Persian: کہ for یا

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Alfaaz

Senior Member
English
Background: In this thread, the Urdu usage of کہ for یا was discussed and a brief comparison to Persian was also made. Relevant quotes:
Stranger_ said:
...[ you might know, or you might not know ]
In Persian: [ shaayad bidaaniid va shaayad (ham) nadaaniid* ~ شاید بدانید و شاید (هم) ندانید ]

I have noticed that you use "ki" to express this probability, but this usage of "ki" looks a bit strange to me because it does not occur in Persian - the language from which it has been borrowed.
Alfaaz said:
... The meaning of کہ - keh you are inquiring about in the opening post seems to be the following listed in Urdu Lughat: یا" کی جگہ" ... Another example:

کوئی ساتھ دے کہ نہ ساتھ دے
یہ سفر اکیے ہی کاٹ لے
کہ ہم بھی مسافر تم بھی مسافر کون کسی کا ہو وے
کاہے چپ چپ رو وے

فلم: بدنام 1966
Wolverine9 said:
Your source of confusion is that ki has two distinct etymologies. The meaning of "that", which you well familiar with, is of Persian origin. However, the meaning of "or" is of Indic origin and is sometimes used instead of yaa. The different uses of ki have been discussed in some detail in the past.
Qureshpor said:
I'd like to know more about the Indic "کہ" that means "or".

Here is an example from Persian..

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

همه چیز و هیچ چیز پسری....!
Stranger_ said:
I have not ever heard "که نه" but I do have heard: "یا که نه"

Perhaps in Urdu-Hindi, the "یا" part has been dropped.
Stranger_ said:
It is both surprising and interesting to see that Allama Iqbal has used this "ki که" alone in one of his Persian poems.

سینا است که فاران است یا رب چه مقام است این
هر ذره خاک من چشمی است تماشا مست
Here is another Persian example from Iqbal, where both meanings of keh mentioned above for Persian & Urdu appear to have been employed:

زد بانگ کہ شاہینم و کارم بہ زمین چیست
صحراست کہ دریاست تہ بال و پر ماست

از شاہین و ماہی - پیام مشرق

Questions:

  • Is such usage of keh in place of yaa found in Classical or Modern Persian?
    • The reason for asking is (a Persian speaker) Stranger_'s expression of surprise, as quoted above.
  • How would forum members translate the couplet from شاہین و ماہی into English?
    • The reason for asking is that there have been different opinions about translations in the recent thread Persian: کہ.
 
  • puya

    Member
    Farsi
    Using 'Ke' instead of 'Ya' is not common in contemporary Farsi. I can not think of any example of such usage.

    As for the example that you've mentioned:

    ای خدا حرفهام رو گوش میدی که نه. میدونم گوش میدی.
    I find it atypical usage of 'ke'
    Probably it's better to be understood like:

    O God, it's not a question of whether you listen to me or not. Sure you do listen to me.


    It is both surprising and interesting to see that Allama Iqbal has used this "ki که" alone in one of his Persian poems.
    It does not surprise me. I remember while reading his از خواب گران خیز poem in highschool, our literature teacher told that while Iqbal is a very eloquent poet, sometimes his work may sound odd to Persian ears, as he is not a native speaker.
     
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    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    .ای خدا حرفهام رو گوش میدی که نه. میدونم گوش میدی
    كه, here is the same as any other كه i.e. it is NOT or:

    اى خدا O God,
    حرفهام رو گوش ميدى do you listen to me (rhetorcal),
    كه نه [I know] that you don't,
    ميدونم گوش ميدى I know you do

    Whereas, when both sides of كه are negative, the sense of or seems to creep in, but in English only. So if it was:
    اى خدا حرفهام رو گوش نمیدی که نه. میدونم گوش میدی which is the sample as اى خدا، حرفهام رو گوش نميدى كه نده، ميدونم گوش ميدى it would mean: [I don't care] if/that you listen to me or not, I know you do.

    These are the same, which are typical, especially in contemporary Persian:
    نمياى كه نيا I don't care if/that you come or not = do I care if/that you come or not
    نميخورى كه نخور i don't care if/that you eat or not. = do I care if/that you eat or not.

    Another version:
    افتاد كه افتاد - he fell [so what] that he fell - basically I don't care that he fell
    رفتى كه رفتى - you left [so what] that you left - basically I don't care that you left.
    رفتم كه رفتم - so I left [what do you care]
    كه چى؟ - so what?
     
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    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Would کہ in the lines below mean "or"?

    سرود رفته باز آید کہ ناید
    نسیمے از حجاز آید کہ ناید
    سرآمد روزگارِ این فقیرے
    دگر دانای راز آید کہ ناید

    اقبال
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Would کہ in the lines below mean "or"?

    سرود رفته باز آید کہ ناید
    نسیمے از حجاز آید کہ ناید
    سرآمد روزگارِ این فقیرے
    دگر دانای راز آید کہ ناید
    In English, که here acts as “but”, these to me are questions the poet is asking himself and answering them as: “but it/he won’t”
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    In English, که here acts as “but”, these to me are question the poet is asking himself and answering them as: but it/he won’t.
    PersoLatin, I don't see how we can fit "but" into these lines.

