Sylheti language

Sylheti (Bengali: সিলেটি Sileṭi, ꠍꠤꠟꠐꠤ Silôṭi) is an Indo-Aryan language, of Bengali-Assamese origin, spoken by about 11 million people native to Sylhet Division of Bangladesh, also primarily spoken in the Barak Valley of Assam as well as northern parts of Tripura.[5][6] Outside of these regions, there are substantial numbers of Sylheti speakers in Indian states of Meghalaya, Manipur and Nagaland; as well as the United Kingdom, the United States and the Middle East.

Sylheti nagari.png
The word Silôṭi ('Sylheti') in Sylheti Nagari
Native toIndia and Bangladesh
RegionSylhet region and Barak Valley[1]
Native speakers
11 million (2007)[2]
Sylheti Nagari, Eastern Nagari[3]
Language codes
ISO 639-3syl
Sylheti speaking zone.png
Sylheti speakers within South Asia
This article contains IPA phonetic symbols. Without proper rendering support, you may see question marks, boxes, or other symbols instead of Unicode characters. For an introductory guide on IPA symbols, see Help:IPA.

Sylheti is considered by some as a dialect of Bengali, while others view it as a separate language.[7][8] Phonologically Sylheti is distinguished from the other Bengali varieties by significant deaspiration and spirantization,[9] leading to major restructuring of the consonant inventory[10] and the development of tones,[11] a unique phenomenon in Indo-Aryan languages. Though some authors claim Sylheti and Bengali are mutually unintelligible, others have observed no great difference.[12]


Though the language is generally considered as a dialect of Bengali, some recent authors have claimed it to be a separate language.[12][13][14] In his Linguistic Survey of India, linguist George Abraham Grierson identified two variations of Sylheti (Western Sylheti and Eastern Sylheti) and grouped them in Eastern Bengali.[15] Grierson notes that a third of the Bengali speakers in Sylhet district spoke the Sylheti varieties and clarifies that the name derives from the Sylhet town, close to Jaintiapur paragana, and not from the district[16]—with the natives calling it Jaintiapuri, Purba Srihattiya, or Ujania.[17] Sylheti shares these linguistic properties with Bengali which are also found in several other Eastern Indo-Aryan languages, such as Chittagonian, Bishnupriya Manipuri, and Dhakaiya Kutti.[18][better source needed] There are differences in grammar and pronunciation as well, although there is a moderate mutual intelligibility between Sylheti and standard Bengali. Sylheti shares 85% to 90% of its lexicon with standard Bengali, despite pronunciation differences, which is a common situation between many related languages.[19][better source needed] Most Sylhetis are at least bilingual to some degree, as standard Bengali is taught at all levels of education in Bangladesh.[20]

Lack of mutual intelligibility is a major factor in some linguists (mostly non-native) to determine it as a separate language.[21][22] This consideration by linguists is also due to the linguistic properties such as phoneme inventory, allophony, and inflectional morphology and lexicon that differ with standard Bengali.[23] Sylhet was part of British Assam and Sylheti shares many common features with Assamese, including a larger set of classifiers and a larger set of fricatives than other Eastern Indo-Aryan languages.[15]

Geographical distributionEdit

The Sylheti language is native to the Sylhet region which comprises the Sylhet Division of Bangladesh and the Karimganj district of the Indian state of Assam.

A Bengali sign in Brick Lane in London, which is home to a large Sylheti diaspora

Besides the native region, it is also spoken by the Sylhetis living in the Hojai district of Assam, northern Tripura, Meghalaya, Manipur, and Nagaland. There are also significant Sylheti-speaking communities in the Middle East,[24][25] the United Kingdom (about 400,000 speakers),[26] and the United States.[27]

A notable amount of Sylheti migration to Europe, North America, and the Middle East from the 20th century has made Sylheti one of the most spoken languages of the Bangladeshi diaspora.

Approximate distribution of native Sylheti speakers (assuming a rounded total of 11 million) worldwide.

  Bangladesh (76%)
  India (22%)
  Other (2%)

Among the total 11 million Sylheti speakers, 76% are from Bangladesh, 22% are from India, and the rest 2% are from across the world.[citation needed]


Front page of a Sylheti Nagri book titled Halat-un-Nabi, written in the mid-19th century by Sadeq Ali of Daulatpur, Longla, Moulvibazar.

The region of Sylhet became a part of Sultan Shamsuddin Firoz Shah's sultanate in Lakhnauti in 1303 during the Conquest of Sylhet led by the Sultan's commanders Sikandar Khan Ghazi and Syed Nasiruddin and aided by Shah Jalal and his disciples. The high influx of Middle Eastern and Central Asian settlers led to an influence from Arabic, the religious language, and Persian, the official court language, on the Bengali language as a whole.

T Walton B.C.S. wrote the Government Report on the History and Statistics of Sylhet District in 1857 which contained a list of peculiar Sylheti vocabulary.[15] This is most likely the earliest appearance of a Sylheti dictionary. Many terms listed here differ from modern Sylheti – highlighting the dialect's evolution. In 1868, another short glossary of local Sylheti terms were written up and compared to standard Bengali to allow ease in understanding the dialect.[28]

In 1874, Sylhet became a part of Assam by the British rule thus leading to Assamese influence on the local Sylheti dialect and a separation from mainland Bengal. in In the 19th century, the British tea-planters in the area referred to the vernacular spoken in Surma and Barak Valleys as Sylheti. Local names included Ujaniyo (lit. northern , i.e. a northern form of Bengali) and Srihottiyo (Srihattan).[15] In the 20th century, Shibprosanna Lahiry wrote a book called Sylheti Bhasatattver Bhumika (A background of the Sylheti language).[29] After a number of political movements led by groups such as the Sylhet Peoples' Association and Sylhet-Bengal Reunion League (1920), the demands of the mobilised public opinion demanding Sylhet's reincorporation into Bengal was met once and for all in 1947 following a referendum.[30] It is very important to note that popular writers and poets of the Sylhet region that wrote in their native tongue, for example Hason Raja or Shah Abdul Karim, were not only renowned amongst Sylhetis but as prosperous contributors to the wider Bengali literature as a whole - greatly admired and celebrated by Bengali speakers as far as West Bengal (such as Rabindranath Tagore).[31][32]

The British Bangladeshis living in England were mainly of Sylheti origin, and a fringe group started a campaign during the mid-1970s to mid-1980s to recognise Sylheti as a language in its own right. During the mid-1970s, when the first mother-tongue classes were established for Bangladeshis by community activists, the classes were given in standard Bengali rather than the Sylheti dialect which triggered the campaign. During the 1980s, a recognition campaign for Sylheti took place in the area of Spitalfields in the East End of London. One of the main organisations was the Bangladeshis' Educational Needs (BENTH) in Tower Hamlets.[33] However this organisation collapsed in 1985 and with its demise, the pro-Sylheti campaign in the borough lost impetus. Nonetheless, Sylheti remains very widespread as a domestic language in working-class as well as upper-class Sylheti households in the United Kingdom.[34]

