Persian/Print version

From Wikibooks, open books for an open world
< Persian
Jump to: navigation, search



Iran 
Shahyad.jpg Persepolis recreated.jpg Hafez-8.JPG
Imam reza shrine in Mashhad.jpg Naghshe Jahan Square Isfahan modified.jpg Si-o-se-Pol.jpg


Contents

Lessons

Appendices

Resources

Contribute to this Wikibook

This is a Wikibook. Feel free to edit, enhance, correct, and add to it, in any way that will make it a better learning resource. Contribute to this book to make it a good way for new learners to learn Farsi!

Next: Introduction to the Persian language course

Continue to Introduction to the Persian language course >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting




Contents

Iran 
Shahyad.jpg Persepolis recreated.jpg Hafez-8.JPG
Imam reza shrine in Mashhad.jpg Naghshe Jahan Square Isfahan modified.jpg Si-o-se-Pol.jpg


Contents

Lessons

Appendices

Resources

Contribute to this Wikibook

This is a Wikibook. Feel free to edit, enhance, correct, and add to it, in any way that will make it a better learning resource. Contribute to this book to make it a good way for new learners to learn Farsi!

Next: Introduction to the Persian language course

Continue to Introduction to the Persian language course >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting




Introduction

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


Welcome to the English Wikibook for learning the Persian Language.

This course requires no prior knowledge of Persian. It aims to teach grammar, vocabulary, common phrases, conversational language, and formal/literary Persian. By the end, you should be able to read and write Persian but will probably need a human teacher to help with listening and speaking. The book is meant to be read starting with lesson 1 and moving forward. It will move slowly.

The Persian Language

Persian (local names: Parsi, Farsi or Dari) is an Indo-European language, the dominant language of the Indo-Iranian language family and is a major language of antiquity. After the 7th century Persian absorbed a great deal of Arabic vocabulary. Persian is the official language of Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan. Persian is also a popular language in academia and business. Related languages include Pashto, Kurdish, Ossetian, and Balochi. Urdu and Turkish also have a sizable vocabulary from Persian.

the distribution of Iranian languages

Persian or Farsi?

Farsi is an Arabized form of the word Parsi, one of the original names in Persian for the Persian language. Since there is no [p] sound in Arabic, Parsi became Farsi after the Arab conquest of Persia. Farsi then became the local name of Persian, but English speakers still call the language “Persian”, just as they say “German”, “Spanish”, and “Chinese” for languages locally called Deutsch, español, and Hanyu. There is considerable opposition to calling Persian Farsi in English and other languages, as is summarized by the following pronouncement on the English name of Persian language by the Academy of Persian language and literature:

  1. “Persian” has been used in a variety of publications including cultural, scientific and diplomatic documents for centuries and, therefore, it carries a very significant historical and cultural meaning. Hence, changing “Persian” to “Farsi” would negate this established important precedent.
  2. Changing the usage from “Persian” to “Farsi” may give the impression that “Farsi” is a new language, although this may well be the intention of some users of “Farsi”.
  3. Changing the usage may also give the impression that “Farsi” is a dialect used in some parts of Iran rather than the predominant (and official) language of the country.
  4. The word “Farsi” has never been used in any research paper or university document in any Western language, and the proposal to begin using it would create doubt and ambiguity about the name of the official language of Iran.

Persian and English

Since Persian and English are both Indo-European languages, many basic Persian words are familiar to English speakers. For example مادر Look up مادر in Wiktionary ‹mâdar› (“mother”), پدر Look up پدر in Wiktionary ‹pedar› (“father”), and برادر Look up برادر in Wiktionary ‹barâdar› (“brother”).

Pronunciation

Although Persian was influenced by Arabic, English speakers should not find it too difficult to pronounce Persian letters fairly well. Fortunately for English speakers, the glottal stop ء [ʔ] from Arabic is barely pronounced in Persian, and the “emphatic” consonants in Arabic (ط ض ص ظ‎ ح‎ ع) are pronounced without the pharyngealization, making them much easier for most native English speakers.

It is important to listen to Persian often and to try to use the language. Pronunciation guides can only closely convey the sounds of Persian but are never totally exact, so pronunciation benefits greatly from listening to native speakers.

Transcription

There are several systems of transcription to represent the sounds of Persian in the Latin alphabet. This book uses the UniPers (also called Pârsiye Jahâni, "Universal Persian") transcription system, which uses the basic Latin alphabet plus a few modified letters (‹â›, ‹š›, ‹ž›, and an apostrophe ‹’›) as a standard phonemic script that is clear, simple, and consistent. Each transcription is enclosed in angle brackets, e.g., ‹fârsi›:

Vowels Diphthongs
UniPers ‹a› ‹â› ‹e› ‹i› ‹o› ‹u› ‹ow› ‹ey› ‹ay› ‹ây› ‹oy› ‹uy›
IPA /æ/ /ɒː/ /e/ /iː/ /o/ /uː/ /ow/ /ej/ /aj/ /ɒj/ /oj/ /uj/
Persian ا آ، ا
(خوا)
ا، ه ای، ی ا، و او و ی ای وی
Consonants
UniPers ‹b› ‹c› ‹d› ‹f› ‹g› ‹h› ‹j› ‹k› ‹l› ‹m› ‹n› ‹p› ‹q› ‹r› ‹s› ‹š› ‹t› ‹v› ‹x› ‹z› ‹ž› ‹’›
IPA /b/ /tʃ/ /d/ /f/ /ɡ/ /h/ /dʒ/ /k/ /l/ /m/ /n/ /p/ /ɣ/ /ɾ/ /s/ /ʃ/ /t/ /v/ /χ/ /z/ /ʒ/ /ʔ/
Persian ب چ د ف گ ه، ح ج ک ل م ن پ غ، ق ر ث، س، ص ش ت، ط و خ ذ، ز، ض، ظ ژ ع، ء


Vocabulary and grammar

In learning to read or speak any language, the two aspects to be mastered are vocabulary and grammar. Acquiring vocabulary is a matter of memorization. Children learn thousands of words of their native language by the time they are conscious of the learning process, so it is easy to underestimate importance of having a large vocabulary. This process can be reactivated by immersion: moving to where the language is spoken and one’s native tongue cannot be used for daily communication.

Without the opportunity to move to a Persian-speaking area, a student must make a substantial effort to learn the meaning, pronunciation, and proper use of words. Be sure to learn all of the vocabulary words in each lesson. Early lessons have simple sentences because the student’s vocabulary is presumably limited, but more complex sentences in later lessons demonstrate more typical Persian. It may be helpful to translate these using a Persian-English dictionary. Access to a print dictionary is very helpful. Other sources of Persian, such as newspapers, magazines, and web sites can help to build vocabulary and to develop a sense of how Persian sentences are put together.

Resources

The Internet has a wide variety of study resources. You can refer to the appendix of this book for a selection of some of the best sources:

Also, each new vocabulary term introduced in this course can be looked up easily in the English Wiktionary wherever the dictionary image Look up فارسی in Wiktionary appears. Click on the image to look up a Persian word wherever you see a link like the following:

خوب Look up خوب in Wiktionary ‹xub› About this sound /ˈxuːb/ (“fine/well/good”)

Next: Lesson 1 ( ۱ ), Introduction to the Persian alphabet

Continue to Lesson 1 ( ۱ ), Introduction to the Persian alphabet >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting



The Alphabet

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


The Persian Alphabet: الفبا ‹alefbâ›

The six vowels and 23 consonants of Persian are written using a modified version of the Arabic alphabet with four extra Persian letters to represent sounds which do not exist in Arabic. Its Persian name is الفبا ‹alefbâ› , which is the equivalent of the English “ABCs”.

Isolated Initial Middle End Pronunciation, ‹UniPers›, [IPA] Name
ا ‹â› [ɒː] as in North American English caught, Received Pronunciation father, South African English park,

‹a› [æ] as in cat, ‹o› [o] as in soap or ‹e› [e] as in well

‹alef›
‹b› [b] as in big ‹be›
‹p› [p] as in park ‹pe›
‹t› [t] as in tea ‹te›
‹s› [s] as in salad ‹se›
‹j› [d͡ʒ] as in jade ‹jim›
‹c› [t͡ʃ] as in cheese ‹ce›
‹h› [h] as in house ‹he›
‹x› [x] as in Bach or Loch ‹xe›
‹d› [d] as in dog ‹dâl›
‹z› [z] as in zoo ‹zâl›
‹r› [ɾ] as in rain ‹re›
‹z› [z] as in zoo ‹ze›
‹ž› [ʒ] as in mirage or French je ‹že›
‹s› [s] as in sand ‹sin›
‹š› [ʃ] as in sugar ‹šin›
‹s› [s] as in sand ‹sâd›
ﺿ ‹z› [z] as in zoo ‹zâd›
‹t› [t] as in tiger ‹tâ›
‹z› [z] as in zoo ‹zâ›
‹'› [ʔ] as in uh-oh ‹'eyn›
‹q› [ɣ] About this sound Voiced velar fricative.ogg or [ɢ], About this sound Voiced uvular stop.oga ‹qeyn›
‹f› [f] as in France ‹fe›
‹q› [ɣ] About this sound Voiced velar fricative.ogg or [ɢ], About this sound Voiced uvular stop.oga ‹qâf›
ک ک ‹k› [k] as in kid ‹kâf›
‹g› [g] as in golf ‹gâf›
‹l› [l] as in love ‹lâm›
‹m› [m] as in music ‹mim›
‹n› [n] as in new ‹nun›
‹w›, ‹u›, ‹o› and ‹v› as in ‹vâv›
‹h› [h] as in horse ‹he›
ى ى ‹y› [j] as in year or ‹i› [iː] as in free ‹ye›

Transcription

UniPers is used as a guide to pronunciation in this book:

Vowels Diphthongs
UniPers ‹a› ‹â› ‹e› ‹i› ‹o› ‹u› ‹ow› ‹ey› ‹ay› ‹ây› ‹oy› ‹uy›
IPA /æ/ /ɒː/ /e/ /iː/ /o/ /uː/ /ow/ /ej/ /aj/ /ɒj/ /oj/ /uj/
Persian ا آ، ا
(خوا)
ا، ه ای، ی ا، و او و ی ای وی
Consonants
UniPers ‹b› ‹c› ‹d› ‹f› ‹g› ‹h› ‹j› ‹k› ‹l› ‹m› ‹n› ‹p› ‹q› ‹r› ‹s› ‹š› ‹t› ‹v› ‹x› ‹z› ‹ž› ‹’›
IPA /b/ /tʃ/ /d/ /f/ /ɡ/ /h/ /dʒ/ /k/ /l/ /m/ /n/ /p/ /ɣ/ /ɾ/ /s/ /ʃ/ /t/ /v/ /χ/ /z/ /ʒ/ /ʔ/
Persian ب چ د ف گ ه، ح ج ک ل م ن پ غ، ق ر ث، س، ص ش ت، ط و خ ذ، ز، ض، ظ ژ ع، ء


Pronunciation

Most letters in this system of transcription can be pronounced like their English equivalents, but some deserve special attention:

Persian letter Pronunciation
آ ا
ژ
خ
ر

Differing Systems of Transcription

There are several different systems of transcription in use for Persian, and no one official system. This can cause difficulties when more than one textbook is consulted, and may lead an absolute beginner to confuse the different letters. There are too many differences to be listed here, but it is useful to be familiar with the most significant examples:

Some common differences include:‎

  • آ ‹â› About this sound listen may be transcribed as ā, á, A, aa, or a. For example, بابا ‹bâbâ› may be written elsewhere as bābā, bábá, bAbA, baabaa, or baba. In texts where ‹â› is transcribed as a, the short ‹a› sound may be written as æ or there may be no written distinction between the long and short sounds.
  • Short ‹a› About this sound listen may be transcribed as æ, especially in texts where a represents long ‹â›. For example, ابر ‹abr› may be written elsewhere as æbr and بابا ‹bâbâ› as baba.
  • چ ‹c› may be transcribed as ch or č. For example, چطور ‹cetor› may be written elsewhere as chetor or četor.
  • خ ‹x› may be transcribed as kh. For example, خوب ‹xub› may be written elsewhere as khub.
  • ‹š› may be transcribed as sh or s. For example, شما ‹šomâ› may be written elsewhere as shoma or soma.
  • Long ‹u›, may be transcribed as oo. For example, دوست ‹dust› may be written elsewhere as doost.

Duplicate Letters

Diacritical Markings

Name Pronunciation Symbol
Hamze ء
Alef hamze أ
Vâv hamze ؤ
Alef Tanvin اً
Tashdid ً
Short "a" ـَ
Short "o" ـُ
Short "e" ـِ
ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting


Stub

This section of the Persian Language Wikibook is a stub.
You can help Wikibooks by expanding it. (See the Persian course Planning page.)



Lesson One

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


In this lesson, you will learn basic greetings, the first nine Persian letters, connecting letters, and unwritten vowels.

Dialogue: ‹salâm!›

Shirin sees her friend Arash in passing and greets him:

The dialogues in lessons 1 through 3 are shown in UniPers, a system of writing the Persian language in the Latin alphabet. In later lessons, the native Persian script is shown along with a transcription.
Shirin : About this sound ‹salâm, âraš!›
“Hello Arash!”
Arash : About this sound ‹salâm, širin! cetori?›
“Hello, Shirin! How are you?”
Shirin : About this sound mersi, xubam. tow cetori?›
“Thank you, I’m fine. How are you?”
Arash : About this sound ‹man xubam.›
“I'm fine.”

Explanation

Arash and Shirin are using a casual style of speech typically among friends. Later lessons will use various styles of speech, including some for more formal situations.

