The Role of Ahmet Baitursynuly in the Formation of the Kazakh Cyrillic Alphabet
1Niğde Ömer Halisdemir Üniversitesi Fen Edebiyat Fakültesi Çağdaş Türk Lehçeleri ve Edebiyatları Bölümü
2Niğde Ömer Halisdemir Üniversitesi Sosyal Bilimler Enstitüsü
Keywords: Ahmet Baitursynuly, Kazakh Cyrillic alphabet, Kazakh Arabic alphabet, Kazakh Latin alphabet, Kazakh ortography.
Kazakhs used both the old and new ortographies of the Arabic alphabet, the Latin alphabet, the Russian Cyrillic alphabet tried by Ybyrai Altynsarin, and the Kazakh Cyrillic alphabet, which was adopted in 1940 and has been used until today. It can be said that the adaptations of the Cyrillic alphabet used by Ybyrai Altynsarin, who was the first to try the Cyrillic alphabet and produced the first literary work in Kazakh, inspired the Kazakh Arabic alphabet, which was adapted by Ahmet Baitursynuly in 1912. The adaptations made by Ahmet Baitursynuly to the Arabic alphabet also became the source of the Kazakh Latin alphabet, which was adopted in 1930, and the Kazakh Cyrillic alphabet, which was adopted in 1940 and has been used until today. Ahmet Baitursynuly not only rearranged the alphabet, but made serious studies about the first orthography of Kazakh as well. Baitursynuly, who was a good linguist, is also considered the architect of today’s Kazakh grammar. In addition to these studies, it can be said that other activities of Baitursynuly, who taught at schools and was lecturing at universities, have also been effective in shaping the Latin and Cyrillic-based alphabets. While Ybyrai Altynsarin was writing his first works in the Cyrillic alphabet, he considered the use of the Arabic alphabet, which he adapted to Kazakh, and tried to write within the framework of the possibilities of the Russian Cyrillic alphabet used at that time. In this usage, instead of the c sound in Kazakh, since there is no c consonant in the Russian alphabet, he used the letter j instead, causing the j sound used in today’s Kazakh language to enter Kazakh. Although there are separate letters corresponding to round vowels in the Cyrillic alphabet, he took into consideration the use of round vowels in the Arabic alphabet with the help of a single sign while writing round vowels and tried to imitate this situation. And he adapted the bilabial v, which was used only in the historical periods of Turkish, into Kazakh in the form of both w and long u. The same is true for ı/i, ıy/iy (и). This usage, which Ybyrai Altynsarin initiated, took its final shape with the spelling rules and new alphabet prepared by Ahmet Baitursynulyand became the source of today’s alphabet. This can be seen better when the letters and usages typical to Russian in the alphabet are removed.