On 18 October 2015, the SOAS Sylheti Project's Chocolate and Bicycles team launched a bilingual dictionary titled Sylheti Dictionary, translating from English to Sylheti and vice versa.[35] In the same decade, Md. Salik Ahmed, Md. Nizam Uddin and Md. Mamunur Rasid translated the last juz' of the Qur'an into the Sylheti language using both the Eastern Nagari and Sylheti Nagri scripts.[36]

Writing systemEdit

The language is primarily written in the Eastern Nagari script however an alternative script was also founded in the Sylhet region known as Sylheti Nagri. Historically, Sylheti Nagri was commonly used by some low-class Muslims of the east of the Sylhet region and mostly limited to writing religious poetry (puthi).[15] This written form was identical to those written in the Dobhashi dialect due to both lacking the use of tatsama and using Perso-Arabic vocabulary as a replacement. As per Dobhashi custom, many Sylheti Nagri texts were paginated from right to left.[37][38] An endangered script, it has since seen a revival mostly by academics and linguists.[39]

Comparison with standard BengaliEdit

A phrase in:

  • Standard Bengali: এক দেশের গালি আরেক দেশের বুলি æk desher gali arek desher buli.
  • Sylheti: ꠄꠇ ꠖꠦꠡꠞ ꠉꠣꠁꠟ ꠀꠣꠞꠇ ꠖꠦꠡꠞ ꠝꠣꠔ/এখ দেশর গাইল, আরখ দেশর মাত ex deshôr gail arôx deshôr mat.

which literally means "one land's obscenity is another land's language", and can be roughly translated to convey that a similar word in one language can mean something very different in another.

Another example: মেঘ megh in Standard Bengali means cloud .

ꠝꠦꠊ/মেঘ megh in Sylheti means rain.
In Pali मेघ megha means both rain and cloud.

Grammar comparisonsEdit

The following is a sample text in Sylheti, of the Article 1 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by the United Nations:
Sylheti in Sylheti Nagri

ꠗꠣꠞꠣ ১: ꠢꠇꠟ ꠝꠣꠘꠥꠡ ꠡꠣꠗꠤꠘꠜꠣꠛꠦ ꠢꠝꠣꠘ ꠁꠎ꠆ꠎꠔ ꠀꠞ ꠢꠇ ꠟꠁꠀ ꠙꠄꠖꠣ ‘ꠅꠄ। ꠔꠣꠞꠣꠞ ꠛꠤꠛꠦꠇ ꠀꠞ ꠀꠇꠟ ꠀꠍꠦ। ꠄꠞ ꠟꠣꠉꠤ ꠢꠇꠟꠞ ꠃꠌꠤꠔ ꠄꠇꠎꠘꠦ ꠀꠞꠇꠎꠘꠞ ꠟꠉꠦ ꠛꠤꠞꠣꠖꠞꠤꠞ ꠝꠘ ꠟꠁꠀ ꠀꠌꠞꠘ ꠇꠞꠣ।

Sylheti in Bengali script

ধারা ১: হখল মানুষ আজাদী ভাবে হমান ইজ্জত আর হক লইয়া পয়দা ‘অয়। তারার হুঁশ আর আখল আছে; এর-লাগি হকলর জরুরি একজনে আরকজনর লগে বিরাদরির মন লইয়া ব্যবহার করা।

Sylheti in Phonetic Romanization

Dara ex: Hôxôl manuš azadi babe hôman izzôt ar hôx lôia fôeda ôe. Tarar hush ar axôl ase. Er lagi hôxlôr zoruri exzône arôxzônôr lôge biradôrir môn lôia bebohar xôra.

Sylheti in IPA

/d̪aɾa ex | ɦɔxɔl manuʃ azad̪í bábe ɦɔman id͡ʒːɔt̪ aɾ ɦɔx lɔia fɔe̯d̪a ɔ́e̯ ‖ t̪aɾaɾ ɦuʃ aɾ axɔl asé; eɾ lagi ɦɔxlɔɾ zɔruri exzɔne arɔxzɔnɔɾ lɔge birad̪ɔɾiɾ mɔn lɔia beboɦar xɔɾa ‖/

Bengali in Bengali script

ধারা ১: সমস্ত মানুষ স্বাধীনভাবে সমান মর্যাদা এবং অধিকার নিয়ে জন্মগ্রহণ করে। তাঁদের বিবেক এবং বুদ্ধি আছে; সুতরাং সকলেরই একে অপরের প্রতি ভ্রাতৃত্বসুলভ মনোভাব নিয়ে আচরণ করা উচিত।

Bengali in Phonetic Romanization

Dhara æk: Šômôsto manuš šadhinbhabe šôman môrjada æbông odhikar niye jônmôgrôhôn kôre. Tãder bibek æbông buddhi achhe; šutôrang šôkôleri æke ôpôrer prôti bhratrittôšulôbh mônobhab niye achôrôn kôra uchit.

Bengali in IPA

/d̪ʱara ɛk | ʃɔmɔst̪o manuʃ ʃad̪ʱinbʱabe ʃɔman mɔrd͡ʒad̪a ebɔŋ od̪ʱikar nije d͡ʒɔnmɔgrɔɦɔn kɔre ‖ t̪ãd̪er bibek ebɔŋ bud̪d̪ʱi at͡ʃʰe ‖ ʃut̪ɔraŋ ʃɔkɔleɾi ɛke ɔpɔrer prot̪i bʱrat̪rut̪ːɔʃulɔbʱ mɔnobʱab nije at͡ʃorɔn kɔra ut͡ʃit̪ ‖/

Below are the grammar similarities and differences appearing in a word to word comparison:
Sylheti word-to-word gloss

All humans' free way same dignity and rights with born are. Their conscious and intelligence exist; therefore everyone's important a-person another-person's with brotherhood's mind with act doing.

Bengali word-to-word gloss

All human free-manner-in equal dignity and right taken birth-take do. Their reason and intelligence exist; therefore everyone-indeed one another's towards brotherhood-ly attitude taken conduct do should.


All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood.


Sylheti is distinguished by its tonal characteristics and a wide range of fricative consonants corresponding to aspirated consonants in closely related languages and dialects such as Bengali; a lack of the breathy voiced stops; word-final stress; and a relatively large set of loanwords from other Bengali dialects and Assamese.

  Front Central Back
Close i   u
Close-mid e    
Open-mid     ɔ
Open   a  
  Labial Dental/
Retroflex Palato-
Velar Glottal
Nasal m n     ŋ  
voiceless unaspirated p , , ʈ , t͡ʃ , k ,  
voiced unaspirated b , , ɖ , d͡ʒ , ɡ ,  
Fricative voiceless fricative ɸ~f , s ,   ʃ x ,  
voiced fricative   z ,       ɦ
Flap   ɾ ɽ      
Approximant w l   j    


Sylheti is a tonal language.[23][40][41] The Indo-Aryan languages are not generally recognised for tone. There are two types of tonal contrasts in Sylheti: the emergence of high tone in the vowels following the loss of aspiration, and a level tone elsewhere.

