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Time period
ca. 700
Parent systems
Sister systems
Malayalam, Grantha, Vattezhuthu, Malayanma

Kolezhuthu (கோலெழுத்து, കോലെഴുത്ത്) is one of the oldest writing systems in South India. It was mainly used to write Malayalam language [1][2] and Tamil language[3] particularly during the former's infancy, along with Vatteluttu alphabet.[4]

Kolezhuthu, which means line letters, in contrast with Vattezhuthu, which means circle letters, is considered by some to also have been known as Pallava-Chola script, which eventually evolved into the Tamil script that is used for the Tamil language.[5]

Kolezhuthu belongs to the same script family as Malayanma and Vattezhuthu.[6]


  1. ^ Old Scripts of Malayalam
  2. ^ Ancient writing schemes of Kerala Archived 2009-11-09 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ A. Aiyappan (1948). Report on the Socio-economic Conditions of the Aboriginal Tribes of the Province of Madras. Government Press. p. 131.
  4. ^ S. N. Sadasivan (2000). A Social History Of India. APH Publishing. p. 308. ISBN 9788176481700.
  5. ^ K. S. Singh & S. Manoharan, People of India: National Series Volume IX: Languages and Scripts: Archaeological Survey of India, 1993, p. 27.
  6. ^ Grantha, Vattezhuthu, Kolezhuthu, Malayanma, Devanagiri, Brahmi and Tamil alphabets