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The Origin of the Persian Language

Author: Sol Ami Patria
by Sol Ami Patria
Posted: Feb 13, 2017
iranian languages

Persian also known as Farsi is today the official language of Islamic Republic of Iran. Its close variants known as Tajik and Dari are the official languages of Tajikistan and Afghanistan respectively. In total, it is believed to have several hundreds of millions of speakers and we can safely say that Persian is one of the major languages in the world. Becoming fluent in Persian and to learn the Persian grammar that includes numerals, tenses and prepositions is a great idea and a good investment for your future. Being such an important language, you should also be wondering where exactly Persian came and who are Persians. Well, that is a long story and here, I will try to explain it very shortly.

Persian is one of the several Iranian Languages. Other extant Iranian Languages include Pashto, Ossetian and Kurdish as well as several others. These languages are no longer mutually intelligible but they all descended from a common progenitor language, that was spoken like four millennia ago. We do not really know about this language that we call proto-Iranian but w can guess what sort of grammar and vocabulary it had because we havevery old remaining texts that belong to the now forgotten Avestan language and Old Persian Language. Thanks to these thousands of years old text, linguists are able to reconstruct the ancient Iranian tongue. What we know for sure is that the old Iranian language sounded quite different from what you would hear people speak in a street in Iran around these days. The grammar was so different. Unlike the presently spoken Persian language that depends of prespositions and one postpostion to build the meaning in a sentence, the ancestor language had case inflections like accusative and dative. In time, the case endings went through what could be called an erosion. In other words, people found it easier to ignore the case endings but in the end they were left with no means to tell what exactly was going on. So they created the adpositions that are used today in Persian. The creation of adpositions in the last two millennia has been one of the most important examples of grammaticalization in persian.

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Author: Sol Ami Patria

Sol Ami Patria

Member since: Dec 08, 2013
Published articles: 24

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