Hindi/Urdu: ki "that"

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by Wolverine9, Feb 16, 2013.

  1. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    According to Platts, 'ki' is of Persian origin. Of the many meanings for this word, one is a conjunction meaning "that". Is there any Indic equivalent for 'ki' in this particular meaning? If not, this might be one of the few words that lacks an Indic correspondent. It is rather interesting considering how ubiquitous and essential 'ki' is in forming various sentences.
  2. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Here is a thread in which this particular connector was discussed. During the course of our discussions in this forums, we have come across a number of words for which there is no suitable Indic equivalent.

  3. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    Okay, thanks!

    It's interesting that kih may ultimately be of Arabic origin. I hope fdb or someone else can verify this. Perhaps I should ask on the etymology forum.
  4. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I personally do not think it has anything to do with Arabic. After my question, nothing was put forward to substantiate the assertion. You could of course ask it in the Arabic and Etomology forums. I don't remember coming across ki/kih in the Qur'an.
  5. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    P که ki [Pehl. and Zend ka; S. कि, pronom. base], interrog. and rel. pronoun, Who? what? which? wherefore? why? (called kāf-ě-istifhām; it is sometimes used, like kyā, as the untranslated sign of interrogation);—who, which, that, as, whoever (called kāf-ě-bayān or bayānīya, or kāf-ě-ṣila);—conj. That, in order that, to the end that, so that, for that, in that, because, for; if; and; or; whether; namely, to wit, saying, thus, as follows (cf. Gr. ὅτι); lest; when; but even;—God grant that (called kāf-ě-duʻāʼīya);—than (expressing comparison,=az). (In some cases ki is untranslatable but idiomatically indispensable; and in some cases it might be omitted without violence to the idiom.)

    Zend == an ancient Iranian language
    "Later Zend. abhi (near) aibi aiwi îhu (work) izba izha. The clearest evidence of the extreme age of the language of the gäthäs is its striking resemblance to the oldest Sanskrit, the language of the Vedic poems." - Encylopedia Brittanica 1911

    Pehl. == Pehlevi- the Iranian language of the Zoroastrian literature of the 3rd to 10th centuries

    Therefore, even according to Platts, ki stretches back all the way to Sanskrit. The labelling as Persian seems to be simply overzealousness.
  6. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu

    It doesn't seem likely to me that it has anything to do with Sanskrit as far as the etymology of this word is concerned, especially that Platts points only towards the similarity of the Sanskrit pronominal base. The word is clearly a Persian one, at least in Urdu, given that its array of usages in Persian and in Urdu is the same. So I don't perceive any argument for justifying your "overzealousness" when one calls white white and black black. The fact simply being that this is a Persian word what is there a need to call it a Sanskrit one? Possibly the Persian word's etymology reaches as far back as Proto I-I or PIE, ultimately, but I can't get my mind over why there is the need to point towards Sanskrit and discard the references to the Persian origin by using a negatively emotion-laden word? Overzealousness in what? Who is supposed to be overzealous? Platts or the participants to this discussion, to which you've also made your entry?

    Could you elaborate on this information? What kind of language is Zend supposed to be? What is the purpose to reproduce the entry about gathas? What kind of source is "Encyclopedia Brittanica"?

    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  7. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    Interesting. Dictionary writers now put similarities in their entries. But in other cases, these said similarities are called origins. Quite interesting.

    I wonder why when I look in an English dictionary it doesn't list the similarities to other languages, but it lists origins or possible origins.

    So, looking at the possible history what might we say? Persian, in some form, came into India in the late ~900s - 1000s (The time when New Persian was growing in scope). Before the flourishing Persian arts in Dehli what were the people speaking? Did they have no word for "that" in their native language? (That question is obviously a definitive NO) If they had a word for it, what was that word?

    Likely, it was similar to the Persian "kih" as the forefathers of Persian and the forefathers of Hindi/Urdu are close linguistic relatives. So to definitively say that "kih" is Persian and Persian only is naive at best. Even Platts felt the necessity to express his unease of making such a decision by recording forms that predate Persian but are possible ancestors.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  8. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    The Sanskrit कि is listed as a cognate of the Iranian forms, not the origin. Most of the Persian words in Platts have Sanskrit cognates listed alongside them. Does that mean all of those Persian words have a Sanskrit origin? Of course not. Besides, the Sanskrit कि, though a cognate of the Persian, doesn't mean "that".

    Perhaps one can look towards Marathi or Bengali for possible words for "that" that may have been used in Hindi/Urdu prior to the arrival of Persian.
  9. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Thanks for your quick response Wolverine9, it has spared me a lot of typing on my moblile device which is difficult! I agree what you said.
    @tonyspeed: is there any way to express yourself whith regard to what others say wihout resirting to words like 'naive', 'overzealous'? Thank you. PS I didn't say it was Persian only, I said it was Urdu as well.
  10. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    These are the entries from Hindi Shabdsaagara. You will notice that the second entry gives "ki" as Farsi.

