Indo-Aryan languages

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Indo-Aryan languages
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{{Redirect-distinguish|Indic languages|Languages of India}}{{More citations needed|date=June 2019}}{{short description|Language family in the Indian subcontinent}}{{Use dmy dates|date=May 2016}}{{Use Indian English|date=May 2016}}

{{legend|#fe933c|Central}}{{legend|#fd15ac|Dardic}}{{legend|#effe27|Eastern}}{{legend|#ad27fe|Northern}}{{legend|#274ffe|Northwestern}}{{legend|#3bed69|Southern}}{{legend|#fe1e1e|Western}}}}{{Indo-European topics}}The Indo-Aryan or Indic languages, are a major language family of South Asia (or the Indian subcontinent). They constitute a branch of the Indo-Iranian languages, itself a branch of the Indo-European language family. In the early 21st century, Indo-Aryan languages were spoken by more than 800 million people, primarily in India, Bangladesh, Nepal, Pakistan and Sri Lanka.ENCYCLOPEDIA, Overview of Indo-Aryan languages,weblink Encyclopædia Britannica, 8 July 2018, Moreover, there are large immigrant and expatriate Indo-Aryan speaking communities in Northwestern Europe, Western Asia, North America and Australia. There are about 219 known Indo-Aryan languages.WEB,weblink Indo-Aryan Branch - About World Languages,, Modern Indo-Aryan languages are descended from Sanskrit through Prakrit.BOOK, Chamber's Encyclopaedia, Volume 7, 1968, International Learnings Systems, English, Most Aryan languages of India and Pakistan belong to the Indo-Aryan family, and are descended from Sanskrit through the intermediate stage of Prakrit. The Indo-Aryan languages are by far the most important numerically and the territory occupied by them extends over the whole of northern and central India and reaches as far south as Goa., BOOK, Donkin, R. A., Between East and West: The Moluccas and the Traffic in Spices Up to the Arrival of Europeans, 2003, American Philosophical Society, 9780871692481, English, The modern, regional Indo-Aryan languates developed from Prakrt, an early 'unrefined' (prakrta) form of Sanskrit, around the close of the, The largest in terms of speakers are Hindustani (Hindi-Urdu, about 329 million),Standard Hindi first language: 260.3 million (2001), as second language: 120 million (1999). Urdu L1: 68.9 million (2001-2014), L2: 94 million (1999): Ethnologue 19. Bengali (242 million),Bengali or Bangla-Bhasa, L1: 242.3 million (2011), L2: 19.2 million (2011), Ethnologue Punjabi (about 100 million)WEB, världens-100-största-språk-2010,weblink Nationalencyclopedin, Govt. of Sweden publication, 30 August 2013, and other languages, with a 2005 estimate placing the total number of native speakers at nearly 900 million.BOOK, Edwin Francis Bryant, Laurie L. Patton, The Indo-Aryan Controversy: Evidence and Inference in Indian History,weblink 2005, Routledge, 978-0-7007-1463-6, 246–247,


{{more citations needed section|date=February 2017}}


Proto-Indo-Aryan, or sometimes Proto-Indic, is the reconstructed proto-language of the Indo-Aryan languages. It is intended to reconstruct the language of the pre-Vedic Indo-Aryans. Proto-Indo-Aryan is meant to be the predecessor of Old Indo-Aryan (1500–300 BCE) which is directly attested as Vedic and Mitanni-Aryan. Despite the great archaicity of Vedic, however, the other Indo-Aryan languages preserve a small number of archaic features lost in Vedic.

Indian subcontinent

{{See also|Linguistic history of India}}Dates indicate only a rough time frame

Old Indo-Aryan

The earliest evidence of the group is from Mitanni Indo-Aryan.BOOK, The Roots of Hinduism: The Early Aryans and The Indus Civilization, Parpola, Asko, Oxford University Press, 2015, The only evidence of it is a few proper names and specialized loanwords.Rigvedic Indo-Aryan has been used in the ancient preserved religious hymns of the Rigveda, the earliest Vedic literature.From the Rigvedic language, "Sanskrit" (literally "put together", meaning perfected or elaborated) developed as the prestige language of culture, science and religion, as well as the court, theatre, etc. Sanskrit is, by convention, referred to by modern scholars as 'Classical Sanskrit' in contradistinction to the so-called 'Rigvedic Sanskrit', which is largely intelligible to Sanskrit speakers.{{Citation needed|date=November 2018}}