Word Transliteration Tone Meaning
ꠀꠔ at level intestine
‘ꠀꠔ át high hand
ꠇꠣꠟꠤ xali level ink
ꠈꠣꠟꠤ xáli high empty
ꠉꠥꠠꠣ guṛa level powder
ꠊꠥꠠꠣ gúṛa high horse
ꠌꠥꠞꠤ suri level theft
ꠍꠥꠞꠤ súri high knife
ꠎꠣꠟ zal level net, web
ꠏꠣꠟ zál high punjent
ꠐꠤꠇ ṭik level tick
ꠑꠤꠇ ṭík high correct
ꠒꠣꠟ ḍal level branch
ꠓꠣꠟ ḍál high shield
ꠔꠣꠟ tal level palmyra, rhythm
ꠕꠣꠟ tál high plate
ꠖꠣꠘ dan level donation
ꠗꠣꠘ dán high paddy
ꠙꠥꠟ ful level bridge
ꠚꠥꠟ fúl high flower
ꠛꠣꠟꠣ bala level bangle
ꠜꠣꠟꠣ bála high good, welfare
ꠛꠣꠔ bat level arthritis
ꠜꠣꠔ bát high rice

Recent study shows that there is a three way tonal system in Sylheti.[42]

No. Word IPA Tone Meaning Word IPA Tone Meaning Word IPA Tone Meaning
1 ꠙꠣꠑꠣ ɸáʈá High goat ꠚꠣꠐꠣ ɸàʈà Low torn ꠙꠣꠐꠣ ɸāʈā Mid grindstone
2 ꠇꠥꠑꠣ kúʈá High room ꠈꠥꠐꠣ kùʈà Low taunting ꠇꠥꠐꠣ kūʈā Mid stick
3 ꠙꠣꠈꠣ ɸáxá High fan ꠚꠣꠇꠣ ɸàxà Low empty ꠙꠣꠇꠣ ɸāxā Mid ripe

It is considered that these tones arose when aspirated consonants lost their aspiration. Sylheti continues to have a long history of coexisting with other Tibeto-Burman languages such as various dialects of Kokborok, Reang which are tonal in nature. Even though there is no clear evidence of direct borrowing of lexical items from those tonal languages into Sylheti, there is still a possibility that the emergence of Sylheti tones is due to an areal feature as the indigenous speakers of Tibeto-Burman languages by and large use Sylheti as a common medium for interaction.


Sylheti grammar is the study of the morphology and syntax of Sylheti.[43]



When a definite article such as -gu/ţa (singular) or -guin/ţin (plural) is added, nouns are also inflected for number. Below are two tables which show the inflections of an animate noun, ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞ satrô (student), and an inanimate noun, ꠎꠥꠔꠣ zuta (shoe).

Noun Inflection
Animate Inanimate
Singular Plural Singular Plural
Nominative ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠉꠥ/ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠐꠣ

the student


the students


the shoe


the shoes

Objective ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠉꠥꠞꠦ/ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠐꠣꠞꠦ

(to) the student


(to) the students


(to) the shoe


(to) the shoes

Genitive ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠉꠥ/ꠍꠣꠔ꠆ꠞꠐꠣ

the student's


the students'


the shoe's


the shoes'

Locative ꠎꠥꠔꠣꠉꠥ/ꠎꠥꠔꠣꠐꠣ

on/in the shoe


on/in the shoes

All of the inflected nouns above have an indefinite article preceding their case markers. There are some basic rules to keep in mind about the cases, apart from the "default" nominative.

For the genitive case, the ending may change, though never with a definite article attached. A noun (without an article) which ends in a consonant or the inherent vowel, ô, is inflected by adding –ꠞ -ôr to the end of the word (and deleting the inherent vowel if applicable). An example of this would be the genitive of ꠉꠥꠍ gus "meat" being ꠉꠥꠍꠔ gustôr "of meat" or "(the) meat's". A noun which ends in any vowel apart from the inherent vowel will just have a {{{text}}}-ꠞ -r following it, as in the genitive of ꠙꠥꠀ fua being ꠙꠥꠀ fuar "(the) boy's". The genitive ending is also applied to verbs (in their verbal noun forms), which is most commonly seen when using postpositions (for example: ꠢꠤꠇꠣ ꠟꠣꠉꠤ hikar lagi, "for learning").

For the locative case, the marker also changes in a similar fashion to the genitive case, with consonants and the inherent vowel having their own ending, -ꠧ -ô, and all other vowels having another ending, -ꠔ -t. For example, ꠍꠤꠟꠐꠧ silôţô "in Sylhet", ꠑꠣꠇꠣ dáxát "in Dhaka", etc.

Measure wordsEdit

When counted, nouns must also be accompanied by the appropriate measure word. The noun's measure word (MW) must be used in between the numeral and the noun. Most nouns take the generic measure word gu/ţa/xán, although there are many more specific measure words, such as zôn, which is only used to count humans.

Measure Words
Sylheti Literal translation Meaning
Nôy-ţa ghoŗi Nine-MW clock Nine clocks
Xôy-ţa balish How many-MW pillow How many pillows
Ônex-zôn manush Many-MW person Many people
Sair-fas-zôn mashţôr Four-five-MW teacher Four or five teachers

Measuring nouns in Sylheti without their corresponding measure words (e.g. aţ mekur instead of aţ-ţa mekur "eight cats") would typically be considered ungrammatical. However, omitting the noun and preserving the measure word is grammatical and not uncommon to hear. For example, Xáli êx-zôn táxbô. (lit. "Only one-MW will remain.") would be understood to mean "Only one person will remain.", since zôn can only be used to count humans.


Personal pronounsEdit

Sylheti personal pronouns are somewhat similar to English pronouns, having different words for first, second, and third person, and also for singular and plural (unlike for verbs, below). Sylheti pronouns, like their English counterparts, do differentiate for gender. Sylheti has different third-person pronouns for proximity. The first are used for someone who is nearby, and the second are for those who are a little further away. The third are usually for those who are not present. In addition, each of the second- and third-person pronouns have different forms for the familiar and polite forms; the second person also has a "very familiar" form (sometimes called "despective"). It may be noted that the "very familiar" form is used when addressing particularly close friends or family as well as for addressing subordinates, or in abusive language. In the following tables, the abbreviations used are as follows: VF=very familiar, F=familiar, and P=polite (honor); H=here, T=there, E=elsewhere (proximity), and I=inanimate.

The nominative case is used for pronouns that are the subject of the sentence, such as "I already did that" or "Will you please stop making that noise?"

