Nawādir al-Alfāẓ | Monography or Translations of known period | Language Manuals and Glossaries | Survey | Perso-Indica

Language Manuals and Glossaries

Monography or Translations of known period
Ārzū, Nawādir al-Alfāẓ

[Preliminary entry] A lexicon by Sirāj al-Dīn ‘Alī Ḫān Ārzū (d. 1756) written at Delhi in 1156/1743. The work is a considerably expanded revision of Ġarā’ib al-luġāt by ‘Abd al-Wāsi‘ Hānsawī (fl. ca. 1700), which is the first extant Persian dictionary of words in the vernacular of the Delhi region. Ārzū’s project is considerably more philologically sophisticated than that of ‘Abd al-Wāsi‘, and he rejects many definitions as being either incorrect or referring to parochial usages (‘Abd al-Wāsi‘ lived in Hansi, a town about 150 km to the northwest of Delhi). Ārzū’s preface illustrates the multilingual context of Persianate intellectuals in northern India since it describes the subject of Ġarā’ib al-luġāt as the “Indic words of which the Persian, Arabic or Turkish [synonyms] were less in the speech of the people of the provinces” (luġhāt-i hindī kih fārsī yā ʿarabī yā turkī-yi ān zabānzad-i ahl-i diyār kamtar būd).

A. D.

Edition:  Nawādir al-alfāẓ, Sayyid ‘Abd Allah, ed., Karachi, Anjuman-i Taraqqi-yi Urdu, 1951. 

Main Persian Title: Nawādir al-Alfāẓ
Author: Ārzū
Year / Period of Composition: 1156/1743
Place: Delhi