Hangul (/ˈhɑːnˌɡuːl/ HAHN-gool; from Korean hangeul 한글 [ha(ː)n.ɡɯl]), is the Korean alphabet. It has been used to write the Korean language since its creation in the 15th century by Sejong the Great.
It is the official writing system of South Korea and North Korea. It is a co-official writing system in the Yanbian Korean Autonomous Prefecture and Changbai Korean Autonomous County in Jilin Province, China. It is sometimes used to write the Cia-Cia language spoken near the town of Bau-Bau, Indonesia.
The alphabet consists of 14 consonants and 10 vowels. Hangul letters are grouped into syllabic blocks, vertically and horizontally. For example, the Korean word for "honeybee" is written 꿀벌, not ㄲㅜㄹㅂㅓㄹ. As it combines the features of alphabetic and syllabic writing systems, Hangul has been described as an "alphabetic syllabary" by some linguists. As in traditional Chinese writing, Hangul texts were traditionally written top to bottom, right to left, and are occasionally still written this way for stylistic purposes. Today, Hangul is typically written from left to right with spaces between words and western-style punctuation.
Some linguists consider Hangul the most logical writing system in the world, partly because the shapes of its consonants mimic the shapes of the speaker's mouth when pronouncing each consonant.
|This article includes content from Hangul on Wikipedia (view authors). License under CC BY-SA 3.0.|