Personal pronouns (nominative case)
Subject Proximity Honor Singular Plural
1 VF ꠝꠥꠁ (mui, I) ꠝꠞꠣ (môra, we)
F ꠀꠝꠤ (ami, I) ꠀꠝꠞꠣ (amra, we)
2 VF ꠔꠥꠁ (tui, you) ꠔꠥꠞꠣ (tura, you)
F ꠔꠥꠝꠤ (tumi, you) ꠔꠥꠝꠞꠣ/ꠔꠥꠝꠤ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (tumra/tumi-tain, you)
P ꠀꠙꠘꠦ (afne, you) ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞꠣ (afnara, you)
3 H F (e, he), ꠄꠁ (ei, she) / ꠁꠉꠥ (igu, he/she) ꠄꠞꠣ (era, they)
P ꠄꠁꠘ (ein, he/she) ꠄꠞꠣ/ꠄꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (era/ein-tain, they)
I ꠁꠉꠥ/ꠁꠇꠐꠣ (igu/ikţa, it) ꠁꠉꠥꠁꠘ (iguin, these)
T F ꠢꠦ (he, he), ꠔꠣꠁ (tai, she) ꠔꠣꠞꠣ (tara, they)
P ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (tain, he/she)

ꠔꠣꠞꠣ/ꠔꠣꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (tara/tain-tain, they)

I ꠅꠉꠥ/ꠅꠇꠐꠣ (ôgu/ôxţa, it) ꠅꠉꠥꠁꠘ (ôguin, those)
E F ꠢꠦ (he, he), ꠔꠣꠁ (tai, she) ꠔꠣꠞꠣ (tara, they)
P ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (tain, he/she)

ꠔꠣꠞꠣ/ꠔꠣꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ (tara/tain-tain, they)

I ꠢꠉꠥ/ꠢꠇꠐꠣ (hôgu/hôxţa, it) ꠢꠉꠥꠁꠘ (hôguin, those)

The objective case is used for pronouns serving as the direct or indirect objects, such as "I told him to wash the dishes" or "The teacher gave me the homework assignment". The inanimate pronouns remain the same in the objective case.

Personal pronouns (objective case)
Subject Proximity Honor Singular Plural
1 VF ꠝꠞꠦ (môre, me) ꠝꠞꠣꠞꠦ (môrare, us)
F ꠀꠝꠣꠞꠦ (amare, me) ꠀꠝꠞꠣꠞꠦ (amrare, us)
2 VF ꠔꠞꠦ (tôre, you) ꠔꠥꠞꠣꠞꠦ (turare, you)
F ꠔꠥꠝꠣꠞꠦ (tumare, you) ꠔꠥꠝꠞꠣꠞꠦ/ꠔꠥꠝꠣ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ (tumrare/tuma-tanre, you)
P ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞꠦ (afnare, you) ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞꠣꠞꠦ/ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠁꠘꠔꠞꠦ (afnarare/afnaintôre, you)
3 H F ꠄꠞꠦ (ere, him), ꠄꠁꠞꠦ (eire, her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞꠦ (erare, them)
P ꠄꠘꠞꠦ (enre, him/her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞꠦ/ꠄꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ (erare/ein-tanre, them)
I ꠁꠉꠥꠞꠦ/ꠁꠇꠐꠣꠞꠦ (igure/ikţare, it) ꠁꠉꠥꠁꠘꠔꠞꠦ (iguintôre, these)
T F ꠄꠞꠦ (ere, him), ꠄꠁꠞꠦ (eire, her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞꠦ (erare, them)
P ꠄꠘꠞꠦ (enre, him/her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞꠦ/ꠄꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ (erare/ein-tanre, them)
I ꠅꠉꠥꠞꠦ/ꠅꠇꠐꠣꠞꠦ (ôgure/ôxţare, it) ꠅꠉꠥꠁꠘꠔꠞꠦ (ôguintôre, those)
E F ꠢꠦꠞꠦ/ꠔꠣꠞꠦ (here/tare, him), ꠔꠣꠁꠞꠦ (taire, her) ꠔꠣꠞꠣꠞꠦ (tarare, them)
P ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ (tanre, him/her) ꠔꠣꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ (tain-tanre, them)
I ꠢꠉꠥ/ꠢꠇꠐꠣ (hôgu/hôxţa, it) ꠢꠉꠥꠁꠘ (hôguin, those)

The possessive case is used to show possession, such as "Where is your coat?" or "Let's go to our house". In addition, sentences such as "I have a book" (ꠀꠝꠣꠞ ꠄꠇꠐꠣ ꠛꠁ ꠀꠍꠦ) or "I need money" (ꠀꠝꠣꠞ ꠐꠦꠇꠣ ꠖꠞꠇꠣꠞ) also use the possessive (the literal translation of the Bengali versions of these sentences would be "There is my book" and "There is my need for money" respectively).

Personal pronouns (possessive case)
Subject Proximity Honor Singular Plural
1 VF ꠝꠞ (môr, my) ꠝꠞꠣꠞ (môrar, our)
F ꠀꠝꠣꠞ (amar, my) ꠀꠝꠞꠣꠞ (amrar, our)
2 VF ꠔꠞ (tôr, your) ꠔꠥꠞꠣꠞ (turar, your)
F ꠔꠥꠝꠣꠞ (tomar, your) ꠔꠥꠝꠞꠣꠞ/ꠔꠥꠝꠣ-ꠔꠣꠘ/ꠔꠥꠝꠣ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞ (tumar/tuma-tan/tuma-tanôr, your)
P ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞ (afnar, your) ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞꠣꠞ/ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠁꠘꠔꠞ (afnarar/afnaintôr, your)
3 H F ꠄꠞ (er, his), ꠄꠁꠞ (eir, her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞ (erar, their)
P ꠄꠘ/ꠄꠁꠘꠞ (en/einôr, his/her) ꠄꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞ (ein-tanôr, their)
I ꠁꠉꠥꠞ/ꠁꠇꠐꠣꠞ (igur/ikţar, its) ꠁꠉꠥꠁꠘꠔꠞ (iguintôr, of these)
T F ꠄꠞ (er, his), ꠄꠁꠞ (eir, her) ꠄꠞꠣꠞ (erar, their)
P ꠄꠘ/ꠄꠁꠘꠞ (en/einôr, his/her) ꠄꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞ (ein-tanôr, their)
I ꠅꠉꠥꠞ/ꠅꠇꠐꠣꠞ (ogur/oxţar, its) ꠅꠉꠥꠁꠘꠔꠞ (oguintôr, of those)
E F ꠔꠣꠞ (tar, his/her) ꠔꠣꠞꠣꠞ (tader, their)
P ꠔꠣꠘ/ꠔꠣꠘꠞ (tan/tanôr, his/her) ꠔꠣꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞ (tain-tanôr, their)
I ꠢꠉꠥꠞ/ꠢꠇꠐꠣꠞ (hôgur/hôxţar, its) ꠢꠉꠥꠁꠘꠔꠞ (hôguintôr, of those)

Indefinite and negative pronounsEdit

Bengali has no negative pronouns (such as no one, nothing, none). These are typically represented by adding the negative particle ꠘꠣꠄ (nae) to indefinite pronouns, which are themselves derived from their corresponding question words. Common indefinite pronouns are listed below.

Question word Indefinite pronoun Indefinite negative pronoun
ꠇꠦ/ꠇꠦꠉꠥ/ꠇꠤꠉꠥ (xe/xegu/kigu, who) ꠇꠦꠃ (xeu, someone) ꠇꠦꠃ ꠘꠣꠄ (xeu nae, no one)
ꠇꠣꠞ/ꠇꠦꠉꠥꠞ/ꠇꠤꠉꠞꠥ (xar/xegur/kigur, whose) ꠇꠦꠃꠞ/ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠞ (xeur/xeurôr, someone's) ꠇꠦꠃꠞ/ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠞ ꠘꠣꠄ (xeur/xeurôr nae, no one's)
ꠇꠣꠞꠦ (kare, to whom) ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠦ/ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠞꠦ (xeure/xeurôre, to someone) ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠦ/ꠇꠦꠃꠞꠞ ꠘꠣꠄ (xeure/xeurôre nae, to someone)
ꠇꠥꠘ (kun, which) ꠇꠥꠘꠥ/ꠇꠥꠘꠅ (kunu/kunô, any) ꠇꠥꠘꠥꠉꠥ ꠘꠣꠄ (kunugu nae, none)
ꠇꠤꠔꠣ (kita, what) ꠇꠤꠍꠥ/ꠇꠥꠘꠔꠣ (kisu/kunta, some/something) ꠇꠤꠌ꠆ꠍꠥ/ꠇꠥꠘꠔꠣ ꠘꠣꠄ (kichchu/kunta nae, nothing)

Relative pronounsEdit

The relative pronoun ꠎꠦ (ze) and its different variants, as shown below, are commonly employed in complex sentences. The relative pronouns for animate objects change for number and honor, but those for inanimate objects stay the same.

