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Learning to Speak the Hindi Language

 

About the Hindi Language

Hindi is the name given to an Indo-Aryan language, or a dialect continuum of languages, spoken in northern and central India (the Hindi belt ), The native speakers of Hindi dialects between them account for 41% of the Indian population. More than 180 million people in India regard Hindi as their mother tongue. Another 300 million use it as second language. Outside of India, Hindi speakers are 100,000 in USA; 685,170 in Mauritius; 890,292 in South Africa; 232,760 in Yemen; 147,000 in Uganda; 5,000 in Singapore; 8 million in Nepal; 20,000 in New Zealand; 30,000 in Germany. Urdu, the official language of Pakistan, spoken by about 41 million in Pakistan and other countries, is essentially the same language. Dakhini is an older, southern form of Urdu that uses fewer Persian or Arabic words. As defined in the Constitution, Hindi is the official language of India and is one of the 22 scheduled languages specified in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution. Official Hindi is often described as Modern Standard Hindi, which is used, along with English, for administration of the central government. Standard Hindi is a sanskritised register derived from the khari boli dialect. Urdu is a different, persianised, register of the same dialect. Taken together, these registers are historically also known as Hindustani.

The word hindi is of Persian origin. It literally means Indian , comprising hind India , and the adjectival suffix -. The word was originally used by Muslims in north India to refer to any Indian language: for example the eleventh-century writer used it to refer to Sanskrit. By the 13th century, Hindi , along with its variant forms Hindavi and Hindui , had acquired a more specific meaning: the linguistically mixed speech of Delhi, which came into wide use across north India and incorporated a component of Persian vocabulary . It was later used by members of the Mughal court to distinguish the local vernacular of the Delhi region where the court was located from Persian, which was the official language of the court. Hindi first started to be used in writing during the 4th century AD. It was originally written with the Brahmi script but since the 11th century AD it has been written with the Devan gar alphabet. The first printed book in Hindi was John Gilchrist's Grammar of the Hindoostanee Language which was published in 1796.

Evidence from the 17th century indicates that the language then called Hindi existed in two differing styles: among Muslims it was liable to contain a larger component of Persian-derived words and would be written down in a script derived from Persian, while among Hindus it used a vocabulary more influenced by Sanskrit and was written in Devanagari script. These styles eventually developed into modern Urdu and modern Hindi respectively. However the word Urdu was not used until around 1780: before then the word Hindi could be used for both purposes. The use of Hindi to designate what would now be called Urdu continued as late as the early twentieth century. Nowadays Hindi as taken to mean Indian is chiefly obsolete; it has come to specifically refer to the language(s) bearing that name.

Hindi as the term for a language is used in at least four different but overlapping senses:

1. defined regionally, Hindi languages, i.e. the dialects native to Northern India

in a narrower sense, the Central zone dialects, divided into Western Hindi and Eastern Hindi
in a wider sense, all languages native to north-central India, stretching from Rajasthani in the west and Pahari in the northwest to Bihari in the east.

2. defined historically, the literary dialects of Hindi literature, that is, historical regional standards such as Braj Bhasha and Avadhi.
3. defined as a single standard language, Modern Standard Hindi, or High Hindi , that is, highly Sanskritized Khari boli
4. defined politically, Hindi is any dialect of the region that is not Urdu. This usage originates in the Hindi-Urdu controversy in the 19th century, and is that adopted by the official Indian census (as of 1991), which includes as Hindi a wide variety of dialects of the Hindi belt (adding up to a fraction native speakers of 40% of the total population), but lists Urdu as a separate language (with 5.8% native speakers).

History

Like many other modern Indian languages, it is believed that Hindi had been evolved from Sanskrit, by way of the Middle Indo-Aryan Prakrit languages and Apabhramsha of the Middle Ages. Though there is no consensus for a specific time, Hindi originated as local dialects such as Braj, Awadhi and finally Khari Boli after the turn of tenth century. In the span of nearly a thousand years of Muslim influence, such as when Muslim rulers controlled much of northern India during the Delhi Sultanate and the Mughal Empire, many Persian and Arabic words were absorbed into khari boli and was called Urdu or Hindustani. Since almost all Arabic words came via Persian, they do not preserve the original phonology of Arabic.

