Ogham is an alphabetic script devised to write a very early form of Irish. Monumental Ogham inscriptions are found in Wales, Ireland, Scotland, England and on the Isle of Man. Many of the Scottish inscriptions are undeciphered and may be in Pictish. It is probable the Ogham (or the Old Irish Ogam) was widely written in wood in early times. The main flowering of classical Ogham, rendered in monumental stone, was in the fifth and sixth centuries. Such inscriptions were mainly employed as territorial markers and memorials; the more ancient examples are standing stones.

The script was originally written along the edges of stone where two faces meet; when written on paper, the central stem-lines of the script can be said to represent the edge of the stone. Inscriptions written on stem-lines cut into the face of the stone, instead of along its edge, known as scholastic, are of a later date (post-7th century). Notes were also commonly written in Ogham in manuscripts as recently as the 16th century.

The Ogham alphabet consists of 26 distinct characters (feda), the first twenty are considered primary, and the last 6 (forfeda) are supplementary. The character names used in the Unicode standard reflect the spelling of the names in modern Irish Gaelic, except that the acute is stripped from Úr, Éabhadh, Ór and Ifín, and the mutation of nGéadal is not reflected.

Ogham text is read beginning from the bottom left side of a stone, continuing upward, across the top and down the right side. Monumental Ogham was incised chiefly in a bottom to top direction, thought there are examples of left to right bilingual inscriptions in Irish and Latin. Manuscript Ogham accommodated the horizontal left to right direction of the Latin script, and the vowels were written as vertical strokes as opposed to the incised notches of the inscriptions.

Unicode's Ogham code block reserves the 32 code points from U+1680 to U+169F, of which 29 are currently assigned.

Unified Canadian Aboriginal Syllabics <-- Ogham --> Runic
An Ogham font typically displays all Ogham characters with a visible stemline, representing the edge of monumental Ogham inscriptions.

All the characters in this code block were added in Unicode 3.0

Number of characters in each General Category :

Letter, Other       Lo : 26
Punctuation, Open   Ps :  1
Punctuation, Close  Pe :  1
Separator, Space    Zs :  1

Number of characters in each Bidirectional Category :

Left To Right    L : 26
Whitespace      WS :  1
Other Neutral   ON :  2

The columns below should be interpreted as :

  1. The Unicode code for the character
  2. The character in question
  3. The Unicode name for the character
  4. The Unicode General Category for the character
  5. The Unicode Bidirectional Category for the character

If the characters below show up poorly, or not at all, see Unicode Support for possible solutions.




U+1680       Ogham space mark Zs WS
* the glyph shows only the stemline in a "stemmed" style font and is blank in a "stemless" style font
ref U+0020     space (Basic Latin)

     Traditional letters

U+1681   ᚁ   Ogham letter beith Lo L
U+1682   ᚂ   Ogham letter luis Lo L
U+1683   ᚃ   Ogham letter fearn Lo L
U+1684   ᚄ   Ogham letter sail Lo L
U+1685   ᚅ   Ogham letter nion Lo L
U+1686   ᚆ   Ogham letter uath Lo L
U+1687   ᚇ   Ogham letter dair Lo L
U+1688   ᚈ   Ogham letter tinne Lo L
U+1689   ᚉ   Ogham letter coll Lo L
U+168A   ᚊ   Ogham letter ceirt Lo L
U+168B   ᚋ   Ogham letter muin Lo L
U+168C   ᚌ   Ogham letter gort Lo L
U+168D   ᚍ   Ogham letter ngeadal Lo L
U+168E   ᚎ   Ogham letter straif Lo L
U+168F   ᚏ   Ogham letter ruis Lo L
U+1690   ᚐ   Ogham letter ailm Lo L
U+1691   ᚑ   Ogham letter onn Lo L
U+1692   ᚒ   Ogham letter ur Lo L
U+1693   ᚓ   Ogham letter eadhadh Lo L
U+1694   ᚔ   Ogham letter iodhadh Lo L

     Forfeda (supplementary letters)

U+1695   ᚕ   Ogham letter eabhadh Lo L
U+1696   ᚖ   Ogham letter or Lo L
U+1697   ᚗ   Ogham letter uilleann Lo L
U+1698   ᚘ   Ogham letter ifin Lo L
U+1699   ᚙ   Ogham letter eamhancholl Lo L
U+169A   ᚚ   Ogham letter peith Lo L


U+169B   ᚛   Ogham feather mark Ps ON
* marks beginning of Ogham text
U+169C   ᚜   Ogham reversed feather mark Pe ON
* marks end of Ogham text

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