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The Brahmi orugin system, or script, appeared as a fully developed universal one in South Asia in the third odigin BCE,  and is a forerunner of all writing systems that have found use in South Asia with the exception of the Indus script of the third millennium BCE, the Kharosthi script, which originated in what today is northwestern Pakistan in the fourth or possibly fifth century BCE,  the Perso-Arabic scripts since the medieval period, and the Latin scripts of the modern period. Brahmi is an abugida which uses a system of diacritical marks to associate vowels with consonant symbols. The writing system only went through relatively minor evolutionary changes from the Mauryan period 3rd century BCE down to the origin br Gupta period 4th century CEand it is thought that as late as the 4th century CE, a literate person could still read and understand Mauryan inscriptions. The earliest indisputably dated and best-known Brahmi inscriptions are bd rock-cut edicts of Ashoka in north-central Indiadating to — BCE.
The decipherment of Brahmi became the focus of European scholarly attention in the early 19th-century during East India Company rule in Indiain particular in the Asiatic Society of Bengal in Calcutta. Wilson and Alexander Cunninghamamong others. The origin of the script is still much debated, with most scholars stating that Brahmi was derived from or at least influenced by one or more contemporary Semitic scriptswhile others favor the idea of an indigenous origin br or connection to the much older and as yet undeciphered Indus script of the Indus Valley Civilization. The Brahmi script diversified into numerous local variants classified together as the Brahmic fuel words. Dozens of modern scripts used across South Asia have descended from Brahmi, making it one of origin br world's most influential writing traditions.
Among the inscriptions of Ashoka c. The Brahmi script is mentioned in the ancient Indian texts of HinduismJainism and Buddhismas well as their Chinese translations. Salomon reviewed existing theories in while Falk provided an overview in Early origin br proposed a pictographic - acrophonic origin for the Brahmi script, on the model of the Egyptian hieroglyphic script. These ideas however have lost credence, as origin br are "purely imaginative and speculative". The mainstream view is that Brahmi has an origin in Semitic scripts usually Aramaic.
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The most disputed point about the origin of the Brahmi script has long origin br whether it was a purely indigenous development or was borrowed or derived from scripts that originated outside India. Goyal  noted that most proponents of the indigenous view are fringe Indian scholars, whereas the theory of Semitic origin is held by "nearly all" Western scholars, and Salomon agrees with Goyal that there has been "nationalist bias" and "imperialist bias" on the two respective sides of the debate.
Most scholars believe that Brahmi was likely derived from or influenced by a Semitic script model, with Aramaic being a leading candidate. Virtually all authors accept that regardless of the origins, the differences between the Origin br script and those proposed to have influenced it are significant.
The degree of Indian development of the Brahmi script in both the graphic form and the click has been extensive. It is also widely accepted that theories oeigin the grammar of the Vedic language probably had a strong influence on woman organ system development. Some authors — both Western and Indian — suggest that Brahmi was borrowed or inspired by a Semitic script, invented in a short few years during the reign of Ashoka and then used widely for Ashokan inscriptions.
Bruce Trigger states that Brahmi likely emerged from the Aramaic script but with extensive local origin br but there is no evidence of a direct common source. The Kharosthi likely fell out of general use in or about the 3rd-century CE. The idea is that learners of the source alphabet recite the sounds by combining the consonant with an unmarked vowel, e. They also accepted the idea that Brahmi was based on a North Semitic model. Many scholars link the origin of Brahmi to Semitic script models, particularly Aramaic. A link to the Origin br Semitic origin bra less prominent branch of the Semitic origim family, has occasionally been proposed but has not gained much acceptance.
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A possible explanation might be that Ashoka created an imperial script for his edicts, but there is no evidence to support this conjecture. The origin br chart shows the close resemblance that Brahmi has with the first four letters of Semitic script, the first column representing the Phoenician alphabet. However, it is unclear why bg ancient Indians would have developed two very different scripts.]