The World’s First (and Only) Truly Phonemic Alphabet



NAVLIPI uses the 26 letters (glyphs) of the Latin (Roman) alphabet, specifically as used for English, i.e. without diacritic marks, accent marks, etc., or transformed letters, e.g. as found in versions of the Latin alphabet used in many other languages, such Czech (e.g. č, š) or even French (e.g. ç), plus just fifteen (15) additional letters


Three of these additional letters are borrowed from Greek (ε; Ω; η). Eleven of them are transformed (an inverted c);  ƪ (an inverted j); ȓ ; t ; d ր; o/; o//; z; ƹ (transformed g); and 2 (the number 2, but used as a letter)). This use in NAVLIPI is thus actually not unlike transformed Latin letters used in such languages as Czech (e.g.  č, ž, á, í ) or even French (e.g.  é, ç). And only one letter is entirely new (). As noted elsewhere in this document, the Latin script was chosen as basis because it is today (2020), fortunately or unfortunately, the most recognized script worldwide. And in the Indian Subcontinent political context, the Latin script carries less “baggage”, than, say, the Dewanaagari or Tamil or Arabic scripts. 


            The 15 additional NAVLIPI lettersand their use, are listed in summary below. Only lower case letters are listed, except in the last case, since the upper case letters are obvious extensions of the lower case ones: 

  • ε (Greek Epsilon) as in English gray, Hindi , Spanish que. 
  • Ω (Greek Omega), as in English ball, vowel in Hindi कौन
  • η (Greek Eta, used by NAVLIPI as a form of n). For the palatal nasal, as in English inch, Hindi मञ्च 
  •  ɔ (inverted-c) as in English Jack, vowel in Hindi मै.
  • ƪ (inverted-j) English Jack Hindi .
  • ȓVowel (“vocalic”) r-sound, distinguished from the semivowel (IPA “approximant”) r-sound. Found in Indian languages, e.g. Hindi (). But this sound is also found in American English, e.g. in bird
  • t  (unvoiced) ; d (voiced); ր (nasal)Variants of the letters t, d, n, to represent the retroflex (मूर्धन्यphones of Indian languages. 
  • o/; o//. Variants of the o-vowel, to represent the sounds in French feuille and German schön, respectively (as two examples). 
  • z.  To represent ingressive clicks. Placed after the sound it is qualifying (i.e. what NAVLIPI calls a post-positional operator, “post-op”). Examples: English “tsk tsk” sound, which is an ingressive, dental click, in NAVLIPI tz  tzEnglish “giddyap” sound used for horses etc., which is an ingressive lateral (l-sound) click, in NAVLIPI lz. 
  • 2 (resembling the number 2), to represent the very rare medio-palatal, unvoiced plosive, e.g. the sound of c in Turkish car (“profit”). 
  •  (lower case);   (upper case). For the Tamil letter , a sound similar to the retroflex r-semivowel, except that it is articulated with the lower jaw thrust forward. It is usually transcribed in the Latin alphabet as zh
  • ƹ (transformed g). For the voiced velar fricative.