Afghan (Pashto/Persian: افغان) refers to someone or something from Afghanistan, in particular a citizen of that country. The pre-nation state, historical ethnonym Afghan was used to refer to a member of the Pashtuns.
The earliest mention of the name Afghan (Abgân) is by Shapur I of the Sassanid Empire during the 3rd century CE, In the 4th century the word "Afghans/Afghana" (αβγανανο) as reference to a particular people is mentioned in the Bactrian documents found in Northern Afghanistan. The word 'Afghan' is of Persian origin to refer to the Pashtun People, according so some scholars, the Bactrian formation Abgân become Persian afġān.
In the past, several scholars sought a connection with “horse,” Skt.aśva-, Av.aspa-, i.e.the Aśvaka or Aśvakayana the name of the Aśvakan or Assakan, ancient inhabitants of the Hindu Kush region, however according to some linguists, it would be extremely difficult to reconcile either Aśvaka or Aśvakayana with the world Afghan.
As an adjective, the word Afghan also means "of or relating to Afghanistan or its people, language or culture". According to the 1964 Constitution of Afghanistan, all Afghans citizens are equal in rights and obligations before the law. The fourth article of the current Constitution of Afghanistan states that citizens of Afghanistan consist of Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, Turkmen, Baloch, Pashayi, Nuristani, Aimaq, Arab, Kyrgyz, Qizilbash, Gurjar, Brahui, and members of other ethnicities. There are political disputes regarding this: there are members of the non-Pashtun ethnicities of Afghanistan that reject the term Afghan being applied to them, and there are Pashtuns in Pakistan that wish to have the term Afghan applied to them.
The term afghani refers to the unit of Afghan currency. The term is also often used (and appears in some dictionaries) for a person or thing related to Afghanistan, although some have expressed the opinion that this usage is incorrect. The term "Afghani" (or more usually "al-Afghani") is also a common surname among Afghans – for example, Jamāl al-Dīn al-Afghānī and Jamila Afghani.
The Afghani currency unit was created in 1925. Between 1925 and 1993 varieties of Afghani coins and banknotes were in circulation through Afghanistan. Coins issued during this period consisted of: 1, 2, 3, 5, 10, 20, 25 puls in bronze, brass, copper nickel, and aluminum-bronze; silver ½, 1, and 2½ afghanis; and gold ½, 1, and 2½ amani. Banknotes issued were in: 2, 5, 10, 20, 50, 100, 500, 1,000, 5,000, and 10,000 afghanis. In 1958 bank notes of 2 and 5 afghanis were switched with coins.
Notes and references
- "Afghan (noun) definition and synonyms | Oxford Dictionary". www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com. Retrieved 2020-12-28.
- Garner, Bryan (2009). Garner's Modern American Usage (third ed.). New York: Oxford University Press. p. 27. ISBN 978-0-19-538275-4.
- Siegal, Allan M.; Connolly, William (2015). The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage (fifth ed.). New York: Crown Publishing Group. p. 18. ISBN 978-1-336-02484-7.
- "History of Afghanistan". Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Retrieved 2010-11-22.
- "Afghan and Afghanistan". Abdul Hai Habibi. alamahabibi.com. 1969. Retrieved 2010-10-24.
- Noelle-Karimi, Christine; Conrad J. Schetter; Reinhard Schlagintweit (2002). Afghanistan -a country without a state?. University of Michigan, United States: IKO. p. 18. ISBN 3-88939-628-3. Retrieved 2010-09-24.
The earliest mention of the name 'Afghan' (Abgan) is to be found in a Sasanid inscription from the 3rd century, and it appears in India in the form of 'Avagana'...
- Balogh, Dániel (12 March 2020). Hunnic Peoples in Central and South Asia: Sources for their Origin and History. Barkhuis. p. 144. ISBN 978-94-93194-01-4.
[ To Ormuzd Bunukan , ... greetings and homage from ... ) , Pithe ( sot ] ang ( ? ) of Parpaz ( under ) [ the glorious ) yabghu of [ Heph ] thal , the chief ... of the Afghans
- Sims-Williams, Nicholas (2000). Bactrian documents from northern Afghanistan. Oxford: The Nour Foundation in association with Azimuth Editions and Oxford University Press. ISBN 1-874780-92-7.
- "Definition of AFGHAN". www.merriam-webster.com. Retrieved 2020-11-25.
- "Article 1 of the 1964 Constitution of Afghanistan". Government of Afghanistan. Archived from the original on 2011-09-17. Retrieved June 13, 2012.
- "Constitution of Afghanistan". 2004. Archived from the original on 2016-08-04. Retrieved 2013-02-16.
National sovereignty in Afghanistan shall belong to the nation, manifested directly and through its elected representatives. The nation of Afghanistan is composed of all individuals who possess the citizenship of Afghanistan. The nation of Afghanistan shall be comprised of Pashtun, Tajik, Hazara, Uzbek, Turkman, Baluch, Pachaie, Nuristani, Aymaq, Arab, Qirghiz, Qizilbash, Gujur, Brahwui and other tribes. The word Afghan shall apply to every citizen of Afghanistan. No individual of the nation of Afghanistan shall be deprived of citizenship. The citizenship and asylum related matters shall be regulated by law.
- "Chatterbox: More on 'Afghani'". Slate. October 4, 2001. Retrieved March 29, 2013.
- "Afghan Afghani". famouswonders.com.
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