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Punjabi language


Punjabi (/pʌnˈdʒɑːbi/; Gurmukhi: ਪੰਜਾਬੀ pañjābī; Shahmukhi: پنجابی, paṉjābī) is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by 102 million native speakers worldwide, making it the 10th most widely spoken language (2010) in the world. It is the native language of the Punjabi people who inhabit the historical Punjab region of Pakistan and India. It is the only living language among the Indo-European languages which is a fully tonal language. Standard dialect The Majhi dialect spoken around Lahore and Amritsar is Punjabi's prestige dialect because it is the standard of written Punjabi. Majhi is spoken in the heart of Punjab in the region of Majha, which spans Lahore, Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Kasur, Tarn Taran, Faisalabad, Nankana Pakpattan, Sahiwal, Narowal, Sheikhupura, Sialkot, Chiniot, Gujranwala and Gujarat districts The Majhi (and Lahnda) spoken in Pakistan is more personalized in vocabulary, and the usage of the sounds /z/, /x/ and /ɣ/ are more profound. History The Sikh religion originated in the 15th century in the Punjab region and Punjabi is the predominant language spoken by Sikhs.[31] Most portions of the Guru Granth Sahib use the Punjabi language written in Gurmukhi, though Punjabi is not the only language used in Sikh scriptures. The Janamsakhis, stories on the life and legend of Guru Nanak (1469–1539), are early examples of Punjabi prose literature. Guru Nanak himself composed Punjabi verse incorporating vocabulary from Sanskrit,Arabic, Persian, and other Indic languages as characteristic of the Gurbani tradition. Punjabi Sufi poetry developed under Shah Hussain (1538–1599), Sultan Bahu(1628–1691), Shah Sharaf (1640–1724), Ali Haider (1690–1785), Saleh Muhammad Safoori (son of Hazrat Mai Safoora Qadiriyya, whom Ali Haider had given great tribute) and Bulleh Shah (1680–1757). Writing system There are two ways to write Punjabi: Gurmukhi and Shahmukhi. The word Gurmukhi translates into "Guru's mouth", Shahmukhi means "from the King's mouth".[26] In the Punjab province of Pakistan, the script used is Shahmukhi and differs from the Urdu alphabet in having four additional letters.[43] East Punjab, located in India, is divided into three states. In the state of Punjab, the Gurmukhī script is generally used for writing Punjabi.