ dia̯w˧.kan˧
เราทุกคนเกิดมาอย่างอิสระ เราทุกคนมีความคิดและความเข้าใจเป็นของเราเอง เราทุกคนควรได้รับการปฏิบัติในทางเดียวกัน.
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)
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Also by Tristan an Arzhig: Canadian Aboriginal Syllabics for Kalaallisut
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