María Palomares Tarí
THE HINDI LANGUAGE: HOW MUCH DO YOU KNOW ABOUT IT?
Spoken by nearly 425 million people as a fist language, the preferred official language of India has a lot to learn about.
Today we’ve brought some of the most interesting facts about this not so well-known but essential language. Ready?
Hindi is one of India’s official languages and is mostly spoken in the northern half of India. However, it is not a national language. In fact, India does not have a national language, but Hindi and English are recognized as official languages.
The Constitution also recognizes 22 regional languages, including Hindi as scheduled languages. According to Ethnologue, the current list of languages in India includes 447 individual living languages.
Hindi is also spoken in in Mauritius, Fiji, Guyana, Suriname, Trinidad & Tobago and Nepal.
English has borrowed a great number of words from Hindi. Hard to believe? Examples are endless! Words like avatar, bandanna, bungalow, nirvana, punch, pyjamas, sorbet, shampoo or yoga are just some of a very long list.
Written in Devnagari script, the alphabetical table of Hindi is called ‘Varnmala’ which means ‘garland of letters’.
Hindi is taught in over 180 universities of the world out of which 45 are American Universities.
The roots of Hindi date back to the 2nd millennium BC making it one of the most prominent ancient languages in the world.
Mahatma Gandhi, who was a popular political figure in India and well-known for being a freedom fighter, encouraged the use of Hindi as the collective voice of India, the language of protest and the language of communication.
Hindi is easy to pronounce as each letter has its own unique sound. Therefore, learners find it easy to pronounce the words because they are spoken as they are written, just like Spanish.
Hindi came from Hindustani that is spoken in North India. It was standardized in the 19th century together with Urdu. These two languages have many similarities and many consider them as variants of the original language, Hindustani.
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