An experiment: a “latin” alphabet modelled on the ethiopian Ge’ez script
Cush, Punt, Saba, Aksum, Abyssinia, Ethiopia — the name of this country in Eastern Africa has seen many changes throughout thousands of years of history. Few nations have a similar long history and cultural tradition. Independent as far back as can be remembered, it was one of the “great” kingdoms for a long time. It is also considered the oldest Christian country.
The Amharic language of Ethiopia and its accompanying script “Ge’ez” developed from Semitic origins in Arabia. Due to a more than 1600 year Christian tradition and the close relationship to the Hellenistic Mediterranean region during late antiquity, there are borrowings from Greek which can be recognized in the Amharic script. »Ge’ez« is the only script of Semitic origin which is written from left to right. Because Amharic is traditionally written with an expanded pen tip, it shows the typical ductus also characteristic of the uncial scripts of late antiquity and the early Middle Ages.
So for experts in script, Amhara has a somewhat sacramental effect. And, although the individual forms look foreign, the overall picture is strangely familiar.
Amhara was created by transferring the typical Amharic forms to the west European alphabet. Nearly all of the formal characteristics of Ge’ez could be carried over into the lower case letters.
Typical for the Ethiopian script are the specially emphasized expanded verticals resulting from the horizontal position of the pen.
Also typical of Semitic scripts are the many forms of commas, serifs, rings and all kinds of additional “accessories.”
The lower case characters have a restless appearance and are not fluently legible. In this way the foreign and exotic impression of the African model is still present.
In contrast to Roman capitals the Amharic characters almost completely do without acute triangular forms. The capitals of Amhara receive a very pleasant, round appearance. A text in upper case characters of this font makes a calm impression as the same few basic forms are continually found in the diverse characters. Seldom does a text in capitals have this gentle effect.
Amhara includes a number of ligatures which dispose of many non-attractive letter combinations: ch ck fa ff fi fl ffl ffi ft gg gt ll st ta th ti tt tu tz.
Stylistic alternates are available for the letters f g h p t y z.
- Designer: Ingo Zimmerman
- License: You can use this font for personal purpose.
You can purchase full version and commercial license here: https://www.myfonts.com/fonts/ingo/amhara/