    कि क्रि० वि० [सं० किंम्] किस प्रकार? कैसे? उ०—जगदंबा जहँ अवतरी, मो पुर वरणि कि जाय । ऋद्धि सिद्धि संपत्ति सुख, नित नूतन अधिकाय ।—तुलसी (शब्द०) ।

    कि अव्य० [फा० कि] १. एक संयोजक शब्द जो कहना, वर्णन करना, देखना, सुनना इत्यादि क्रियाओं के बाद उनके विषयवर्णन के पहले आता है । जैसे,—(क) उसने कहा कि मैं नहीं जाऊँगा । (ख) राम ने देखा कि आगे एक साँप पड़ा है । (ग) जब उसने सुना कि उसका भाई मर गया, तब वह भी सन्यासी हो गया । २. तत्क्षण । त्काल । तुरंत । जैसे,—(क) मै जानै ही को था कि वह आ गया । (ख) चुपचाप बैठो, उठे कि मारा । (ग) तुम यहाँ से हुटे कि चीज गई । ३. या । अथवा । जैसे,—तुम आम लोगो कि इमली । उ०—सुंदर बोलत आवत बैन । ना जानौं तिहि समय सखी री, सब तन स्रवन कि नैन ।—सूर०,१० ।१८०४ ।

    I can't help with Marathi or Bengali but in Punjabi this conjunction is, as shown below (pa'ii) which in my version of Panjabi is va'ii.

  11. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    Thank you for the above reference.
    Given that I cannot find any evidence as to the similarity of Farsi "kih" with any Apabhramsha form, I will agree that the origin seems to be Persian.
    One site also claims that Gujurati also adopted this form "ke" from Persian.
  12. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    I agree with what you have said, but I don't think any Farsi words have Sankrit origin do they? Thank you for your input.
  13. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    There are some Sanskrit loans in Farsi but not many. ki is not one of them.
  14. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    One futher question to add to this thread. Is the 'ki' meaning 'that' (borrowed from Persian) the same "ki" used when we say
    "kyaa aap jaaeNge ki nahiiN?" (meaning "or") Does it have the same origin? Is it used this way in Persian?

    A comparative grammar of the Gaudian languages: August Friedrich Rudolf Hoernle p. 396 seems to leave out the Persian aspect in explaning its derivation.

  15. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو

    vuh jo ham meN tum meN qaraar thaa, tumheN yaad ho kih nah yaad ho
    vahii ya3nii va3dah nibaah kaa tumheN yaad ho kih nah yaad ho

    Momin Khan Momin (1800-1851)

    I am not certain.
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2013
  16. Alfaaz Senior Member

    (#4 کہ) Note: the pronunciation is usually keh in Urdu, not کی/(English) key.
  17. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    ki meaning "or" is of Sanskrit origin. I don't believe it's used in Persian in this sense since it's not mentioned Hayyim's dictionary.
  18. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    This usage is fiund in the 3rd part of the entry from Hindi Shabdasaagara. Could you perhaps indicate the Sanskrit form of this word?
  19. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Although I've mostly heard يا for this, I think it is used in this way; how about this: سلام راست میگی ارزش دیدن داشت به من هم سر بزن یه کلیپ جدید جدید گذاشتم میای که نمیای؟
  20. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    It's from Skt. 'kim'. Turner explains it below:

    kím n.sg. ʻ what? why? ʼ, interrogative particle RV., kiṁ vā ʻ or whether ʼ Mn. [ká -- 2]
    Pa. kiṁ ʻ what? ʼ, kiṁ . . . udāhō ʻ whether . . . or ʼ, Aś. jau. kiṁ, gir. ki, kb. kiṁmaṁ ʻ why so? ʼ < kim ēvam, NiDoc. ki, Pk. kiṁ, ki pron. and interr. particle, Dm. kya, Tir. ki, Gaw. , Kal. kīa, Kho. ki ʻ which? (of animals and things) ʼ, Mai. , Phal. ga, K. kyā, rām. ḍoḍ. ʻ why? ʼ, S. ki interr. particle; P. interj. ʻ what! ʼ, . . . ʻ whether . . . or ʼ; WPah. bhal. paṅ. khaś. , Ku. kyā, N. ki ʻ interr. particle, or ʼ, kina ʻ why? ʼ, kyā, ʻ what? ʼ; A. B. Or. Mth. OAw. ki ʻ what?, or ʼ; H. ki . . . ki ʻ whether . . . or ʼ, kyā ʻ what? ʼ; OMarw. kyaü, kyu, G. kiyũ; M. kī˜ ʻ or ʼ (separate from kī˜ conj. ʻ that ʼ ← H. ki ← Pers. LM 209); Si. ki -- in cmpds. such as kikala ʻ what time? ʼ, kikaruṇa ʻ why? ʼ.
  21. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Thanks for this one. Leaving the topic of the "other" ki aside for the moment, we've got the answer about Marathi, which appears to have borrowed the conjunction, via Hindi, from Persian. It indicates moreover that it is not Platts alone who confirmed the Persian etymology but Turner as well, black on white.
  22. searcher123

