Kazakh is a Turkic language spoken in Kazakhstan, Russia and China by about 8 million people. The word “Kazakh” means “a free and independent nomad” in ancient Turkish.

Many languages are spoken in Kazakhstan. In fact, 11 languages are used in newspapers, TV/Radio programs, and academics. Kazakh, spoken by over 60% of the population, is the state language, with Russian also spoken by many.

Kazakh was first written with the Arabic alphabet during the 19th century. The Cyrillic alphabet was introduced but was not widely accepted at the time so the Arabic alphabet was reintroduced. After that, the Latin alphabet was introduced but in 1940, it was replaced by the Cyrillic alphabet.