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Submissions/Automatic Deciphering and Digitization Of Ancient Characters (Brahmi, Vattezhuthu And Grantha) Of The Tamil Language From Manuscripts And Inscriptions

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This is an Open submission for Wikimania 2017 that has not yet been reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

Submission no. 7010 Subject - L4
Title of the submission

Automatic Deciphering and Digitization of Ancient Characters (Brahmi, Vattezhuthu and Grantha) of the Tamil Language from Manuscripts and Inscriptions

Type of submission (lecture, panel, tutorial/workshop, roundtable discussion, lightning talk, poster, birds of a feather discussion)

Presentation / Poster / Lightning Talk

Author of the submission

E.K.Vellingiriraj (girirajek)

Language of presentation


E-mail address




Country of origin


Affiliation, if any (organisation, company etc.)

Kongu Engineering College, Perundurai - 638 060, TN, INDIA

Personal homepage or blog


Abstract (up to 300 words to describe your proposal)

Tamil is one of the oldest languages in the world, is rich in literature. In the ancient days, the writers, especially in Southern Tamilnadu, used palm leaves to encrypt their writing. The ancient literature includes many palm leaf manuscripts that contain rare commentaries on sangam works, unpublished portions of classics, saiva, vaishnava and jain works, poetry of all descriptions, medical works of exceptional values, food, astronomy & astrology, vaastu & kaama shastra, jewellery, music, dance & drama, medicine, Siddha and so on. The Tamil palm manuscripts are available all over the world in renowned libraries including Tamilnadu. The earliest period of Tamil literature, Sangam literature, dated from 3rd century BC – AD 3rd century. It has the oldest extant literature amongst other Dravidian languages. The earliest epigraphic records are found on rock edicts and hero stones date from around the 5th century BC. The oldest dated Tamil inscription written in the Tamil-Brahmi script has been found in Palani in Southern India, scientifically dated to 540 BC - the oldest known Brahmi inscriptions on the Indian sub-continent. Nowadays, the conversion of ancient Tamil characters from palm manuscripts and inscriptions is manually made by people. The characters also have developed in different names like Tamil Brahmi, Vattezhuthu, and Grantha alphabets in different centuries. Each century has different styles and strokes of characters. In the existing system, there is no effective ancient Tamil handwritten character recognition from palm manuscripts and inscriptions. The proposed research is to form a data set from 3rd BC to current 21st century and to develop the multimodal system that can recognize the Ancient characters from manuscripts and inscriptions to convert them into present digital Tamil text format and archiving the information.

What will attendees take away from this session?

Attendees may understand the culture and digitization of Ancient Characters like Brahmi(500BC-5th Century, Vattezhthu (2nd-15th Century) & Grantha(5th - 18th Century).

Theme of presentation

Sister Projects

For workshops and discussions, what level is the intended audience?


Length of session (if other than 25 minutes, specify how long)
5-10 Mins
Will you attend Wikimania if your submission is not accepted?
Slides or further information (optional)

20 Slides demonstrate the Digitization and Culture of World's Oldest Language TAMIL.

Special requests

This project is funded by University Grants Commission, New Delhi, INDIA

Is this Submission a Draft or Final?

This is a Completed submission for Wikimania 2017 ready to be reviewed by a member of the Programme Committee.

Interested attendees

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