November 27, 2006

Map of South Asia

I came across this terrific map on Wikipedia. It shows South Asia, with the names of the various countries, the states and union territories of India, and the provinces of Pakistan in the local language and writing system. The caption भारत in the lower right says "India" in Hindi, but the map actually includes Sri Lanka, Pakistan, China, Tibet, Nepal, Bangladesh and Burma as well. [Click on the map for a larger version.]

Map of South Asia with Native Names

In addition to being pretty, it's a nice reminder of some of the writing systems you (or at least I) have still to learn. Sinhala, in particular, continues to intimidate me. All those curlicues give me a headache.

Addendum 2006-11-27

Reader Vajra Chandrasekara points out that Sri Lanka is mis-spelled. It is written ශ්රී ලංකාව, which makes sense but is not the way the word is actually written, which is ශ්‍රීලංකාව. Stephen Carlson points out that the Chinese for "People's Republic of China" is in traditional characters, not the simplified characters in use in China today. For example, the last character, "country", would be 国 in simplified characters. I'm not sure why that is - the little bit of information on the creator's Wikimedia user page indicates that he is "from China". Anyhow, its okay with me - I prefer traditional characters.

Posted by Bill Poser at November 27, 2006 01:41 PM