Vocabulary

  • ‹salâm› Look up سلام in Wiktionary  IPAAbout this sound /sæˈlɒːm/ — “peace” a common greeting like “hello” in English
  • ‹cetori› Look up چطور in Wiktionary  About this sound /t͡ʃeˈtoɾiː/ — “how are (you)” (informal, used among friends)
  • ‹tow› Look up تو in Wiktionary  About this sound /tow/ — “you” (informal)
  • mersi› Look up مرسی in Wiktionary  About this sound /'meɾsiː/ — “thanks”
  • ‹man› Look up من in Wiktionary  About this sound /mæn — “I, me”
  • xubam› Look up خوب in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈxuːbæm/ — “(I) am fine/well/good”

The Persian Alphabet

The Persian language has six vowel sounds and twenty-three consonant sounds. Old Persian was written using its own cuneiform alphabet. Other scripts were used in later stages of the language, and eventually the Arabic alphabet was adopted. The sounds of Persian are different from Arabic, though, so four letters were added for Persian sounds that do not exist in Arabic ( پ Look up پ in Wiktionary ‹pe›, چ Look up چ in Wiktionary ‹ce›, ژ Look up ژ in Wiktionary ‹že›, and گ Look up گ in Wiktionary ‹gâf›), and letters for several foreign Arabic sounds are pronounced like their closest Persian approximation.

Thus, the twenty-nine sounds of Persian are written in the Perso-Arabic script, which has thirty-two letters and is called الفبا Look up الفبا in Wiktionary ‹alef›, named after its first two letters (similar to "ABCs" in English). It is a cursive script, written from right to left like Arabic, opposite of the English direction. The letters are presented in the first four lessons of this book, followed by a summary of the whole alphabet in the "Alphabet summary" section of Lesson 4.

The Coat of Arms of Tajikistan
Culture Point: The Tajik (тоҷикӣ) language
Not all dialects of Persian are written using the Perso-Arabic alphabet taught here. The Tajik (тоҷикӣ) language, spoken mainly in Tajikistan and Uzbekistan, is a variety of Persian written in the Cyrillic alphabet.

The language diverged from Persian as spoken in Afghanistan and Iran as a result of political borders, geographical isolation, and the influence of Russian and neighboring languages. The standard language is based on the north-western dialects of Tajik, which were influenced by the neighboring Uzbek language. Tajik also retains numerous archaic elements in its vocabulary, pronunciation, and grammar that have been lost elsewhere in the Persian world.


ا ‹alef›

The two forms of ‹alef›:
آ ا
About this sound ‹â›

The first letter in Persian is ا Look up ا in Wiktionary ‹alef›.

At the beginning of a word (on the right side), alef has two forms. The form on the far right here with the madde (the small "hat" on top: آ ) is written as a tall, vertical stroke from top to bottom followed by the madde on top written from right to left as a straight ( - ) or curved ( ~ ) line. This form represents a doubled alef ( اا ). It is pronounced with the long vowel sound /ɒː/ (IPA), transcribed here as ‹â›. That is, it has a long duration and is produced with rounded lips and the tongue low and far back in the mouth, like a slow version of the vowel in the Queen's English pronunciation of hot, American English caught, or South African English park. When the first letter of a word is alef without a "hat" ( ا ), it is read as a short vowel: ‹a› (IPA: /æ/) as in at, ‹e› (/e/) as in end or ‹o› (/o/) as in open, as will be seen in later examples.

When alef appears later in a word (after the first letter), it is always written without the "hat" ( ا ) and it always represents long ‹â›.

Note.svg Distinguishing a and â:
Decide whether the ‹alef› in the following words stands for (short) ‹a› or (long) ‹â›. You do not need to be able to read the whole word at this stage. To see the correct answer, click “[show ▼]”.
آب

(long) ‹â›

اتو

(short) ‹a›

اسب

(short) ‹a›

آن

(long) ‹â›

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing آ ‹alef madde› and ا ‹alef›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

01c-Alif-Madda.png01c-Alif-Madda.png01c-Alif-Madda.png Alif-individua.svgAlif-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg

آ آآآ ا ااا    
آ آآآ ا ااا    
Arabic examples.  Persian examples would be better here, probably a separate page to print out with letters to trace.

Madd alef.pngMadd alef.pngMadd alef.pngАAlef.PNG ﺍ 'álif.jpgﺍ 'álif.jpgﺍ 'álif.jpg1 ﺍ 'álif.gif


ب ‹be›, پ ‹pe›, ت ‹te›, ث ‹se›

(read from right to left)
ب پ ت ث
‹be› ‹pe› ‹te› ‹se›

After alef ( ا ), the next four Persian letters, shown on the right, are all written similarly but with varying dots.

Persian letters have names that begin with the sound they make, so these four letters make the sounds ‹b›, ‹p›, ‹t›, and ‹s›.


ب
About this sound ‹be›

The second Persian letter is ب Look up ب in Wiktionary ‹be›. It represents the /b/ sound. Its name sounds like a quick pronunciation of the English word “bay”.


آب آ ب آب
About this sound ‹âb› ‹â› ‹b›

The Persian word آب Look up آب in Wiktionary ‹âb› (“water”) is shown on the right. In this word, the initial alef is written with a “hat” ( آ ), so it is read as long ‹â›. Persian is written from right to left and positioned on and around a horizontal baseline that is typically not visible on the page. The swooping stroke of ب is written from right to left and sits on that baseline, as does آ . The dot is below the baseline and, like the dot in the English cursive letter i, it is written after the connected strokes in the word.


Connecting letters
Like English cursive, most Persian letters in a word connect with each other, but separate Persian words never connect. For example, ب connects with the letter that follows it. Notice, though, that the letters in آب above do not connect with each other. That's because ا never connects with the letter that follows it.

Connecting letters may be written one way alone (in the “isolated” form) or with slightly different forms when connected with letters before or after them:

ب ب‍ ‍ب‍ ‍ب ← ب ببب


The line above shows ب in its “isolated” form on the far right, then in its “initial” form used when another letter follows, then its “medial” form used to connect it with letters on both sides, and then its “final” form used to connect it only to the previous letter. Notice that the upward-swooping tail only appears in the isolated and final forms. Many Persian letters have tails that behave this way.

As the remaining alphabet lessons will explain, all but seven Persian letters connect with the letter that follows.

بابا ب‍ ‍ا ب‍ ‍ا بابا
About this sound ‹bâ ‹b› ‹â› ‹b› ‹â›

As shown on the right, the swooping stroke of each ب connects with the following ا to spell بابا Look up بابا in Wiktionary ‹bâ›, an informal word for “father”, similar to the English words “dad” and “daddy”. The other letters in this section are like ب in that each has a swooping stroke that sits on the baseline and connects with the following letter, and each has one or more dots that are written after all of the connected strokes of the word.

Note that the alefs in بابا are not at the beginning of the word, so they represent long ‹â› and are not written with a “hat”.


پ پ‍ ‍پ‍ ‍پ پپپ
About this sound ‹pe› connecting forms

The third Persian letter is پ Look up پ in Wiktionary ‹pe›. It is pronounced as /p/ and its name sounds like a quick pronunciation of the English word “pay”. Its swooping stroke is written from right to left like the other letters of this group, then after the rest of the connected strokes of the word are written, the three dots of پ are written below the baseline.


پا پ‍ ‍ا پا
About this sound ‹pâ› ‹p› ‹â›

پ followed by ا spells the word پا Look up پا in Wiktionary ‹pâ› (“foot”).


ت ت‍ ‍ت‍ ‍ت تتت
About this sound ‹te› connecting forms

The letter ت Look up ت in Wiktionary ‹te› is pronounced like /t/ and is written with two dots above the swooping line. Its name rhymes with the other letters in this section.


تا ت‍ ‍ا تا
‹tâ› ‹t› ‹â›

ت followed by ا spells the word تا Look up تا in Wiktionary ‹tâ› (“until”).


Letters with dots
Many Persian letters have one, two, or three dots. In most printed publications, those dots appear as diamond shapes, or squares, or circles. Groups of three dots are positioned in a triangle, and groups of two dots are positioned side by side. In fast handwriting, though, three dots are often written as a caret ( ^ ) and two dots are often written as a dash ( - ) or like a reversed tilde ( ~ ).
ث ث‍ ‍ث‍ ‍ث ثثث
About this sound ‹se› connecting forms

The letter ث Look up ث in Wiktionary ‹se› is one of three separate Persian letters for the /s/ sound, since that is the Persian approximation of the letter's Arabic sound [θ]. In Persian, its name sounds like an abbreviated version of the English word “say”. It is used mainly in words of Arabic origin and is not a very common letter in Persian.


اثاث ا ث‍ ‍ا ث اثاث
‹asâs ‹a› ‹s› ‹â› ‹s›

As shown on the right, ث appears twice in the word اثاث Look up اثاث in Wiktionary ‹asâs› (“furniture”).

Note the difference between a hatless initial alef pronounced as short ‹a› and an alef in the middle of a word, pronounced as long ‹â›.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ب ‹be›, پ ‹pe›, ت ‹te› and ث ‹se›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Baa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svg Paa-individua.svgPaa-individua.svgPaa-individua.svg Taa-individua.svgTaa-individua.svgTaa-individua.svg THaa-individua.svgTHaa-individua.svgTHaa-individua.svg

ب ببب پ پپپ ت تتت ث ثثث
ب ببب پ پپپ ت تتت ث ثثث
Arabic alphabet ba-ya.png

Lettre 2 ﺏ bâ'.jpgLettre 2 ﺏ bâ'.jpgLettre 2 ﺏ bâ'.jpgLettre 2 ﺏ bâ'.gif Lettre 3 tāʾ.jpgLettre 3 tāʾ.jpgLettre 3 tāʾ.jpgLettre 3 ﺕ tâ'.gif Lettre 4 ṯâʾ.jpgLettre 4 ṯâʾ.jpgLettre 4 ṯâ'.gif


ج ‹jim›, چ ‹ce›, ح ‹he›, خ ‹xe›

ج چ ح خ
‹jim› ‹ce› ‹he› ‹xe›

The next four Persian letters, shown on the right, are all written similarly but with varying dots.


Hook-shaped tails
Notice that the tails in these four letters hook to the right. Recall that tails only appear in the isolated and final forms for letters. When another letter follows, the tails are not written, so these four letters lose their hooks when another letter follows them.
ج ج‍ ‍ج‍ ‍ج ججج
About this sound ‹jim› connecting forms

The letter ج Look up ج in Wiktionary ‹jim› is transcribed as ‹j› and pronounced as [d͡ʒ] (i.e. like the English letter j in jump). The top stroke is written first from left to right above the baseline, followed by the lower hook extending counterclockwise below the baseline. The dot is written later, after any other connected strokes in the word.


جا ج‍ ‍ا جا
‹jâ› ‹j› ‹â›

ج followed by ا spells the word جا Look up جا in Wiktionary ‹jâ› (“place”). This example shows that the shape of this letter changes when another letter follows it. The top stroke is still written from left to right, but a simple right-to-left stroke along the baseline replaces the hook when another letter follows. The other letters in this section change shape similarly when another letter follows.


چ چ‍ ‍چ‍ ‍چ چچچ
‹ce› connecting forms

The letter چ Look up چ in Wiktionary ‹ce› is transcribed in UniPers as ‹c› and pronounced as [t͡ʃ] (i.e., like ch in English church).


ح ح‍ ‍ح‍ ‍ح ححح
‹he› connecting forms

The letter ح Look up ح in Wiktionary ‹he› is pronounced as /h/. Its name sounds like a quick version of the English word “hay” (that is, it does not sound like the English word “he”).


حب ح‍ ‍ب حب
‹hab› ‹h› ‹b›

ح followed by ب spells the word حب Look up حب in Wiktionary ‹hab› (“pill”).

Unwritten vowels
You probably noticed that the short vowel ‹a› is not represented in حب ‹hab›. That is because Persian makes an important distinction between short and long vowels. The short vowels (‹a›, ‹e› and ‹o›) are not usually written in Persian. When you come across a new word in writing you might have to find out how it is pronounced from a dictionary or someone who speaks Persian. Although there is a system of marking vowel sounds (see Alefba), it is only usually seen in children's books, because it disrupts the normal layout of text. In contrast, long vowels have their own letters and are written down.

More details about writing and pronouncing vowels will be presented in the Lesson 4.



خ خ‍ ‍خ‍ ‍خ خخخ
‹xe› connecting forms

The letter خ Look up خ in Wiktionary ‹xe› is pronounced like the IPA sound [x] (like the Spanish letter j or the German ch), transcribed in UniPers as ‹x›.


خاج خ‍ ‍ا ج خاج
‹xâj› ‹x› ‹â› ‹j›

خ followed by ا and ج spells the word خاج Look up خاج in Wiktionary ‹xâj› (“cross”). Like the previous few letters, the tail of خ is not written when another letter follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ج ‹jim›, چ ‹ce›, ح ‹he› and خ ‹xe›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Jiim-individua.svgJiim-individua.svgJiim-individua.svg CHaa-individua.svgCHaa-individua.svgCHaa-individua.svg HHaa-individua.svgHHaa-individua.svgHHaa-individua.svg KHaa-individua.svgKHaa-individua.svgKHaa-individua.svg

ج ججج چ چچچ ح ححح خ خخخ
ج ججج چ چچچ ح ححح خ خخخ
Arabic examples.  Persian examples would be better here, probably a separate page to print out with letters to trace.

