Persian: میگذرم vs میگزارم

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by Dib, Dec 16, 2013.

  1. Dib Senior Member

    Bengali (India)
    If I am not mistaken, the spellings are میگذرم and میگزارم.

    But why is there ze in one and zal in the other? Is there a historical reason?
  2. Treaty Senior Member


    There are actually three:
    می گزارم (from گزاردن = to perform, to state) e.g., نماز گزاردن to perform/observe prayer (it is very formal), گزاره statement. There seems to be an obsolete گزاشتن infinitive too.
    می گذارم (from گذاشتن = to place, to leave sth on sw).
    می گذرم (from گذشتن = to pass) although it has a rare noun گذار (= passage, visit).

    Persian used to differentiate between ذ and ز in older days. Maybe this is the reason for their difference.
    I also guess گذاشتن and گذشتن may have a same root meaning "to leave behind".
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2013
  3. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    If you were to read Tazkiratu_lauliyaa2, you will find zaals galore. I suspect this mixing up of zaal and ze is a reminiscence of its prevalence in the past. In the modern language, a very few words are still spelt with a zaal, one of them being the verb paziiruftan. The zaal sound was equivalent to the Classical Arabic zaal.
  4. Dib Senior Member

    Bengali (India)
    Thanks guys for your answers. It kind of makes sense, now. Seems, I was confusing two different words then.

    @ Qureshpor:
    Thanks for your pointer. I do happen to know that zal (dhal) and se (the) were distinguished from ze and sin in Older Persian in a similar way as in Arabic. I was just surprised to see them alternate in what I thought was the same root, because zal would etymologically alternate with dal, not ze (like what happened in the Persian loanword 'ustaad in Arabic, with the plural 'asaatidha). But as Treaty explained, I was probably looking at two separate roots, in fact. Thanks anyways.


    A couple of follow-up questions:
    1. Does anyone know the middle and/or old persian forms for these 3 words?
    2. Are both "می گزارم" and "می گذارم" pronounced "mi-gozaaram"? I know, at least one of them can also become "mi-zaaram". Which one? Both?
  5. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Regarding 1) fdb SaaHib would probably be your best bet to answer. His forte (amongst other things) is etymology and he will no doubt be able to help.

    2) I would suggest they would both end up as mii-zaaram in Colloquial Persian. In the Standard language, both mii-guzaaram (i.e mii-gozaaram). No doubt our Persian speaking friends will correct me if I am wrong.

    Re: ustaad, you may find this thread of interest.
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2013
  6. Treaty Senior Member

    1. Their Pahlavi/MPers equivalents are widardan (or widaštan گذشتن), widārdan گذاشتن and wizārdan گزاردن. I saw somewhere that wizārdan is akin Sanskrit vicāra. For a precise etymology you should wait for other members.
    2. Yes, they are both pronounced the same. As I explained گزاردن is very formal. It is also used in a limited context. The verb is not used in colloquial Persian. Therefore, می زارم or می ذارم both refer to می گذارم.
  7. fdb Senior Member

    Cambridge, UK
    French (France)
    Thank you, Qureshpor, for the kind words.

    There are two etymologically distinct roots:

    NP guδar- “to pass” is from *wi-tara-, with guδār- “to let pass” from the causative stem *wi-tāraya- (root *tṛ-)

    NP guzār- “separate, interpret, perform (prayer)” is from *wi-čāraya- (root *kṛ-)

    At some point in the history of New Persian guδār- became “contaminated” (as one says in linguistics) with guzār-, with the result that guδār- was pronounced like guzār-, and that the unetymological /z/ spread also to the cognate guδar-. The etymologically correct distinction between δ and z was, however, retained in the orthography.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2013
  8. Dib Senior Member

    Bengali (India)
    Excellent replies, everyone! Thanks a lot. It was most enlightening and helpful!

    @ Qureshpor:
    Also extra thanks for the ustaad thread. I learnt the word "ustaanii" there. :)

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