Middle Indo-Aryan (Prakrits)

Mitanni inscriptions show some middle Indo-Aryan characteristics along with Old Indic, for example sapta in old Indo-Aryan becomes satta ('pt' is transformed into middle indo aryan 'tt'). According to S.S. Misra this language can be similar to Buddhist hybrid Sanskrit which might not be a mixed language but an early middle Indo-Aryan occurring much before prakrit.The Indo-Aryan numerals are found in the treatise on horse training composed by Kikkulis of Mitanni (Section 6.9). They are aikawartanna ( Skt ekavartana) 'one turn of the course', terawartanna ( Skt tre-vartana) 'three turns of the course', sattawartanna ( Skt sapta-vartana) 'seven turns of the course', nawartana with haplology for nawawartana ( Skt nava-vartana) 'nine turns of the course'. The forms of numerals in these words are clearly Indo-Aryan. The form aika- is especially confirmatory. The form satta for Skt sapta- is a clearly Middle Indo-Aryan form. The following linguistic features reveal that the language belongs to an early Middle Indo-Aryan stage or to a transitional stage between Old Indo-Aryan and Middle Indo-Aryan. (i) Dissimilar plosives have been assimilated, for example, sapta satta. Gray quotes the MIA form for comparison, but he is silent about the fact that the borrowing in Anatolian is from MIA (1950: 309). (ii) Semi-vowels and liquids were not assimilated in conjuncts with plosives, semi-vowels or liquids as in 1st MIA, for example, vartana wartana, rathya aratiya-, virya Birya-, Vrdhamva Bardamva. (iii) Nasals were also not assimilated to plosives/nasals, unlike in 1st MIA and like in OIA. This characteristic places the language of these documents earlier than 1st MIA, for example, rukma urukmannu, rtanma artamna. (iv) Anaptyxis was quite frequent, for example, Indra Indara smara mumara. (v) v b initially, for example, virya birya, vrdhasva bardamva. (vi) r ar, for example, rta arta, vrdh bard-. Thus, a linguistic study of the borrowed Indo-Aryan forms in the Anatolian records shows that they are definitely Indo-Aryan and not Iranian nor Indo- Iranian. This also shows that this language belongs to a transitional stage between OIA and MIA. Further, this language is comparable to the language of the Indus seals as deciphered by S. R. Rao. This language is the base for Buddhist Hybrid Sanskrit, which was wrongly named Hybrid because of a misconception that it was a mixed language. Thus, the language of Middle Indo-Aryan is much before the Afokan Prakrit. On the basis of the borrowed words in Anatolian records and the language of the Indus seals as deciphered by S. R. Rao the date of MIA may go beyond 2000 BC. The transitional stage between OIA and MIA might have started in 2500 BC. BOOK, THE INDO-ARYAN CONTROVERSY Evidence and inference in Indian history, Bryant, Edwin, 2001, Routledge, 978-0-203-64188-0, 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, 181–234, There is good evidence that in the Old Indic or Indo-Aryan dialect to which the names belong, at the time of the documents, initial v, represented by b, was pronounced like v, while medial v kept its value of semivowel and was pronounced like w. For instance, Birasena(-Virasena), Birya (=Virya). Biryasura (=Viryasura)... 'It seems that in the language to which the names belong, just as in Middle Indic, the group pt had become tt, as in, for instance, Wasasatta(=Vasasapta), Sattawadza(=Saptavaja) and sausatti (=sausapti 'the son of susapti') JOURNAL, Dumont, P.E., October 1947, Indo-Aryan Names from Mitanni, Nuzi, and Syrian Documents, Journal of the American Oriental Society, 67, 4, 251–253, 596061, 10.2307/596061, Outside the learned sphere of Sanskrit, vernacular dialects (Prakrits) continued to evolve. The oldest attested Prakrits are the Buddhist and Jain canonical languages Pali and Ardhamagadhi Prakrit, respectively. By medieval times, the Prakrits had diversified into various Middle Indo-Aryan languages. Apabhraṃśa is the conventional cover term for transitional dialects connecting late Middle Indo-Aryan with early Modern Indo-Aryan, spanning roughly the 6th to 13th centuries. Some of these dialects showed considerable literary production; the Śravakacāra of Devasena (dated to the 930s) is now considered to be the first Hindi book.The next major milestone occurred with the Muslim conquests in the Indian subcontinent in the 13th–16th centuries. Under the flourishing Turco-Mongol Mughal Empire, Persian became very influential as the language of prestige of the Islamic courts due to adoptation of the foreign language by the Mughal emperors. However, Persian was soon displaced by Hindustani. This Indo-Aryan language is a combination with Persian, Arabic, and Turkic elements in its vocabulary, with the grammar of the local dialects.The two largest languages that formed from Apabhraṃśa were Bengali and Hindustani; others include Assamese , Sindhi, Gujarati, Odia, Marathi, and Punjabi.

