The Gujarātī script was adapted from the Devanāgarī script to write the Gujarātī language. The earliest known document in the Gujarātī script is a manuscript dating from 1592, and the script first appeared in print in a 1797 advertisement.
Until the 19th century it was used mainly for writing letters and keeping accounts, while the Devanāgarī script was used for literature and academic writings.
The Gujarātī script is also known as the śarāphi (banker’s), vāṇiāśāi (merchant’s) ormahājani (trader’s) script.
Gujarātī is a syllabic alphabet in that consonants all have an inherent vowel.
Vowels can be written as independent letters, or by using a variety of diacritical marks which are written above, below, before or after the consonant they belong to.