ARABIC CALLIGRAPHY INSTRUCTION
Square Kufi Alphabet
Instructor: Mamoun Sakkal
New Square Kufic Alphabet chart (2017)
Figure 1.28 Square Kufic alphabet chart Notes:
Init= Initial form, Medi= Medial form, Fina= Final form, Isol= Isolated form.
Red letters are variations that occur historically but are not desirable because they create reading ambiguity.
Letters can be turned at right angles, examples are shown for letters D, N, and W.
Note that all the black letters of the written text should fall on the grey colored background gridline, and never in-between them.
For my Ph.D. dissertation titled "Square Kufic Calligraphy in Modern Art,
Transmission and Transformation" completed in 2010 at the University of Washington
I have updated the Square Kufic chart as shown above. This is an expansion of the original chart published on this page as shown below.
In the new chart above, I also revised the size of the connections between the letters to be half a square each, so that when two letters are connected
there will be a connection that is only one square wide. In the older chart below, each connection was one square wide, and if two letters are connected
without overlapping the connections, a two square connection results. This breakes the rule to have the lines and spaces all of equal size.
Qassim Haider provides a web app for designing Square Kufic here: http://typogridapp.com
Examples of historic examples of Square Kufic can be found here: http://kufic.info
Note: Thanks to David Rowe's observation, I have corrected the letters Tah.fina (exteneded left tail) and Kaf.init (no connection on right) to conform to the gridlines.
Old Square Kufic Alphabet chart (2003)
1. Square Kufi, like Early Kufi, is written without dots that distinguish between the letters sharing the same glyph shape.
2. In the top line of this figure, Arabic letters are written from right to left, while their English equivalents are written from left to right.
3. For a complete listing of the alphabet please check here
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