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Hindi handwriting?

I'm rather proud of my English handwriting. My cursive is neat, fast to write, distinctive, and, in my opinion, pretty. My Hindi handwriting is . . . not. It's slow, I have a hard time writing the letters straight, and I'm pretty sure I'm not making the strokes in the correct order.

I've downloaded a few worksheets for kids learning to write Devanagari, and I actually have a book that teaches Devanagari in a little more detail, but I'd really like to know if anyone has some advice?

One of the things that bothers me is that, apparently, I should be drawing in the top line (from which the characters 'hang') last, but then the characters are uneven and tend to slope quite a bit. This is probably a noob question, but, if I'm writing in a lined notebook, should I be writing under, instead of over, the line? How do native speakers (writers?) write?

One last thing: in English, I primarily use cursive, and it's pretty fast. Is there an equivalent in Hindi?

September 3, 2020



There isn't really a preferred stroke order in Devanagari but you can go through the animations for writing the letters on the Hindi script tutor.

If you are writing in a lined book, write with the top line as reference rather than the bottom one like in English. Then, you can trace the shirorekha (line at the top of a word) over the line of the book once you're done with the word.

Hindi doesn't have a cursive equivalent.


Yes, that's true.


oh that's a good idea! I was always doing the line first at a length I estimated to be appropriate and then guessing completely wrong.


Yeah, the shirorekha (thanks for the new word!) was giving me real grief. I actually thought of using the top line as a guide as I was asking the question last night, and I can't believe it took me this long to think of it. I'll look through the Script Tutor – that looks really helpful! Thank you!

[deactivated user]

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LinpqTQEWsgeLk57hEaI079OnBg8sDq-/view?usp=drivesdk <-This is how natives usually write .

    https://drive.google.com/file/d/1LkUKpyxHPtmVmH77ZgNPR3mnoIvO87-w/view?usp=drivesdk <= This is how natives usually writes in a 'lined notebook'.

    P.S. It's the first time I have tried to share some image/gif on duolingo . I am not sure if you will be able to see or open it .


    This is right. Even I write in the same way.


    I was, thank you!


    This was super helpful! I'm also a Hindi Beginner (a very beginner, though) and this helped me so much. Thank you!

    [deactivated user]

      Glad to hear that it helped you !


      That was so helpful. Thank you!

      [deactivated user]

        So good to hear that it was of some help !


        I wouldn't call this a great tip, but I only write on every second line because the bits that stick up and down otherwise merge into each other (sorry for the utterly incorrect vocabulary there).


        As a kid, I always had a better clarity and speed when writing English over Hindi (I guess I had an affinity towards english) so my mother got me a tonne of these books https://www.amazon.in/s?k=hindi+sulekh+pustak&crid=3GP1KS1CEC2MF&sprefix=hindi+sulekh+%2Caps%2C346&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_4_13 I used to fill a shittonne of them in my summer vacations. They certainly help. You can finish a set and then move on to write 1 Page of Hindi (copy from your choice of book) everyday.

        Fun tip- Su is a prefix that gives a positive meaning to the word (It's opposite prefix is Ku, sometimes dur too) So Sulekh means good writing (antonym would be Kulekh- bad writing) Another example- Suputra (Good son), Kuputra (bad son)


        Thank you! I'll look into getting some of those.


        i am having trouble to because i get confused by all the lines in one word.


        These are very useful. Here is a link to 53 YouTube videos by Anil Mahato how to correctly write Devanagani letters and how to pronounce each one: https://youtube.com/playlist?list=PLSzKbnydlhPJvw8Mf3cok1CvzvZcisYv_


        Native Indian here! I have written Hindi as well as Marathi (which also uses the Devanagari script) for 7 years in school. My handwriting in Hindi is better than in English. For the Devanagari script, you write the word UNDER the notebook's ruled line (and not over the line) and then draw the "shirorekha" (top line) at the end. However, it takes practice to write neatly.

        Practice a lot to ensure that you leave enough space between words on two consecutive lines so that "matras" on two consecutive lines do not clash e.g. ु on one line with ो on the next one. for e.g. कू on one line may clash with the ऎ on the next line.

        Hindi has no cursive equivalent but the beauty of Devanagari is that it is highly phonetic.

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