Contact the appropriate librarian in International Collections and Research Support (ICRS) for help with material in any of these areas:
You have a book. You don't know what language it's in.
Who do you call? ICRS! This Guide will help match script to librarian.
Does it look...
If all else fails, please visit
English speakers have it easy. Generally, English is always written in the Latin alphabet (English writing system).
But in theory, we could also write (transliterate) English words in the Russian alphabet/script (named Cyrillic). That would look a little something like this:
Latin alphabet: Hello world!
Cyrillic: Хелло ворлд!
Both are English--they just use different scripts. This is not the case for many other languages.
For example, the dead language Pali (think: the Latin of Theravada Buddhism) is written in many different scripts, depending on which country is using the text. The most common scripts are:
This guide will help you identify the script ONLY. More work may need to be done to identify the language.