Hindi is contrasted with Urdu in the way both are written, and the use of Sanskrit vocabulary in higher registers. Urdu is the official language of Pakistan and also an official language in some parts of India. The primary differences between the two are the way Standard Hindi is written in Devanagari and draws its vocabulary with words from (Indo-Aryan) Sanskrit, while Urdu is written in Urdu script, a variant of the (Semitic) Perso-Arabic script, and draws heavily on Persian and Arabic vocabulary. Vocabulary is in quotes here since it is mostly the literary vocabulary that shows this visible distinction with the everyday vocabulary being essentially common between the two. To a common unbiased person, both Hindi and Urdu are same (Hindustani) though politics of religion and ethnicity portrays them as two separate languages since they are written in two entirely different scripts Hindi-Urdu controversy. Interestingly, if Urdu is written in Devanagiri script, it will be assumed as Hindi and vice versa. The popular examples are Bollywood songs and gazals.

Hindi languages

Modern Standard Hindi

Main article: Modern Standard Hindi

After independence, the Government of India worked on standardizing Hindi, instituting the following changes:

* standardization of Hindi grammar: In 1954, the Government of India set up a committee to prepare a grammar of Hindi; The committee's report was released in 1958 as A Basic Grammar of Modern Hindi
* standardization of Hindi spelling
* standardization of the Devanagari script by the Central Hindi Directorate of the Ministry of Education and Culture to bring about uniformity in writing and to improve the shape of some Devanagari characters.
* scientific mode of transcribing the Devanagari alphabet
* incorporation of diacritics to express sounds from other languages.

Khari boli

Main article: Khari boli

Khari boli or standing dialect is the term for the Western Hindi dialect of the Delhi region, which since the later 17th century (Mughal period) has emerged as the prestige dialect. Khari boli includes several standardized registers, including:

* Urdu, historically the language of the court , a Persianized register
* Rekhta, a heavily Persianized and Arabized register used in Urdu poetry
* Dakhni, the historical literary register of the Deccan region
* Standard Hindi, a heavily Sanskritzed register created in the 19th century (colonial period) as a counter-proposal contrasted to Urdu in the Hindi-Urdu controversy.

The colloquial language spoken by the people of Delhi is indistinguishable by ear, whether it is called Hindi or Urdu by its speakers. The only important distinction at this level is in the script: if written in the Perso-Arabic script, the language is generally considered to be Urdu, and if written in devanagari it is generally considered to be Hindi. However, since independence the formal registers used in education and the media have become increasingly divergent in their vocabulary. Where there is no colloquial word for a concept, Standard Urdu uses Perso-Arabic vocabulary, while Standard Hindi uses Sanskrit vocabulary. This results in the official languages being heavily Sanskritized or Persianized, and nearly unintelligible to speakers educated in the other standard (as far as the formal vocabulary is concerned).

These two standardised registers of Hindustani have become so entrenched as separate languages that many extreme-nationalists, both Hindu and Muslim, claim that Hindi and Urdu have always been separate languages. The tensions reached a peak in the Hindi-Urdu controversy in 1867 in the then United Provinces during the British Raj. However, there were and are unifying forces as well. For example, it is said that Indian Bollywood films are made in Hindi , but the language used in most of them is the same as that of Urdu speakers in Pakistan.

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Latest Hindi Song 'Haathon Mein Haath' Sung By Nikhil Chanoria And Nitish Chanoria - Times of India

Latest Hindi Song 'Haathon Mein Haath' Sung By Nikhil Chanoria And Nitish Chanoria  Times of IndiaFor all Hindi music fans, check-out latest Hindi song 'Haathon Mein Haath' sung by Nikhil Chanoria and Nitish Chanoria. Music of song Haathon Mein Haath by ...

