Hindi, Urdu: sajraa saveraa mere tan barse...

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by eskandar, May 11, 2014.

  1. eskandar

    eskandar Moderator

    English (US)
    This is from the song "Kun Fayakun" from the movie Rockstar. Firstly, I couldn't find the word sajraa (सजरा سجرا) in any of the dictionaries I consulted except for Urdu Encyclopedia, which defined it as 'clean, clear' (saaf suthraa, shafaaf). Is this the sense it's being used in here (clean/clear morning)? Some song translations online, which may well be wrong, suggested 'adorned/decorated' for sajraa. I'm also having trouble with another line; here are the lyrics in question:

    सजरा सवेरा मेरे तन बरसे कजरा अंधेरा तेरी जलती लौ क़तरा मिला जो तेरे दर पर से ओ मौला سجرا سویرا میرے تن برسے كجرا اندھیرا تیری جلتی لو قطرہ ملا جو تیرے در پر سے او مولا sajraa saveraa mere tan barse kajraa andheraa terii jaltii lau qatra milaa jo tere dar par se o maula

    Aiming for as literal a translation as possible, I get:

    The clean morning rains [on] my body
    Your burning flame [in] the kohl[-black] darkness
    [I can't make sense of this line - am I hearing it wrong?]
    O Master/Lord

    Any help, especially with the third line?
  2. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I have n't heard the song but just using your lines.

    The fresh dawn showers upon my body
    [There is] jet black darkeness [but I have] your burning flame
    When I got a drop from your door
    Oh Master

    I don't know the full context. "jo" could imply "if".
  3. littlepond Senior Member

    Note that in Hindi at least "qatra" is a literary and strong word: it is not just "boond" (drop). We often use it with "khoon kaa qatraa" (drop of blood) and in expressions like "qatraa-qatraa baih gayaa" (every drop [of blood] was lost). It is usually used (in Hindi) when the contents are not munificent, and so every drop matters.

    "dar" can also mean threshold, doorstep.
  4. eskandar

    eskandar Moderator

    English (US)
    Am I correct in understanding that mere is oblique because there is an implied par as in mere tan [par] barse ?

    So if I were to rearrange the line slightly to make more sense of it: jo [meaning jab/agar] tere dar par se [mujhe] qatra milaa

    Is that about right?
  5. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    ^ Yes, eskandar SaaHib, "par" is understood. Sometimes postpositions are missed out in poetry for the sake of "vazn". Here is an example from Faiz where "ko" is absent.

    raat* yuuN dil meN terii kho'ii hu'ii yaad aa'ii
    jaise viiraane meN chupke se bahaar aa jaa'e
    jaise saHraa'oN meN haule se chale baad-i-nasiim
    jaise biimaar ko be-vajh qaraar aa jaa'e

    * For "raat ko"

    Yes, your understanding of the "jo" sentence is correct. It would be nice to have a bit more of the song to understand the various links.

    You did n't comment on the word "sajraa" (fresh).
  6. eskandar

    eskandar Moderator

    English (US)
    Thanks for the confirmation QP SaaHib. For the rest of the song, you can Google the lyrics; I think we're not allowed to ask about more than a few lines of a song per thread. I may open up a new thread for another part of the song soon, though.

    As for sajraa: I wonder if there is any discrepancy between the Punjabi and Hindi/Urdu uses of this word? I could be totally wrong and perhaps their usage does not differ at all. However, when searching سجرا + "fresh" all the results that come up have to do with Punjabi, whereas the one Urdu dictionary in which I could find سجرا did not mention 'fresh' among the definitions.
  7. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    ^ Well, I have never come across the word "sajraa" in Urdu. It is a certainly a "TheTh" Punjabi word for "fresh" and is synonymous with "taazah". I have heard it used in context of "sajrii roTii"...taazah roTii. For "fresh (sajraa) dawn (saveraa)", I have never heard it used in this way in Punjabi. As a matter of interest what definition/s did the Urdu dictionary provide for "sajraa". It is possible I may be totally wrong and "sajraa" does not mean "fresh".