Animate relative pronouns
Nominative (who) Genitive (whose) Objective (to whom)
Singular (VF/F) ꠎꠦ ꠎꠣꠞ ꠎꠣꠞꠦ
Singular (P) ꠎꠦꠁꠘ ꠎꠦꠘ ꠎꠦꠘꠞꠦ
Plural (VF/F) ꠎꠣꠞꠣ ꠎꠣꠞꠣꠞ ꠎꠣꠞꠣꠞꠦ
Plural (P) ꠎꠦꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ ꠎꠦꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘ ꠎꠦꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠘꠞꠦ
Inanimate relative pronouns
Nominative/Objective (which) Genitive (of which) Locative (in which)
ꠎꠦꠔꠣ ꠎꠦꠔꠣꠞ ꠎꠦꠔꠣꠔ


Adjectives do not inflect for case, gender, or number in Sylheti and are placed before the noun they modify.

Some adjectives form their opposites by prefixing ꠅ- (before consonants) or ꠅꠘ- (before vowels) or ꠘꠤ-, for example, the opposite of ꠡꠝ꠆ꠜꠛ (shômbôb, "possible") is ꠅꠡꠝ꠆ꠜꠛ (ôshômbôb, impossible"), the opposite of ꠝꠣꠔꠞꠣ (matra, speaker") is ꠘꠤꠝꠣꠔꠞꠣ (nimatra, quite").

Demonstrative adjectives – this and that – correspond to ꠁ and ꠅꠃ respectively, with the definite article attached to the following noun. Thus, this book would translate to ꠁ ꠛꠁꠐꠣ, while those books would translate to ꠅꠃ ꠛꠁꠐꠣ.

Comparatives and superlativesEdit

Sylheti adjectives form their comparative forms with ꠀꠞꠅ (arô, "more"), and their superlative forms with ꠡꠛ ꠕꠣꠇꠤ (shôb táki, "than all"). Comparisons are formed by using genitive form of the object of comparison, followed by the postposition ꠕꠣꠇꠤ/ꠕꠘꠦ/ꠌꠦ (táki/tóne/se, "than") or the postposition ꠟꠣꠇꠣꠘ (laxan, "like") and then by ꠀꠞꠅ (arô, "more") or ꠇꠝ (xôm, "less"). The word for "more" is optional, but the word for "less" is required, so in its absence "more" is inferred. Adjectives can be additionally modified by using ꠛꠣꠇ꠆ꠇꠣ/ꠛꠃꠔ/ꠅꠘꠦꠇ (bakka/bout/ônex, "much") or ꠅꠘꠦꠇ ꠛꠦꠡꠤ (ônex beshi, "much more"), which are especially useful for comparing quantities.

Sylheti Literal Translation Meaning
ꠇꠞꠤꠝ ꠞꠢꠤꠝ ꠕꠘꠦ ꠟꠣꠝ꠆ꠛꠣ Karim of Rahim than tall Karim is taller than Rahim
ꠇꠞꠤꠝ ꠞꠢꠤꠝ ꠕꠣꠇꠤ ꠀꠞꠅ ꠟꠣꠝ꠆ꠛꠣ Karim of Rahim than more tall Karim is taller than Rahim
ꠇꠞꠤꠝ ꠞꠢꠤꠝ ꠕꠘꠦ ꠇꠝ ꠟꠣꠝ꠆ꠛꠣ Karim of Rahim than less tall Karim is shorter than Rahim
ꠇꠞꠤꠝ ꠞꠢꠤꠝꠞ ꠟꠣꠇꠣꠘ ꠟꠣꠝ꠆ꠛꠣ Karim of Rahim like tall Karim is as tall as Rahim
ꠇꠞꠤꠝ ꠞꠢꠤꠝ ꠕꠣꠇꠤ ꠛꠃꠔ ꠟꠣꠝ꠆ꠛꠣ Karim of Rahim than much tall Karim is much taller than Rahim


Sylheti verbs are highly inflected and are regular with only few exceptions. They consist of a stem and an ending; they are traditionally listed in Sylheti dictionaries in their "verbal noun" form, which is usually formed by adding -a to the stem: for instance, ꠇꠞꠣ (xôra, to do) is formed from the stem ꠇꠞ. The stem can end in either a vowel or a consonant. Verbs are conjugated for tense and person by changing the endings, which are largely the same for all verbs. However, the stem vowel can often change as part of the phenomenon known as "vowel harmony", whereby one vowel can be influenced by other vowels in the word to sound more harmonious. An example would be the verb "to write", with stem lex-: ꠟꠦꠈꠧ (lexô, you all write) but also ꠟꠦꠈꠤ (lekí, we write). If verbs are classified by stem vowel and if the stem ends in a consonant or vowel, there are nine basic classes in which most verbs can be placed; all verbs in a class will follow the same pattern. A prototype verb from each of these classes will be used to demonstrate conjugation for that class; bold will be used to indicate mutation of the stem vowel. Additionally, there are irregular verbs, such as ꠎꠣꠅꠀ (zaoa, to go) that change the first consonant in their stem in certain conjugations.

Like many other Indo-Aryan languages (such as Bengali or Assamese), nouns can be turned into verbs by combining them with select auxiliary verbs. In Sylheti, the most common such auxiliary verb is ꠇꠞꠣ (xôra, to do); thus, verbs such as joke are formed by combining the noun form of joke (ꠓꠋ) with to do (ꠇꠞꠣ) to create ꠓꠋ ꠇꠞꠣ. When conjugating such verbs the noun part of such a verb is left untouched, so in the previous example, only ꠇꠞꠣ would be inflected or conjugated (e.g.: "I will make a joke" becomes ꠀꠝꠤ ꠓꠋ ꠇꠞꠝꠥ; see more on tenses below). Other auxiliary verbs include ꠖꠦꠅꠀ and ꠘꠦꠅꠀ, but the verb ꠇꠞꠣ enjoys significant usage because it can be combined with foreign verbs to form a native version of the verb, even if a direct translation exists. Most often this is done with English verbs: for example, "to vote" is often referred to as ꠜꠥꠐ ꠖꠦꠅꠀ (búţ deoa, where búţ is the transliteration of "vote").


Sylheti is considered a zero copula language in some aspects.

