High Galactic alphabet

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Jedi Path Jedi Code

Two pages from a copy of The Jedi Path: A Manual for Students of the Force, written in High Galactic characters, with handwritten comments from some of its former owners.

"Done up in High Galactic letters, I see."
Zerba Cher'dak, commenting on a standard alphanumerical keypad[src]

The High Galactic alphabet was a form of writing in the galaxy. While not as commonly used as Aurebesh, this alphabet was frequently used in signatures and by nobles,[1] and was often associated with snobbery.[2] It was most commonly used to write in Galactic Basic Standard. The High Galactic letters came in two forms: one was a printscript, in which all letters were treated as separate glyphs, and the other was a handwritten, cursive form, in which the strokes of successive characters were joined and the angles rounded.[3] While the High Galactic alphabet normally made the distinction between the letters that were in larger upper case and smaller lower case,[4] many logos were written entirely in capital letters.[5][6]

Origins and historyEdit


The logo of the Corporate Sector Authority incorporated both the High Galactic alphabet and Aurebesh.

"Does the weapon begin with the letter A?"
Weequay bodyguard, speaking to his quay[src]

The alphabet originated as part of the High Galactic language, which was spoken by the colonists of Alsakan prior to 17,000 BBY, and originated during the war between the Galactic Republic and the Tion Cluster. The alphabet entered widespread galactic usage in approximately 17,000 BBY, during the Alsakan Conflicts. The Alsakanese borrowed characters from Tionese language and introduced others of their own invention, creating a writing system with no ties to the Aurebesh or related scripts.[1]

Millennia later, the alphabet continued to see fairly widespread use. By circa 22 BBY, Republic Census figures showed that the High Galactic Alphabet was used by nearly one third of Galactic Basic speakers when writing, and by over half of upper-class Basic speakers. As a result, Aurebesh and the High Galactic Alphabet were often presented side-by-side.[1] Nearly all Basic advertising was presented in the High Galactic Alphabet, as was the case for corporate logos that incorporated written language, such as Industrial Automaton, the Corellian Engineering Corporation, and Sienar Fleet Systems.[1]

The High Galactic Alphabet was also used for naming many starship models (such as the T-65 X-wing starfighter) and droid models (such as the R2 series of astromech droids).[1]

Texts written in this alphabetEdit

Although the usage of this alphabet was less common than Aurebesh, there is indication that whole (although few) texts were written in it. Following are several examples:


Ashii Nermani delivers an Imperial HoloVision newscast with headlines in both this alphabet and Aurebesh.


Many Humans—and some Non-Humans—would use this alphabet in their signatures, in opposition to the more common Aurebesh, perhaps by tradition. Those individuals included:

Droid names examplesEdit


A Sienar Fleet Systems transport decorated with the alternate Basic alphabet.

Droid names often derived from letters in this alphabet:

Other examplesEdit

Behind the scenesEdit


The tractor beam information gauge, as it appears in the original A New Hope (top) and the 2004 DVD version (bottom).

This article describes the occurrences of the Latin alphabet in the Star Wars universe; it is a form of writing in the real world and is the most common alphabet of Western nations, usually containing about twenty-six letters. Although canon has established the fictitious writing system of Aurebesh, it is somewhat unsurprising that this alphabet, especially its American English variant, make their appearance in the Star Wars universe, as the Star Wars movies and most Expanded Universe materials are of American origin.


"Well, actually, they do use the Roman alphabet in the Star Wars universe."
Pablo Hidalgo[src]

The Latin alphabet has appeared in several instances of the original trilogy and the Expanded Universe, but its appearance was ambiguous before explicitly canonized as the "High Galactic Alphabet" in the Hyperspace-exclusive article The Written Word.[1] Roman labels in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope were edited into Aurebesh in the DVD release, indicating that George Lucas had some reasons to believe that real-world Roman letters don't belong in the Star Wars universe.

However, in the way that Galactic Basic is English, Roman letters were seen in some in-universe inscriptions (such as the Jedi Code) or emblems, like that of the Jedi Order. The text seen on viewscreens in The Star Wars Holiday Special is in Roman, rather than Aurebesh, due to the fact that Aurebesh had yet to be invented at the time in the real world. Aurebesh was introduced later in The Empire Strikes Back (when R2D2's conversation with Luke Skywalker in the X-Wing on the way to Dagobah is translated on the ship's dashboard readout).

In The Clone Wars episode The Gungan General, a display in Barb Mentir's Flarestar-class attack shuttle shows High Galactic letters; it says "WHATEVER 123467-RR".

Some instances show both Roman and Aurebesh alongside (Corporate Sector Authority) showing that the two coexisted. Additionally, the use of characters from the Roman alphabet to describe various starfighters based on their shapes (X-wing, Y-wing, A-wing, etc.), as the shapes of these craft do not match the shapes of the corresponding letters in Aurebesh but do in the Roman alphabet while other craft was named after letters in the Aurebesh alphabet (Aurek-class tactical strikefighter) or Greek alphabet (Lambda-class T-4a shuttle).

Except vehicles, droids too are named with the alphabet, such as R2-D2 being called Artoo Deeto, rather than "Reshtoo Dorntoo", and C-3PO is Cee Threepio and not Cresh-ThreePethOsk. Clone Troopers are also sometimes code named in games such as Star Wars: Battlefront.

In the Tokyo Disneyland queue videos for both Star Tours and Star Tours: The Adventures Continue, English writing using both Roman lettering/"High Galactic" and Aurebesh appears along with Japanese writing. In addition, in the former ride, French writing and speech was used for the Disneyland Paris version of the ride.

Non-canon appearancesEdit

The Happy Nerf Herder's signage was in Basic, as were various other Coruscant signs around 50 BBY.[29] Darth Vader's diary was written in this script.[30]

See alsoEdit


Non-canonical appearances


Notes and referencesEdit

See alsoEdit

WP favicon Latin alphabet on Wikipedia

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