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Thread: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

  1. #1
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    Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    "Back to square one" is often used when, after much ado, one seems to have got to where one started from. It could be said if one is trying to solve some problem but after a lot of attempts one is once again at the starting point. This phrase may also be employed during a discussion when one has n't really got anywhare with the topic in hand.

    How would you convey this idea in your respective language?

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    I did some searching and found the phrase "जहाँ के तहाँ" but I personally have never used this. Google attests to some usage. I've always used round-about non-idiomatic ways of expressing the idea of starting over: पहले से शुरू करना, शुरू से करना, फिर से करना.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    May not be so well-packaged, but I have heard and used the phrase ghuum phir ke waapas apni jagah aa jaanaa

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    In such a context, I use जहाँ के तहाँ (already mentioned by langnerd) or "vaapas vahiiN par".

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    jitthe dii khottii, othe aan khaRotii/khalotii

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Not exactly what's asked but in the same ballpark ... xair se buddhuu ghar ko lauTe

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by UrduMedium View Post
    xair se buddhuu ghar ko lauTe
    Interesting! We have a slightly different version of this: "lauT ke buddhuu ghar ko aaye" Is this "xair" here same as in "xairiiyat"?

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    ^ Yes xair here is the same as xairiyat. However, now I am not sure. What you wrote also sounds very familiar. I think your version is correct and I may have mixed it up with something else. ِLet's see if someone comments to settle it.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by UrduMedium View Post
    ^ Yes xair here is the same as xairiyat. However, now I am not sure. What you wrote also sounds very familiar. I think your version is correct and I may have mixed it up with something else. ِLet's see if someone comments to settle it.
    lauT ke buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    jaan bachii aur laakhoN paa'e

    lauT ke buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    jaan bachii so laakhoN paa'e

    jaan bachii laakhoN paa'e
    xair se apne ghar ko aa'e

    jaan bachii so laakhoN paa'e
    xair se buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    Last edited by Qureshpor; 1st December 2012 at 11:09 PM.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by langnerd View Post
    I did some searching and found the phrase "जहाँ के तहाँ" but I personally have never used this. Google attests to some usage. I've always used round-about non-idiomatic ways of expressing the idea of starting over: पहले से शुरू करना, शुरू से करना, फिर से करना.
    Did you mean "jahaaN kaa tahaaN", langnerd SaaHib?

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by hindiurdu View Post
    jitthe dii khottii, othe aan khaRotii/khalotii
    Thank you, hindiurdu SaaHib. You will be pleased to know that others have thought about this very same Punjabi idiom!

    I would personally say "aaNR" but not "khaRotii" unless you have the retroflex l (L) in mind. I think this is a very apt equivalent of "back to square one"!

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by QURESHPOR View Post
    lauT ke buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    jaan bachii aur laakhoN paa'e

    lauT ke buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    jaan bachii so laakhoN paa'e

    jaan bachii laakhoN paa'e
    xair se apne ghar ko aa'e

    jaan bachii so laakhoN paa'e
    xair se buddhuu ghar ko aa'e
    Thanks QP saahab. Probably a fair description of what went on inside my head.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by QURESHPOR View Post
    Thank you, hindiurdu SaaHib. You will be pleased to know that others have thought about this very same Punjabi idiom!

    I would personally say "aaNR" but not "khaRotii" unless you have the retroflex l (L) in mind. I think this is a very apt equivalent of "back to square one"!
    Believe it or not, this was the first expression that came to my mind too . But for some reason I felt it carried a different nuance. But hearing now from two native speakers, I'm convinced of its applicability here.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Yes QP, I looked up जहाँ का तहाँ and found it is the much more common phrase. It seems to be used to mean something like "वहीं के वहीं रह जाना", which is not quite the same as "back to square one."