14 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Top Hindi Channels Gave Modi-Shah 2.5x More Airtime Than Rahul-Priyanka - The Wire

Top Hindi Channels Gave Modi-Shah 2.5x More Airtime Than Rahul-Priyanka  The WireIn that period in April, Modi addressed 64 rallies across the country and Rahul Gandhi spoke at 65. Yet the top eleven Hindi channels lavished far more time on ...

14 May 2019 | 3:00 am

There Is Much More to JNU Than Left Politics for a Hindi-Medium Student - The Wire

There Is Much More to JNU Than Left Politics for a Hindi-Medium Student  The WireThe new admission tests – MCQs only available in English – will mean many Hindi-medium students will be denied access to yet another national institution.

13 May 2019 | 3:00 am

BJP invokes Tagore in Bengal to counter pro-Hindi image - Deccan Herald

BJP invokes Tagore in Bengal to counter pro-Hindi image  Deccan HeraldWest Bengal has had its share of verbal duels between political heavyweights on various issues such as celebration of Ram Navami, Hanuman Jayanti and ...

11 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Watch: Ziva Dhoni teaches Rishabh Pant Hindi vowels in viral video - India Today

Watch: Ziva Dhoni teaches Rishabh Pant Hindi vowels in viral video  India TodayIPL 2019: In a video posted on Ziva Dhoni's Instagram account, the 4-year-old is seen giving wicket-keeper-batsman Rishabh Pant nursery lessons.

11 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Latest Hindi Song 'Dil Mein Sanam' (Lyrical) Sung By Alka Yagnik And Kumar Sanu - Times of India

Latest Hindi Song 'Dil Mein Sanam' (Lyrical) Sung By Alka Yagnik And Kumar Sanu  Times of IndiaFor all Hindi music fans, check-out Hindi song 'Dil Mein Sanam' sung by Alka Yagnik and Kumar Sanu. Original song credits are - Singer: Alka Yagnik and ...

11 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Anurag to present Taapsees Game Over in Hindi - Business Standard

Anurag to present Taapsees Game Over in Hindi  Business StandardRead more about Anurag to present Taapsee's 'Game Over' in Hindi on Business Standard. Filmmaker Anurag Kashyap has come on board to present the Hindi ...

10 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Sam Pitroda apologises for 1984 riots remark, says his Hindi isn't good - India Today

Sam Pitroda apologises for 1984 riots remark, says his Hindi isn't good  India TodayAsserting that his Hindi is "not good", Sam Pitroda alleged that his statement on the 1984 riots was "completely twisted" and was taken "out of context".

10 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Purbachal boy on a record ISC high, but for Hindi - Telegraph India

Purbachal boy on a record ISC high, but for Hindi  Telegraph IndiaDewang Agarwal registers a perfect score in the ISC examination jointly with a student from Bangalore.

10 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Most Of India Prefers Using Hindi For Search, Says Google - Inc42 Media

Most Of India Prefers Using Hindi For Search, Says Google  Inc42 MediaThere has been a 2.3X increase in Hindi queries about smartphones and mobile phones in India, according to Google Year in Search report.

9 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Pregnant Amy Jackson and boyfriend George Panayiotou get engaged in London - Times of India

Pregnant Amy Jackson and boyfriend George Panayiotou get engaged in London  Times of IndiaActress Amy Jackson, who began her Bollywood career in 2012, recently got engaged to boyfriend George Panayiotou in an intimate ceremony in London on ...

6 May 2019 | 3:00 am

50 years of Hindi alternative cinema - Livemint

50 years of Hindi alternative cinema  LivemintIn 1969, three films signalled the start of Hindi-language Parallel Cinema.To mark the half-century, Lounge selects 50 films from the arthouse, experimental, ...