Lettre 5 jîm.jpgLettre 5 jîm.jpgLettre 5 jîm.jpgLettre 5 jîm.gif 05a-Tsche.png05a-Tsche.png05a-Tsche.png Lettre 6 ḥâʾ.jpgLettre 6 ḥâʾ.jpgLettre 6 ḥâʾ.jpgLettre 6 ḥâ'.gif Lettre 7 ḫâʾ.jpgLettre 7 ḫâʾ.jpgLettre 7 ḫâ'.gif

Exercises

Note.svg Distinguishing a and â:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Decide whether the ‹alef› in the following words stands for (short) ‹a› or (long) ‹â›. You do not need to be able to read the whole word at this stage.
آبی

(long) ‹â›

اب

(short) ‹a›

آلمان

(long) ‹â›

اکبر

(short) ‹a›

Note.svg Recognizing letters:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
What are the names of and sounds represented by the following letters?
ج

The letter ‹jim›, which represents the sound ‹j› (IPA: [d͡ʒ]).

ا

The letter ‹alef› without madde, which represents the long vowel sound ‹â› (/ɒː/) in the middle or end of a word, or a short vowel sound (‹a›, ‹e›, or ‹o›) at the beginning of a word.

The letter ‹se›, which represents the sound ‹s›.

آ

The letter ‹alef›, with madde at the beginning of a word is represents the long ‹â› sound.)

ت

The letter ‹te›, which represents the sound ‹t›.

The letter ‹be›, which represents the sound ‹b›.

پ

The letter ‹pe›, which represents the sound ‹p›.

ا

The letter ‹alef›, without a madde, it represents the long vowel sound ‹â›, or at the beginning of a word, a short vowel sound (‹a›, ‹e›, or ‹o›).

خ

The letter ‹xe›, which represents the sound ‹x› (IPA: [x]).

ح

The letter ‹he›, which represents the sound ‹h›.

Note.svg The Persian alphabet:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Which sounds have no letters of their own in Persian?

Short vowels usually are not written in Persian.

Which four letters were added to the Arabic alphabet by Persians to represent sounds which do not exist in Arabic?

پ ‹pe›, چ ‹ce›,ژ ‹že› and گ ‹gâf›.

Note.svg Reading words:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Read these words by breaking them down into their component parts.
جا

‹jâ›: ج‍  ‍ا

آب

‹âb›: آ ب

بابا

‹bâbâ›: ب‍ ‍ا ب‍ ‍ا

اثاث

‹asâs›: ا ث‍ ‍ا ث

Note.svg Conversation:
Use the following phrases in a short dialogue:
  • ‹salâm.›
  • ‹tow cetori?›
  • ‹man xubam, mersi›.

Review

In this lesson, you learned some greetings, the first nine letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell several words with those letters from right to left. You also learned that short vowels are usually not written, and that many letters change their shape depending on whether they connect with letters before or after them.

Core vocabulary:
  • ‹cetori› Look up چطور in Wiktionary  About this sound /t͡ʃeˈtoɾiː/ — “how are (you)” (informal)
  • ‹tow› Look up تو in Wiktionary  About this sound /tow/ — “you” (informal)
  • ‹tow cetori?› Look up چطور in Wiktionary  — “How are you?” (informal)
  • mersi› Look up مرسی in Wiktionary  About this sound /'meɾsiː/ — “thanks”
  • ‹man› Look up من in Wiktionary  About this sound /mæn/ — “I, me”
  • xubam› Look up خوب in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈxuːbæm/ — “(I) am fine/well/good”
  • ‹man xubam.› Look up خوب in Wiktionary  — “I’m fine.”
Letters:
  • ا Look up ا in Wiktionary ‹alef
  • ب Look up ب in Wiktionary ‹be›
  • پ Look up پ in Wiktionary ‹pe›
  • ت Look up ت in Wiktionary ‹te›
  • ث Look up ث in Wiktionary ‹se›
  • ج Look up ج in Wiktionary ‹jim›
  • چ Look up چ in Wiktionary ‹ce›
  • ح Look up ح in Wiktionary ‹he›
  • خ Look up خ in Wiktionary ‹xe›
Bonus words:
  • آب Look up آب in Wiktionary ‹âb› — “water”
  • بابا Look up بابا in Wiktionary ‹bâ› — “dad, papa”
  • پا Look up پا in Wiktionary ‹pâ› — “foot”
  • تا Look up تا in Wiktionary ‹tâ› — “until”
  • اثاث Look up اثاث in Wiktionary ‹asâs› — “furniture”
  • جا Look up جا in Wiktionary ‹jâ› — “place, space”
  • حب Look up حب in Wiktionary ‹hab› — “pill”
  • خاج Look up خاج in Wiktionary ‹xâj› — “cross”

Next: Lesson 2 ( ۲ ), The alphabet (continued)

Continue to Lesson 2 ( ۲ ), The alphabet (continued) >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting



Lesson Two

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


In lesson 1, you learned some greetings, the first nine letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell several words with those letters from right to left. You also learned that short vowels are usually not written, and that many letters change their shape depending on whether they connect with letters before or after them.

In this lesson, you will learn more formal greetings, the next eleven Persian letters and syllable stress.

Dialogue: ‹hâl-e šo cetor e?›

Arash sees Peyman:

Arash : ‹salâm, âqâ-ye peymân. hâl-e šo cetor e?›
“Hello, Mr. Peyman. How are you?”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Peyman : ‹salâm, âraš. xubam, mersi. šo cetorin?›
“Hello Arash. I am well, thank you. How are you?”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Arash : ‹man xubam, mersi. xofez, âqâ-ye peymân.›
“I am well, thanks. Goodbye, Mr. Peyman!”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Peyman : ‹xofez.›
“Goodbye.”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.

Explanation

Arash and Peyman are using a more formal style of speech typically used to show respect. That is why they use the formal pronoun ‹šo› Look up شما in Wiktionary  instead of the informal ‹tow› Look up تو in Wiktionary  used in lesson 1.

Vocabulary

  • hâl› Look up حال in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈhɒːl/ — “health”
  • ‹šo› Look up شما in Wiktionary  About this sound /ʃoˈmɒː/ — “you” (formal, shows speaker's respect for listener)
  • ‹cetor› Look up چطور in Wiktionary  About this sound /t͡ʃeˈtoɾ/ — “how” (the endings ‹e› and ‹-in› will be explained in Lesson 5)
  • ‹xofez› Look up خدا حافظ in Wiktionary  About this sound /xoˈdɒː hɒːˈfez/ — “May God keep you” (similar to the literal meaning of “goodbye”, i.e. “May God be with you”)
Culture Point: Titles
Titles like آقا Look up آقا in Wiktionary ‹âqâ› (“sir, Mr.”) are used before or after the first name, before or after a last name, or before or after both names. In the dialogue above, it is used before the first name پيمان ‹peyman› .

The feminine version of آقا ‹âqâ› (“sir, Mr.”) is آغا ‹âqâ› (“madam, Miss”). The two words are pronounced the same way and are sometimes confused for each other as a misspelling, but آقا is the proper spelling for use with male names and آغا for female names.

Family names are a relatively new aspect of Persian culture, having been introduced in Iran in 1912.


Syllable stress
In most Persian words, the stress falls on the last syllable of the stem.

For example, in the following words from the dialogue, the stress is on the last syllable:

  • ‹šo
  • ‹cetor
  • ‹mamnun
  • ‹xo
  • ‹hâfez

When suffixes and enclitics are added to Persian words and word stems, the stress usually does not move:

  • ‹cetor› + ‹-in› → ‹cetorin›
  • hast› + ‹-am› → ‹hastam›
  • hâl› + ‹-e› → ‹hâl-e›

A few prefixes and suffixes are stressed. Those details will be explained in the lessons for those suffixes and prefixes.

A limited set of Persian words (interjections, conjunctions and vocatives), however, has the stress on the first syllable:

  • mersi› — First syllable is stressed when used as in the conversation above, "Thanks!"
  • âqâ-ye› — First syllable is stressed when addressing someone by title as in the conversation above, but not when talking with someone else about ‹â-ye› so-and-so.
  • âraš› — First syllable is stressed when addressing Arash as in the conversation above, but the last syllable is stressed ‹âraš› when talking about him.
  • peymân› — First syllable is stressed when addressing Peyman as in the conversation above, but the last syllable is stressed ‹peyman› when talking with someone else about him.


د ‹dâl›, ذ ‹zâl›

(read from right to left)
د ذ
‹dâl› ‹zâl›

The next two Persian letters, shown on the right, have the same basic form, but only second one has a dot. Like ا ‹alef›, these two letters do not connect with the letter that follows them.


‌د‌ ‌د‌‍ ‍‌د‌‍ ‍‌د‌ ‌د‌‌د‌‌د‌
About this sound ‹dâl› does not connect with the following letter

The letter د Look up د in Wiktionary ‹dâl› represents the /d/ sound. It sits on the baseline and is written beginning at the top, ending at the bottom left. Its name sounds like the English word “doll”.


داد د ا د داد
About this sound ‹dâd› ‹d› ‹â› ‹d›

The Persian word داد Look up داد in Wiktionary ‹dâd› (“(he/she/it) gave”) is shown on the right. As shown, د does not join with the letter that follows it.


‌ذ‌ ‌ذ‌‍ ‍‌ذ‌‍ ‍‌ذ‌ ‌ذ‌‌ذ‌‌ذ‌
‹zâl› does not connect with the following letter

The letter ذ Look up ذ in Wiktionary ‹zâl› is one of the “foreign” letters in Persian. In Arabic, it represents the consonant [ð], but Persian does not have that sound, so it is pronounced as the closest Persian sound. Thus, ذ ‹zâl› is one of four Persian letters pronounced /z/.


ذات ذ ا ت ذات
‹zât› ‹z› ‹â› ‹t›

As shown in ذات Look up ذات in Wiktionary ‹zât› (“essence”) on the right, the letter ذ also does not join with the letter that follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing د ‹dâl› and ذ ‹zâl›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Daal-fina.svgDaal-fina.svgDaal-fina.svg DHaal-fina.svgDHaal-fina.svgDHaal-fina.svg

د ددد ذ ذذذ    
د ددد ذ ذذذ    
Arabic alphabet dal-dhal.png

Lettre 8 dâl.jpgLettre 8 dâl.jpgLettre 8 dâl.jpgLettre 8.gif Lettre 9 ḏâl.jpgLettre 9 ḏâl.jpgLettre 9 ḏâl.jpgLettre 9 ḏâl.gif


ر ‹re›, ز ‹ze›, ژ ‹že›

ر ز ژ
‹re› ‹ze› ‹že›

The next three Persian letters, also have the same basic form except for the dots. They are all written with a tail that drops well below the baseline. Like ا ‹alef›, د ‹dâl›, and ذ ‹zâl›, these three letters do not connect with the letter that follows them.


‌ر‌ ‌ر‌‍ ‍‌ر‌‍ ‍‌ر‌ ‌ر‌‌ر‌‌ر‌
About this sound ‹re› does not connect with the following letter

The letter ر Look up ر in Wiktionary ‹re› is pronounced as [ɾ], that is, it is produced by striking the tongue against the roof of the mouth just behind the teeth, then expelling air over the middle of the tongue, similar to the r in the Scottish English pronunciation of free or the tt in the American English and Australian English better. Between vowels, it is often trilled like rr in the Spanish word perro. Its name, ‹re›, sounds similar to a quick pronunciation of the English word "ray".


در د ر در
About this sound ‹dar› ‹d› ‹r›

As shown in the word در Look up در in Wiktionary ‹dar› (“door”), the letter ر does not join with the letter that follows it.


چرا چ‍ ‍ر ا چرا
‹cerâ› ‹c› ‹r› ‹â›

چ followed by ر and ا spells the word چرا Look up چرا in Wiktionary ‹cerâ› (“why”). Recall that ‹e›, like other short vowels, is not usually written in Persian.


‌ز‌ ‌ز‌‍ ‍‌ز‌‍ ‍‌ز‌ ‌ز‌‌ز‌‌ز‌
About this sound ‹ze› does not connect with the following letter

The letter ز Look up ز in Wiktionary ‹ze› is the most common of the four ‹z› letters in Persian.


رز ر ز رز
‹roz› ‹r› ‹z›

The word رز Look up رز in Wiktionary ‹roz› (“rose”) is shown on the right. Recall that ‹o› is usually not spelled in Persian words. Like ر, ز does not join with the letter that follows it.


‌ژ‌ ‌ژ‌‍ ‍‌ژ‌‍ ‍‌ژ‌ ‌ژ‌‌ژ‌‌ژ‌
About this sound ‹že› does not connect with the following letter

The letter ژ Look up ژ in Wiktionary ‹že› is transcribed in UniPers and here as ‹ž› and is pronounced as [ʒ], i.e. like the "g" in "mirage" or the s in measure and Persian. If you open your Persian-English dictionary at the letter ژ , you can see that it is not used in very many words. It occurs in many loanwords of French origin.


ژخ ژ خ ژخ
‹žax› ‹ž› ‹x›

As shown in the word ژخ  Look up  ژخ  in Wiktionary ‹zhakh› (“wart”), ژ does not join with the letter that follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ر ‹re›, ز ‹ze› and ژ ‹že›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Raa-fina.svgRaa-fina.svgRaa-fina.svg Zai-fina.svgZai-fina.svgZai-fina.svg 11a-Zhe.png11a-Zhe.png11a-Zhe.png

ر ررر ز ززز ژ ژژژ  
ر ررر ز ززز ژ ژژژ  
Arabic examples.  Persian examples would be better here, probably a separate page to print out with letters to trace.

