Persian: بالاخره, بلافاصله

PersoLatin

Senior Member
UK
Persian - Iran
Are these words fully Arabic or a mixture of Persian & Arabic?
The Persian part in question is ب/b in both case:
ب + ال + اخره in the end/finally
ب+ لا + فاصله without delay/a gap

Thank you.
 
  • Derakhshan

    Senior Member
    Arabic, Persian
    They are fully Arabic. Persian به and Arabic ب‍ do happen to have overlapping meanings, but as you may know, the Persian preposition has its origin in MP pad. It's likely the influence of Arabic ب‍ over time shaped Persian به to its current form.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Thank you.

    The reason I doubted them was the entry for بلافاصله in Wiktionary which says it is Persian (the same for بالاخره), also 'Google translate' does strange things, e.g. when you enter بلافاصله it says it means 'no comma' which is fair enough but if you change the order of the languages to English to Arabic, for 'no comma' it gives لافاصلة, and for بالاخره it produces فى النهايه which is fine but بالاخره is not mentioned as a synonym.
     
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    Shih-Wei

    New Member
    Chinese - Taiwan
    Thank you.

    The reason I doubted them was the entry for بلافاصله in Wiktionary which says it is Persian (the same for بالاخره), also 'Google translate' does strange things, e.g. when you enter بلافاصله it says it means 'no comma' which is fair enough but if you change the order of the languages to English to Arabic, for 'no comma' it gives لافاصلة, and for بالاخره it produces فى النهايه which is fine but بالاخره is not mentioned as a synonym.
    I would suspect that these are Arabic words made by Iranians. There are plenty of such words, like فارغ التحصیل ،فوق العاده، فی البداهه، سوء استفاده.
     

    Dib

    Senior Member
    Bengali (India)
    They are fully Arabic. Persian به and Arabic ب‍ do happen to have overlapping meanings, but as you may know, the Persian preposition has its origin in MP pad. It's likely the influence of Arabic ب‍ over time shaped Persian به to its current form.
    Just to add a bit more, b- occurs also in other Semitic languages, including (according to wiktionary) in Ugaritic that went extinct in 2nd millenium BCE, while mid-1st millenium BCE Old Persian has patiy (spelling: p-t-i-y) as the precursor of Middle Persian pad. So, any chance of connection is practically non-existent.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    In Persian به or -ب is almost always used in the same way as English 'to/at' and rarely as 'in', except for the cases when it is said to be 'the influence of Arabic' e.g. -ب in بنام, anyway this use is fairly limited, also poets would have come across it sooner or later.

    Persian uses در for 'in':
    به پایان رسید/ به آخر رسید "it reached the end/it ended"
    در پایان "in the end"

    Use of -ب in the two examples (in the OP) seem non-Persian, unless بلافاصله started as بی فاصله since ب doesn't make any sense in there, neither as 'in' nor as 'to/at', and in the case بالاخره it (ب) has to mean 'in' to make sense.
     

    Shih-Wei

    New Member
    Chinese - Taiwan
    In Persian به or -ب is almost always used in the same way as English 'to/at' and rarely as 'in', except for the cases when it is said to be 'the influence of Arabic' e.g. -ب in بنام, anyway this use is fairly limited, also poets would have come across it sooner or later.

    Persian uses در for 'in':
    به پایان رسید/ به آخر رسید "it reached the end/it ended"
    در پایان "in the end"

    Use of -ب in the two examples (in the OP) seem non-Persian, unless بلافاصله started as بی فاصله since ب doesn't make any sense in there, neither as 'in' nor as 'to/at', and in the case بالاخره it (ب) has to mean 'in' to make sense.
    I don't quite agree with this comparison 'به' - 'to/at'.
    The preposition in a locution is fixed by usage and doesn't mean a lot. You would say in English "in the name of" but in French one says "au nom de". The preposition 'à' is closer to the English 'to/at' than 'in'.
    The expression "به نام" in Persian seems to pre-exists the Arabic influence. The following is from Avesta:

    kanga_gathas.png


    source: http://www.avesta.org/kanga/kanga_gathas.pdf

    In addition, the Pahlavi 'ped' can be translated to 'in, on, at, to, through, by, for, with, among, against, regarding, according to', depending on cases.

    Another evidence of the heritage of Pahlavi 'ped' in the New Persian is the contraction 'به این' -> 'بدین' . The coda [d] reappears when به is followed by vowel. This phenomenon is similar to the "liaison" in French.
     
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    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    The expression "به نام" in Persian seems to pre-exists the Arabic influence. The following is from Avesta:

    kanga_gathas.png
    Thank you for this, I used بنام/به نام as it is identical in meaning to the Arabic بسم/besm which is the short form of به اسم/in [the] name, I had assumed that the idea of 'Arabic influence' may have come from this term but now I wonder what other words has raised that idea.
     