4 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Avengers Endgame India box office week 1: Marvel film outclasses every Hindi film in history, grosses... - Hindustan Times

Avengers Endgame India box office week 1: Marvel film outclasses every Hindi film in history, grosses...  Hindustan TimesAvengers: Endgame continues to break records at the India box office. After one week of release, the Marvel superhero film has made Rs 260 crore nett, and ...

3 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Elections 2019: BJP Could Lose 75 Seats in Six Hindi Heartland States - The Wire

Elections 2019: BJP Could Lose 75 Seats in Six Hindi Heartland States  The WireOur analysis shows that the loss in terms of seats is likely to be much more dramatic than the loss in vote share.

3 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Julia Barretto 'auditions' for Darna role: 'Hindi nila ako sineryoso' - ABS-CBN News

Julia Barretto 'auditions' for Darna role: 'Hindi nila ako sineryoso'  ABS-CBN News"Hindi nila ako sineryoso," quipped Julia Barretto, talking about how her "audition" for Darna went. "Sabi ko nga, 'Maghuhubad na ba ako? Kasi ready na ako.

3 May 2019 | 3:00 am

How many Indians live in Australia? - SBS

How many Indians live in Australia?  SBSThe Australian Bureau of Statistics's preliminary estimates suggests there are 592000 Indians living in Australia as of June 2018.

2 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Sonali Bendre cried for an entire night after her cancer diagnosis - Times of India

Sonali Bendre cried for an entire night after her cancer diagnosis  Times of IndiaActress Sonali Bendre, who returned from New York in December after undergoing treatment for metastatic cancer, is hailed as an emblem of strength and ...

2 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Can shuffle between Marathi, Hindi films: Priya Bapat - Business Standard

Can shuffle between Marathi, Hindi films: Priya Bapat  Business StandardActress Priya Bapat, known for her Marathi films like "Kaksparsh" and "Aamhi Doghi", is making her digital debut with the Hindi web series "City of Dreams".

2 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Patna HC gives nod for filing writ petitions in Hindi, but with a caveat - Bar & Bench

Patna HC gives nod for filing writ petitions in Hindi, but with a caveat  Bar & BenchIn a significant development, a Full Bench of the Patna High Court on Tuesday allowed for writ petitions and tax references to be filed in Hindi, albeit with a ...

2 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Do you know what these Hindi spices are called in English? - India Today

Do you know what these Hindi spices are called in English?  India TodayIf you have ever seen an Indian kitchen, you will feel like you are in a small world of spices. Spices are the essence of Indian Food. India has been home to a ...

1 May 2019 | 3:00 am

Nearly 10 Lakh Students Fail Hindi Board Exams In Uttar Pradesh - NDTV News

Nearly 10 Lakh Students Fail Hindi Board Exams In Uttar Pradesh  NDTV NewsIn the Hindi heartland state of Uttar Pradesh, nearly 10 lakh students failed in Hindi in the recently concluded Class 10 and Class 12 board exams this year.

1 May 2019 | 3:00 am

A Closer Look At The Vibrant And Kitschy World Of Hindi Pulp Fiction - VERVE

A Closer Look At The Vibrant And Kitschy World Of Hindi Pulp Fiction  VERVEThe niche industry of fast-paced Hindi crime fiction was slowly on its way out, but publisher Minakshi Thakur remained convinced that these novels could find a.

30 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Latest Hindi Song 'Rehne Do Zara' (Dance Video) Sung By Madhubanti Bagchi - Times of India

Latest Hindi Song 'Rehne Do Zara' (Dance Video) Sung By Madhubanti Bagchi  Times of IndiaFor all Hindi music fans, check-out latest Hindi song 'Rehne Do Zara' (Dance Video) sung by Madhubanti Bagchi. The song 'Rehne Do Zara' is produced by ...

30 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Writ Petitions Can Be Filed In Hindi Along With Authentic English Translation: Patna HC (FB) [Read... - Live Law

Writ Petitions Can Be Filed In Hindi Along With Authentic English Translation: Patna HC (FB) [Read...  Live Law'Hindi can be accepted as an elective language for preferring such petitions, but with the caveat that along with the Hindi version, authoritative English ...