Lettre 10 râʾ.jpgLettre 10 râʾ.jpgLettre 10 râʾ.jpgLettre 10 râ'.gif Lettre 11 zâī.jpgLettre 11 zâī.jpgLettre 11 zâī.jpgLettre 11 zây.gif Jaa-individua.svgJaa-individua.svgJaa-individua.svgJaa-fina.svg


س ‹sin›, ش ‹šin›

س ش
‹sin› ‹šin›

The next two Persian letters have the same shape, but one of them has no dots and the other has three.


س س‍ ‍س‍ ‍س سسس
About this sound ‹sin› connecting forms

The letter س Look up س in Wiktionary ‹sin› is the usual Persian letter for /s/. Its name sounds like the English word "seen".


سر س‍ ‍ر سر
‹sar› ‹s› ‹r›

As shown in the word سر Look up سر in Wiktionary ‹sar› (“head”) on the right, the letter س joins with the letter that follows it.


ش ش‍ ‍ش‍ ‍ش ششش
About this sound ‹šin› connecting forms

The letter ش Look up ش in Wiktionary ‹šin› is pronounced as [ʃ], that is, like "sh" in English. It is transcribed in UniPers as ‹š›, but in other literature it may be transcribed as sh, sch, ʃ, or ş. Its name sounds like the English word “sheen”.


شب ش‍ ‍ب شب
‹šab› ‹š› ‹b›

As shown in the word شب Look up شب in Wiktionary ‹šab› (“evening”), the letter ش joins with the letter that follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing س ‹sin› and ش ‹šin›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Siin-individua.svgSiin-individua.svgSiin-individua.svg SHiin-individua.svgSHiin-individua.svgSHiin-individua.svg

س سسس ش ششش    
س سسس ش ششش    
Arabic alphabet sin-shin.png

Lettre 12 sīn.jpgLettre 12 sīn.jpgLettre 12 sīn.jpgLettre 12 sīn.gif Lettre 13 šīn.jpgLettre 13 šīn.jpgLettre 13 šīn.jpgLettre 13 šîn.gif


ص ‹sâd›, ض ‹zâd›

ص ض
‹sâd› ‹zâd›

The next two Persian letters have the same shape, but only one has a dot.


ص ص‍ ‍ص‍ ‍ص صصص
About this sound ‹sâd› connecting forms

The the letter ص Look up ص in Wiktionary ‹sâd› is the third Persian letter for the sound /s/.


صد ص‍ ‍د صد
‹sad› ‹s› ‹d›

As shown in the word صد Look up صد in Wiktionary ‹sad› (“hundred”), on the right, the letter ص joins with the letter that follows it.


ض ض‍ ‍ض‍ ‍ض ضضض
About this sound ‹zâd› connecting forms

The the letter ض Look up ض in Wiktionary ‹zâd› is another Persian letter for the sound /z/.


ضد ض‍ ‍د ضد
‹zed› ‹z› ‹d›

As shown in the word ضد Look up ضد in Wiktionary ‹zed› (“opposite”) on the right, the letter ض joins with the letter that follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ص ‹sâd› and ض ‹zâd›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

SSaad-individua.svgSSaad-individua.svgSSaad-individua.svg DDaad-individua.svgDDaad-individua.svgDDaad-individua.svg

ص صصص ض ضضض    
ص صصص ض ضضض    
Arabic alphabet sad-dad.png

Lettre 14 ṣâd.jpgLettre 14 ṣâd.jpgLettre 14 ṣâd.jpgLettre 14 ṣâd.gif Lettre 15 ḍâd.jpgLettre 15 ḍâd.jpgLettre 15 ḍâd.jpgLettre 15 ḍâd.gif


ط ‹tâ›, ظ ‹zâ›

ط ظ
‹tâ› ‹zâ›

The next two Persian letters have the same shape, but only one has a dot.


ط ط‍ ‍ط‍ ‍ط ططط
About this sound ‹tâ› connecting forms

The the letter ط Look up ط in Wiktionary ‹tâ› is another Persian letter for the sound /t/.


طاس ط‍ ‍ا س طاس
‹tâs› ‹s› ‹â› ‹s›

As shown in the word طاس  Look up  طاس  in Wiktionary ‹tâs› (“bald”) on the right, the letter ط joins with the letter that follows it.


ظ ظ‍ ‍ظ‍ ‍ظ ظظظ
‹zâ› connecting forms

The the letter ظ Look up ظ in Wiktionary ‹zâ› is another Persian letter for the sound /z/. It is rare and only appears in words of Arabic origin.

ظ joins with the letter that follows it.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ط ‹tâ› and ظ ‹zâ›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

TTaa-individua.svgTTaa-individua.svgTTaa-individua.svg ZZaa-individua.svgZZaa-individua.svgZZaa-individua.svg

ط ططط ظ ظظظ    
ط ططط ظ ظظظ    
Arabic alphabet da-za.png

Lettre 16 ṭâʾ.jpgLettre 16 ṭâʾ.jpgLettre 16 ṭâʾ.jpgLettre 16 tâ'.gif Lettre 17 ẓâʾ.jpgLettre 17 ẓâʾ.jpgLettre 17 ẓâʾ.jpgLettre 17 zâ'.gif

Exercises

Note.svg Recognizing letters:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
What are the names of and sounds represented by the following letters?

The letter ‹šin›, which represents the sound ‹š› (IPA: [ʃ]).

The letter ‹dâl›, which represents the sound ‹d›.

The letter ‹sin›, which represents the sound ‹s›.

ژ

The letter ‹že›, which represents the sound ‹ž› (IPA: [ʒ]).

The letter ‹sâ›, which represents the sound ‹s›.

The letter ‹zâl›, which represents the sound ‹z›.

The letter ‹sâd›, which represents the sound ‹s›.

The letter ‹zâd›, which represents the sound ‹z›.

The letter ‹ze›, which represents the sound ‹z›.

The letter ‹tâ›, which represents the sound ‹t›.

The letter ‹re›, which represents the sound ‹r›.

Note.svg Reading words:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Read these words by breaking them down into their component parts.
چرا

‹čerâ›: ج‍ ‍ر ا

صبح

‹sobh›: ص‍ ‍ب‍ ‍ح

بابا

‹bâbâ›: ب‍ ا‍ ب‍ ‍ا

اسم
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
چرا

‹čerâ›: ج‍ ‍ر ا

اثاث

‹asâs›: ا‍ ث‍ ا‍ ث

توت
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Note.svg Word recognition.:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
See if you can recognize these familiar words:
ژاكت

ژاكت Look up ژاكت in Wiktionary ‹žâkat› (“jacket”)

بازار

بازار Look up بازار in Wiktionary ‹bâzâr› (“bazar, marketplace”)

بد

بد Look up بد in Wiktionary ‹bad› (“bad (not good)”)

Review

In this lesson, you learned some greetings, the first nine letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell several words with those letters from right to left. You also learned that short vowels are usually not written, and that many letters change their shape depending on whether they connect with letters before or after them.

Core vocabulary:
  • hâl› Look up حال in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈhɒːl/ — “health”
  • ‹šo› Look up شما in Wiktionary  About this sound /ʃoˈmɒː/ — “you” (formal, shows speaker's respect for listener)
  • ‹cetor› Look up چطور in Wiktionary  About this sound /t͡ʃeˈtoɾ/ — “how”
  • ‹xofez› Look up خدا حافظ in Wiktionary  About this sound /xoˈdɒː hɒːˈfez/ — “May God keep you” (similar to “goodbye”, “God be with you”)
  • hâl-e šo cetor e?› — "How is your health?"
  • ‹man xub hastam.› — “I am well.”
  • ‹šo cetorin?› — “How are you?” (formal)
Letters:
  • د Look up د in Wiktionary ‹dâl›
  • ذ Look up ذ in Wiktionary ‹zâl›
  • ر Look up ر in Wiktionary ‹re›
  • ز Look up ز in Wiktionary ‹ze›
  • ژ Look up ژ in Wiktionary ‹že›
  • س Look up س in Wiktionary ‹sin›
  • ش Look up ش in Wiktionary ‹šin›
  • ص Look up ص in Wiktionary ‹sâd›
  • ض Look up ض in Wiktionary ‹zâd›
  • ط Look up ط in Wiktionary ‹tâ›
  • ظ Look up ظ in Wiktionary ‹zâ›
Bonus words:
  • داد Look up داد in Wiktionary ‹dâd› — “(he/she/it) gave”
  • ذات Look up ذات in Wiktionary ‹zât› — “essence”
  • در Look up در in Wiktionary ‹dar› — “to, for, at”
  • رز Look up رز in Wiktionary ‹roz› — “rose”
  • چرا Look up چرا in Wiktionary ‹ce› — “why”
  • ژخ Look up ژخ in Wiktionary ‹žax› — “wart”
  • سر Look up سر in Wiktionary ‹sar› — “head”
  • شب Look up شب in Wiktionary ‹šab› — “evening”
  • صد Look up صد in Wiktionary ‹sad› — “hundred”
  • ضد Look up ضد in Wiktionary ‹zed› — “opposite”
  • طاس Look up طاس in Wiktionary ‹tâs› — “bald”

Below are all the core vocabulary words from lessons 1 and 2. The far right column shows the words in Persian script. Don't worry if you can't yet read the Persian script:

All vocabulary Lessons 1 - 2   edit
English gloss Notes ‹fârsi› فارسی
Letter: [ɒː], [æ], [e], [o] Look up ا in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹alef ا
Noun: gentleman, sir, Mr. Look up آقا in Wiktionary Lesson 2 âqâ› آقا
Letter: [b] Look up ب in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹be› ب
Letter: [p] Look up پ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹pe› پ
Letter: [t] Look up ت in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹te› ت
Pronoun: you (singular, informal) Look up تو in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹tow› تو
Letter: [s] Look up ث in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹se› ث
Letter: [dʒ] Look up ج in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹jim› ج
Letter: [tʃ] Look up چ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹ce› چ
Adjective: how Look up چطور in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹cetor چطور
Phrase: How are you? (informal) Look up چطوری؟ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹cetori?› چطوری؟
Letter: [h] Look up ح in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹he› ح
Noun: health Look up حال in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹hâl› حال
Letter: [x] Look up خ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹xe› خ
Phrase: May God keep you. (Goodbye.) Look up خداحافظ. in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹xofez.› خداحافظ.
Phrase: I’m fine. Look up (من) خوبم. in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹(man) xubam.› (من) خوبم.
Letter: [d] Look up د in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹dâ› د
Letter: [z] Look up ذ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ذ
Letter: [ɾ] Look up ر in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹re› ر
Letter: [z] Look up ز in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹ze› ز
Letter: [ʒ] Look up ژ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹že› ژ
Letter: [s] Look up س in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sin› س
Phrase: Peace (hello)! Look up سلام! in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹salâm!› سلام!
Letter: [ʃ] Look up ش in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šin› ش
Pronoun: you (plural or polite singular) Look up شما in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šomâ› شما
Letter: [s] Look up ص in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sâd› ص
Letter: [z] Look up ض in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâd› ض
Letter: [t] Look up ط in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹tâ› ط
Letter: [z] Look up ظ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ظ
Interjection: thanks Look up مرسی in Wiktionary Lesson 1 mersi› مرسی
Pronoun: I, me Look up من in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹man› من

Next: Lesson 3 ( ۳ ), The alphabet (continued)

Continue to Lesson 3 ( ۳ ), The alphabet (continued) >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting



Lesson Three

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


In lessons 1 and 2, you learned some greetings, the first twenty letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell several words with those letters. You also learned syllable stress in Persian words.

In this lesson, you will learn more about casual and formal speech, the next nine Persian letters, and more about short vowels in Persian.

Dialogue: ‹sobh bexeyr

Hassan drops by to see his good friend Mohamad:

Hassan : ‹sobh bexeyr, mamad!›
“Good morning, Mamad!”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Mohamad : ‹sobh bexeyr, hasani. hâlet cetor e?›
“Good morning, Hassani. How’s your health?”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Hassan : ‹bad nistam, mersi. va to?›
“Not bad, thanks. And you?”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
Mohamad : ‹man xeyli xubam.›
“I'm very good.”

Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.

Explanation

Mohamad and Hassan are using a very casual style of speech because they are close friends. “Mamad” is a common nickname for people named Mohamad. “Hassani” is a common nickname for people named “Hassan”.

Vocabulary

  • hâlet› Look up حالت in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈhɒːlet/ — “your health” (informal)
  • ‹bad› Look up بد in Wiktionary  About this sound /bæd/ — “bad” similar meaning and pronunciation as the English word
  • nistam› Look up نیستم in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈniːstæm/ — “(I) am not”
  • ‹va, o› Look up و in Wiktionary  About this sound /væ/, /o/ — “and”
  • xeyli› Look up خیلی in Wiktionary  — “very”
Familiarity and formality
In any language, speakers use various levels of formality in various social settings. For example, an English speaker in a formal setting may use proper grammar, pronounce -ing clearly (i.e., so that "walking" does not sound like "walkin'"), may choose formal or technical words (e.g. sodium chloride rather than salt and child rather than kid), and refrain from saying ain't, but the same person could violate some or all of those rules in an informal setting.

In Persian, several speech patterns are used to raise or lower the level of formality. One general rule in the Persian formality system is that referring to an individual with a plural pronoun and/or plural verb indicates respect for that individual. In polite Persian conversations, it is therefore customary to use the plural pronoun شما ‹šomâ› to when speaking with a superior or someone whom one has just met, and to use the singular pronoun تو ‹to› only when talking to friends, family members, and the like.



