Writing Malayalam words using phonetic keyboard is as easy as writing our names in English. For example, കേരള രാജ്യം മനോഹരമാണ് can be written as kEraLa rAjyaM manOharamAN.

 

See: Phonetic Examples


 

Vowel:

അ=a, ആ=A,aa, ഇ=i, ഈ=I,ee, ഉ=u, ഊ=U,oo, ഋ=Ru, ൠ=RU, എ=e, ഏ=E, ഐ=ai, ഒ=o, ഓ=O, ഔ=au,ou

 

= M

= H

 

Consonant:

ക്=k, ഖ്=K,kh, ഗ്=g, ഘ്=G,gh, ങ്=~g

ച്=c,ch, ഛ്=C,Ch, ജ്=j, ഝ്=J,jh, ഞ്=~j

ട്=T, ഠ്=Th, ഡ്=D, ഢ്=Dh, ണ്=N

ത്=t, ഥ്=th, ദ്=d, ധ്=dh, ന്=n

പ്=p, ഫ്=P,ph, ബ്=b, ഭ്=B,bh, മ്=m

 

യ്=y,Y, ര്=r, റ്=rx,tx ല്=l, വ്=v,w, ശ്=S,sh, ഷ്=Sh, സ്=s, ഹ്=h,~h, ള്=L, ഴ്=zh,Lx

 

ജ്ഞ = j~ja

ക്ഷ = kSha

 

Others:

ഽ = &

₨ = Rs

Danda = |

Double Danda = ||

Zero Width Joiner = ^

Zero Width Non Joiner = ^^

 

Punctuation Marks:

The English symbols [ ] { } ( ) - + * / = ; : . , " ? ! % \ ~ _ will translate into the same symbols in Malayalam also.

 

Quotation Marks:

` ' characters are converted to single smart quotes (‘ ’) characters. We can get double smart quotes (“ ’) by using them twice.


When a consonant character is used alone, it results in a dead consonant (mula vyanjana).

 

Example

k, c, T, t, p = ക്, ച്, ട്, ത്, പ്

N, n, r, l, L = ണ്, ന്, ര്, ല്, ള്

 

When a consonant character is followed by a vowel character, it results in a live consonant.

 

ka kA ki kI ku kU kRu kRU ke kE kai ko kO kau kaM kaH

ക കാ കി കീ കു കൂ കൃ കൠ കെ കേ കൈ കൊ കോ കൗ കം കഃ

pashu pAl tarunnu.

പശു പാല് തരുന്നു.

sahAyaM ceytavare marxakkarutu^.

സഹായം ചെയ്തവരെ മറക്കരുതു‍.

 

‘ഹ’ consonant can be written in two ways; 'h' and '~h'. If you want to apply a ‘ഹ’ half consonant to consonants such as 'k', 'g', 't', 'd', etc, you have to use '~h' instead of of 'h'.

 

Example:

bakkiMghAm = ബക്കിംഘാമ്

bakkiMg~hAm = ബക്കിംഗ്ഹാമ്


 

ZWJ, ZWNJ characters:

^ = ZWJ (zero width joiner)

^^ = ZWNJ (zero width non joiner)

 

If ZWJ comes after N,n,r,l,L consonants, we get the chillu forms.

 

Example:

N, n, r, l, L = ണ്, ന്, ര്, ല്, ള്

N^, n^, r^, l^, L^ = ണ്‍, ന്‍, ര്‍, ല്‍, ള്‍

 

janma = ജന്മ

jan^ma = ജന്‍മ

jan^^ma = ജന്‌മ

 

When ZWJ comes after the 'u' vowel sign, a chandrakkala symbol is added on the top of the 'u' vowel sign. [Note: Malayalam linguists deny the use of chandrakkala symbol with vowel signs. But, such usage can be found even today.]

 

Example:

nUr = നൂര്

nUru = നൂരു

nUru^ = നൂരു‍

 

vIT = വീട്

vITu = വീടു

vITu^ = വീടു‍

 

If a dead consonant is required in the middle of a word, the ZWNJ character should be used after the consonant.

 

Example:

satsaMgaM = സത്സംഗം

sat^^saMgaM = സത്‌സംഗം

 

sAPTwEr = സാഫ്ട്വേര്

sAPT^^wEr = സാഫ്ട്‌വേര്

 

If two English characters are making one Malayalam vowel (ex: ai, ou), then, ZWNJ character can be used to separate them into different vowels.

 

Example:

iMDiyainPo = ഇംഡിയൈന്ഫൊ

iMDiya^^inPo = ഇംഡിയ‌ഇന്ഫൊ