    Another, by the way, point. I don't know about the etymology of "saveraa" but I often wonder if it "sa (good)" + "velaa" (time).
  8. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    I can't check Urdu encyclopedia dictionary any more, it seems it's dead! eskandar SaaHib, I think you found the entry there.
    I myself am not familiar with this word at all (I mean in Urdu and even in Punjabi). I have thought about it for a while since you posted your query and "saaf suthraa, shaffaaf" doesn't seem to me to be a right definition. I am also not sure whether this word is originally an Urdu word or a loan-word. As far as I can remember when I checked that entry, there were no literary examples of its having been employed by writers nor any attestation of this word in writing in general was provided. I hope for Urdu encyclopedia to resurrect soon.

    So I think and a couple of factors support my reasoning that "sajraa", especially in this context, would be tantamount to "bhiigaa hu'aa, nam-naak, paanii se mansuub" on the pattern (Skt.) sa-jala. After some search I found the word sajlaa does exist in Hindi and it is not excluded it can or could have existed in some form of Urdu in the alternate form "sajraa".

    QP SaaHib, re. saveraa: Platts would agree with you!
    H سوير सवेर sawer [S. +वेला], adj. & adv. Early, timely; in good time, soon.

    (Yet another example of l<r fluctuation)

    *** Can anyone please check the link on their computers and check if it is working or it's only me?)

    EDIT: Qureshpor SaaHib, I have to retract my words. Just now I have re-read your post and came to the conclusion that sa-velaa is "on time, timely, soon thence in good time" but this doesn't implicate the time was "good". Possibly you are quite right and Platts wrong, and it is from su-velaa, su- meaning "good, auspicious".
    Last edited: May 14, 2014
  9. littlepond Senior Member

    ^ Or, as in many other languages (e.g. French), "in good time" often also means early morning.
  10. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Yes, I had "su-velaa" in mind. My mistake. sa/with, su/good. No, I don't think Platts is wrong. He is giving the etymology of "saveraa" and we have to admit no one pronounces it as "suveraa". So, on my part, good intention, wrong result!:)
  11. eskandar

    eskandar Moderator

    English (US)
    Thanks for your input everyone. I wonder if sajraa is in fact a Punjabi word being used here; the video for "Kun Fayakun" is set at the shrine of Nizamuddin Awliya in Delhi, a city where the streams of Punjabi and Hindi/Urdu have long mixed.
  12. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    On the net, one finds several citations of sajraa/sajrii/sajre

    Soniya Ve Mukh Tera Sajri Saver e (soNRiyaa mukh teraa sajrii saver e (saver being used as a feminine noun)

    mere sajre phullaaN de gajre

    Here is an entry from a Punjabi dictionary. The correct pronunciation is that the j is doubled. Searching under "sajjra" has revealed "sajjraa faqiir" which would imply a "new faqiir". So, sajjraa/new, fresh etc.

    adjective, masculine fresh; new, recent
  13. Alfaaz Senior Member

    A few references that might (or might not!) be helpful:
    The definition here might not be correct or might not be related to the sajraa being discussed in this thread: ثجرہ

    An example from Urdu poetry. (It is possible that sajraa is being used as a loanword here.)
    Last edited: May 19, 2014
  14. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    ^ Thank you. The Bikrami Calender has numerous errors. If one excludes the spellings, "Diigar" and "sargii" have nothing to do with the Bikrami Calender since they are Punjabi corruptions of Persian words (diigar, as in namaaz-i-diigar and saHar-gaah). So, I have my doubts about the accuracy of the explanation concerning "sajraa".

    I have checked an Arabic dictionary for your sajrah entry with a se. No such word was found.

    On a final note, Hassan Abbas Riza could be of Punjabi background and used this word as a "loan" word, as you also suggest.

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