  • In the simple present tense there is no verb connecting the subject to the predicative (the "zero verb" copula). There is one notable exception, however, which is when the predicative takes on the existential, locative, or possessive aspects; for such purposes, the incomplete verb ꠀꠍ- (as) is used, which is conjugated according to the rules given below.
  • In the past tense, the incomplete verb ꠀꠍ- is always used as the copula, regardless of the nature of the predicative.
  • For the future tense and non-finite structures, the copula is supplied by the verb ‘ꠅꠅꠀ (ówa), with the only exception being the possessive predicative for which the verb ꠕꠣꠇꠣ (táxa, "to remain") is utilized.

The following table demonstrates the rules above with some examples.

English Sylheti Notes
I am happy ꠀꠝꠤ ꠈꠥꠡꠤ No verb used to denote the copula
There is time ꠡꠝꠄ ꠀꠍꠦ ꠀꠍ- used to connect to an existential predicative
I am at home ꠀꠝꠤ ꠛꠣꠠꠤꠔ ꠀꠍꠤ ꠀꠍ- used to connect to a locative predicative
We were happy ꠀꠝꠞꠣ ꠛꠦꠎꠣꠞ ꠀꠍꠟꠣꠝ In the past tense, ꠀꠍ- is used as the copula
I will be at home ꠀꠝꠤ ꠛꠣꠠꠤꠔ ꠕꠣꠇꠝꠥ In the future tense, ꠕꠣꠇꠣ is used as the copula
He will have a car ꠔꠣꠞ ꠄꠈꠣꠘ ꠉꠣꠠꠤ ꠕꠣꠇꠛ In the future tense, ꠕꠣꠇꠣ is used to connect to a possessive predicative


There are three sentence negators employed in Sylheti:

  • The zero verb copula is negated using the incomplete negator ꠘ-, which is conjugated as ꠘꠣꠄ (1), ꠘꠣꠁ (2), ꠘꠣ (3).
  • Existential sentences that use the verb ꠀꠍ- are negated with ꠘꠣꠁ (nai), which does not need to be conjugated.
  • All other verbs (with the exceptions of the ones listed above) are negated using the universal negative particle ꠘꠣꠄ (nae). ꠘꠣꠄ is typically placed after the finite verb (see examples below), but can also be placed at the end of the sentence, which negates the whole sentence. ꠘꠣꠄ can be used in all tenses except two: the present perfect and the past perfect.
  • Verbs in the present perfect and the past perfect tenses are negated using the suffix -ꠘꠣ (na) which can also refer to "no" in yes-no questions.
Negating verbs
English Sylheti Notes
I am not happy ꠀꠝꠤ ꠈꠥꠡꠤ ꠘꠣꠄ Incomplete negator ꠘ- conjugated for first-person
We don't have a car ꠀꠝꠞꠣꠞ ꠉꠣꠠꠤ ꠘꠣꠁ ꠘꠣꠁ used to negate ꠀꠍ-, which is completely replaced
I don't work ꠀꠝꠤ ꠇꠣꠝ ꠇꠞꠤ ꠘꠣ ꠘꠣ is used to negate all other finite verbs
I didn't help him ꠀꠝꠤ ꠔꠣꠞꠦ ꠡꠣꠁꠎ꠆ꠏ ꠇꠞꠍꠤꠟꠣꠝ ꠘꠣ


Verbs are inflected for person and honour, but not for number. There are five forms: first person, second person (very familiar), second person (familiar), third person (familiar), and second/third person (polite). The same sample subject pronouns will be used for all the example conjugation paradigms: mui (ꠝꠥꠁ), ami (ꠀꠝꠤ), tui (ꠔꠥꠁ), tumi (ꠔꠥꠝꠤ), he (ꠢꠦ), tai (ꠔꠣꠁ) and afne (ꠀꠙꠘꠦ). These have the following plurals respectively: môra (ꠝꠞꠣ), amra (ꠀꠝꠞꠣ), tura (ꠔꠥꠞꠣ), tumra (ꠔꠥꠝꠞꠣ)/tumi-tain (ꠔꠥꠝꠤ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ), tara (ꠔꠣꠞꠣ)/tain-tain (ꠔꠣꠁꠘ-ꠔꠣꠁꠘ) and afnara (ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞꠣ).


A notable characteristic of spoken Sylheti is the correspondence of the /x/ and /ɦ/, pronounced as a voiceless velar fricative to the /k/ or /kʰ/ of Bengali and voiceless glottal fricative to the /x/ of Assamese respectively.

Bengali Assamese Sylheti IPA Meaning
/ɖáxa/ Dhaka
একজন লোক
Ēkjôn lōk
এজন লোক
Ezôn lük
ꠄꠇꠎꠘ ꠝꠣꠘꠥꠡ
Ēxzôn manush
/exzɔn manuʃ/ A person
একজন পুরুষ
Ekjôn purush
এজন মানুহ
Ezôn manuh
ꠄꠇꠐꠣ ꠛꠦꠐꠣ
Exta beta
/exʈa beʈa/ A man
/kiɔ́ɾ/ Informal of Whereof
কন্যা, মেয়ে
Kônna, Meye
জী, ছোৱালী
Zi, Süali
ꠇꠂꠘ꠆ꠘꠣ, ꠏꠤ, ꠙꠥꠠꠤ
Xôinna, Zí, Furi
/xɔinna/, /zí/, /ɸuɽi/ Daughter
মানৱজাতি, মানুহৰ জাতি
Manôwzati, Manuhôr zati
ꠝꠣꠁꠘꠡꠞ ꠎꠣꠔ
Mainshôr zat
/mainʃɔɾ zat̪/ Mankind
অসমিয়া, অহমিয়া
Ôshômiya, Ôhômiya
/ɔɦɔmia/ Assamese people
/aŋguil/ Finger, toe
/aŋʈi/ Ring
জুইত পোৰা, জুইত সেকা
Zuit püra, Zuit xeka
/aguinfuɽa/ Baked, grilled
পাখি, চিড়িয়া
Pakhi, Chiriya
চৰাই, পখী
Sorai, Pokhi
ꠙꠣꠈꠤꠀ, ꠙꠞꠤꠘ꠆ꠖꠣ
Fakya, Forinda
/ɸakia/, /ɸɔrinda/ Bird
পরে, বাদে
Pôre, Bade
পিছত, পৰত
Pisot, Porot
ꠛꠣꠖꠦ, ꠙꠞꠦ
Fôre, Bade
/ɸɔɾe/, /bad̪e/ Later
সকল, সমস্ত, সব
Shôkôl, Shômôsto, Shômôsto, Shôb
সকলো, সব, চব
Xôkôlü; Xôb; Sôb
ꠢꠇꠟ, ꠢꠇ꠆ꠇꠟ, ꠡꠛ, ꠔꠣꠝꠣꠝ
Hôxôl, Hôkkôl, Shôb, Tamam
/ɦɔxɔl/, /ɦɔkkɔl/, /ʃɔb/ All
সারা, পুরা
Shara, Puro
ꠀꠍ꠆ꠔꠣ, ꠢꠣꠞꠣ
Asta, Hara
/ɦaɾa/ Whole
সাত বিল
Shat bil
সাত বিল
Xat bil
ꠢꠣꠔ ꠛꠤꠟ
Hat bil
/ɦat̪ bil/ Seven wetlands
/ɦat̪xɔɽa/ Citrus macroptera fruit
/silɔʈi/ Sylheti
ভালো করে খান।
Bhalo kôre khan.
ভালকৈ খাওক।
Bhalkoi khaük.
ꠜꠣꠟꠣ ꠇꠞꠤ/ꠑꠤꠇꠦ ꠈꠣꠃꠇ꠆ꠇꠣ।
Bala xôri/tike xaukka.
/bála xɔɾi xaukka/, /bála ʈike xaukka/ Bon appetit
স্ত্রী, পত্নী, বউ
Stri, Pôtni, Bôu
স্ত্রী, ঘৈণী, পত্নী
Stri, Ghôini, Pôtni
/bɔu/ Wife
স্বামী, বর, জামাই
Shami, Bôr, Jamai
গিৰিয়েক, পতি, স্বামী
Giriyêk, Pôti, Swami
ꠢꠣꠁ, ꠎꠣꠝꠣꠁ
Hai, Zamai
/zamai/ Husband
/damand/ Son-in-law
/ɦɔúɾ/ Father-in-law
/ɦɔɽi/ Mother-in-law
/ɦala/ Brother-in-law
/ɦali/ Sister-in-law
/ɦika/ Learn
/ɦɔiɾɔ/ Mustard
/ɦial/ Fox, Jackal
Biral, Beral
মেকুৰী, বিৰালী
Mekuri, Birali
ꠝꠦꠇꠥꠞ, ꠛꠤꠟꠣꠁ
Mekur, Bilai
/mekuɾ/, /bilai/ Cat
শুকটি, শুকান মাছ
Xukôti, Xukan mas
ꠢꠥꠐꠇꠤ, ꠢꠥꠇꠂꠘ
Huṭki, Hukôin
/ɦuʈki/, /ɦukoin/ Sundried Fish
আপনার নাম কী?
Apnar nam ki?
আপোনাৰ নাম কি?
Apünar nam ki?
ꠀꠙꠘꠣꠞ ꠘꠣꠝ ꠇꠤꠔꠣ?
Afnar nam kita?
/aɸnaɾ nam kit̪a/ What's your name?
ডাক্তার আসার পূর্বে রোগী মারা গেল।
Daktar ashar purbe rogi mara gelo
ডাক্তৰ অহাৰ আগতেই ৰোগী মৰি গ’ল।