ع ‹’eyn›, غ ‹qeyn›

(read from right to left)
ع غ
‹’eyn› ‹qeyn›

The next two letters have the same form except only one has a dot over it. The bottom hook in these letters is a tail that only appears in isolated and final position.


ع ع‍ ‍ع‍ ‍ع ععع
About this sound ‹’eyn› connecting forms

The Persian letter  Look up ﻉ in Wiktionary ‹’eyn› represents the sound [ʔ], i.e. the glottal stop in the middle of “uh-oh” in English. Traditionally, as well as in UniPers it is transcribed as ‹’›. Its name sounds something like the English word “main”, but beginning with a glottal stop instead of an m. The top loop sits on the baseline. When it is the last (or only) letter in a word, its lower loop hangs below the baseline. When another letter follows it, it has a different form.


رعد ر ع‍ ‍د رعد
About this sound ‹ra'd› ‹r› ‹’› ‹d›

As shown on the right, the letter ‹’eyn› combines with the letter that follows it, e.g. with د in the word رعد Look up رعد in Wiktionary ‹ra’d› (“thunder”).


غ غ‍ ‍غ‍ ‍غ غغغ
About this sound ‹qeyn› connecting forms

The Persian letter غ Look up غ in Wiktionary ‹qeyn› represents the sound [ɣ], that is, it is produced by placing the back part of the tongue against the soft palate and vibrating the vocal cords while pushing air from the lungs over the middle of the tongue.

The top loop sits on the baseline. When it is the last (or only) letter in a word, its lower loop hangs below the baseline. When another letter follows it, it has a different form.


باغ ب‍ ‍ا غ باغ
About this sound ‹bâq› ‹b› ‹â› ‹q›

As shown on the right, the letter ‹qeyn› is used to spell باغ Look up باغ in Wiktionary ‹bâq› (“garden”).

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ع ‹'eyn› and غ ‹qeyn›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Ain-individua.svgAin-individua.svgAin-individua.svg GHain-individua.svgGHain-individua.svgGHain-individua.svg

ع ععع غ غغغ    
ع ععع غ غغغ    
Arabic alphabet ayn-ghayn.png

Lettre 18 ʿayn.jpgLettre 18 ʿayn.jpgLettre 18 ʿayn.jpgLettre 18 'ayn.gif Lettre 19 ġayn.jpgLettre 19 ġayn.jpgLettre 19 ġayn.jpgLettre 19 ġayn.gif


ف ‹fe›, ق ‹qaf›

ف ق
‹fe› ‹qaf›

The next two letters are shown on the right.


ف ف‍ ‍ف‍ ‍ف ففف
About this sound ‹fe› connecting forms

The Persian letter ف Look up ف in Wiktionary ‹fe› sits on the baseline. Its name sounds like a quick pronunciation of "Faye".


فردا ف‍ ‍ر د ا فردا
‹fardâ› ‹f› ‹r› ‹d› ‹â›

As shown on the right, the letter ف ‹fe› combines with the letter that follows it, e.g. as the first letter in the word فردا Look up فردا in Wiktionary ‹fardâ› (“tomorrow”).


ق ق‍ ‍ق‍ ‍ق ققق
About this sound ‹qaf› connecting forms

The Persian letter ق Look up ق in Wiktionary ‹qaf› is pronounced like غ ‹qeyn›, i.e. like [ɣ]. The small loop sits on the baseline and the tail, when present, hangs below the baseline. Like other Persian letters with tails, the tail is only written when no other letter follows.


آقا آ ق‍ ‍ا آقا
‹âqâ› ‹â› ‹q› ‹â›

As shown on the right, the letter ‹qaf› combines with the letter that follows, as in آقا Look up آقا in Wiktionary ‹âqâ› (“Mr., sir, gentleman”).

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ف ‹fe› and ق ‹qaf›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Faa-individua.svgFaa-individua.svgFaa-individua.svg Qaaf-individua.svgQaaf-individua.svgQaaf-individua.svg

ف ففف ق ققق    
ف ففف ق ققق    
Arabic alphabet fa-qaf.png

Lettre 20 fâʾ.jpgLettre 20 fâʾ.jpgLettre 20 fâʾ.jpgLettre 20 fâ.gif Lettre 21 qâf.jpgLettre 21 qâf.jpgLettre 21 qâf.jpgLettre 21 qâf.gif


ک ‹kaf› and گ ‹gaf›

ک گ
‹kaf› ‹gaf›

The next two letters are shown on the right.


ک ک‍ ‍ک‍ ‍ک ککک
About this sound ‹kaf› connecting forms

The Persian letter ک Look up ک in Wiktionary ‹kaf› sits on the baseline. The slash on top ( / ) is written after the connected strokes of the word, along with the dots in any of the word’s dotted letters. Its name sounds a bit like the English word “cough”.


کتاب ک‍ ‍ت‍ ‍ا ب کتاب
About this sound ‹ketâb ‹k› ‹t› ‹â› ‹b›

As shown on the right, the letter ک combines with the letter that follows it, e.g. as the first letter in the word کتاب Look up کتاب in Wiktionary ‹ketâb› (“book”).


گ گ‍ ‍گ‍ ‍گ گگگ
About this sound ‹gaf› connecting forms

The Persian letter گ Look up گ in Wiktionary ‹gaf› sits on the baseline. The two slashes on top ( // ) are written after the connected strokes of the word, along with the dots in any of the word’s dotted letters.


بزرگ ب‍ ‍ز ر گ بزرگ
About this sound ‹bozorg› ‹b› ‹z› ‹r› ‹g›

As shown on the right, the letter گ is used in the word بزرگ Look up بزرگ in Wiktionary ‹bozorg› (“big”).

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ک ‹kaf› and گ ‹gaf›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Kahah-individua.svgKahah-individua.svgKahah-individua.svg Gaaf-individua.svgGaaf-individua.svgGaaf-individua.svg

ک ککک گ گگگ    
ک ککک گ گگگ    
Arabic alphabet kaf.png

22b-Persisches Kaf.png22b-Persisches Kaf.png22b-Persisches Kaf.png 22a-Gaf.png22a-Gaf.png22a-Gaf.pngGaf.svg


ل ‹lâm›

ل ل‍ ‍ل‍ ‍ل للل
‹lâm› connecting forms

The letter ل Look up ل in Wiktionary ‹lâm› sits on the baseline and connects with the letter that follows it.


گل گ‍ ‍ل گل
‹gol› ‹g› ‹l›

ل is the last letter in گل Look up گل in Wiktionary ‹gol› (“flower”).

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ل ‹lâm›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Laam-individua.svgLaam-individua.svgLaam-individua.svg

ل للل      
ل للل      
Arabic alphabet lam.png

Lettre 23 lâm.jpgLettre 23 lâm.jpgLettre 23 lâm.jpgLettre 23 lâm.gif


م ‹mim›

م م‍ ‍م‍ ‍م ممم
About this sound ‹mim› connecting forms

The Persian letter م is pronounced as /m/.


اسم ا س‍ ‍م اسم
About this sound ‹esm› ‹e› ‹s› ‹m›

The Persian word اسم Look up اسم in Wiktionary ‹esm› (“name”), shown on the right, is an example of an initial alef without a “hat” ( ا ) used to indicate that the word begins with a short vowel, in this case, with ‹e›.

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing م ‹mim›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Miim-individua.svgMiim-individua.svgMiim-individua.svg

م ممم      
م ممم      

Lettre 24 mīm.jpgLettre 24 mīm.jpgLettre 24 mīm.jpgLettre 24 mîm.gif


ن ‹nun›

ن ن‍ ‍ن‍ ‍ن ننن
About this sound ‹nun› connecting forms

The name of this letter "nun" is pronounced rhyming with "noon" and not "nun". Note the difference between ن nun and be, in be the dot is below the curve and in nun it is above. The shape of nun is also narrower than the "be, pe, se, te" group of letters.


نان ن‍ ‍ا ن نان
‹nun› ‹n› ‹â› ‹n›

The Persian word نان Look up نان in Wiktionary ‹nun› (“bread”) is shown on the right. Note that the written form uses ا ‹â› , indicating that the word should be pronounced as ‹nân›, but in standard Persian, ان ‹ân› is usually pronounced ‹un›, including the word آن Look up آن in Wiktionary ‹un› (“that”).

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ن ‹nun›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Nuun-individua.svgNuun-individua.svgNuun-individua.svg

ن ننن      
ن ننن      

Lettre 25 nūn.jpgLettre 25 nūn.jpgLettre 25 nūn.jpgLettre 25 nūn.gif

Exercises

Note.svg Recognizing letters:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
What are the names of and sounds represented by the following letters?
ف

The letter ‹fe›, which represents the sound ‹f›.

The letter ‹lâm›, which represents the sound ‹l›.

گ

The letter ‹gaf›, which represents the sound ‹g›.

ق

The letter ‹qaf›, which represents the sound ‹q›.

ع

The letter ‹'eyn›, which represents the sound ‹'›.

غ

The letter ‹qeyn›, which represents the sound ‹q›.

ک

The letter ‹kaf›, which represents the sound ‹k›.

Note.svg Reading words:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Read these words by breaking them down into their component parts.
بازار

بازار Look up بازار in Wiktionary ‹bâzâr› (“bazaar, market”)

چادر

چادر Look up  چادر in Wiktionary ‹câdor› (“chador, covering”)

بانک

بانک Look up  بانک in Wiktionary ‹bânk› (“bank”)

چک

چک Look up  چک in Wiktionary ‹chek› (“Czech”)

Review

In this lesson, you learned ..., the next seven letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell several words with those letters from right to left. You also learned about syllable stress in Persian words.

Core vocabulary:
  • ‹sobh bexeyr› Look up صبح بخیر in Wiktionary  About this sound /sobh beˈxejɾ/ — “Good morning”
  • hâlet› Look up حالت in Wiktionary  About this sound /ˈhɒːlet/ — “your health” (informal)
  • ‹bad› Look up بد in Wiktionary  About this sound /bæd/ — “bad” similar meaning and pronunciation as the English word
  • xeyli› Look up خیلی in Wiktionary  — “very”
Letters:
  • ع Look up ع in Wiktionary ‹’eyn›
  • غ Look up غ in Wiktionary ‹qeyn›
  • ف Look up ف in Wiktionary ‹fe›
  • ق Look up ق in Wiktionary ‹qaf›
  • ک Look up ک in Wiktionary ‹kaf›
  • گ Look up گ in Wiktionary ‹gaf›
  •  Look up ﻝ in Wiktionary ‹lâm›
  • م Look up م in Wiktionary ‹mim›
  • ن Look up ن in Wiktionary ‹nun›
Bonus words:
  • رعد Look up رعد in Wiktionary ‹ra’d› — “thunder”
  • باغ Look up باغ in Wiktionary ‹bâq› — “garden”
  • فردا Look up فردا in Wiktionary ‹fardâ› — “tomorrow”
  • آقا Look up آقا in Wiktionary ‹âqâ› — “sir, Mr., gentleman”
  • کتاب Look up کتاب in Wiktionary ‹ketâb› — “book”
  • بزرگ Look up بزرگ in Wiktionary ‹bozorg› — “big”
All vocabulary Lessons 1 - 3   edit
English gloss Notes ‹fârsi› فارسی
Letter: [ɒː], [æ], [e], [o] Look up ا in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹alef ا
Noun: gentleman, sir, Mr. Look up آقا in Wiktionary Lesson 2 âqâ› آقا
Letter: [b] Look up ب in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹be› ب
Adjective: bad Look up بد in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹bad› بد
Letter: [p] Look up پ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹pe› پ
Letter: [t] Look up ت in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹te› ت
Pronoun: you (singular, informal) Look up تو in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹tow› تو
Letter: [s] Look up ث in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹se› ث
Letter: [dʒ] Look up ج in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹jim› ج
Letter: [tʃ] Look up چ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹ce› چ
Adjective: how Look up چطور in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹cetor چطور
Phrase: How are you? (informal) Look up چطوری؟ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹cetori?› چطوری؟
Letter: [h] Look up ح in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹he› ح
Noun: health Look up حال in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹hâl› حال
Noun: your health (informal) Look up حالت in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹hâlet› حالت
Letter: [x] Look up خ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹xe› خ
Phrase: May God keep you. (Goodbye.) Look up خداحافظ. in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹xofez.› خداحافظ.
Phrase: I’m fine. Look up (من) خوبم. in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹(man) xubam.› (من) خوبم.
very Look up خیلی in Wiktionary Lesson 3 xeyli› خیلی
Letter: [d] Look up د in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹dâ› د
Letter: [z] Look up ذ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ذ
Letter: [ɾ] Look up ر in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹re› ر
Letter: [z] Look up ز in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹ze› ز
Letter: [ʒ] Look up ژ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹že› ژ
Letter: [s] Look up س in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sin› س
Phrase: Peace (hello)! Look up سلام! in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹salâm!› سلام!
Letter: [ʃ] Look up ش in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šin› ش
Pronoun: you (plural or polite singular) Look up شما in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šomâ› شما
Letter: [s] Look up ص in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sâd› ص
Interjection: Good morning Look up صبح بخیر in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹sobh bexeyr صبح بخیر
Letter: [z] Look up ض in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâd› ض
Letter: [t] Look up ط in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹tâ› ط
Letter: [z] Look up ظ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ظ
Letter: [ʔ] Look up ع in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹’eyn› ع
Letter: [ɣ], [ɢ] Look up غ in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹qeyn› غ
Letter: [f] Look up ف in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹fe› ف
Letter: [ɢ], [ɣ], [q] Look up ق in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹qaf› ق
Letter: [k] Look up ک in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹kaf› ک
Letter: [g] Look up گ in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹gaf› گ
Letter: [l] Look up ل in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹lâm› ل
Letter: [m] Look up م in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹mim› م
Interjection: thanks Look up مرسی in Wiktionary Lesson 1 mersi› مرسی
Pronoun: I, me Look up من in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹man› من
Letter: [n] Look up ن in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹nun› ن
Verb: (I) am not Look up نیستم in Wiktionary Lesson 3 nistam› نیستم
Conjunction: and Look up و in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹va, vo, o› و

Next: Lesson 4 ( ۴ ), The alphabet (continued)

Continue to Lesson 4 ( ۴ ), The alphabet (continued) >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting


Stub

This section of the Persian Language Wikibook is a stub.
You can help Wikibooks by expanding it. (See the Persian course Planning page.)