New Indo-Aryan

Dialect continuum

The Indo-Aryan languages of North India and Pakistan form a dialect continuum. What is called "Hindi" in India is frequently Standard Hindi, the Sanskritized version of the colloquial Hindustani spoken in the Delhi area since the Mughals. However, the term Hindi is also used for most of the central Indic language varieties from Bihar to Rajasthan. The spoken New Indo-Aryan dialects from Assam in the east to the borders of Afghanistan in the west form a linguistic continuum across the plains of North India, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

Medieval Hindustani

In the Central Zone Hindi-speaking areas, for a long time the prestige dialect was Braj Bhasha, but this was replaced in the 19th century by the Khariboli-based Hindustani. Hindustani was strongly influenced by Sanskrit and Persian, with these influences leading to the emergence of Modern Standard Hindi and Modern Standard Urdu as registers of the Hindustani language.BOOK, Kulshreshtha, Manisha, Mathur, Ramkumar, Dialect Accent Features for Establishing Speaker Identity: A Case Study,weblink 24 March 2012, Springer Science & Business Media, 978-1-4614-1137-6, 16, {{Citation | title=The Cultural Landscape an Introduction to Human Geography |author1=Robert E. Nunley |author2=Severin M. Roberts |author3=George W. Wubrick |author4=Daniel L. Roy | year=1999 | isbn=978-0-13-080180-7 | publisher=Prentice Hall | url= | quote=... Hindustani is the basis for both languages ...}} This state of affairs continued until the division of the British Indian Empire in 1947, when Hindi became the official language in India and Urdu became official in Pakistan. Despite the different script the fundamental grammar remains identical, the difference is more sociolinguistic than purely linguistic.WEB,weblink Urdu and its Contribution to Secular Values, South Asian Voice, 26 February 2008, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 11 November 2007, dmy-all, WEB,weblink Hindi/Urdu Language Instruction, University of California, Davis, 3 Jan 2015, yes,weblink" title="">weblink 3 January 2015, dmy-all, WEB,weblink Ethnologue Report for Hindi, Ethnologue, 26 February 2008, Today it is widely understood/spoken as a second or third language throughout South AsiaOtto Zwartjes Portuguese Missionary Grammars in Asia, Africa and Brazil, 1550-1800 Publisher John Benjamins Publishing, 2011 {{ISBN|9027283257}}, 9789027283252 and one of the most widely known languages in the world in terms of number of speakers.