30 April 2019 | 3:00 am

IRS Q1 2019: Dainik Jagran continues to lead in Hindi as Amar Ujala drops to 3 - Exchange4Media

IRS Q1 2019: Dainik Jagran continues to lead in Hindi as Amar Ujala drops to 3  Exchange4MediaThe Indian Readership Survey Q1 2019 has shown that Dainik Jagran continues to lead among the top 20 dailies in terms of last 1 month read (Total ...

29 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Can easily shuffle between Marathi, Hindi films: Priya Bapat - Business Standard

Can easily shuffle between Marathi, Hindi films: Priya Bapat  Business StandardActress Priya Bapat, known for her Marathi films 'Kaksparsh' and 'Aamhi Doghi,' is making her digital debut with the Hindi web series 'City of Dreams,' saying ...

29 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Laaxmi Bomb: Kiara Advani to romance Akshay Kumar in Kanchana Hindi remake - India Today

Laaxmi Bomb: Kiara Advani to romance Akshay Kumar in Kanchana Hindi remake  India TodayRaghava Lawrence and Akshay Kumar are teaming up for the Hindi remake of Tamil horror film Kanchana. Kiara Advani has been roped in as the female lead ...

28 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Explaining Game of Thrones live streaming to India in Hindi - Quartz

Explaining Game of Thrones live streaming to India in Hindi  QuartzMillions of Indians love watching Game of Thrones (GoT)—and for some of them, that involves overcoming a hefty language barrier. English access is a ...

28 April 2019 | 3:00 am

UP Board Results 2019: In Hindi heartland, over 5 Lakh students fail in Hindi paper - Hindustan Times

UP Board Results 2019: In Hindi heartland, over 5 Lakh students fail in Hindi paper  Hindustan TimesIn Hindi heartland, more students failed in Hindi as compared to English and Mathematics in the UP Board high school examinations, the results of which were ...

28 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Hindi Krinsky's Passion Inspires Thousands of Children - Aish

Hindi Krinsky's Passion Inspires Thousands of Children  AishEven after her tragic death last year at age 32, a passionate Long Island teacher is keeping the flame of education burning bright for thousands of children ...

28 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Asterix in Hindi: How do you translate a universal cultural memory? - Scroll.in

Asterix in Hindi: How do you translate a universal cultural memory?  Scroll.inPuneet Gupta and Dipa Chaudhuri have translated four Asterix comic albums into Hindi, with more to come.

27 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Devaki Nandan Khatri: The man who blazed a new trail for Hindi novel-writing - The Hindu

Devaki Nandan Khatri: The man who blazed a new trail for Hindi novel-writing  The HinduDevaki Nandan Khatri, who created the character of Chandrakanta, blazed a new trail in the field of novel writing in Hindi.

26 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Blood, liver and heart in Hindi films - BusinessLine

Blood, liver and heart in Hindi films  BusinessLineBlood transfusion is a hero, new technologies are fun and life-changing, while organ transplant is always criminal. The doctor, however, is missing in action in ...

26 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Video showing ‘Hindi stones’ in Thanjavur Big Temple is fake, says official - The Hindu

Video showing ‘Hindi stones’ in Thanjavur Big Temple is fake, says official  The HinduA video viral in social media claims Tamil scriptures in the Sri Brihadeeswarar Temple are being replaced by Hindi scriptures.

24 April 2019 | 3:00 am

Star Sports 1 Hindi sees a massive viewership growth, but can it sustain post-IPL? - Best Media Info

Star Sports 1 Hindi sees a massive viewership growth, but can it sustain post-IPL?  Best Media InfoStar Sports 1 Hindi's viewership has soared in BARC charts. The broadcaster says a mix of IPL, other popular sporting leagues and innovation storytelling and ...

24 April 2019 | 3:00 am

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