Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Hindi Words of Arabic Origin

When I was in the tenth grade, I studied a little bit of Arabic before concentrating on Hindi. Hindi has been influenced a great deal by the Arabic language, and a hybrid tongue, Urdu, is even spoken in Pakistan. Knowing the Arabic alphabet and being able to read Urdu script really helped to east the transition between English to Hindi, I think. So if you are interested in learning Hindi but don't have access to a school with lessons (which I completely understand - they're impossible to find), try taking an Arabic course instead. Though not terribly common, Arabic lessons are simpler to find than Hindi ones. And of course, Arabic is a particularly important language to have some knowledge of in order to understand current events.

अदब (adab) – good manners
आदत (adat) – custom; tradition
ऐना (aina) - eye
ऐनक (ainak) – glasses (from Arabic أين)
अजीब (ajib) – strange
अक्ल (akl) – intellect (from Arabic عقل)
आलम (alam) – the universe
अलीम (alim) – learned
आशिक (ashik) – lover (from Arabic عشيق)
अजं (azam) – great (as in ‘मुग़ल इ अजं’, great Mughal empire)
अजमत (azmat) - greatness
अज़ीज़ (aziz) – dear; अजिजी is a girls’ name
दुनिया (duniya) – world (not in the geographic sense)
कसम (kasam) – promise
वक़्त (waqt) – time
सब्र (sabr) - patience
जन्नत (jannat) - heaven
मुसाफिर (musafir) – traveler
मुश्कील, मुसीबत (mushkil, musiibat) – problem
आमिर (amir) – rich
शहीद, कुर्बानी (shaheed, qurbaani) – sacrifice
इंसान (insaan) – man
जिस्म (jism) – body
ख्याल (khayal) – hopes; dreams, i.e. “I Had a Dream” by Martin Luther King
माफ़ (maaf) – forgive
हवा (hawa) – wind; air
अलीम (alim) – scientist
ग़म (gham) – a sort of pain; sadness
बस (bas) – enough! That’s it!
इन्तिज़ार (intizaar) – to wait
काफी (kaphi) – enough, sufficient
मदद (madad) – help
मोहबत (mohabbat) – love; a general context
इश्क (ishq) – love between two people
महबूबा (mehbooba) – my lover
ग़लत (galat) – wrong; i.e. क्या ग़लत है?; What’s wrong?
सवाल (sawal) – question
जवाब (jawab) – answer
दिमाघ (dimagh) – brain
मतलब (matlab) – asking for something (from Arabic تالاب)
किताब (kitab) – book
मौज्रिम (moojrim) - criminal
इशारा (isharaa) – a sign
कुर्सी (kursi) – chair
दौकने (doukane) - store
हकीकत (hakikat) – the truth
इन्सान (insaan) – a person; human being
यानि (yani) – meaning [that]… (a common sentence-filler like ‘um’, ‘yeah’, or ‘well…’)


  1. There are many arabic words in Hindi Language, i'm arabic and it's easy for me to undestand indian conversations , it's a pretty language, Urdu too.
    i add the word "Aurat" wich means "woman" from arabic عورة
    The word "Nazar" = sight
    Ehsan = favour / Sama = Sky / Kaala = Black from "AKHAL" in arabic / Sukun = peace or restless / Ruh = spirit / Zulfonn= Hair from arabic "Zulfa" / Wada = Promise from arabic "waad" وعد / zakhm= pain/ tamanat= wish ... i don't remeber the rest
    Thanks for this amazing article

    1. aura in Arabic does not mean woman, I am an Arabic speaker, aura in Arabic usually refers to genitalia whether it is male or female. Woman in Arabic is emra'a