Some theonyms, proper names and other terminology of the Mitanni exhibit an Indo-Aryan superstrate, suggest that an Indo-Aryan elite imposed itself over the Hurrians in the course of the Indo-Aryan expansion. In a treaty between the Hittites and the Mitanni, the deities Mitra, Varuna, Indra, and the Ashvins (Nasatya) are invoked. Kikkuli's horse training text includes technical terms such as aika (eka, one), tera (tri, three), panza (pancha, five), satta (sapta, seven), na (nava, nine), vartana (vartana, turn, round in the horse race). The numeral aika "one" is of particular importance because it places the superstrate in the vicinity of Indo-Aryan proper as opposed to Indo-Iranian or early Iranian (which has "aiva") in generalPaul Thieme, The 'Aryan' Gods of the Mitanni Treaties. JAOS 80, 1960, 301–17Another text has babru (babhru, brown), parita (palita, grey), and pinkara (pingala, red). Their chief festival was the celebration of the solstice (vishuva) which was common in most cultures in the ancient world. The Mitanni warriors were called marya, the term for warrior in Sanskrit as well; note mišta-nnu (= miẓḍha, ≈ Sanskrit mīḍha) "payment (for catching a fugitive)" (M. Mayrhofer, Etymologisches Wörterbuch des Altindoarischen, Heidelberg, 1986–2000; Vol. II:358).Sanskritic interpretations of Mitanni royal names render Artashumara (artaššumara) as Ṛtasmara "who thinks of Ṛta" (Mayrhofer II 780), Biridashva (biridašṷa, biriiašṷa) as Prītāśva "Whose Horse is Dear" (Mayrhofer II 182), Priyamazda (priiamazda) as Priyamedha "whose wisdom is dear" (Mayrhofer II 189, II378), Citrarata as Citraratha "Whose Chariot is Shining" (Mayrhofer I 553), Indaruda/Endaruta as Indrota "helped by Indra" (Mayrhofer I 134), Shativaza (šattiṷaza) as Sātivāja "Winning the Race Price" (Mayrhofer II 540, 696), Šubandhu as Subandhu "Having Good Relatives" (a name in Palestine, Mayrhofer II 209, 735), Tushratta (tṷišeratta, tušratta, etc.) as *tṷaiašaratha, Vedic Tvastar "Whose Chariot is Vehement" (Mayrhofer, Etym. Wb., I 686, I 736).

Romani, Lomavren, and Domari languages


Domari is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by older Dom people scattered across the Middle East. The language is reported to be spoken as far north as Azerbaijan and as far south as central Sudan.*Matras, Y. (2012). A grammar of Domari. Berlin: De Gruyter Mouton (Mouton Grammar Library).{{rp|1}} Based on the systematicity of sound changes, we know with a fair degree of certainty that the names Domari and Romani derive from the Indo-Aryan word ḍom.WEB,weblink History of the Romani language,


Lomavren is a nearly extinct mixed language, spoken by the Lom people, that arose from language contact between a language related to Romani and DomariWEB,weblink Archived copy, 2015-03-25, yes,weblink 2 April 2015, dmy-all, Encyclopedia Iranica and the Armenian language.


The Romani language is usually included in the Western Indo-Aryan languages.WEB
, Romani (subgroup)
, SIL International
, n.d.
, 15 September 2013, Romani—spoken mainly in various parts of Europe—is conservative in maintaining almost intact the Middle Indo-Aryan present-tense person concord markers, and in maintaining consonantal endings for nominal case—both features that have been eroded in most other modern languages of Central India. It shares an innovative pattern of past-tense person concord with the languages of the Northwest, such as Kashmiri and Shina. This is believed to be further proof that Romani originated in the Central region, then migrated to the Northwest.
There are no known historical documents about the early phases of the Romani language.Linguistic evaluation carried out in the nineteenth century by Pott (1845) and Miklosich (1882–1888) showed that the Romani language is to be classed as a New Indo-Aryan language (NIA), not Middle Indo-Aryan (MIA), establishing that the ancestors of the Romani could not have left India significantly earlier than AD 1000.The principal argument favouring a migration during or after the transition period to NIA is the loss of the old system of nominal case, and its reduction to just a two-way case system, nominative vs. oblique. A secondary argument concerns the system of gender differentiation. Romani has only two genders (masculine and feminine). Middle Indo-Aryan languages (named MIA) generally had three genders (masculine, feminine and neuter), and some modern Indo-Aryan languages retain this old system even today.It is argued that loss of the neuter gender did not occur until the transition to NIA. Most of the neuter nouns became masculine while a few feminine, like the neuter अग्नि (agni) in the Prakrit became the feminine आग (āg) in Hindi and jag in Romani. The parallels in grammatical gender evolution between Romani and other NIA languages have been cited as evidence that the forerunner of Romani remained on the Indian subcontinent until a later period, perhaps even as late as the tenth century.


