Pronunciation of सुबह in Hindi/Urdu

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by HenchardTheGreat, Feb 25, 2015.

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  1. HenchardTheGreat New Member

    Hindi, English, Punjabi - India
    I have heard many pronunciations of the word सुबह, such as su - ba - ha, su - b - ha, su - be - he, su - bai, su - baa, and even su - bhaa. Which of these is the correct pronunciaton in Standard Hindi and Standard Urdu?
     
  2. HZKhan

    HZKhan Senior Member

    Karachi, Pakistan
    Persian (Cultural Language)
    It's sub'h in standard Urdu, and that is how it is used in Urdu poetry, although in colloquial speech 'subah' is a more common variant.
     
  3. tonyspeed Senior Member

    English & Creole - Jamaica

    What is standard Hindi? If you go by the reading Nazis that claim absolute phonetic reading you would say "subaha". In real life people either say subaa or subɛ (where ɛ is the short-e sound for which there is no commonly used symbol in Hindi, but it does exist ऎ)

    I usually leave out the h in this because I believe h is a carry-over from Urdu spelling and not intended to represent an h-sound. This is the pronunciation suggested by "Colloquial Hindi" - Bhatia

    Although I feel like I have heard subhaa and subaah before.

    See: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=2574400&highlight=subah
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2015
  4. tarkshya Senior Member

    Marwari
    sub'h is just a literal transliteration. Most likely the pronunciation goes like sub'ha. The a after h is a short a vowel, i.e. the schwa.

    The reason is that if you don't pronounce a vowel between b and h, then you will have to pronounce one after h. You can't avoid that.

    Hindi speakers typically mispronounce the word as subah. Meaning they drop the schwa habitually after h, but put it between b and h.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  5. gagun Senior Member

    TS,india
    Telugu-TS, Deccani-TS
    in urdu subha is different from subaah/sabaah/subah/sabah/sahar/saher/sabEraa/savEraa(morning).
    Thank you
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  6. HenchardTheGreat New Member

    Hindi, English, Punjabi - India
    So, is the correct pronunciation sub - ha?
     
  7. gagun Senior Member

    TS,india
    Telugu-TS, Deccani-TS
    please read what I wrote
    sub ha=jap maala/japa maala
     
  8. HZKhan

    HZKhan Senior Member

    Karachi, Pakistan
    Persian (Cultural Language)
    No, that is not true. The word is indeed a monosyllabic word in Standard Urdu and that is how it is treated in Urdu poetic tradition, whose meter is measured by long and short syllables.

    Ghalib says:
    zindagaanii nahiiN besh az nafas e chand asad
    ghaflat-aaraamii e yaaraaN pe haiN xandaaN gul o sub'h
    (mirzaa ghaalib)

    Now, if someone mispronounce the word as subah or sub'ha, then the meter will certainly be disturbed.
     
    Last edited: Feb 26, 2015
  9. HZKhan

    HZKhan Senior Member

    Karachi, Pakistan
    Persian (Cultural Language)
    Colloquially, the most common pronunciation in Urdu is subah.
     
  10. littlepond Senior Member

    Hindi
    This is also the most common pronunciation in Hindi; another common variant in Hindi is "subeh".
     
  11. tarkshya Senior Member

    Marwari
    Honestly, I can't even speak this word in monosyllabic way. I have to put a vowel after 'h' to be able to speak it.

    Do you have any audio where I can hear it as sub'h, as you say.
     
  12. HZKhan

    HZKhan Senior Member

    Karachi, Pakistan
    Persian (Cultural Language)
    In Urdu (and in Persian), the monosyllabic sub'h sounds quite similar to subh.
     
  13. tarkshya Senior Member

    Marwari
    Search you tube with this search text "subah na aayi shaam na aayi "

    Rafi clearly sings it with "sub-ha". Now I understand it is a song and demands of meter can modify the pronunciation, still I find it difficult to pronounce it in monosyllabic fashion (sub'h).
     
  14. mundiya Senior Member

    Hindi, English, Punjabi
    ^ PKhan saahib already indicated that the monosyllabic pronunciation is similar to "subh", by which I believe he means सुभ.

    Also, listen to the famous song "dam maro dam", where Zeenat Aman's character sings the line "subh shaam" if my memory is right.
     
    Last edited: Feb 27, 2015

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