An extinct Semitic language spoken and written from at least the middle of 2nd millennium BC at Ugarit and the surrounding area. It belonged to a western group of Semitic languages (i.e. Arabic, Hebrew) and was conveyed alphabetically - the earliest alphabet for which we have a complete record. The cuneiform writing system used on the Syrian coast from the 15th-13th century BC. It was unique, though possibly patterned after the North Semitic alphabet. Ugaritic was written from left to right; its 30 symbols included 3 syllabic signs for vowels. Documents in Ugaritic are written on clay tablets with a wedge-shaped stylus and date from the 15th-14th century BC.