There can be no definitive enumeration of Indo-Aryan languages because their dialects merge into one another. The major ones are illustrated here; for the details, see the dedicated articles.The classification follows Masica (1991) and Kausen (2006).{{Pie chartHindustani language>Hindustani (including Hindi language and Urdu language>Urdu)|value1=25.4Bengali language>Bengali|value2=20.7Punjabi language>Punjabi|value3=9.4Marathi language>Marathi|value4=5.6Gujarati language>Gujarati|value5=3.8Bhojpuri language>Bhojpuri|value6=3.1Maithili language>Maithili|value7=2.6Odia language>Odia|value8=2.5Sindhi language>Sindhi|value9=1.9|label10=Others|value10=25|caption=Percentage of Indo-Aryan speakers by native language:}}


Kashmiri - 5.6 million speakers
* Shina - 500,000 speakers * Brokskat - 10,000 speakers * Domaaki - 340 speakers * Kundal Shahi - 700 speakers * Kalkoti - 6,000 speakers * Ushoji - 2,000 speakers * Palula - 10,000 speakers
* Savi - 3,000 speakers
Pashayi - 400,000 speakers
* Dameli - 5,000 speakers * Gawar-Bati - 9,500 speakers * Nangalami - 5,000 speakers
* Shumashti - 1,000 speakers
* Kalasha - 5,000 speakers
* Khowar - 290,000 speakers
* Maiya - 200,000 speakers * Bateri - 29,000 * Chilisso - 1,000 speakers * Gowro - 200 speakers * Kalami - 100,000 speakers * Tirahi - 100 speakers * Torwali - 80,000 speakers * Wotapuri-Katarqalai †

Northern Zone

Central Pahari
* Garhwali - 2.9 million speakers
* Kumaoni - 2.4 million speakers
Eastern Pahari
* Nepali - 17 million speakers * Jumli - 85,000

Northwestern Zone

Dogri - 4 million speakers
* Kangri - 1.1 million speakers * Mandeali - 1.7 million * Jaunsari - 100,000 speakers * Kullu - 110,000 * Pahari Kinnauri - 6,300 speakers * Mahasu Himachali - 1 million speakers * Hinduri - 30,000 speakers * Sirmauri - 400,000 speakers
* Punjabi - 122 million speakers * Doabi * Lahnda ** Saraiki - 20 million speakers ** Hindko - 3.7 million speakers ** Jakati † ** Pothwari - 2.5 million speakers * Majhi * Malwai * Puadhi
* Sindhi - 25 million speakers * Jadgali - 25,000 speakers * Kutchi - 873,000 speakers * Luwati - 5,000 speakers * Memoni

Western Zone

Ethnologue lists the following languages under the Western Zone that are not already covered in other subgroups:WEB,weblink Indo-Aryan, Ethnologue,
* Rajasthani * Rajasthani proper - 25.8 million speakers * Bagri - 2.1 million speakers * Marwari - 22 million speakers * Mewati - 3 million speakers * Dhundari - 9.6 million speakers * Harauti - 4.7 million speakers * Mewari - 5.1 million speakers * Shekhawati - 3 million speakers * Bagri - 2.1 million speakers * Dhatki - 150,000 speakers * Malvi - 5.6 million speakers * Nimadi - 2.31 million speakers * Gujarati * Gujarati - 49 million speakers * Jandavra - 5,000 speakers * Saurashtra - 190,000 speakers * Aer - 100 speakers * Vaghri - 10,000 speakers * Vasavi - 1.2 million speakers * Koli - 1.4 million speakers * Parkari Koli - 250,000 speakers * Kachi Koli - 500,000 speakers * Wardiyara Koli - 542,000 speakers * Bhil * Northern Bhil * Bauria - 27,000 speakers * Bhilori - 200,000 speakers * Magari * Central Bhil ** Bhili proper - 3.5 million speakers ** Bhilali - 1.1 million speakers ** Chodri - 210,000 speakers ** Dhodia - 170,000 speakers ** Dhanki - 140,000 speakers ** Dubli - 250,000 speakers * Bareli ** Palya Bareli - 10,000 speakers ** Pauri Bareli - 640,000 speakers ** Rathwi Bareli - 100,000 speakers ** Pardhi - 49,000 speakers
* Kalto - 15,000 speakers
Khandeshi - 1.9 million speakers
Domari - 4 million speakers
Romani - 1.5 million speakers
* Northern Romani ** Sinte Romani - 200,000 speakers ** Carpathian Romani - 160,000 speakers ** Finnish Kalo - 12,000 speakers ** Baltic Romani - 35,000 speakers * Carpathian Romani - 150,000 speakers * Balkan Romani - 560,000 speakers * Vlax Romani - 540,000 speakers

Central Zone (Madhya or Hindi)

(File:Hindi Indoarisch.png|thumb|right|Indic, Central Zone)Parya - 4,000 speakers
Western Hindi
* Hindustani (including Standard Hindi and Standard Urdu) - 329 million speakers * Braj - 21 million speakers * Haryanvi - 8 million speakers * Bundeli - 3.1 million speakers
* Kannauji - 9.5 million speakers
Eastern Hindi
* Awadhi - 3.5 million speakers ** Fiji Hindi - 460,000 speakers * Bagheli - 8.4 million speakers * Chhattisgarhi - 24 million speakers Parya historically belonged to the Central Zone but lost intelligibility with other languages of the group due to geographic distance and numerous grammatical and lexical innovations.