    The bygone melody, will it come back که not come?
    Will the zephyr from the Hijaaz come که not come?
    Well, this particular fakiir's time has come to an end
    Will another knower of secrets come که not come?
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    I don’t know, is it possible that in Urdu که یا has been shortened to که?
    Something like this:
    سرود رفته باز آید یا که نیاید
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I don’t know, is it possible that in Urdu که یا has been shortened to که?
    Something like this:
    سرود رفته باز آید یا که نیاید
    Well, the problem is that the quote is in Farsi and not Urdu.
     

    taraa

    Senior Member
    Persian
    افتاد كه افتاد - he fell [so what] that he fell - basically I don't care that he fell
    رفتى كه رفتى - you left [so what] that you left - basically I don't care that you left.
    رفتم كه رفتم - so I left [what do you care]
    كه چى؟ - so what?
    Hello PersoLatin!
    Sorry can you please explain the meanining of 'so what' in these examples?
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    Sorry can you please explain the meanining of 'so what' in these examples?
    The equivalent to Persian terms حالا که چی؟ or خب که چی؟ or just که چی؟ is, “so what?” Or “so what!”, I hope that’s what you wanted to know.
     

    taraa

    Senior Member
    Persian
    The equivalent to Persian terms حالا که چی؟ or خب که چی؟ or just که چی؟ is, “so what?” Or “so what!”, I hope that’s what you wanted to know.
    Yes, that's what I asked. Many thanks for the great explanation. :thank you::thank you::thank you:
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    If it’s in Persian then it can’t be “or", at least not in the Persian I know.
    Hi PersoLatin, what do you make of this?

    نفسم بند نفسهای کسی هست که نیست
    بی گمان در دل من جای کسی هست که نیست

    غرق رویای خودش پشت همین پنجره ها
    شاعری محوتماشای کسی هست که نیست

    درخیالم وسط شعر کسی هست که هست
    شعر آبستن رویای کسی هست که نیست
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    ^^
    Hi Qureshpor, in the above, all three instances of که نیست have the meaning “one who is not“, essentially: one who is not here with me.
     
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    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    From a Persian grammar book, I can quote the following, emphasis being mine.

    "For if (=whether) in indirect questions use the word آیا, the universal word that can introduce all questions (less common though, when a question word is present).

    The word که (“that”) can still be used in indirect questions after the reporting verb, as in indirect statements, with or without آیا, or can be dropped. Therefore, you might have که or آیا or (less commonly) both or neither of them.

    مینا به پرویز : (آیا) کجا می روی؟

    مینا از پرویز می پرسد/ میپرسید (که) ( آیا) او کجا می رود۔

    مینا به دارا : (آیا) به آنجا رفتی؟

    مینا از دارا می پرسد/می پرسید (که) (آیا) رفته (است)۔"

    I am wondering if in the examples cited by Alfaaz SaaHib, Iqbal has omitted the word آیا and has only left که but still retaining the meaning imparted by آیا. I have no doubt that Iqbal must have had authoritative precedence in Classical Persian poetry to use such constructions. Had the construction that he has used been wrong, he would have been picked upon, not only by his countrymen amongst whom there were many "masters" of the language and authorities on the language in his time but also amongst the scholars of Afghanistan and Iran. This, to the best of my knowledge, has not happened. On the contrary, Iqbal is a towering figure amongst the literary intelligentsia of both Iran and Afghanistan.

    Let's take a couple of examples for illustrative purposes. One, a question and the other, a statement.

    سینا است که (آیا) فاران است یارب چه مقام است این

    هر ذرهء خاکِ من چشمے است تماشا مست

    از : پس چہ باید کرد - اقبال

    زد بانگ که شاھینم و کارم به زمین چیست
    صحراست که (آیا) دریاست ته بال و پر ماست

    از شاہین و ماھی - پیام مشرق - اقبال
     
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    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    I’m afraid I can’t say any more than I have said on the main question.

    مینا به پرویز : (آیا) کجا می روی؟

    مینا از پرویز می پرسد/ میپرسید (که) ( آیا) او کجا می رود۔
    These are not right, there’s no need for آیا in interrogating sentences that contain a ‘question word’ like کجا.
     
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    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I’m afraid I can’t say any more than I have said on the main question. These are not right, there’s no need for آیا in interrogating sentences that contains a ‘question word’ like کجا.
    That's no problem. I too have said what I have said and it is there for posterity. :) The reference I have quoted is from Persian – Intermediate Persian: A Grammar and Workbook- Saeed Yousef assisted by Hayedeh Torabi (2014)

    There is precidence for a question word with آیا. Check Dehkhoda again.
     

    Qureshpor

    Senior Member
    Panjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Is it under آیا? Perhaps you could send a link please, hard to search with the phone, until I get home.
    مخمور آن دو چشمم آیا کجاست جامی
    بیمار آن دو لعلم آخر کم از جوابی

    حافظ

    آن ترک پری چهره که دوش از بر ما رفت
    آیا چه خطا دید که از راه خطا رفت

    حافظ

    دانی خیال روی تو در چشم من چه گفت
    آیا چه جاست این که همه روزه با نمست

    سعدی

    آیا چگونه می‌گذرد تلخی قفس
    بر توتیان که بر شکرستان پریده‌اند

    وحشی

    I think these should be enough for the time being.
     

    PersoLatin

    Senior Member
    UK
    Persian - Iran
    In post 15 you presented 4 examples in modern Persian from what I presume is a modern Persian grammar book & I said 2 of them were wrong & I maintain in modern Persian they are wrong. You have now presented poetry examples from classical Persian to counter what I said. We have been here before as again you are using poetry to prove this latest grammatical conundrum.
     
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