The Dongba Symbols
The Dongba symbols are ideographic and phonetic pictographs used by the Naxi people who reside in eastern Tibet Autonomous Region and northern Yunnan Province. Due to the ancient origins of the symbols, and their entirely unique nature, the script has been the subject of widespread international academic study since the 1920s. The symbols were once thought to be on the verge of extinction. However, recent studies indicate that the Dongba symbols are not only actively in use, but also evolving. The photo shows a farmland deed written in Dongba symbols in 1830 during the Qing Dynasty.