12 Facts About Sylheti language


Sylheti is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by an estimated 11 million people, primarily in the Sylhet Division of Bangladesh, the Barak Valley and Hojai district of Assam, and North Tripura and Unakoti district of Tripura, India.

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Sylheti language is known as Sylhetti, Sylheti language Bangla, Sileti, Siloti, Syloti, and Syloty.

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Thus Sylheti language derived a large number of words from Persian and Arabic, cultivating the Perso-Arabic influence on the vernacular.

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Many native speakers too consider it to be an informal version of Standard Bengali and not an independent Sylheti language; and there is a reported Sylheti language shift to Standard Bengali and a decrease in the number of native speakers since parents are not teaching it to their children.

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In Bangladesh there is a diglossia where Sylheti is one among other low status regional dialects while Standard Bengali, the official language, has a high status.

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Classification of Sylheti is contentious—Chalmers suggested that it was generally identified as a dialect of Bengali though there were efforts to recognise it as a language.

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Phonologically Sylheti language is distinguished from Standard Bengali and other regional varieties by significant deaspiration and spirantisation, leading to major restructuring of the consonant inventory and the development of tones.

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Significant Sylheti language-speaking communities reside in the Middle East of which most are migrant workers, and in many other countries throughout the world.

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Sylheti language Nagri was however mostly limited to writing religious poetry.

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The orthography of the script equates with Sylheti language, it has fewer characters as compared with the Bengali script due to fewer phonemes found in Sylheti language.

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New Testament in Sylheti language was published in the Sylhet Nagri script along with Latin and Bengali–Assamese script, in 2014.

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Sylheti language verbs are highly inflected and are regular with only few exceptions.

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