March 1, 2017

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Etymology (bustani)

From Arabic بُسْتَان ‎(bustān), from Persian بوستان ‎(bôstân).


bustani (n class, plural bustani)

1) garden

From Wiktionary: https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/bustani


Persian بوستان ‎(bôstân) is also the source of Classical Syriac ܒܘܣܬܢܐ‎ (būstānā), and perhaps of Old Armenian բուրաստան (burastan, "garden; orchard; suburb"), which would otherwise usually considered to be formed natively in Armenian as բոյր (boyr, "smell, odour") +‎ -աստան (-astan, "place forming suffix, as in all the Central Asiatic Stans [Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan]").


I've not heard this word used very much. Typically "shamba" is used for a vegetable garden. Is "bustani" more like a park or a flower gardens?


Persian and Arabic gardens are traditionally highly manicured, so i would assume so.


There is a nice park in Zanzibar called "Bustani gardens". Definitely well-manicured, for strolling through, not a vegetable garden. You can get great fast-food there though.


I think you must be right


"Garden" is one of the most confusing words in the English language if the dialect isn't specified. So is this "garden" like in British English or American English?


Looks like we are talking about ornamental grounds laid out for public enjoyment and recreation. I'm British, but I think this meaning of "garden" also applies in American English.

I believe that both variants of English also use the word "garden" in the sense of a place to grow your own vegetables, fruit or flowers, but it looks like "shamba" might be the specific word for vegetable garden in Swahili, with "bustani" meaning public, manicured, ornamental garden.


Hmm, it looks like another occurrence of “bustani” in the course is “bustani ya matunda,” less than completely helpfully translated as “garden of fruit” (“orchard” maybe?). It would seems that’s more likely to be a place where the primary point is the crop, as opposed to the ornamentation, but of course it’s hardly dispositive.

Just as long as it doesn’t mean what an American would call the “back (or front) yard” :) (which is where the dialect stuff gets really confusing)


The plot thickens!


In Tanzania they also use 'bustani ya mbogamboga' for vegetable gardens, so for sure it's not only used for ornamental gardens.


Thanks vTvSkbea! Then it seems "bustani" is a general word and the exact type of garden is indicated by the particular context.

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