Tibetan is a Unicode block containing characters for the Tibetan, Dzongkha, and other languages of Tibet, Bhutan, Nepal, and northern India. The Tibetan Unicode block is unique for having been allocated as a standard virama-based encoding for version 1.0, removed from the Unicode Standard when unifying with ISO 10646 for version 1.1, then reintroduced as an explicit root/subjoined encoding, with a larger block size in version 2.0.
The Tibetan alphabet is an abugida of Indic origin used to write the Tibetan language as well as Dzongkha, the Sikkimese language, Ladakhi, and sometimes Balti. The printed form of the alphabet is called uchen script (Wylie: dbu-can; «with a head») while the hand-written cursive form used in everyday writing is called umê script (Wylie: dbu-med; «headless»). The alphabet is very closely linked to a broad ethnic Tibetan identity. Besides Tibet, it has also been used for Tibetan languages in Bhutan, India, Nepal, and Pakistan. The Tibetan alphabet is ancestral to the Limbu alphabet, the Lepcha alphabet, and the multilingual 'Phags-pa script. The Tibetan alphabet is romanized in a variety of ways. This article employs the Wylie transliteration system.