Eastern Zone

These languages derive from Magadhan Apabhraṃśa Prakrit.
*Bhojpuri - 51 million speakers **Caribbean Hindustani - 166,000 speakers *Magahi/मगही - 20 million speakers *Maithili/मैथिली/মৈথিলি - 33.9 million speakers *Angika/अंगिका/অঙ্গিকা - 743,000 speakers *Khortha - 8.04 million speakers *Sadri (Nagpuri) - 5.1 million speakers
*Kurmali - 556,089 speakers
Tharu - 1.9 million speakers
Odia (ଓଡ଼ିଆ) - 34 million speakers
*Halbi - 766,000 speakers * Bhatri - 334,000 speakers * Kamar - 40,000 speakers * Mirgan - 60,000 speakers
* Nahari - 20,000 speakers
Bengali–Assamese (বাংলা-অসমীয়া):

Southern Zone languages

This group of languages developed from Maharashtri Prakrit.It is not clear if Dakhini (Deccani, Southern Urdu) is part of Hindustani along with Standard Urdu, or a separate Persian-influenced development from Marathi.


*Marathi (मराठी) - 73 million speakers * Phudagi - 1,000 speakers * Kadodi * Konkani (कोंकणी) - 2.26 million speakers * Katkari - 12,000 speakers * Kukna - 110,000 speakers * Varli - 387,000 speakers * Maharashtrian Konkani - 2.4 million speakers

Insular Indo-Aryan

*Sinhala (සිංහල) - 17 million * Maldivian () - 340,000 speakers **Mahl - 10,000 speakers
The Insular Indo-Aryan languages share several characteristics that set them apart significantly from the continental languages.


The following languages are related to each other, but otherwise unclassified within Indo-Aryan:Kuswaric{{glottolog|kusw1234|Kuswaric}}
* Danwar - 46,000 speakers * Bote-Darai - 20,000 speakers
Chinali–Lahul Lohar{{glottolog|chin1491|Chinali–Lahul Lohar}}
* Chinali - 750 speakers * Lahul Lohar - 750 speakers
The following other poorly attested languages are listed as unclassified within the Indo-Aryan family by Ethnologue 17: Also Degaru, Mina, Bhalay and Gowlan are all names for the Gowli caste, rather than a language.Kholosi
The Kholosi language is a more recently discovered Indo-Aryan language spoken by aroud 1800 people in two villages in southern Iran and remains currently unclassified.