Daktor ohar agotei rügi mori gól

ꠒꠣꠇ꠆ꠔꠞ ꠀꠅꠣ ꠀꠉꠦꠃ ꠛꠦꠝꠣꠞꠤ ꠝꠞꠤ ꠉꠦꠟ।
Daxtôr awar ageu bemari môri gelo.
/ɖaxt̪ɔɾ awaɾ age bemaɾi mɔɾi gelo/ Before the doctor came, the patient had died.
বহুদিন দেখিনি।
Bôhudin dekhini.
বহুদিন দেখা নাই।
Bôhudin dekha nai.
ꠛꠣꠇ꠆ꠇꠣ ꠖꠤꠘ ꠖꠦꠈꠍꠤ ꠘꠣ।
Bakka din dexsi na.
/bakka d̪in d̪exsi na/ Long time, no see.
আপনি কি ভালো আছেন?
Apni ki bhalo achhen?
আপুনি ভালে আছে নে?
Apuni bhale asê nê?
ꠀꠙꠘꠦ ꠜꠣꠟꠣ ꠀꠍꠂꠘ ꠘꠤ?
Afne bala asôin ni?
/aɸne bála asoin ni/ How are you?
আমি তোমাকে ভালোবাসি।
Ami tomake bhalobashi.
মই তোমাক ভাল পাওঁ।
Moi tümak bhal paü.
ꠀꠝꠤ ꠔꠥꠝꠣꠞꠦ ꠜꠣꠟꠣ ꠙꠣꠁ।
Ami tumare bala fai.
/ami t̪umare bála ɸai/ I love you.
আমি ভুলে গিয়েছি।
Ami bhule giyechhi.
মই পাহৰি গৈছোঁ।
Môi pahôri goisü.
ꠀꠝꠤ ꠙꠣꠅꠞꠤ ꠟꠤꠍꠤ।
Ami faûri lisi.
/ami ɸaʊɾi lisi/ I have forgotten.
মাংসের ঝোলটা আমার খুব ভালো লেগেছে।
Mangsher jholṭa amar khub bhalo legeche.
‍মাংসৰ তৰকাৰীখন মোৰ খুব ভাল লাগিছে।
Mangxôr tôrkarikhôn mür khub bhal lagise.
ꠉꠥꠍꠔꠞ ꠍꠣꠟꠘꠐꠣ ꠀꠝꠣꠞ ꠛꠣꠇ꠆ꠇꠣ ꠜꠣꠟꠣ ꠟꠣꠉꠍꠦ।
Gustôr salônṭa amar bakka bala lagse.
/gust̪ɔɾ salɔnʈa amaɾ bakka bála lagse/ I liked the meat curry.
শিলচর কোনদিকে?
Shilcôr kondike?
শিলচৰ কোনফালে?
Xilsôr künphale?
ꠢꠤꠟꠌꠞ ꠇꠥꠘꠛꠣꠄ/ꠇꠥꠘꠛꠣꠁꠖꠤ/ꠇꠥꠘꠝꠥꠈꠣ?
Hilcôr kunbae/kunbaidi/kunmuka?
/ɦil͡tʃɔɾ kunbae, kunbaed̪i, kunmuká/ Which way to Silchar?
এটা কী?

Eṭa ki?

এইটো কি?

Eitü ki?

ꠁꠉꠥ/ꠁꠇꠐꠣ/ꠁꠐꠣ ꠇꠤꠔꠣ?
Igu/Ikṭa/Iṭa kita?
/igu, ikʈa, iʈa kit̪a/ What is this?
সেটা কী?

Sheṭa ki?

সেইটো কি?

Xeitü ki?

ꠢꠤꠉꠥ/ꠢꠤꠇꠐꠣ/ꠢꠤꠐꠣ ꠇꠤꠔꠣ?
Higu/Hikṭa/Hiṭa kita?
/ɦigu, ɦikʈa, ɦiʈa kit̪a/ What is that?
/ɦeʃ/ End, finish

