Koreanclass101.com

Learn Hebrew online

Learn a new language outside the books with Mondly

Persian (Fārsī / فارسی) فارسی / Fārsī (Persian)

Persian is a member of the Western Iranian branch of the Indo-European language family. It is spoken by about 110 million people, mainly in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan, and also in Uzbekistan, Iraq, Russia and Azerbaijan. In 2009 there were about 60 million native speakers of Persian, and another 50 million second language speakers.

In Afghanistan Persian is known as Dari (درى) or Dari-Persian, while in Tajikistan it's known as Tajiki (Тоҷики / تاجيكى).

Persian at a glance

  • Native name: فارسی (Fārsī) [fɒːɾˈsiː]
  • Linguistic affliation: Indo-European, Indo-Iranian, Iranian, Western Iranian, Southwestern Iranian
  • Number of speakers: c. 110 million
  • Spoken in:Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Iraq, Russian and Azerbaijan
  • First written: 600 BC
  • Writing systems: Old Persian Cuneiform, Pahlavi, Manichaean, Avestan, Persian, Cyrillic and Latin scripts
  • Status: official language in Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan

Under Mongolian and Turkish rulers, Persian was adopted as the language of government in Turkey, central Asia and India, where it was used for centuries, and until after 1900 in Kashmir.

Persian, Farsi or Parsi?

The official language of Iran is sometimes called Farsi in English and other languages. This is a correct transliteration of the native name of the language, however many, including the ISO and the Academy of Persian Language and Literature, prefer the name Persian for the language. Some speakers use the older local name: Parsi (پارسی). There is some discussion about this topic at: www.iranian.com and wikipedia.

Iran or Persia?

Until 1935, the official name of the country currently known as Iran was Persia, though the Persian people have called their country Iran since the Sassanid period (226-651 AD). There's further discussion about this at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_naming_dispute

Written Persian

Old Persian was first written in about 600 BC in the Old Persian Cuneiform. The language had evolved into what we known as Middle Persian by about 300 BC, and was written with the Pahlavi, Manichaean and Avestan alphabets. From 800 AD the language is known as Modern Persian, and was written with the Persian of Perso-Arabic alphabet. There are also ways of writing Persian with the Latin alphabet.

In Tajikistan Tajik has been written with a version of Cyrillic alphabet since 1940. Between 1928 and 1940 it was written with a version of the Latin alphabet, and before then with the Perso-Arabic alphabet.

Persian alphabet (الفبای فارسی / alefbā-ye fârsi) فارسی) الفبای فارسی / alefbā-ye fârsi (Persian alphabet)

After the Islamic conquest of the Persian Sassanian Empire in 642 AD, Arabic became the language of government, culture and especially religion, and the Arabic alphabet was adapted to write the Persian language. This is now known as the Persian or Perso-Arabic alphabet (الفبای فارسی / alefbā-ye fârsi).

Notable features

Persian alphabet and pronunciation

A recording of the Persian alphabet by Bahaareh Asghari (بهاره اصغرى)

Notes

Notes and corrections by Ali Jahanshiri

Numerals

Persian numerals

A recording of these numbers by Bahaareh Asghari (بهاره اصغرى)

Note

The symbols for 4,5 and 6 are different from the standard numerals used for Arabic.

Download alphabet charts for Persian (Excel)

Sample text

تمام افراد بشر آزاد به دنیا می آیند و از لحاظ حیثیت و حقوق با هم برابرند, همه دارای عقل و وجدان می باشند و باید نسبت به یک دیگر با روح برادری رفتار کنند.

Transliteration (by Ali Jahânshiri)

Tamâm-e afrâd-e bašar âzâd be donyâ miâyand va az lehâz-e heysiyat-o hoquq bâ ham arâbar-and. Hame dârâ-ye aql-o vejdân mibâšand va bâyad nesbat be yekdigar bâ ruh-e barâdari raftâr konand.

A recording of this text by Bahaareh Asghari (بهاره اصغرى)

Translation

All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.
(Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights)

Sample videos in Persian

Information about Persian | Latin alphabets for Persian | Phrases | Numbers | Tower of Babel | Links | Learning materials

Links

Information about the Persian language
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persian_language
http://www.farsinet.com/farsi/
http://www.iranchamber.com/literature/articles/persian_language.php
http://www.kwintessential.co.uk/language/about/persian.html

Learn Persian (Farsi) online with PersianPod101
Learn Persian (Farsi) with Glossika

More Persian links

Iranian languages

Avestan, Baluchi, Bartangi, Dari, Gilaki, Hazaragi, Ishkashimi, Juhuri, Khufi, Kurdish, Luri, Mazandarani, Ossetian, Oroshor, Persian, Parthian, Pashto, Rushani, Sanglechi, Sarikoli, Shabaki, Shughni, Tajik, Talysh, Tat, Wakhi, Yaghnobi, Yazghulami, Zazaki

Languages written with the Arabic script

Adamaua Fulfulde, Afrikaans, Arabic (Algerian), Arabic (Egyptian), Arabic (Lebanese), Arabic (Modern Standard), Arabic (Moroccan), Arabic (Syrian), Arabic (Tunisian), Arwi, Äynu, Azeri, Balti, Baluchi, Beja, Bosnian, Brahui, Chagatai, Chechen, Comorian, Crimean Tatar, Dari, Domari, Gilaki, Hausa, Hazaragi, Kabyle, Karakalpak, Konkani, Kashmiri, Kazakh, Khowar, Khorasani Turkic, Kurdish, Kyrgyz, Lezgi, Luri, Malay, Marwari, Mandekan, Mazandarani, Morisco, Palula, Pashto, Persian/Farsi, Punjabi, Qashqai, Rajasthani, Rohingya, Salar, Saraiki, Serer, Shabaki, Shina, Shughni, Sindhi, Somali, Tatar, Tausūg, Torwali, Turkish, Urdu, Uyghur, Uzbek, Wakhi, Wolof


If you need to type in many different languages, the Q International Keyboard can help. It enables you to type almost any language that uses the Latin, Cyrillic or Greek alphabets, and is free.

If you like this site and find it useful, you can support it by making a donation, or by contributing in other ways. Omniglot is how I make my living.