    2. here is more hindi, arabic, somali/somalized
      aree=waryee ( hindi/somali)
      Langade = laangare ( hindi/somali)
      gaari=gaari ( hindi/somali)
      baldi=baaldi ( hindi/somali)
      parda = daah ( hindi/somali)
      maroor=maroojin ( hindi/somali)
      mann=maanka ( hindi/somali)
      ghar= guri ( hindi/somali)
      dukan=dukaan ( hindi/somali)
      sambusa?sambuus ( hindi/somali)
      qanun=qanun ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      dhobi=doobi ( hindi/somali)
      koolie=kuuli/hamaali ( hindi/somali)
      mej=miis ( hindi/somali)
      chappal =jambal ( hindi/somali)
      rashan=raashiin ( hindi/somali)
      bas=bas ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      paisa=beso ( hindi/somali)
      chote=shoodhe ( hindi/somali)
      acha= hasha' ( hindi/somali)
      khatra=khatar ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      asli=asli ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      khabar=akhbaar ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      khalaas=khalaas ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      ajnabee=ajnabi ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      nuqsan=nuqsan ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      zulm=dulmin ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      chai=shah ( hindi/somali)
      inkar=inkirid ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      badhan= beedh ( hindi/somalized)
      taiyyaar=diyaar ( hindi/somali)
      roti=roti ( hindi/somali)
      angres=ingariis ( hindi/somali)
      galat=qalad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      aakhir=aakhir ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      sabr=sabr ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      ahmiyat =ahmiyad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      adat=aado ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      ishara=isharo ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      istimal=istimal ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      Kiraya=Kiraysi ( hindi/somali)
      musibat=musibo ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      yaar=yar.... ''yarka/ saxib'' ( hindi/somali)
      badal=badal ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      shak=shaki ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      kharab=kharab ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      kharch=kharash ( persian/hindi/somali)
      aurat=ooro ( hindi/somali)
      sawal=suaal ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      jawaab=jawAAb ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      sabun=sabun ( hindi/somali)
      saaf=saafi ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      tufan=duufaan ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      sabab=sabab ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      lekin=lakin ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      baqi=baaqi ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      faeda=faaiido ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      barood=baaruud ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      hawa=hawo ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      haa=haa ( hindi/somali)
      jaga=jago ( hindi/somali)
      hal=hal ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      halat= haalad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      natija=natiijo ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      kafan=kafan ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      qabza=qabsasho ( hindi/somali)
      amanat=amaano ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      karara= kharaar ( hindi/somali)
      arsi=arji ( hindi/somali) ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      zamaanat=damaanat ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      jajus=jaajuus= ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      jaha=jiho ( persian/hindi/somali)
      khamoosh=aamus ( hindi/somali)
      zyada=siyaado ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      tartib=tartiib ( urdu/hindi/somali)
      fursat=fursad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      barabar=barbar ( hindi/somali)
      barf=baraf ( hindi/somali)
      dalaal=dalaal ( hindi/somali)
      zamana=samAAn ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      qabu = qabo ( hindi/somali)
      khodna= qodid ( hindi/somali)
      tat= daad ( hindi/somali)
      fraq= farqi ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      bala=balo ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      maal=maal ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      martaba= mar ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      haqirat=haqiraad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      harf=haraf ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      chadar=joodari ( hindi/somali)
      nishana=nishaano/shiish ( hindi/somali)
      shart=sharad ( arabic/hindi/somali)
      sir=sar( madah ) ( hindi/somali)

  2. You are mainly saying Urdu words in your post! True, pure Hindi is much more Indo-European and does not use many of those words! For example Aankh = eyes ; sansaar = universe ; chashma = glasses ; mahaan = great ; mahaanta = greatness ; pritvi = Earth ; heaven = svarg ; traveler = yaatri ; man = manushya ; scientist = vigyaanik ; sad = udaas ; question = prashn ; answer =utter ; brain = buddhi (yes, like buddha, the enlightened one); book = pustak ; truth = satya ; and many more! What you are showing here is Urdu, not Hindi!

    1. I'm not whether Bollywood is intentionally using the Urdu language in their movies the words used in the post are the words used in Indian movies. one thing I would add the word Bas might be Indian not Arabic :P. Its cool to know that Indians can have their own language instead of keep blaming others for their miserable life.

  3. Yes, HIndi and Urdu are sometimes so mixed up. However of late there has been a conscious effort by a section of people to use more what they call "sudh" Hindi or in other words an effort to sanitise the language and culture by various means including discarding words whose etymology is Arabic in favour of those with Sanskrit roots. The reason is very clear: the rise of Hindu fundamentalism in the country which seeks to deny any Islamic contribution to our great cultures. However no such attempt has been made in Bengali (that is not just Bangladesh, but in predominantly Hindu WB). Arabic and Persian words are part of culture and we greatly value it.

    While we are about it, let me also acknowledge the fact the Arabs were one of the most advanced civilizations in ancient times and both the East and West benefited from their direct influence. What we have now is a regressive kingdom of the house of Saud and Wahabbis who are neither representatives of Arabic culture nor should properly have any right to rule but are through the good grace of their American friends.

    More than military power the Arabs of the past had missionary zeal unlike Mughals or Delhi Sultanate. Their influence reached coasts of Mediterranean from North Africa to Spain, and their learning penetrated Europe through Greeks giving impetus to further their knowledge in every field. On the other hand Arabic influence reached beyond South Asia to South East Asia. In Bahasa Indonesia or Bahasa Melayu, there's as many words with Arabic roots as there are with Sanskrit, if not more. Words like mumkin, tarikh, waktu or habis are clearly from Arabic. Funnily the first word I recognised in Indonesia after landing in the Bandar (airpor .. ;) ) on a Garuda (!) flight was "Dirghayu Indonesia", a caption for the independence day celebrations. Dirgha = long, Ayu = Life!!! Happy, Sanskrit lovers? Now go and read Kalidasa's Kumarasambhava: there's more erotic scenes in it between some gods than Hussein ever painted.

  4. There are alot of words in Hindi and Somali that are the same

  5. 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂.These words are not Hindi words,in fact all these words are Urdu words from Arabic origin.one mistake what we indiInd do is,we have a perception that Urdu is Hindi unless and until we understand it,the moment someone start speaking in fasi Urdu which is difficult to understand people say that this is Urdu.so change your perception we Indians use mostly Urdu words while speaking not Hindi.