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Niharranjan Ray (January 1980). Bangalir Itihas (in Bengali). 2.
  2. ^ Mikael Parkvall, "Världens 100 största språk 2007" (The World's 100 Largest Languages in 2007), in Nationalencyklopedin
  3. ^ "Sylheti". Ethnologue. Retrieved 12 March 2018.
  4. ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Sylheti". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.
  5. ^ "Sylheti is an Indo-Aryan language spoken by about 11 million people in India and Bangladesh (Hammarström et al., 2017). Sylheti is an Eastern Indo-Aryan language, primarily spoken in the Sylhet division of Bangladesh, and in Barak valley, in Assam of the India and in the northern parts of the state of Tripura in India."(Mahanta & Gope 2018:81)
  6. ^ "Sylheti". Ethnologue.
  7. ^ "Along the linguistic continuum of eastern Indic languages, Sylheti occupies an ambiguous position, where it is considered a distinct language by many and also as a dialect of Bengali or Bangla by some others." (Mahanta & Gope 2018:81)
  8. ^ Ruxandra Comanaru and Jo d’Ardenne.Translation and cognitive testing of the harmonised personal well-being questions. April 2008. Office for National Statistics
  9. ^ "One of the properties that distinguish Sylheti from SCB or other regional varieties is the significant application of obstruent weakening involving de-aspiration and spirantization." (Gope & Mahanta 2014:10)
  10. ^ "Consequently, the consonant inventory (especially the obstruents), of Sylheti exhibit a major reduction and restructuring compared to that of (Standard Colloquial Bengali)." (Gope & Mahanta 2014:10)
  11. ^ "Also noteworthy is the development of tones due to loss of the breathiness and aspiration contrast." (Mahanta & Gope 2018:81)
  12. ^ a b "Chalmers and Miah (1996) describe Sylheti as a distinct language that is 'mutually unintelligible to a Standard Bengali speaker' (p. 6), but anecdotal evidence from members of the London-Bengali community suggests that the differences are relatively small (Rasinger, 2007)" (McCarthy, Evans & Mahon 2013:346)
  13. ^ Sebastian M. Rasinger (2007). Bengali-English in East London: A Study in Urban Multilingualism. pp.F 26-27. Retrieved on 2017-05-02.
  14. ^ Ruxandra Comanaru and Jo d’Ardenne.Translation and cognitive testing of the harmonised personal well-being questions. April 2008. Office for National Statistics
  15. ^ a b c d e "The Cachar version in p.234 may be taken as illustrating the typical Eastern Sylhet dialect also." George Grierson. Language Survey of India – Vol. V Pt 1.
  16. ^ "Sylhet Town, which is the head-quarters of the District, being within six miles of the Jaintiapur Faiganaj lies within the area in which this dialect is spoken, and hence this form of speech is called Sylhettia by Europeans. For this reason it is often wrongly said that the language of the whole Sylhet District is uniform, and the term Sylhettia is incorrectly applied to the dialect of the west of the District, as well as to that of the North-East. The term 'Sylhettia 'properly means the language of the town, and not of the District, of Sylhet." (Grierson 1903:221)
  17. ^ "As already stated, the dialect spoken in Sylhet Town and in the North and North-East of the District is that which Europeans call Sylhettia. Natives do not use this title. They call it Jaintiapuri, Purba Srihattiya, or Ujania. The latter means the language of the upper country. It is estimated that, of the 2,033,000 speakers of Bengali in Sylhet 678,000 use this dialect.(Grierson 1903:224)
  18. ^ (Chatterjee 1939, Gordon 2005)
  19. ^ Chalmers (1996)
  20. ^ Sebastian M. Rasinger (2007). Bengali-English in East London: A Study in Urban Multilingualism. pp.F 26–27. Retrieved on 2 May 2017.
  21. ^ Khan, Sameer Ud Dowla (21 February 2018). "Amago Bhasha". The Daily Star. Retrieved 17 June 2020.
  22. ^ Tripura, Prashanta (21 February 2018). "Amago Bhasha". Dhaka Tribune. Retrieved 26 June 2020.
  23. ^ a b Gope & Mahanta 2014.
  24. ^ "Kuwait restricts recruitment of male Bangladeshi workers | Dhaka Tribune". 7 September 2016. Archived from the original on 30 August 2017. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  25. ^ "Bahrain: Foreign population by country of citizenship, sex and migration status (worker/ family dependent) (selected countries, January 2015) – GLMM". GLMM. 20 October 2015. Archived from the original on 16 December 2017. Retrieved 4 December 2017.
  26. ^ Comanaru, Ruxandra; D'Ardenne, Jo (2018). The Development of Research Programme to Translate and Test the Personal well-being Questions in Sylheti and Urdu. pp.16. Köln: GESIS - Leibniz-Institut für Sozialwissenschaften. Retrieved on 30 June 2020.
  27. ^ Nazli Kibria (2011). Muslims in Motion. pp.58-61. Retrieved on 1 July 2020.
  28. ^ E M Lewis (1868). "Sylhet District". Principal Heads of the History and Statistics of the Dacca Division. Calcutta: Calcutta Central Press Company. pp. 323–325.
  29. ^ Mohammad Daniul Huq; Aminur Rahman. "Bangla Literature". Banglapedia: National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh. Asiatic Society of Bangladesh.
  30. ^ Tanweer Fazal (2013). Minority Nationalisms in South Asia. Routledge. pp. 54–55. ISBN 978-1-317-96647-0.
  31. ^ Tasiqul Islam (2012). "Hasan Raja". In Islam, Sirajul; Miah, Sajahan; Khanam, Mahfuza; Ahmed, Sabbir (eds.). Banglapedia: the National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh (Online ed.). Dhaka, Bangladesh: Banglapedia Trust, Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. ISBN 984-32-0576-6. OCLC 52727562. Retrieved 4 July 2020.
  32. ^ Zakaria, Saymon (2012). "Karim, Shah Abdul". In Islam, Sirajul; Miah, Sajahan; Khanam, Mahfuza; Ahmed, Sabbir (eds.). Banglapedia: the National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh (Online ed.). Dhaka, Bangladesh: Banglapedia Trust, Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. ISBN 984-32-0576-6. OCLC 52727562. Retrieved 4 July 2020.
  33. ^ Kershen, Anne J (2019). A Question of Identity. Section: Language in Bangladesh.
  34. ^ Anne J. Kershen (2005). Strangers, Aliens and Asians: Huguenots, Jews and Bangladeshis in Spitalfields, 1660–2000. Routledge. pp. 148–150. ISBN 978-0-7146-5525-3.
  35. ^ "Sylheti Dictionary – Apps on Google Play". Google Play. Chocolate and Bicycles.
  36. ^ "SYLOTI BOOKS DESCRIPTION". Syloti Language Center.
  37. ^ Islam, Sirajul; Miah, Sajahan; Khanam, Mahfuza; Ahmed, Sabbir, eds. (2012). "Sylheti Nagri". Banglapedia: the National Encyclopedia of Bangladesh (Online ed.). Dhaka, Bangladesh: Banglapedia Trust, Asiatic Society of Bangladesh. ISBN 984-32-0576-6. OCLC 52727562. Retrieved 4 July 2020.
  38. ^ d'Hubert, Thibaut (May 2014). In the Shade of the Golden Palace: Alaol and Middle Bengali Poetics in Arakan. ISBN 9780190860356.
  39. ^ Kershen, Anne J (2017). Language, Labour and Migration. pp. 23–30.
  40. ^ Gope, Amalesh; Mahanta, Shakuntala (2015). "An acoustic analysis of Sylheti phonemes" (PDF). Proceedings of the 18th International Conference on Phonetic Sciences.
  41. ^ Gope, Amalesh; Mahanta, Shakuntala (20 July 2018). "Tonal polarity in Sylheti in the context of noun faithfulness". Language Sciences.
  42. ^ Raychoudhury, Priti; Mahanta, Shakuntala (25–28 May 2020). "The Three Way Tonal System of Sylheti" (PDF). 10th International Conference on Speech Prosody 2020.
  43. ^ Das, Amrita (2017). "A Comparative Study of Bangla and Sylheti Grammar". Semantic Scholar.


External linksEdit

  Sylheti phrasebook travel guide from Wikivoyage