Lanna script

Ian James
© October-November 2011

script name

Lanna is one of my favourite writing systems, but it can tend to rely too heavily on hand-written forms, which are often cluttered. Fonts for it are thus troubled with stylistic disunity and poor use of glyph-space. This current offering aims for a very clear style; some glyphs have been redesigned slightly, and a number of them (still recognizable) come directly from my Tai Anphabet.


The main changes are to high and low class /c/, low class dental /th/ and the glottal. Minor changes include smaller upper tails for high /p/ and middle /j/, bringing the head blob of many glyphs to inside their bowl, tilting /na:/, matching the loops of high /s/ and low and high /ph/, and matching all large upper and lower tails, which are designed to avoid vowels and subscripts.

Lanna consonants


Here are the vowel marks, shown with a high class /k/:

Lanna vowels

And the special glyphs for initial vowels /i/, /i:/, /u/, /u:/ and /e/:

Lanna initial vowels


The subscripts are slightly smaller than usual, so they don’t make clutter. Those without a vertical-rising stem all fit within any long tails of consonants. Sometimes compact versions are needed where two subscript glyphs must sit together.

Lanna subscripts


The Hora numerals are derived from ancient Mon. The Dhamma numerals are unique to Lanna, used mainly in religious documents.

Lanna numerals

Sample text

A poem about maintaining interest in the Lanna script.

example of new Lanna font


All material on this page © Ian James.
Last modified Nov.12,2011