Lesson Four

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


In lessons 1, 2, and 3, you learned some greetings, the first twenty-seven letters of the Persian Alphabet, and how to spell and pronounce several words with those letters.

In this lesson, you will learn the final three letters (ﻭ ‹vâv›, ﻩ ‹he› and ى ‹ye›), diacritics, and the remaining rules for reading and writing Persian vowels. You will also learn about a Persian tradition called ‹haft sin›.

Dialogue: ‹esm-e šo ci e?›

Reza meets Shirin:

The dialogue below and those in subsequent lessons are shown in both Persian script and UniPers. Some of the Persian letters used below are explained later in this lesson, so read the UniPers transcription for now, then come back to read the Persian script version after completing this lesson.
Shirin: ‹bebaxšin, esm-e šo ci-st?›
“Excuse me, what is your name?”
ببخشید، اسم شما چی است؟
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
شيرين:
Reza: esm-e man re-st. va šo?›
“My name is Reza. And you?”
اسم من رضا است. و شما؟
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
رضا:
Shirin: esm-e man širin e.›
“My name is Shirin.”
اسم من شیرین است.
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
شيرين:
Reza: ‹xošbaxtam, nom-e širin.›
“Nice to meet you, Miss Shirin.”
خوشبختم، خانم شیرین.
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
رضا:

Explanation

Shirin meets Reza.

Vocabulary

  • ببخشید Look up ببخشید in Wiktionary ‹bebaxšid› — “excuse me”
  • اسم Look up اسم in Wiktionary ‹esm› — “name”
  • چی Look up چی in Wiktionary ‹ci› — “what”
  • خانم Look up خانم in Wiktionary ‹xânom› About this sound /xɒːnom/ — “Miss”
  • خوشبختم Look up خوشبختم in Wiktionary ‹xošbaxtam› — “Nice to meet you.”


و ‹vâv›

‌و ‌و‍ ‍‌و‍ ‍‌و ‌و‌و‌و
About this sound ‹vâv› does not connect with the following letter

The letter و does not connect with the following letter. It is pronounced in different ways, depending on the word: ‹v›, ‹u›, or ‹o›.


آواز آ و ا ز آواز
‹âvâz› ‹â› ‹v› ‹â› ‹z›

The word آواز Look up آواز in Wiktionary ‹âvâz› About this sound /ɒːˈvɒːz/ (“voice, song”) is shown on the right, demonstrating that و ‹vâv› is pronounced as the consonant ‹v› in some words.


چوب چ‍ ‍و ب چوب
‹cub› ‹c› ‹u› ‹b›

The word چوب  Look up  چوب  in Wiktionary ‹cub› About this sound /tʃuːb/ (“wood”) is shown on the right, demonstrating that و ‹vâv› is pronounced as the long vowel ‹u› in some words.


اوت ا و ت اوت
‹ut› ‹-› ‹u› ‹t›

The long vowel sound ‹u› may also occur at the beginning of a word, in which case it is spelled with initial او, as demonstrated on the right in اوت Look up اوت in Wiktionary ‹ut› (“August”).


تو ت‍ ‍و تو
‹to› ‹t› ‹o›

Some Persian words that were originally pronounced with the long vowel sound ‹u› are pronounced today with the sound ‹o›, but their spelling has not changed. So و sometimes represents the sound ‹o› in Modern Persian:

  • تو Look up تو in Wiktionary ‹to› (“you (informal)”)
  • دو Look up دو in Wiktionary ‹do› (“two”)
Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing و ‹vâv›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Waau-individua.svgWaau-individua.svgWaau-individua.svg

و ووو      
و ووو      

Lettre 27 wâw.jpgLettre 27 wâw.jpgLettre 27 wâw.jpgLettre 27 wâw.gif


ه ‹he›

ه ه‍ ‍ه‍ ‍ه ههه
About this sound ‹he› connecting forms

The letter ه Look up ه in Wiktionary ‹he› is often pronounced like ‹h›, just like the Persian letter ح Look up ح in Wiktionary ‹he›. To distinguish between them, a Persian speaker may specify ح by saying ‹he-ye jimi›, in reference to the similar form shared with ج ‹jim› . Or, because of the traditional arrangements of letters in chronograms, they may be distinguished as حاء حطّی ‹he-ye hotti› for ح and هاء هوّز ‹he-ye havvaz› for ه .

جوجه ج‍ ‍و ج‍ ‍ه جوجه
‹jojeh› ‹j› ‹o› ‹j› ‹h›

The connecting forms of ه ‹he› are shown on the right in a typical Persian style. There are several variations, though, so you may run across any of the following:

  • راه Look up راه in Wiktionary ‹râh› (“road, path”)
  • جوجه Look up جوجه in Wiktionary ‹jojeh› (“chicken”)

At the end of a word, ه often is not pronounced as ‹h›, but just indicates that the word ends in the sound ‹e›: خانه ‹xâne› (“house”)

Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ه ‹he›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Haa-individua.svgHaa-individua.svgHaa-individua.svg

ه ههه      
ه ههه      

Lettre 26 hâʾ.jpgLettre 26 hâʾ.jpgLettre 26 hâʾ.jpgLettre 26 hâ'.gif

Duplicate Letters
In Persian there is more than one letter available for some sounds because words imported from Arabic are spelled using their Arabic spelling, but with Persian pronunciation. So, there are three letters for ‹s›, four for ‹z›, two for ‹t›, two for ‹q›, two for ‹h›, and two for ‹'›. They are not all used equally, for example ز is more common than the other ‹z› letters.
  • ‹s›:
    • س
    • ص , e.g. صد Look up صد in Wiktionary ‹sad› (“hundred”)
    • ث
  • ‹z›:
    • ز
    • ذ
    • ظ
    • ض, e.g. راضی Look up راضی in Wiktionary ‹râzi› (“satisfied”)
  • ‹t›:
    • ت
    • ط, e.g. طور Look up طور in Wiktionary ‹towr› (“method”)
  • ‹q›:
    • ق, e.g. آقا Look up آقا in Wiktionary ‹âqâ› (“sir”)
    • غ, e.g. آغا Look up آغا in Wiktionary ‹âqâ› (“madam”)
  • ‹h›:
    • ه
    • ح
  • <'>:
    In Arabic, a symbol known as hamzaء ) is used to separate two vowels. This convention only used in Persian for words of Arabic origin.
    • ء, e.g. رأس Look up رأس in Wiktionary ‹râ's› (“head”)
    • ع, e.g. رعد Look up رعد in Wiktionary ‹ra'd› (“thunder”)


ی ‹ye›

ی ی‍ ‍ی‍ ‍ی ییی
About this sound ‹ye› connecting forms

The last Persian letter, ى Look up ى in Wiktionary ‹ye›, has a few different pronunciations: ‹y›, ‹i›, or ‹ey›. Its isolated and final forms vary significantly from its initial and medial forms: It has a tail and no dots in the isolated and final forms, but it has two dots and no tail in the initial and medial forms,.


یک ی‍ ‍ک یک
‹yek› ‹y› ‹k›

In یک Look up یک in Wiktionary ‹yek› (“one”), ی as the first letter of the word is pronounced ‹y›.


سیب س‍ ‍ی‍ ‍ب سیب
‹sib› ‹s› ‹i› ‹b›
ایران ا ی‍ ‍ر ا ن ایران
‹irân› ‹-› ‹i› ‹r› ‹â› ‹n›
این ا ی‍ ‍ن این
‹in› ‹-› ‹i› ‹n›

As the examples این ‹in› (“this”) and سیب Look up سیب in Wiktionary ‹sib› (“apple”) show on the right, ی as the second letter of the word is pronounced as ‹i›.

فارسی ف‍ ‍ا ر س‍ ‍ی فارسی
‹fârsi› ‹f› ‹â› ‹r› ‹s› ‹i›

In فارسی Look up فارسی in Wiktionary ‹fârsi› (“Persian (language)”), ی as the last letter of the word is pronounced as ‹i›.


Vowels at the beginning of words
When a Persian word begins with any vowel sound, it is spelled with an initial ا. If that initial sound is a short vowel, the specific vowel is not indicated, but if it is a long vowel, the corresponding long vowel letter is written ( ا for ‹â›, و for ‹o›, or ی for ‹i›). So, ا is the first letter in Persian words that begin with a long ‹i› sound, such as ایران Look up ایران in Wiktionary ‹irân› (“Iran”) and اين Look up اين in Wiktionary ‹in› (“this”).

Remember from lesson 1, though, the long ‹â› sound at the beginning of a word is not spelled with two ا letters in a row, but with آ, alef madde.


Note: Writing practice
Learning Arabic calligraphy (Kaf).jpg

Get out a pen and paper and practice writing ی ‹ye›. Remember to write from right to left and to keep the base lines even.

Yaa-Persa-individua.svgYaa-Persa-individua.svgYaa-Persa-individua.svg

ی ییی      
ی ییی      
Culture Point: هفت‌سین Look up هفت‌سین in Wiktionary ‹haft sin›
a Haft sin table in Iran

Do you remember the letter س ‹sin› from leson 3? Combined with هفت Look up هفت in Wiktionary ‹haft› (“seven”) from this lesson makes an important Iranian New Year tradition of هفت‌سین Look up هفت‌سین in Wiktionary ‹haft sin› (“seven Ss”). During the Persian New Year ‹nowruz›, the سفره Look up سفره in Wiktionary ‹sofreh› (“tablecloth”) is arranged with seven items beginning with the letter س ‹s›. That might include:

  1. ‹sabzeh›
  2. ‹sib›
  3. ‹sir›
  4. ‹samanu›
  5. ‹senjed›
  6. ‹serkeh›
  7. ‹somâk›

Originally called هفت چین Look up هفت چین in Wiktionary ‹haft cin›


Note.svg Which of the following items would go on your traditional هفت سین Look up هفت سین in Wiktionary ‹haft sin› table? (Clue: Sabzeh, Sib, Sir, Samanu, Senjed, Serke and Somâq):
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
سیب زمینی

sib zamini (potato)- no

سیب

sib (apple)- yes

سگ

sag (dog)- no

ستاره

setareh (star)- no

سير

sir (garlic)- yes

سركه

serke (vinegar)- yes

سوسک‌

(cockroach)- no

سبزه

sabzeh (wheat, barley or lentil sprouts)- yes

سیگار

sigar (cigar)- no

سنگ

sang (stone)- no

سماق

somâq (sumac berries)- yes

سنجد

senjed (senjed, the dried fruit of the oleaster tree )- yes

سمنو

samanu (wheat pudding)- yes

Ligatures

Certain combinations of letters are written in a combined form known as a ligature.


لا ل‍ ‍ا لا
‹lâ› ‹l› ‹â›

When ل ‹lâm› is followed by ا ‹alef› , they combine to form the ligature لا ‹lâ› , as shown on the right.

سلام س‍ ‍ل‍ ‍ا م سلام
‹salâm› ‹s› ‹l› ‹â› ‹m›

The lâm-alef ligature appears in the greeting سلام ‹salâm› .


ۀ ه‌ ‌ی ۀ
‹he-ye› ‹he› ‹ye›

In an ezafe construction after a word ending in ‹he›, the ی is sometimes written in a small form over the ه, i.e. as ۀ ‹he-ye› . It looks like a hamze, and is considered such by some, but others consider this a ligature of ه‌ی.

Diacritics

Like the accent mark over the e in café, Persian diacritics (symbols written above or below the letters) are not actual letters in the Persian alphabet.

  • ّ ‹tašdid› (“strengthening”)

Tashdid is a mark that looks like a small, curly w, placed above a consonant to double or strengthen it. It may be omitted, but is used in many situations for clarity.

ء ‹hamze›

The diacritic ‹hamze›, isolated and over ‹he›:
ء هٔ
About this sound ‹’›, ‹ye›

The symbol on the right is called همزه ‹hamze› . It is never at the beginning of a word and has different pronunciations, depending on whether it is in a native Persian word or one borrowed from Arabic.


خانهٔ خ ا ن هٔ خانهٔ
‹xuneye› ‹x› ‹â› ‹n› ‹e-ye›

In Persian words, hamze may be written over silent final ‹he› ( هٔ ), as shown on the right, to represent the sound ‹ye› in a construction called ‹ezâfe› that will be explained in Lesson 6. The hamze for this purpose is usually left unwritten and is only added for extra clarity. Rarely, it is used in the same way with words ending in ی (that is, ئ).

Historically   Modern
جملهٔ جمله‌ای ‹jomlei› (“a sentence”)
قهوهٔ رنگ قهوه‌ای رنگ ‹qahvei rang› (“brown”)
خستهٔ خسته‌ای ‹xaste i› (“you are tired”)
شیمیائی شیمیایی ‹šimiāi› (“chemical”)
بگوئید بگویید ‹beguid› (“say”)

Historically, Persian words with the sounds ‹âi› or ‹ui› were written with a hamze (that is, with ائی or وئی) to show that the vowel sounds were separate, but today such words are usually written with a doubled ی (that is, ‹âi› is written as ایی and ‹ui› as ویی) instead. Similarly, words ending with ‹ei› were once written as هٔ, but today that ending is written as ه‌ای.