    searcher123 Senior Member

    My home ;-) /The Persian Gulf
    مياي كه نمياي is completely wrong in Modern Persian. كه is not an equivalent for يا in any case at all.

    do you take it or you don't take it? = گرفتيش يا نه؟
    are you listening to me or not? = به من گوش مي‌دي يا نه؟
    do you want an apple or a banana? = سيب مي‌خواي يا موز؟
  23. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    What do you make of this, aaqaa-ye-Morteza?

    ای خدا حرفهام رو گوش میدی که نه. میدونم گوش میدی

    Last edited: Feb 19, 2013
  24. searcher123

    searcher123 Senior Member

    My home ;-) /The Persian Gulf
    Surely it is wrong, a typo!
  25. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    The story goes even further. According to Complementation by R.M.W. Dixon, the complementizer "ki" is found in Hebrew. On page 181 he says "an Israeli formal writer could use the rare complementizer ki 'that', which derives from the Hebrew complementizer ki "that", from ki 'because' (Hebrew ki was replaced by 'asher/she owing to the calquing of Aramaic di/zi...)
  26. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    I beleive the information the poster is looking for may be found in the book Historical Syntax and Linguistic Theory edited by Paola Crisma, Giuseppe Longobardi.
    On page 286-287 Davison in her paper "Correlative clause features in Sanskrit and Hindi/Urdu" states that in some of the earliest Braj Bhasha writings available [17th century] a new innovation is found where "jo" is being used as a complementizer introducing a complement clause (something not found in Sanskrit). This usage of "jo" she hypothesizes later on was replaced by Persian "ki" in Braj [19th century].
  27. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    ^ "jo" is used even today in place of "ki" by many Hindi speakers. It gives the language a colour of the kind that oak barrels give to wine.
  28. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English

    I'm not familiar with this phrase. Are you saying it enriches the language or makes it seem more rustic?
  29. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    I guess this suggests that jo was the norm once upon a time in Hindi for phrases that now generally have ki.
  30. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    Gives it a rustic, literary flavour: enrichment as well as a special turn to the language.
  31. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I would be interested in seeing examples of "jo" for "kih", as a complementizer, as in...

    "vuh samajhte haiN kih biimaar kaa Haal achchhaa hai"

    "jo" is still part of Urdu and Hindi, both as a, temporal, relative and as a conditional.

    Examples from Urdu literature:

    jo = jab

    un ke dekhe se jo aa jaatii hai muNh par raunaq
    vuh samajhte haiN kih biimaar kaa Haal achhaa hai


    jo = relative that/what/who

    vuh jo ham meN tum meN qaraar thaa, tumheN yaad ho kih nah yaad ho
    vahii ya3nii va3dah nibaah kaa, tumheN yaad ho kih nah yaad ho


    jo ham pih guzrii so guzrii magar shab-i-hijraaN
    hamaare ashk terii 3aaqibat saNvaar chale


    vuh jo bechte the davaa-i-dil
    vuh dukaan apnii baRhaa ga'e


    jo = agar

    ko'ii mere dil se puuchhe tere tiir-i-niim-kash ko
    yih xalish kahaaN se hotii jo jigar ke paar hotaa


    Yes, I did forget to mention "jo" = who. I've added an example for this.
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2013
  32. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    ^ You forgot to list "jo" = who (more commonly, in Braj, "jaa"/"yaa"/"je", but also "jo"). The proverb "jaako/yaako maar sake naa koii ..." is quite commonly known, I guess.

    Meanwhile, for "jo" examples used as "ki", I guess someone who has good knowledge of Braj literature might help.
  33. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    Here's an example from Gokuldas/Harirai ("Chauraasi do sau baavan vaishNavan kii vaartaa"): "So Taansen ne kahii jo jinneN yeh kiirtan kiyo hai so braj meN raihat haiN aur Soordaasjii unkau naam hai".

    "Jo" here is the modern "ki" (that; "Thus Tansen said that whoever has composed this song, that person lives in the Braj and his name is Surdas ji").

    You will find numerous other examples even today, QP, if you have ever been in the Braj area and care to talk to people.
  34. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    If "jo" is an "innovation" in this case, what word was being used before this innovation? I am also curious to find out if she mentions anything about this usage in "KhaRii-Bolii", the vernacular upon which both Urdu and Hindi are based.

