Urdu, Persian: -um / -am

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by Sheikh_14, Dec 20, 2013.

  1. Sheikh_14 Senior Member

    English- United Kingdom, Urdu, Punjabi
    The purpose of this thread is to ask whether or not the Persian derived suffix -um signifying mine, or me is acceptable in Urdu as it is in Turkish as well.

    Examples of the given include Dostum= my friend, Babum= my dad, Raqsum= I dance and so on and so forth.
  2. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    The "am" in dost-am and baabaa-am is a possessive suffix whilst the "am" in "raqs-am" (in fact mii-raqs-am...I dance/I am dancing) is a verbal suffix for the first person singular.

    To answer your question, I can only think of "3aziiz-am" (My dear) as far as Urdu is concerned. It is not a productive suffix for Urdu.
  3. Alfaaz Senior Member

    Even though it isn't used in colloquial language, you may find it being used in poetry or lyrics:

    تیرا جلوہ سرِ منزل، سرِ منزل سفر ہے عشق

    خدا جانے کہ تیرے ہجر میں دلدار می رقصم
    سرِ خانہ ، سرِ محفل، سرِ بازار می رقصم

    صابر ظفر
    ڈراما: می رقصم
  4. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    For this thread is about Urdu I'd like to widen its scope a bit to include the core component of this language's vocabulary.

    You will find numerous instances of the use of suffix -am in this thread:

    [h=1]Thread: Urdu, Hindi: bhaarii bharkam[/h]
    Returning to the Persian component, in addition to QP SaaHib's contribution I'm tempted to mention another word:

  5. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    ^ marrish SaaHib, I am not sure "beg-um" and "xaan-um" falls in this bracket. (neither does the -am in bharkam have any connection with this suffix, you would agree).
  6. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    I'm not sure either. You understood -um to be -am, I suggested an extension beyond Persian based things in Urdu and I know your stance on xaan-um etc; but would you agree there are many that take it as -am not -um. Given the ambiguity of this thread I hope I'm not guilty of being off-topic.
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 22, 2013
  7. littlepond Senior Member

    ^ I don't see how "bhaari bharkam" or anything else similar to that fits the bill here. I for one do consider your two above posts as completely off topic. The suffix "-um" in Persian indicates possession, and except for rare instances, this suffix has not much currency in Urdu. As for "raqs-am", as Qureshpor jii has already indicated, the "am" there is the conjugation suffix for first person singular: a completely different thing.
  8. Dib Senior Member

    Bengali (India)
    A favorite of Bollywoodie music:
    jaan-am (and jaan-e man)
  9. marrish

    marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Hi, there's the red triangle to report posts, it is there so that any discussions on whether posts are on-topic can be avoided.

    If I'm wrong on these examples, it's another matter. The title allows me to speak about Urdu.
  10. Sheikh_14 Senior Member

    English- United Kingdom, Urdu, Punjabi
    Precisely Jaanam, is a word of the kind which is in vogue so is danam from danish i.e. to know, I know. Similary since we have guftaar and guftagoo, Guftam could easily qualify as a quick alternative to Mainey kaha= I said. Similarly, deedar and deedah are present. Therefore deedam for I witnessed can be an alternative to I witnessed Mainey dekha.

    Now I am not saying that these are common words for they are not but than again most of the words we discuss in this forum are not and that is much of the point. Never the less they don't seem out of place.
  11. Sheikh_14 Senior Member

    English- United Kingdom, Urdu, Punjabi
    Well from a "legal perspective" your aziizam example does set a nice precedent.
    Would the arabic Aziizii suffice too, in such a case?
  12. eskandar

    eskandar Moderator

    English (US)
    The fact that Turkish forms the first-person possessive in a similar way to Persian is not a borrowing, just a coincidence. This is evidenced by the fact that most or all other Turkic languages do the same thing, including languages like Tuvan which did not come under Persian influence.

    To the best of my knowledge, there is no precedent for using fully-conjugated verbs from Persian this way in Urdu. Only nouns and adjectives are borrowed from Persian, not fully-conjugated verbs. They are no more or less out of place than using the English equivalents in Urdu, I suppose. I think of it as a matter of taste. If you are comfortable with "آے سید" in place of "میں نے کہا" , or "آے ساء" instead of "میں نے دیکھا", then sure, گفتم and دیدم would work too. Personally I would not write it (though as a non-native speaker maybe my opinion doesn't matter) because to my ears and taste using گفتم or دیدم in this sense sounds just as unpleasant as "I said keh yeh accha nahiiN lagtaa" instead of "maiN ne kehaa keh..."

    As QP SaaHib pointed out, begum and Khaanum do not belong to this category, as they are both of Mongolian origin and the 'um' has nothing to do with the Persian possessive.
  13. Sheikh_14 Senior Member

    English- United Kingdom, Urdu, Punjabi
  14. Faylasoof Senior Member

    Plato's Republic
    English (UK) & Urdu (Luckhnow), Hindi
    As eskandar SaaHib has already elaborated they are not Persian in origin but Turco-Mangolian, i.e the Altaic family. From the Turkish beg (masc) --> begim (fem) --> begam (in Urdu). Same for the Mangolain xaan (masc.) --> ---> xaanam (in Urdu).
  15. Faylasoof Senior Member

    Plato's Republic
    English (UK) & Urdu (Luckhnow), Hindi
    Moderator note: Please discuss examples of code switching and mixed syntax in this new thread here.

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