ژوئن ژ و ئ‍ ‍ن ژوئن
‹žuan› ‹ž› ‹u› ‹-› ‹n›

As shown on the right, ئـ is used in some foreign words, like ژوئن Look up ژوئن in Wiktionary ‹žuan› (“June”) (from French juin), to show a transition between vowels.


أ ‹a’›/‹’a›
  • متأسف ‹mota’assef› (“sorry”)
  • تأسیس ‹ta’sis› (“foundation”)
ؤ ‹o’›
  • مؤمن ‹mo’men› (“believer”)
  • مسئول ‹mas’ul› (“responsible”)
ئو ‹’u›, ئـ ‹’›
  • مسأله\مسئله ‹mas’ale› (“problem”)

In words taken from Arabic, like the ones on the right, hamze may appear anywhere after the first letter of a word to represent a glottal stop [ʔ], i.e. the same ‹’› sound that ع ‹’eyn› represents. Usually, though, أ is written without the hamze, e.g. متاسف ‹mota’assef› , مساله ‹masale› .


جزء ج‍ ‍زء جزء
‹joz› ‹j› ‹z›

At the end of an Arabic word, ء is usually silent and written by itself, e.g. جزء ‹joz› (“part”).

Arabic loanwords ending with a final اء are sometimes still spelled that way, but the final hamze in such words is silent, so the hamze is usually omitted. For example, ابتداء ‹ebtedâ› (“beginning”) is now usually written ابتدا .

Short vowel marks

In children's books and some other learning resources, short vowel are marked using the following symbols:

  • َ , called زَبَر ‹zabar› (“above”) or فتحه‎‎ Look up فتحه‎‎ in Wiktionary ‹fatha› (“opening”), is used to represent short ‹a›. E.g. دَر Look up در in Wiktionary ‹dar› (“door, at”)
  • ِ , called زير ‹zir› (“below”) or كَسره Look up كَسره in Wiktionary ‹kasra› (“breaking”), is used to represent ‹e›.
  • ُ , called پيش ‹piš› (“before”) or ضَمّه Look up ضَمّه in Wiktionary ‹zamah›, is used to represent ‹o›.

The short vowel diacritics may be doubled at the end of an Arabic loanword to indicate that the vowel is followed by ‹-n›, known as تنوين ‹tanvin› (“nunation”) (also, تنوين نصب ‹tanvin nasb› (“marking a consonant with tanvin”)). In Arabic, the signs indicate grammatical case endings: ـً ‹-un› (nominative), ـٍ ‹-en› (accusative), and ـٌ ‹-an› (genitive).

A related mark is سُكون ‹sokun› , also called جَزْم ‹jazm› (“amputation”). It is used to indicate the absence of a vowel and is written as a superscripted o: ْ

Exercises

Note.svg Recognizing letters:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
What are the names of and sounds represented by the following letters?

The letter ‹vâv›, which represents the consonant ‹v›, the long vowel ‹u›, or the short vowel ‹o›.

ى

The letter ‹ye›, which represents the long vowel ‹i› or ‹ay› in a dipthong, e.g. ‹ye›, ‹ay›, ‹ey›, ....

ن

The letter ‹nun›, which represents the sound ‹n›.

The letter ‹he›, which represents the consonant ‹h› or the short vowel ‹e›.

م

The letter ‹mim›, which represents the sound ‹m›.

Non-connecting letters.
Which seven Persian letters do not join with the letter that follows?

ا ‹alef›, ‹dâl›, ‹zâl›, ‹re›, ‹ze›, ژ ‹že› and ‹vâv›.

Note.svg Reading words:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Read these words by breaking them down into their component parts.
ما

‹mâ›: م‍  ‍ا

ماه

‹mâh›: م‍  ‍ا ه

نه

‹nah›: ن‍  ‍ه

هفت

‹haft›: ه‍  ‍ف‍ ‍ت

طناب

‹tanâb›: ط‍ ‍ن‍ ‍ا ب

اسم

‹esm›: ا س‍ ‍م

Note.svg The Persian script:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Determine which of these words has unwritten vowels (vowels not included in the spelling of the word).
ما

No, the one vowel ‹â› is written, like all long vowels in Persian.

ماه

No, the one vowel ‹â› is written, like all long vowels in Persian.

نه

Yes, نه Look up نه in Wiktionary ‹nah› (“not”) has an unwritten short vowel: ‹a›.

چرا

Yes, چرا Look up چرا in Wiktionary ‹cerâ› (“why”) has a written long vowel ‹â› and an unwritten short vowel ‹e›.

هفت

Yes, هفت Look up هفت in Wiktionary ‹haft› (“seven”) has an unwritten short vowel: ‹a›.

آب

No, the one vowel ‹â› is written, like all long vowels in Persian.

بابا

No, the vowel ‹â› is written, like all long vowels in Persian.

اسم
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
چرا
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
اثاث

Yes, the vowel ‹â› in the middle of the word is written, but the short vowel ‹e› at the beginning of the word is unwritten.

توت
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Note.svg Word recognition:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
See if you can recognize these familiar words.
شاه

شاه Look up شاه in Wiktionary ‹šâh› (“shah, king”)

افغانستان

افغانستان Look up افغانستان in Wiktionary ‹afqânestân› (“Afghanistan”)

زعفران

زعفران Look up زعفران in Wiktionary ‹za'ferân› (“saffron”)

پايجامه

پايجامه Look up پايجامه in Wiktionary ‹payjâma› (“pajamas”)

مادر

مادر Look up مادر in Wiktionary ‹mâdar› (“mother”)

Review

In this lesson, you learned the final letters of the Persian Alphabet and some diacritics. You will also learn about a Persian tradition called ‹haft sin›.

Congratulations! You now know how to read, write, and pronounce Persian words!

Core vocabulary:
  • ‹bebaxšin› Look up ببخشید in Wiktionary  — “excuse me”
  • ‹esm› Look up اسم in Wiktionary  — “name”
  • ‹ci› Look up چی in Wiktionary  — “what”
  • ‹xânom› Look up خانم in Wiktionary  About this sound /xɒːnom/ — “Miss”
Letters:
  • و Look up و in Wiktionary ‹vâv›
  • ه Look up ه in Wiktionary ‹he›
  • ی Look up ی in Wiktionary ‹ye›

Diacritics and ligatures:

  • لا ‹lâ› (‹lâm› + ‹alef›)
  • ۀ ‹he ye›
  • اً ‹tanvin nasb›
  • ّ ‹tašdid›
  • ء ‹hamze›
  • َ ‹fatha›
  • ِ ‹kasra›
  • ُ ‹zamma›
Bonus words:
  • آواز Look up آواز in Wiktionary ‹âvâz› — “voice, song”
  • چوب Look up چوب in Wiktionary ‹cub› — “wood”
  • اوت Look up اوت in Wiktionary ‹ut› — “August”
  • تو Look up تو in Wiktionary ‹to› — “you” (informal)
  • جوجه Look up جوجه in Wiktionary ‹jojeh› — “chicken”
  • یک Look up یک in Wiktionary ‹yek› — “one”
  • سیب Look up سیب in Wiktionary ‹sib› — “apple”
  • فارسی Look up فارسی in Wiktionary ‹fârsi› — “Persian”
  • ايران Look up ايران in Wiktionary ‹irân› — “Iran”
  • هفت Look up هفت in Wiktionary ‹haft› — “seven”
  • هفت‌سین Look up هفت‌سین in Wiktionary ‹haft sin› — “seven Ss” (Iranian New Year tradition)
  • سي Look up سي in Wiktionary ‹sir› — “garlic”
  • سنجد Look up سنجد in Wiktionary ‹senjed› — “senjed” (the dried fruit of the oleaster tree)
  • سمنو Look up سمنو in Wiktionary ‹samanu› — “samanu” (a kind of wheat pudding)
All vocabulary Lessons 1 - 4   edit
English gloss Notes ‹fârsi› فارسی
Letter: [ɒː], [æ], [e], [o] Look up ا in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹alef ا
Noun: gentleman, sir, Mr. Look up آقا in Wiktionary Lesson 2 âqâ› آقا
Noun: name Look up اسم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹esm› اسم
Letter: [b] Look up ب in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹be› ب
Interjection: excuse me Look up ببخشید in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹bebaxšid› ببخشید
Adjective: bad Look up بد in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹bad› بد
Letter: [p] Look up پ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹pe› پ
Letter: [t] Look up ت in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹te› ت
Pronoun: you (singular, informal) Look up تو in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹tow› تو
Letter: [s] Look up ث in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹se› ث
Letter: [dʒ] Look up ج in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹jim› ج
Letter: [tʃ] Look up چ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹ce› چ
Adjective: how Look up چطور in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹cetor چطور
Phrase: How are you? (informal) Look up چطوری؟ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹cetori?› چطوری؟
Pronoun: what? Look up چی in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹ci› چی
Letter: [h] Look up ح in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹he› ح
Noun: health Look up حال in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹hâl› حال
Noun: your health (informal) Look up حالت in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹hâlet› حالت
Letter: [x] Look up خ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹xe› خ
Phrase: May God keep you. (Goodbye.) Look up خداحافظ. in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹xofez.› خداحافظ.
Noun: (person) wife, lady, Miss Look up خانم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹xânom› خانم
Phrase: I’m fine. Look up (من) خوبم. in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹(man) xubam.› (من) خوبم.
Phrase: Nice to meet you. Look up خوشبختم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹xošbaxtam› خوشبختم
very Look up خیلی in Wiktionary Lesson 3 xeyli› خیلی
Letter: [d] Look up د in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹dâ› د
Letter: [z] Look up ذ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ذ
Letter: [ɾ] Look up ر in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹re› ر
Letter: [z] Look up ز in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹ze› ز
Letter: [ʒ] Look up ژ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹že› ژ
Letter: [s] Look up س in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sin› س
Phrase: Peace (hello)! Look up سلام! in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹salâm!› سلام!
Letter: [ʃ] Look up ش in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šin› ش
Pronoun: you (plural or polite singular) Look up شما in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹šomâ› شما
Letter: [s] Look up ص in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹sâd› ص
Interjection: Good morning Look up صبح بخیر in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹sobh bexeyr صبح بخیر
Letter: [z] Look up ض in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâd› ض
Letter: [t] Look up ط in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹tâ› ط
Letter: [z] Look up ظ in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹zâ› ظ
Letter: [ʔ] Look up ع in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹’eyn› ع
Letter: [ɣ], [ɢ] Look up غ in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹qeyn› غ
Letter: [f] Look up ف in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹fe› ف
Letter: [ɢ], [ɣ], [q] Look up ق in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹qaf› ق
Letter: [k] Look up ک in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹kaf› ک
Letter: [g] Look up گ in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹gaf› گ
Letter: [l] Look up ل in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹lâm› ل
Letter: [m] Look up م in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹mim› م
Interjection: thanks Look up مرسی in Wiktionary Lesson 1 mersi› مرسی
Pronoun: I, me Look up من in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹man› من
Letter: [n] Look up ن in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹nun› ن
Verb: (I) am not Look up نیستم in Wiktionary Lesson 3 nistam› نیستم
Letter: [v], [u], [ow] Look up و in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹vâv› و
Conjunction: and Look up و in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹va, vo, o› و
Letter: [h] Look up ه in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹he› ه
Noun: Persian New Year’s tradition of “seven S’s” Look up هفت‌سین in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹haftsin› هفت‌سین
Letter: [j], [i], [ej] Look up ی in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹ye› ی
Symbol: (ligature) lam-alef Look up لا in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹lâ› لا
Symbol: (diacritic) tashdid (“strengthening”) Look up ّ in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹tašdid› ّ
Symbol: (diacritic) hamze Look up ء in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹’› ء
Symbol: (diacritic) zabar (“above”) Look up َ in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹a› َ
Symbol: (diacritic) zir (“below”) Look up ِ in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹e› ِ
Symbol: (diacritic) pish (“before”) Look up ُ in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹o› ُ
Symbol: (diacritic) sokun Look up ْ in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹-› ْ

Next: Lesson 5 ( ۵ ), Introduction to Verbs

Continue to Lesson 5 ( ۵ ), Introduction to Verbs >>

ContentsIntroduction

Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting


Stub

This section of the Persian Language Wikibook is a stub.
You can help Wikibooks by expanding it. (See the Persian course Planning page.)



Lesson Five

Iran

Afghanistan

Tajikistan

فارسی (‹fârsi›, “Persian”)
Learn the Persian language
ContentsIntroduction
Persian Alphabet lessons: 1 ( ۱ )2 ( ۲ )3 ( ۳ )4 ( ۴ )
Elementary grammar: 5 ( ۵ )6 ( ۶ )7 ( ۷ )8 ( ۸ )9 ( ۹ )
10 ( ۱۰ )11 ( ۱۱ )12 ( ۱۲ )13 ( ۱۳ )14 ( ۱۴ )15 ( ۱۵ )
Intermediate: 16 ( ۱۶ )17 ( ۱۷ )18 ( ۱۸ )19 ( ۱۹ )20 ( ۲۰ )
21 ( ۲۱ )22 ( ۲۲ )23 ( ۲۳ )24 ( ۲۴ )25 ( ۲۵ )26 ( ۲۶ )
Advanced:
Appendix: AlphabetGlossaryHandwriting

Farsi

To continue, your computer must display Persian. The box below should show these Persian letters on the far right: Paa-individua.svgBaa-individua.svgAlif-individua.svg
ا ب پ ت ث ج چ ح خ د ذ ر ز ژ س ش ص ض ط ظ ع غ ف ق ک گ ل م ن و ه ی

If they are different or in the wrong order, see Persian Computing.


