Turkish Sign Language


A language of Turkey

Alternate Names
TİD, Türk İşaret Dili


Language Status

5 (Developing).


Two-handed fingerspelling, unrelated to the one used for British Sign Language [bfi]. (Kubus and Hohenberger 2011).

Other Comments

Presence of deaf people using sign languages is documented from Hittite times (2000 to 1200 BCE). During the Ottoman Empire (15th to 18th centuries), deaf and other sign language users, called Dilsiz ‘speechless’, served as royal servants, although there is no evidence that Ottoman Sign Language is related to modern TID. A one-handed fingerspelling system for Arabic script was used in the 19th and early 20th centuries until the alphabet revolution in 1928 that introduced Latin script for writing Turkish [tur], at which time a two-handed fingerspelling system for Latin script came into use. (Kemaloglu and Kemaloglu 2012).

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