Compiled by the UNGEGN Working Group on Romanization Systems
Version 4.0, March 2016


No romanization system for Maldivian (Divehi) has been approved at the United Nations conferences on the standardization of geographical names.

In 1987 the Maldivian government adopted a system for the romanization of Maldivian. It was also approved by the BGN and the PCGN in 1988. Minor modifications to the system were introduced in 2009. Notes on its application have been adapted from the BGN/PCGN table.

Maldivian is written from right to left. Vowels are marked as diacritical marks accompanying a consonant character.

System of romanization

The official romanization (1987) is as follows.


1 ހ h
2 ށ sh
3 ނ nA
4 ރ r
5 ބ b
6 ޅ lh
7 ކ k
8 އ (B)
9 ވ v
10 މ m
11 ފ f
12 ދ dh
13 ތ thC
14 ލ l
15 ގ g
16 ޏ gn
17 ސ s
18 ޑ d
19 ޒ z
20 ޓ t
21 ޔ y
22 ޕ p
23 ޖ j
24 ޗ ch

Consonants with diacritical marks (used mainly in words of Arabic origin, corresponding Arabic characters and their romanizations are shown in parentheses)

25 ޘ th’ (ث th)
26 ޙ h’ (ح ḩ)
27 ޚ kh (خ kh)
28 ޛ dh’ (ذ dh)
29 ޜ x (ژ zh)
30 ޝ sh’ (ش sh)
31 ޞ s’ (ص ş)
32 ޟ l’ (ض ḑ)
33 ޠ t’ (ط ţ)
34 ޡ z’ (ظ z̧)
35 ޢ (ع ‘)
36 ޣ gh (غ gh)
37 ޤ q (ق q)
38 ޥ w (و w)

Note. Romanization values for consonant characters with diacritical marks have been taken from the ISO draft transliteration for Thaana (Anthony P. Stone, June 26, 2000,

Vowels (އ stands for any consonant character)

1 އަ a
2 އާ aa
3 އެ e
4 އޭ ey
5 އި i
6 އީ ee
7 އޮ o
8 އޯ oa
9 އު u
10 އޫ oo

Diacritical mark (އ stands for any consonant character)

އް (not romanized; marks absence of the vowel)


  1. The character އ is not romanized. If it bears a vowel character, that vowel character alone is romanized, e.g. އިރުގައި irugai.
  2. Characters އް and ށް word-finally and before a digraph are romanized h, e.g. ވޭވަށް Veyvah, ކެރެއްދޫ Kerehdhoo. In other cases, when އް and ށް are used, the romanized value of the following consonant character is doubled, e.g. ބައްޓެށް batteh, ކަޅެހުއްޓާ Kalhehuttaa.