ⓘ Romanian Cyrillic alphabet


ⓘ Romanian Cyrillic alphabet

The Romanian Cyrillic alphabet, is the Cyrillic alphabet that was used to write the Romanian language before the 1860s, when it was officially replaced by a Latin-based Romanian alphabet. The Romanian Cyrillic alphabet was based on the Bulgarian alphabet. Cyrillic remained in occasional use until the 1920s, mostly in Bessarabia.

From the 1830s until the full adoption of the Latin alphabet, a so-called Civil alphabet was in place, combining Cyrillic and Latin letters, and including some of the Latin letters with diacritics that remain in the modern Romanian alphabet. The Romanian Orthodox Church continued using the alphabet in its publications until 1881.

The Romanian Cyrillic alphabet is not the same as the Moldovan Cyrillic alphabet which is based on the Russian alphabet used in the Moldavian SSR for most of the Soviet era.


1. Unregulated transitional alphabets

Starting with the 1830s and ending with the official adoption of the Latin alphabet, there were no regulations for writing Romanian, and various alphabets using Cyrillic and Latin letters, besides the mid-transitional version in the table above, were used, sometimes two or more of them in a single book. The following table shows some of the many alphabets used in print.


2. An example of Romanian Cyrillic text

According to a document from the 1850s, this is how the Romanian Lords Prayer looked in Cyrillic script. Transcriptional values correspond to the above table.