The Austronesian Hebrew writing system was apparently influenced by a variety of sources, and in turn, influenced a variety itself. Proto-Semitic (Phoenician), Old South Arabian, and Akkadian all seem to have had an impact. The Brahmi script of India -- which is the ancestor of all Indian writing systems -- came from the AH abugida. Also interesting is the use of determinatives, small "pictures" used to distinguish meanings between homophones. These seem to be the equivalent to Akkadian logograms, but the forms resemble ancient Chinese characters.
AH characters generally bear some resemblance to their Paleo-Hebrew counterparts. These characters are often not at all like their Modern Hebrew counterparts, which are actually Aramaic in origin. Many times, characters appear to be rotated 180º from their ANE counterparts. Without archaeological evidence, it is a matter of speculation whether PAH spawned Kharoṣṭhī (and therefore Brahmi) or was simply contemporary to it. Like Phoenician and other Levant scripts, it is written right-to-left.
AH is an abugida, that is, each symbol represents a consonant plus /a/, while other vowels are written as small flourishes. In some religious texts, the vowel "points" were not added, in which case, AH functioned as an abjad. The cancelation of the inherent /a/ vowel was written with two dots above the grapheme. However, in elaborate secular texts, elaborate ligatures developed where coda consonants are written underneath and to the left of the syllable in which they appear. Unicode does not correctly support all the AH ligatures yet. We are forced to write them simply as "subscripts", which is not always the same as the ancient hand. These small coda consonants do not possess the inherent "a". The entire system is right-to-left, like Hebrew.
The letter "A" is actual a glottal-stop plus /a/ when it appears word-initially. Elsewhere, it is another way of writing long "a".
Unknown signs, occurring only in loan-words, possibly rhotacized or pre-nasalized are: 𐨃𐨦,𐨃𐨠,𐨃𐨀,𐨃𐨛, or 𐨃𐨱, 𐨃𐨮,𐨃𐨨, 𐨃𐨣, 𐨃𐨪, 𐨃𐨐, 𐨃𐨫, 𐨃𐨬
"T" seems to have had two ways to be written from the beginning. These appear to have been schools of penmanship, and not the t vs ṭ of PH, as first suspected. "H" progressively evolved from a "7" to a "3" over AH's lifetime. Some letters have unique forms, especially "y" in the short vs. long vowel forms.
- 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮 ( 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨅, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨅𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨁, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨁𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨆, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨆𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨂, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮𐨂𐨌, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮͏𐨎, 𐨐͏𐨿𐨮͏𐨍 )
- 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱 (𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨌, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨅, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨅𐨌, ?, ?, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨆, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨆𐨌, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨂, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨂𐨌, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨎, 𐨬͏𐨿𐨱͏𐨍)
Alphabetical order was still
- hey (H that looks like question mark)
- tetu (crossed in the middle)
- ayinu - not a letter, but the period/decimal mark
- taw (crossed on the top)