Turkmen/Turkish: mutual intelligibility

Nikola

Senior Member
English - American
I am told that the Turkmen in Iraq and Iran speak more like Turkish than like in Turkmenistan despite their name. Geographically they are closer to Turkey.
So is it like Turkish?
 
  • BobCincy

    New Member
    uzbekistan
    Hi there

    There are many turk (turkic) languages from Eastern Europe to Japan. It has a three main branches: 1. Ogiz(oogiz) turk, 2. Chigatoyi (or Uyghur) turk, 3. Qipchoq turk.

    Turkish ( turk language of Turkey) and Turkmen belong to Ogiz turk as well as Azerbajan (Azeri turk language). We all turks have same root, but Turks of Turkey and Turkmens and Azeribajons are so close. Yes there are lots of Turkmens all around the middle east as well as Central Asia. There are more azererbajons in Iran than Azerbajon repablic.

    We can understan each other if we, speaker, speaks slower. Espacially, i have no problem to understanding Turkmen and Azerbajon turk languages, but i have little bit problem with Turkish (turk language of Turkey) might be, becouse<, i haven't heard a lot.
     

    Nikola

    Senior Member
    English - American
    Thanks Bob Cincy. To moderators, it is not really just a question as to mutual intelligibility of Turkish and Turk of Turmenistan, I know there is some. I was led to believe that Turkmen in Iran and Iraq are so close to Turkish more than Turk of Turkmenistan despite the same name.
     

    BobCincy

    New Member
    uzbekistan
    Yeah you right, I think there are so reasons, First is Turkmenistan was one of the Soviet Union Country which did have right to build relationship directly others espacially with other Turks. Turkistan was divided five small countries by Soviet Union, and each countries remodeled its language under Soviet union, so those turkmens were left behind from that . Second, even after independance of Turkmenistan, lack of finance has been one of the reason. Third i think, govenments policy hs not been enough strong to keep other Turkmens to close Turkmenistan.

    So, Turkey has lots of opportunity to incourage them is good for both side. Yes, I think it is more like Turkish, rather than Turkmen.
     

    MarcB

    Senior Member
    US English
    Iraqi Turkmen speak the Turkish language almost identical to Turkish of Turkey, although they have more influence from Arabic. The population is made up of Central Asian Turks and Ottoman Turks resettled from current Turkey. They have more differences with the Turks of Turkmenistan.
     

    Spectre scolaire

    Senior Member
    Maltese and Russian
    Iraqi Turkmen speak the a Turkish language almost identical very similar to Turkish of Turkey, although they have more influence from Arabic.
    Judging from flash interviews with Turkmens in
    Iraq, I think this is correct.

    When it comes to the language spoken in Turkmenistan, it’s an entirely different cup of tea. ;) Even carefully listening to it doesn’t really pay off in terms of understanding more than words. There are too many morphological differences (including different applications of vowel harmony). The vocabulary is also somehow “unusual” if you are “only” familiar with Turkish in Turkey.

    There are lots of myths about mutual intelligibility between Turkic languages. ;) In earlier years, there was a general ignorance about other Turkic languages, and at the same time this slightly Pan-Turkic idea that one could understand each other from the Balkans to the Pacific coast...

    Since the collapse of the Soviet Union there is another set of ideas coming up: As many young people from Central Asia are studying in Turkey and learning Turkish very quickly, there is a general belief that the languages cannot be that different. This is a fallacy. We are faced with a centre-periphery phenomenon. Turkish spoken in Turkey is a very prestigeous language for other Turkic-speaking people. For Turks, however, other Turkic languages are seldom learned and are often subject to jokes – especially faux amis in the vocabulary. I have come across numerous Turks working in Central Asia, but I have never heard about any such person learning the language of the country – except Russian. :D Admittedly, they often learn it passively to the degree of understanding it fairly well, but they just don’t speak it.

    I have got many examples of Uyghurs in China with an almost perfect command of Turkish. I’d be delighted to hear about a Turk with the same command of Uyghur...

    Talking about Turkmens in Iraq is like talking about Azeri in Azerbaijan or in Iran. Their languages are comprehensible without any great need of diving into particular features prone to prevent intelligibility. Such neighbouring languages give a false impression about the considerable diversity among Turkic languages. As far as Turkmen language is concerned, a projection of Iraqi Turkmen to the official language of Turkmenistan is ...well, a bit farfetched.
    :) :)
     

    Edguoglitigin

    Senior Member
    Turkish
    I think it is the point that Turkmenistan country is so close to other branches of Turkic (Kipchaq and Qarluk ones). If not Turkmens of Turkmenistan would speak to a Turkey turkish as well as understand that...And if Turkmens of Iraq speak like a Turkey turkish it is because of close relationship.
     
    I am told that the Turkmen in Iraq and Iran speak more like Turkish than like in Turkmenistan despite their name. Geographically they are closer to Turkey.
    So is it like Turkish?

    Yes Nikola, the Turkmen language in Iraq and Turkish are "the same" language. The Turkish language in Iraq is called as Turkmen because of "political reasons." It would be like saying that the Irish speak "Englishmen" which is a similar language to English :D or that the Americans speak "American" which is a similar language to English. On the other hand, the Zazaki language -the language of the Zaza people- is classified as Kurdish again for political reasons. So the number of total Zazaki speakers is added to the number of people who speak Kurdish.

    I have listened to several Turkmens on TV and they speak standard Turkish influenced by Arabic and sometimes they sound like Azerbaijani people. That's all.


    Edit: You may read it here:
    Article Three of the "Declaration of Principles" clarifies how the Iraqi Turkomans perceive their linguistic kinships among the Oghuz Turks: "The official written language of the Turkmans is Istanbul Turkish, and its alphabet is the new Latin alphabet."
     
    Last edited:

    kmaro

    Senior Member
    Russian
    Yes Nikola, the Turkmen language in Iraq and Turkish are "the same" language. The Turkish language in Iraq is called as Turkmen because of "political reasons." It would be like saying that the Irish speak "Englishmen" which is a similar language to English :D or that the Americans speak "American" which is a similar language to English. On the other hand, the Zazaki language -the language of the Zaza people- is classified as Kurdish again for political reasons. So the number of total Zazaki speakers is added to the number of people who speak Kurdish.


    It is clear to everyone that Zaza people are Kurdish.
     
    It is clear to everyone that Zaza people are Kurdish.
    Then why are they called "Zaza"? Why do they speak a language which called "zazaki" which is clearly different than Kurdish? There is not even a good mutual intelligibility between Zaza and Kurdish. So it is not clear to everyone that the Zaza people are Kurdish. I'd be glad to know more if you provide me with some links though. Saying that Zazas are Kurdish is like saying that Catalans are Spanish. (Even if both Catalan and Spanish are Neo Latin)

    You may read this link though
    Likewise, the Zazas are not Kurds, but ethnically distinct, related to the Kizilba§. Kurdish nationalists generally regard the Kizilba§ and Zazas as part of the Kurdish nation. However, as has already been indicated above, they both may well have had a common ancestor,
    Or even wikipedia has to say:
    Zazaki is an Iranic language in the Indo-European family. From the point of view of the spoken language, its closest relatives are Mazandarani, Hewrami, Gilaki and other Caspian languages. However, the classification of Zazaki has been an issue of political discussion. Kurdish nationalist advocate that Zazaki is a Kurdish (another Iranic Language) dialect
    So not all Iranian languages spoken in Turkey and Iraq are Kurdish.
     
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