Western Punjabi

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Lahnda language)
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the Punjabi language in Pakistan. For the Punjabi language in India, see Eastern Punjabi.
Western Punjabi
لہندا پنجابی
Region Western Punjab region
Ethnicity Punjabis
Native speakers
ca. 117 million (2014?)[1]
Standard forms
(Shahmukhi alphabet)
Official status
Official language in


Flag of Punjab.svg Punjab (Provincial)
Recognised minority
language in
Language codes
ISO 639-2 lah
ISO 639-3 lahinclusive code
Individual codes:
hnd – Southern Hindko
hno – Northern Hindko (Kagani)
jat – Inku (Jakati)
phr – Pahari-Potwari (Pothohari)
pnb – Western Punjabi proper (Majhi)
skr – Saraiki
xhe – Khetrani
Glottolog lahn1241[4]
Punjab in Pakistan (claims hatched).svg

Western Punjabi (Western Punjabi: لہندا پنجابی /ˈlɑːndə/ /pʌnˈɑːbi/)[5] or Lahnda, are the western dialects of Punjabi in Pakistani Punjab, and parts of Azad Kashmir, and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.[6] Some consider them to be transitional between Eastern Punjabi and Sindhi. The literary language of the speakers of Lahnda dialects has traditionally been Standard Punjabi.[7]:2


Lahnda means "western" in Punjabi. It was coined by William St. Clair Tisdall (in the form Lahindā) probably around 1890 and later adopted by a number of linguists—notably George Abraham Grierson—for a dialect group that had no general local name.[8]:883 The southern varieties are locally called Saraiki, and northwestern varieties Hindko or Panjistani. The main identifier of Lahnda is use of 'ahā' in the past instead of the Standard Punjabi "sì sì'gē and sàn,"


Below is a list of Western Punjabi's dialects as well as the number of speakers:[1][3]

Northern Hindko (Kagani)
Southern Hindko

Because Punjabi is spoken in a region that has witnessed significant ethnic and identity conflict, it has been exposed to the dialect-versus-language debate. Recently, Saraiki and Hindko are being cultivated as literary languages.[9] The development of the standard written language began after the founding of Pakistan in 1947, driven by a regionalist political movements.[10]:838[11] The national census of Pakistan has counted Saraiki and Hindko speakers since 1981.[12]:46

Khetrani is commonly included, but may be a remnant Dardic language.[13] Some of the northern dialects of what has for geographical reasons been considered Gujarati are actually closer to Lahnda. There is also a Lahnda language in Afghanistan and Ukraine in the form of Jakati.

Lahnda has several traits that distinguish it from Punjabi, such as a future tense in -s-. Like Sindhi, Siraiki retains breathy-voiced consonants, has developed implosives, and lacks tone. Hindko, also called Panjistani or (ambiguously) Pahari, is more like Punjabi in this regard, though the equivalent of the low-rising tone of Punjabi is a high-falling tone in Peshawar Hindko.[9]

Sindhi, Lahnda, Punjabi, and Western Pahari form a dialect continuum with no clear-cut boundaries. Ethnologue classifies the western dialects of Punjabi as Lahnda, so that the Lahnda–Punjabi isogloss approximates the Pakistani–Indian border.[14]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Summary by language size". Ethnologue. Retrieved 21 July 2016. 
  2. ^ Ernst Kausen, 2006. Die Klassifikation der indogermanischen Sprachen (Microsoft Word, 133 KB)
  3. ^ a b "Western Panjabi". Ethnologue. Retrieved 21 July 2016. 
  4. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Lahnda". Glottolog 2.7. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. 
  5. ^ "Lahnda". Oxford English Dictionary (3rd ed.). Oxford University Press. September 2005.  (Subscription or UK public library membership required.)
  6. ^ "Panjabi, Western". 
  7. ^ Tolstaya, Natalya I. (1981). The Panjabi Language. Routledge. ISBN 9780710009395. 
  8. ^ Grierson, George A. (1930). "Lahndā and Lahndī". Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies. 5 (4): 883–887. doi:10.1017/S0041977X00090571. 
  9. ^ a b Shackle, Christopher (2010). "Lahnda". In Brown, Keith; Ogilvie, Sarah. Concise Encyclopedia of Languages of the World. Oxford: Elsevier. p. 635. ISBN 9780080877754. 
  10. ^ Rahman, Tariq. 1997. Language and Ethnicity in Pakistan. Asian Survey, 1997 Sep., 37(9):833-839.
  11. ^ Shackle, C. 1977. Saraiki: A Language Movement in Pakistan. Modern Asian Studies, 11(3):379-403.
  12. ^ Javaid, Umbreen (2004). "Saraiki political movement: its impact in south Punjab" (PDF). Journal of Research (Humanities). Lahore: Faculty of Arts and Humanities, University of the Punjab. 40 (2): 45–55.  External link in |journal= (help) (This PDF contains multiple articles from the same issue.)
  13. ^ Masica (1991)
  14. ^ Western Punjabi at Ethnologue (18th ed., 2015)