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    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Another evidence of the heritage of Pahlavi 'ped' in the New Persian is the contraction 'به این' -> 'بدین' . The coda [d] reappears when به is followed by vowel. This phenomenon is similar to the "liaison" in French.
    Agree with that, there are many examples of this in modern Persian and in most of these cases they are equivalent to in/at/to in English:
    بدین/بدان to this/that
    پدبد in sight (پدید آمد/به دبد آمد “came to sight”)
    بدرود، پنهان
     
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    fdb

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    Just to add a bit more, b- occurs also in other Semitic languages, including (according to wiktionary) in Ugaritic that went extinct in 2nd millenium BCE, while mid-1st millenium BCE Old Persian has patiy (spelling: p-t-i-y) as the precursor of Middle Persian pad. So, any chance of connection is practically non-existent.
    bi- is indubitably Semitic. The Early New Persian offshoot of OP pati > MP pad is originally pa; this can be seen in NP texts in Manichaean and Hebrew script, and fossilised in NP words like padīd and pidrām. The later voicing of pa to ba and then bi was probably influenced by Arabic bi.
     
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    Shih-Wei

    New Member
    Chinese - Taiwan
    The text you have reproduced is Avesta with introductory prayers in "Pazend" (Persian in Avestan script). “pa name yazdān” is New Persian, not Avestan.
    Yes, I just found the mistake. It's certainly not Avestan. Even though it seems to be written in Middle Persian (not sure if it's early New Persian or Middle Persian), it is certainly a very late composition and largely influenced by the New Persion. I withdraw the claim of early use of this expression.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    The later voicing of pa to ba and then bi was probably influenced by Arabic bi.
    The change (pa>ba) is said to be 'influenced by Arabic bi', what is the difference then between that and changes like p>f and g>j etc. that are present in Persian & are caused by Arabic influence?

    In Persian we use both جوهر and گوهر and many similar examples (خندق، رزق، فارسی، فیل), but we call this re-borrowing rather than 'influence by Arabic', I understand the process of re-borrowing my point is why isn't pa>ba simply a sound change?

    My Pahlavi knowledge is limited but I seem to remember that both /b/ and /p/ are represented by one symbol.
     

    Shih-Wei

    New Member
    Chinese - Taiwan
    The change (pa>ba) is said to be 'influenced by Arabic bi', what is the difference then between that and changes like p>f and g>j etc. that are present in Persian & are caused by Arabic influence?

    In Persian we use both جوهر and گوهر and many similar examples (خندق، رزق، فارسی، فیل), but we call this re-borrowing rather than 'influence by Arabic', I understand the process of re-borrowing my point is why isn't pa>ba simply a sound change?

    My Pahlavi knowledge is limited but I seem to remember that both /b/ and /p/ are represented by one symbol.
    I guess the voicing of an initial [p] is rather uncommon in the phonological changes of Iranian languages.

    I just found the following document which summerises the important traits of this evolution:
    https://www.isfas.uni-kiel.de/de/linguistik/forschung/copy_of_Conference contributions/kuemmel_presentation.pdf
    Only the [p]'s in internal position do generally evolve to [b ].

    Taking a look at the Leiden Etymological Dictionary of the Iranian Verb, by J. Cheung, we find that among those verbs whose roots begin with [p], some of them evolve to [f], but none of them evolve to [b ]. The same is for the prepositions [pas] and [peːʃ] in Pahlavi, which don't change to [bas] or [biʃ] in New Persian. We can multiply the examples.

    All these let suppose the singularity of the change ([pa] > [ba]), though I have no proof that this is effectively due to the Arabic influence.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    I just found the following document which summerises the important traits of this evolution:
    https://www.isfas.uni-kiel.de/de/linguistik/forschung/copy_of_Conference contributions/kuemmel_presentation.pdf
    Only the [p]'s in internal position do generally evolve to [b ].
    Thank you for the link and extra information.

    All these let suppose the singularity of the change ([pa] > [ba]), though I have no proof that this is effectively due to the Arabic influence.
    Thank you, I understand this a bit better now.

    Just to complete the picture for me, I have often seen Persian پادشاه/pādšāh "king" as بادشاه/bādšāh in Urdu (and maybe other languages of the subcontinent), the same word in Turkish has changed to پاشا/pāšā so 'p' has not changed, both of these languages were in contact with Arabic & its script, Urdu later than (Persian) & Turkish.

    In the case of Urdu, would the change p > b be considered as 'Arabic influence' or would it be because of a trait of that language that allows such changes more naturally?

    I suppose the same question applies to Turkish & why پاشا/pāšā didn't become باشا/bāšā.

    Finally what is the nature of this 'Arabic influence' on pad-/pa-, is it because the meaning of the Arabic bi- coincides with Persian pad-/pa-, or is it because Arabic speakers could not pronounced /p/ so were often heard saying bad-/ba when speaking Persian, or was it because of numerous proper Arabic words starting with bi- (can't think of many myself)) which made their way into Persian?
     
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    Shih-Wei

    New Member
    Chinese - Taiwan
    The expression of 'pad nām' also appears in manichaean texts.
    The following page is from this article: Two Manichæan Magical Texts with an Excursus on the Parthian Ending -ēndēh on JSTOR

    نماگرفت از 2021-09-26 03-43-48.png


    pd tw n'm : in your name
    pd n'm mrym'ny : in the name of Mar Mani
    and so on.
    It's claimed that this fragement may have been written in the 6th century near Balkh.
    See also here:
    TITUS Texts: Manichaean Reader (arr. by texts): Frame
    Another fragment containing 'pad nām':
    TITUS Texts: Manichaean Reader (arr. by texts): Frame
     
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