transliteration or transcription to Latin characters

Romanization, or Latinization, is how words from languages that normally do not use the Latin alphabet are converted into Latin letters. That allows people who do not know the original writing system to read the sounds of the language. Romanization is one way to show the pronunciation of the language's words.

There are often several ways to romanize a language. For the Russian language, the Soviet Union invented several systems, and the United Nations and the International Organization for Standardization invented two of the others. There are also several methods for Arabic, Japanese, and Chinese. Some romanization systems are based on the writing system of the original language, some are based on speech in the original language, and some are based on both. In other words, some romanization systems are based on transliteration, and others are based on transcription.


Other websites

  • UNGEGN Working Group on Romanization Systems
  • U.S. Library of Congress Romanization Tables in PDF format
  • Java romanization app
  • One of the few books with lists of romanizations is ALA-LC Romanization Tables, Randall Barry (ed.), U.S. Library of Congress, 1997, ISBN 0-8444-0940-5.
  • Microsoft Transliteration Utility – A free tool for making and using transliteration systems from any alphabet to any other alphabet.
  • G. Gerych. Transliteration of Cyrillic Alphabets. Ottawa University, April 1965. 126 pp.