Stop positions

The normative system of New Indo-Aryan stops consists of five points of articulation: labial, dental, "retroflex", palatal, and velar, which is the same as that of Sanskrit. The "retroflex" position may involve retroflexion, or curling the tongue to make the contact with the underside of the tip, or merely retraction. The point of contact may be alveolar or postalveolar, and the distinctive quality may arise more from the shaping than from the position of the tongue. Palatals stops have affricated release and are traditionally included as involving a distinctive tongue position (blade in contact with hard palate). Widely transcribed as {{IPA|[tʃ]}}, {{Harvcoltxt|Masica|1991|p=94}} claims {{IPA|[cʃ]}} to be a more accurate rendering.Moving away from the normative system, some languages and dialects have alveolar affricates {{IPA|[ts]}} instead of palatal, though some among them retain {{IPA|[tʃ]}} in certain positions: before front vowels (esp. {{IPA|/i/}}), before {{IPA|/j/}}, or when geminated. Alveolar as an additional point of articulation occurs in Marathi and Konkani where dialect mixture and others factors upset the aforementioned complementation to produce minimal environments, in some West Pahari dialects through internal developments ({{IPA|*t̪ɾ}}, {{IPA|t̪}} > {{IPA|/tʃ/}}), and in Kashmiri. The addition of a retroflex affricate to this in some Dardic languages maxes out the number of stop positions at seven (barring borrowed {{IPA|/q/}}), while a reduction to the inventory involves *ts > {{IPA|/s/}}, which has happened in Assamese, Chittagonian, Sinhala (though there have been other sources of a secondary {{IPA|/ts/}}), and Southern Mewari.Further reductions in the number of stop articulations are in Assamese and Romany, which have lost the characteristic dental/retroflex contrast, and in Chittagonian, which may lose its labial and velar articulations through spirantization in many positions (> {{IPA|[f, x]}}).{{Harvcoltxt|Masica|1991|pp=94–95}}{| class="wikitable"! Stop series !! Language(s)p}}, {{IPAslinkʈ}}, {{IPAslinkk}}Hindi, Punjabi, Dogri, Sindhi, Gujarati, Bihari, Maithili, Sinhala, Odia, Standard Bengali, dialects of Rajasthani (except Lamani, NW. Marwari, S. Mewari)p}}, {{IPAslinkʈ}}, {{IPAslinkk}}Nepali, dialects of Rajasthani (Lamani and NW. Marwari), Northern Lahnda's Kagani, Kumauni, many West Pahari dialects (not Chamba Mandeali, Jaunsari, or Sirmauri)p}}, {{IPAslinkʈ}}, {{IPAslinktʃ}}, {{IPAslink|Marathi, Konkani, certain W. Pahari dialects (Bhadrawahi, Bhalesi, Padari, Simla, Satlej, maybe Kulu), Kashmiri{{IPAslinkt̪}}, {{IPAslinkts}}, {{IPAslinktʂ}}, {{IPAslink|Shina, Bashkarik, Gawarbati, Phalura, Kalasha, Khowar, Shumashti, Kanyawali, Pashaip}}, {{IPAslinkʈ}}, {{IPAslink|Rajasthani's S. Mewarip}}, {{IPAslinkt}}, {{IPAslinktɕ}}, {{IPAslink|E. and N. dialects of Bengali (Dhaka, Mymensing, Rajshahi)p}}, {{IPAslinkk}}Assamesep}}, {{IPAslinktʃ}}, {{IPAslink|Romanit̪}}, {{IPAslinkk}} (with /i/ and /u/)Sylhetit̪}}, {{IPAslink|Chittagonian


Sanskrit was noted as having five nasal-stop articulations corresponding to its oral stops, and among modern languages and dialects Dogri, Kacchi, Kalasha, Rudhari, Shina, Saurasthtri, and Sindhi have been analyzed as having this full complement of phonemic nasals {{IPAslink|m}} {{IPAslink|n}} {{IPAslink|ɳ}} {{IPAslink|ɲ}} {{IPAslink|ŋ}}, with the last two generally as the result of the loss of the stop from a homorganic nasal + stop cluster ({{IPA|[ɲj]}} > {{IPA|[ɲ]}} and {{IPA|[ŋɡ]}} > {{IPA|[ŋ]}}), though there are other sources as well.{{Harvcoltxt|Masica|1991|pp=95–96}}


The following are consonant systems of major and representative New Indo-Aryan languages, as presented in {{Harvcoltxt|Masica|1991|pp=106–107}}, though here they are in "language" and "dialect" is a difficult one, and any distinction made using these terms is obscured by their ambiguity. In one general colloquial sense, a language is a "developed" dialect: one that is standardised, has a written tradition and enjoys social prestige. As there are degrees of development, the boundary between a language and a dialect thus defined is not clear-cut, and there is a large middle ground where assignment is contestable.There is a second meaning of these terms, in which the distinction is drawn on the basis of linguistic similarity. Though seemingly a "proper" linguistics sense of the terms, it is still problematic: methods that have been proposed for quantifying difference (for example, based on mutual intelligibility) have not been seriously applied in practice; and any relationship established in this framework is relative.{{sfn|Masica|1991|pp=23–27}}

See also





Further reading

|year=2003|editor1-last= Cardona|editor1-first= George|editor-link= George Cardona|editor2-last= Jain|editor2-first= Dhanesh
|title=The Indo-Aryan Languages

|authorlink=Colin Masica
|title=The Indo-Aryan Languages|place= Cambridge
|publisher=Cambridge University Press

External links

{{Old and Middle Indo-Aryan}}{{Indo-Aryan languages}}{{Authority control}}

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