  35. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    As far as Hindi is concerned, it is primarily based on khari boli, braj, and Awadhi, and speaking of modern Hindi, also English and Portuguese, rather than on khari boli alone.
  36. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    ^ I don't understand why you mentioned English and Portuguese. They are sources for loanwords but don't form the basis for the language; that is mainly Khari Boli.
  37. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    If you watch a film like, say, "Jab We Met" (note the title itself), most of the dialogues are in that kitsch of Hindi and English - and this is not something contrived, but the actual way most Indians, especially urban Indians (note that urban doesn't mean "metropolitan cities" but small towns, too) but also the rest, speak. When we glide into half a phrase of English and half a phrase of Hindi, it's difficult for me to insist that all that is merely "loanwords".
  38. Wolverine9 Senior Member

    American English
    It ceases to be be Hindi at that point. If it's half-English and half-Hindi, it's a type of creole. You can call it Hinglish, but it's not Modern Hindi, the standardized language.

    It would be interesting to see if Khari Boli has/had any other word for "that" besides ki. Though I wouldn't be surprised if it's also jo.
  39. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    I never said it's Standard or Modern Hindi (note the capital); I am only saying that it's modern Hindi. For me, it does not cease to be Hindi, just as if someone were to use a heavily Persianized vocabulary is still speaking Hindi, as long as comprehensible in all its nuances. Anyway, let's close the off-topic discussion: I don't think that in kharii bolii, anything else besides "ki" exists or existed.
  40. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    QP-ji, one thing she does state is that sources are very hard to come by because, as you probably already know, the vernacular was not seen as fit for writing. Writing was done in Sanskrit. Braj and Avadhi are the only two such vernaculars that had some kind of written form before the dominance of khaRii-Bolii and, even then, at a very late date. She says "As classical Sanskrit continued to be used as a literary language for centuries, and there are no known texts surviving from the intermediate period between Middle Indic and early modern language, it is very hard to define a chronology before the 17th century (Snell 1991)" (p. 286)

    (In response to Wolv-Saahib, there are grammatical constructs that have been taken from English at least. So English could be considered a basis of Hindi beyond just vocabulary, but that is another topic.)
  41. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    That is indeed true. Both Urdu and Hindi have KhaRii-Bolii as their foundation and NOT Braj, Awadhi, Bhojpuri or any other language! This has been demonstrated in numerous past threads with examples from works of respectable scholars. Including vernaculars other than KhaRii-Bolii as a basis of Hindi is simply incorrect!
  42. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    I think you can make this claim for Urdu. High Hindi on the other hand is quite different.
  43. greatbear Banned

    India - Hindi & English
    It has been repeatedly demonstrated only in your imagination, QP: my family comes from Braj (something which I have also repeatedly told you), and parts of my family speak the Braj language: let me assure you that they are perfectly comprehensible to other Hindi speakers of India and they also understand the others. So much so that they never felt that they are speaking some other language, and neither did the others. Of course, your claim might work for Urdu, but even there I have doutbs if I consider the Deccani dialect of Urdu, which is very different from your obsolete rule books...
  44. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Tony SaaHib, it seems even you have had your eyes shut when lengthy debates in different threads were taking place on this Forum concerning this very issue. I don't wish to discuss this matter in this thread but please check this information out for yourself. There is plently available on the net. If you accept that this is (or may be) true for Urdu, then you know of all people, how, where and when "High Hindi" was made to land on this planet.
  45. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica
    I beleive what I intend to say is that High Hindi, when created, got a lot of its inspiration (at least its written form) from the significant written body of literature that was already extant in Braj. Where else would they look to create a form of Hindi that was "nativised"? Braj was very native and very popular in the Mughal courts as well, more popular for a long time in fact than khadii Boli and with much more history.

    Kabir, for example, wrote in a form of Braj, influenced by other dialects in the dialect continuum like Avadhii, Bhojpuri and Khadi Boli. (see Sadhukaddi) In Kabir's time, Khadii bolii had little literary prowess.

    There is a long tradition as well of both bhakti, riti, and semi-erotic poetry in Braj. See http://www.columbia.edu/cu/mesaas/faculty/directory/busch_pub/Busch Hidden in Plain View.pdf

    That paper discusses some of the ignorance of Braj at present in literary/historical circles.

    If Braj had such a strong historical tradition and was the dominant Hindi dialect for such a LONG period of Hindi literary history (even in the Mughal court), to claim that it had absolutely no effect on Khadii Bolii is really to be completely ignorant of how dialect continuums work.

    Compare the Braj map: http://multitree.org/codes/bra.html with the Urdu map: http://multitree.org/codes/hin-urd.
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2013

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