In lessons 1 through 4, you learned some greetings and how to read, write, and pronounce Persian words.

In this lesson, you will learn about Persian verbs: their agreement with the subject, their location in a sentence, and how to conjugate the most common one, بودن Look up بودن in Wiktionary ‹budan› (“to be”), in the simple present tense.

Dialogue: شما کجایی هستید؟ ‹šomâ kojâi hastid?›

Reza and Shirin have just met:

Shirin: ‹xošbaxtam, âqâ-ye rezâ. šomâ kojâi hastid? ›
“Nice to meet you, Mr. Reza. Where are you from?”
خوشبختم، آقای رضا. شما کجایی هستید؟
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
شيرين:
Reza: ‹man irâniyam. az mašhad hastam. šo cetor?›
“I’m Iranian. I’m from Mashhad. How about you?”
من ایرانیم. از مشهد هستم. شما چطور؟
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
رضا:
Shirin: ‹man az tehrân hastam.›
“I’m from Tehran.”
من از تهران هستم.
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
شيرين:
Reza: ‹va â-ye esmit? engelisi-st?›
“And Mr. Smith? Is he English?”
و آقای اسمیت؟ انگلیسی است؟
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
رضا:
Shirin: ‹xeyr, u âmrikâiy-st.›
“No, he’s American.”
خیر، او آمریکایی است.
Missing audio Missing audio. If you are fluent in Persian, record and upload your voice.
شيرين:

If you intend to help complete this dialogue, please see #Exercises and Persian/Planning#Dialogue for suggestions that emphasize this lesson's topic: simple present tense forms of بودن .

Explanation

Shirin and Reza have just met.

Vocabulary

  • کجایی Look up کجایی in Wiktionary ‹kojâi› — “from where?”
  • ایرانیم Look up ایرانیم in Wiktionary ‹irâniyam› — “(I) am Iranian.”
  • او Look up او in Wiktionary ‹u› About this sound /uː/ — “he, she, it”
  • انگلیسی Look up انگلیسی in Wiktionary ‹engelisiy› — “English”
  • خیر Look up خیر in Wiktionary ‹xeyr› — “no”
  • آمریکایی Look up آمریکایی in Wiktionary ‹âmrikâiy› — “American”
  • ما Look up ما in Wiktionary ‹mâ› About this sound /mɒː/ — “we, us”
  • آنها Look up آنها in Wiktionary ‹ân› About this sound /ɒːnˈhɒː/ — “they”


Subjects

In both English and Persian, sentences have subjects and verbs. In a sentence that expresses an action, the subject is usually the main actor or agent. In a sentence that makes a comment about a topic, the subject is usually that topic. A verb is a word like talk that expresses an action, or one like is that links the subject to the words that comment about it:

Sentence Subject Verb
“I am a student.” “I” “am”
“Did you complete the assignment?” “you” “Did complete”
“Study this grammar topic!” “(you)”[1] “Study”

Each sentence above, like all complete sentences in English and Persian, has a subject and a verb, even if the subject is only implied. Subjects have grammatical “number” and “person”:

  • First, second, or third person: indicates whether the speaker or addressee is included
  • Singular or plural number: indicates how many people or things are included [2]

Grammatical person and number may be represented by the following pronouns:

Grammatical number and person Number
Singular

(one)

Plural

(more than one)[2]

First person

(the speaker)

من ما
‹man› ‹mâ›
“I” “we”
Second person

(the addressee)

تو شما
‹to› ‹šomâ›
“you” “you”
Third person

(someone else)

او آنها
‹u› ‹ânhâ›
“he/she/it” “they”

Present tense forms of بودن ‹budan› (“to be”)

بودن ‹budan› (“to be”)

Simple present tense, “full” form
Stem: هست‍ ‹hast-›

Number
Singular Plural
First person (من) هستم (ما) هستیم
(‹man›) ‹hastam› (‹mâ›) ‹hastim›
“(I) am” “(we) are”
Second person (تو) هستی (شما) هستید
(‹to›) ‹hasti› (‹šomâ›) ‹hastin›[3]
“(you) are” “(you) are”
Third person (او) هست (آنها) هستند
(‹u›) ‹hast (‹ânhâ›) ‹hastan›[3]
“(he/she/it) is” “(they) are”

Persian verbs are conjugated by adding suffixes, similar to the way English verbs like talk take the suffixes -s, -ed, and -ing to make verb forms like talks, talked, and talking. In Persian, though, the verb’s suffix clearly indicates its grammatical person and number. For example, the table on the right shows the simple present tense “full” forms of the Persian verb بودن Look up بودن in Wiktionary ‹budan› (“to be”), consisting of the stem هست‍ ‹hast-› and various suffixes to indicate the person and number:

Note.svg Conjugation
Say each of the personal pronouns from the table above. While saying each one, imagine and point to the people to whom the pronoun might refer. For example, while saying ما Look up ما in Wiktionary ‹mâ› (“we, us”), imagine another person next to you and point to that person and yourself.
Repeat the personal pronouns as above, but after each one, say the corresponding simple present tense full forms of بودن ‹budan› from the table above. For example, when saying شما Look up شما in Wiktionary ‹šomâ› (“you (plural)”), point to two imaginary addressees and then say هستید ‹hastin› .[3]

The full simple present tense of بودن ‹budan› appeared as هستید ‹hastin› and هستم ‹hastam› in the first and third lines of the dialogue above.

بودن ‹budan› also appears in abbreviated form above, once as the word است ‹e› [3] and once as the suffix ‍م ‹-am› following ایرانی ‹irâniy› (“Iranian”). That's because the verb بودن ‹budan› has both a full form using the stem هست‍ ‹hast-› and a short form. The long form is a bit more formal in tone and often carries the sense of “exists”.

The short form is used more often than the long form, especially in casual speech. As shown below, most of the short form is written as suffixes (technically clitics since they attach to phrases rather than just words) like ‍ید ‹-in› [3] in چطورید ‹cetorin› (“how are you”), but the third person singular form is written as a separate word: است ‹e› (“is”)[3]:

بودن ‹budan› (“to be”)

Simple present tense, short form

Number
Singular Plural
First person ... + ‍م ... + ‍یم
‹...am› ‹...im›
“(I) am” “(we) are”
Second person ... + ‍ی ... + ‍ید
‹...i› ‹...id›, ‹...in›[3]
“(you) are” “(you) are”
Third person است ... + ‍ند
‹ast›, ‹...e›, ‹...s› [3] ‹...+an›[3]
“(he/she/it) is” “(they) are”

است ‹ast› can be used with singular or plural subjects to express existence, like "there is" or "there are" in English.

For plural “animate” subjects (one that refers to multiple people or to a thing that might be thought to behave figuratively like multiple people), existence can also be expressed with the plural form هستند ‹hastan› .

Some sources disagree with this and say است is only used as a copula, never used for existence.

Colloquially, هستند ‹hastand› may be a suffix pronounced ‹an› after consonant or ‹n› after vowel.

Word order

As the previous dialogues have shown, the verb usually comes last in a simple Persian sentence. For example, the last word in each Persian sentence below is a form of the verb بودن Look up بودن in Wiktionary ‹budan› (“to be”):

  Each line below reads from right to left: the Persian expression, its components, transcription, and glosses.  “I am fine.” 
  من خوب هستم.  
  من خوب هستم  
 ←  ‹man› ‹xub› hastam›  
 ←  “I” “fine” “am”  
  Each line below reads from right to left: the Persian expression, its components, transcription, and glosses.  “You are a student.” 
  تو دانشجو هستی.  
  تو دانشجو هستی  
 ←  ‹to› ‹danešju› hasti›  
 ←  “you” “student” “are”  
  Each line below reads from right to left: the Persian expression, its components, transcription, and glosses.  “The university is big.” 
  دانشگاه بزرگ است.  
  دانشگاه بزرگ است  
 ←  ‹dânešgâh› ‹bozorg› ‹e›  
 ←  “university” “big” “is”  

Grammatically, subjects are optional in Persian. Since the suffix of a conjugated verb clearly indicates the number and person of the subject, subject pronouns are often omitted from Persian sentences, except when used for emphasis.


Exercises

Note.svg Reading Persian sentences:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)
Translate the following Persian sentences into English:
او آرش است.

He is Arash.

آرش خوش است.

Arash is happy.

Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Note.svg Creating Persian sentences:
(To check your answers, click “[show ▼]”.)

Fill in the blanks.

  • [...] کجاست؟ ‹Where is [...]?› Fill in the blank with someone's name.
  • شما [...] هستید؟ ‹šomâ [...] hastin?› (“Are you a [...]?”) Fill in the blank with an occupation (e.g. دکتز ‹doktor› (“doctor”)), a role (e.g. دانشجو ‹dânešju› (“student”)), or a nationality (e.g. ایرانی ‹irâni› (“Iranian”)).
  • نه، من [...]م. ‹nah, man [...]am.› (“No, I am a [...].”) Fill in the blank with an occupation.
  • شما کجایی هستید؟ ‹šomâ kojey hastin?› (“Where are you from?”)
  • من آمریکاییم. ‹man âmrikâiyam.› (“I'm American.”)
  • من ایرانیم. شما چطور؟ ‹man irâniam. šomâ cetor?› (“I'm Iranian. How about you?”)
  • ببخشید، شما کجایی هستد؟ to ask about someone's nationality
  • من انگلیسیم. ‹man engelisiam.› (“I'm English.”) or other nationalities
  • سما هم انگلیسی هستین؟ ‹šomâm engelisi hastin?› (“Are you also English?”)
  • نه، من انگلیسی نیستم. آمریکاییم. ‹nah, man engelisi nistam. âmrikâiyam.›
Translate the following English sentences into Persian:
He is Hassan.
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Hassan is my friend.
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.
Stub
This exercise is incomplete. Help the English Wikibooks Persian Language course by completing it.

Review

In this lesson, you learned how to conjugate two sets of simple present tense forms of the Persian verb بودن Look up بودن in Wiktionary ‹budan› (“to be”)....

Core vocabulary:
  • کجایی Look up کجایی in Wiktionary ‹kojâi› — “from where?”
  • ایرانیم Look up ایرانیم in Wiktionary ‹irâniyam› — “(I) am Iranian.”
  • او Look up او in Wiktionary ‹u› About this sound /uː/ — “he, she, it”
  • آمریکایی Look up آمریکایی in Wiktionary ‹âmrikâiy› — “American”
  • ما Look up ما in Wiktionary ‹mâ› About this sound /mɒː/ — “we, us”
  • آنها Look up آنها in Wiktionary ‹ân› About this sound /ɒːnˈhɒː/ — “they”
...s:
  • ابپثت Look up ابپثت in Wiktionary ‹abepesete› — “lorem ipsum dolor...”
... words:
  • ابپثت Look up ابپثت in Wiktionary ‹abepesete› — “lorem ipsum dolor...”
All vocabulary Lessons 1 - 5   edit
English gloss Notes ‹fârsi› فارسی
Letter: [ɒː], [æ], [e], [o] Look up ا in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹alef ا
Noun: gentleman, sir, Mr. Look up آقا in Wiktionary Lesson 2 âqâ› آقا
Adjective: American Look up آمریکایی in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹âmriyi› آمریکایی
Pronoun: they Look up آنها in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹ân, onâ› آنها
Verb: am, is, are Look up ام، ای، است، ایم، اید، اند in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹am, i, ast, im, in, an› ام، ای، است، ایم، اید، اند
Noun: name Look up اسم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹esm› اسم
Pronoun: he, she Look up او in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹u› او
Adjective: Iranian Look up ایرانی in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹ini› ایرانی
Letter: [b] Look up ب in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹be› ب
Interjection: excuse me Look up ببخشید in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹bebaxšid› ببخشید
Adjective: bad Look up بد in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹bad› بد
Verb: to be Look up بودن in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹budan› بودن
Letter: [p] Look up پ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹pe› پ
Letter: [t] Look up ت in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹te› ت
Pronoun: you (singular, informal) Look up تو in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹tow› تو
Letter: [s] Look up ث in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹se› ث
Letter: [dʒ] Look up ج in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹jim› ج
Letter: [tʃ] Look up چ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹ce› چ
Adjective: how Look up چطور in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹cetor چطور
Phrase: How are you? (informal) Look up چطوری؟ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹cetori?› چطوری؟
Pronoun: what? Look up چی in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹ci› چی
Letter: [h] Look up ح in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹he› ح
Noun: health Look up حال in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹hâl› حال
Noun: your health (informal) Look up حالت in Wiktionary Lesson 3 ‹hâlet› حالت
Letter: [x] Look up خ in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹xe› خ
Phrase: May God keep you. (Goodbye.) Look up خداحافظ. in Wiktionary Lesson 2 ‹xofez.› خداحافظ.
Noun: (person) wife, lady, Miss Look up خانم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹xânom› خانم
Phrase: I’m fine. Look up (من) خوبم. in Wiktionary Lesson 1 ‹(man) xubam.› (من) خوبم.
Phrase: Nice to meet you. Look up خوشبختم in Wiktionary Lesson 4 ‹xošbaxtam› خوشبختم
Interjection: no Look up خیر in Wiktionary Lesson 5 ‹xeyr› خیر
very Look up خیلی in Wiktionary Lesson 3 xeyli› خیلی
Letter: [d]