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    I think I know what you'd call wraparound (modulo calculus), or in french rembobiner, it would be something like rujuu3 ilal bad. But it doessn't convey the same sense as back to square on.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by BelligerentPacifist View Post
    I think I know what you'd call wraparound (modulo calculus), or in french rembobiner, it would be something like rujuu3 ilal bad. But it doessn't convey the same sense as back to square on.
    French word "rembobiner" means to rewind, or to readjust, rearrange: its sense is nowhere close to "back to square one." Coming back to the original question, I would also say "lauT phir ke (vahiiN) aanaa/aa jaanaa", which is quite close to "back to square one." (The "phir" here means to turn, to roam around (verb "phirnaa"), not the same as the "phir" in post 2.)

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    v
    Quote Originally Posted by greatbear View Post
    French word "rembobiner" means to rewind, or to readjust, rearrange: its sense is nowhere close to "back to square one." Coming back to the original question, I would also say "lauT phir ke (vahiiN) aanaa/aa jaanaa", which is quite close to "back to square one." (The "phir" here means to turn, to roam around (verb "phirnaa"), not the same as the "phir" in post 2.)
    Leaving French aside, could you shed more light on theHindi expression that you postulate? Since you have explained the meaning of 'phir', can you do the same with 'lauT' please?

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    From Platt's: H لوٿ लौट lauṭ [Prk. पल्लट्टो; S. पर्यस्त, part. of rt. अस् with परि; cf. palaṭ], s.m. Turning over, inverting; turning back, returning.

    Just to have it here too:


    H پهرنا फिरना phirnā [phir˚ = pher˚ = Prk. फेरे(इ) or फेर(इ)=S. पर्ये(ति), rt. इ with परि], v.n. To turn, go round, revolve, whirl; to circulate; to turn back, to return; to walk, walk about, walk to and fro; to wander, rove, ramble, stroll; to travel; to turn over, to roll; to turn away, to turn (from, -se), to forsake (in this sense phir-jānā is the common form); to change; to turn aside, to deviate, wander; to turn, bend, become distorted or crooked, to warp;—to go forth, or to go (to the necessary), to have a stool (usually with jhāṛā or some similar word, e.g. jhāṛā phirnā):—phir-paṛnā (-se), To turn away from (in dissatisfaction or displeasure), to be dissatisfied, be displeased:—phir-jānā (-se), To pass (before); to go back, to return; to turn (from), turn (against), to forsake, abandon, desert, to revolt (from, or against); to be bent, be distorted; to warp.
    Last edited by langnerd; 3rd December 2012 at 8:42 PM.

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    Quote Originally Posted by langnerd View Post
    From Platt's: H لوٿ लौट lauṭ [Prk. पल्लट्टो; S. पर्यस्त, part. of rt. अस् with परि; cf. palaṭ], s.m. Turning over, inverting; turning back, returning.

    Just to have it here too:


    H پهرنا फिरना phirnā [phir˚ = pher˚ = Prk. फेरे(इ) or फेर(इ)=S. पर्ये(ति), rt. इ with परि], v.n. To turn, go round, revolve, whirl; to circulate; to turn back, to return; to walk, walk about, walk to and fro; to wander, rove, ramble, stroll; to travel; to turn over, to roll; to turn away, to turn (from, -se), to forsake (in this sense phir-jānā is the common form); to change; to turn aside, to deviate, wander; to turn, bend, become distorted or crooked, to warp;—to go forth, or to go (to the necessary), to have a stool (usually with jhāṛā or some similar word, e.g. jhāṛā phirnā):—phir-paṛnā (-se), To turn away from (in dissatisfaction or displeasure), to be dissatisfied, be displeased:—phir-jānā (-se), To pass (before); to go back, to return; to turn (from), turn (against), to forsake, abandon, desert, to revolt (from, or against); to be bent, be distorted; to warp.
    I think the query might be about "lauT-phir ke" as a whole. I am not aware if it is used when Urdu is the medium of communication. Let's see if other people are familiar with this "turn of phrase".

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    Re: Urdu-Hindi-Punjabi: Back to square one

    "lauT-phir ke" is a commonly used expression in Hindi. I don't know whether it's commonplace to Urdu speakers as well or not.

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