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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Liebert_

Tips to learn Persian Farsi?

I've decided to learn Farsi since I don't know any language spoken in Middle East. Moreover I've heard that Farsi has many loanwords just as bad (bad), tarik (dark), merci (thank you), dar (door), and so on. For that reason I'm really exicited to learn a new whole different language with a different alphabet. I have already a tourist guide book which teach Farsi and I've signed up some Youtube channels which teach Farsi. However, my doubt is: Should I learn every single word in Arabic alphabet or is it a good idea to start first with transliteration words? I do this question as a noob. :)

April 26, 2017

14 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/garpike

Definitely learn the Persian alphabet, but I suggest you try to use resources that include the short vowel marks at first, so you can actually spell out the words rather than having to rely on already knowing how to pronounce them.
In my opinion, learning any language divorced from its writing system is a terrible idea. The only time where transliteration (preferably into the IPA) is appropriate is when you are simply learning the constituent sounds of the language in question†.

† I'll make a limited exception for languages written logographically or that have extremely irregular spelling; then you will need a transliteration system as a reference, but you should still practise using the proper script.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Borbotrincess

Yeah, I second that. I understand little kids learn like this when they start reading and writing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aria487

Hi, native Farsi speaker here!
I think you're assuming Farsi is written in Arabic alphabet, it's not true. Farsi alphabet was based on the Arabic alphabet during the Tahirid dynasty, it's been centuries Farsi is written like this, all of our best-known literary works are written in this system. It has -in practice- all the letters in the Arabic alphabet plus four. The two alphabets basically look the same, but they sound very different.

If you are to learn Farsi, learn the alphabet first, then start learning the language, just like e.g. Russian. There's no need to learn Arabic alphabet, or words.(I'm not sure if transliteration is a good idea. I know using Romaji for Japanese is discouraged, because it doesn't require you to learn Hiragana or Katakana first.)

I must say there are many loanwords, true, but Persian is still strongly present in Farsi. Besides, no Arabic speaker can understand the language.(Unless they know Farsi, of course)
As I (kind of) previously mentioned, Farsi and Arabic also sound very different. You'd have to pronounce Arabic words differently in Farsi if you know any.

I'll be here, in case I wasn't clear enough on anything. And feel free to ask any questions you will have!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lizsue

So it's the same alphabet, give or take a few letters?

I mean, the Spanish alphabet and the English alphabet are based on the Latin alphabet, and have in practice all the same letters as in the Latin alphabet plus a few like Ñ and W. That doesn't mean Spanish and English aren't written in the Latin alphabet. ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aria487

Basically, take the Arabic alphabet, add four letters [and remove one, not everyone agrees on this part], that's the Farsi alphabet! :D There's no /ch/, /zh/ (sabotage), /g/ (God), or p sound in Arabic. (by default!)

Regarding "in practice", I realize I'm partially incorrect here, thanks for making me clarify! :D (My text may imply that Farsi doesn't have something in the Arabic alphabet, but that's not completely correct)
The main thing that made me add "in practice" was the use of ي in Farsi; it's only used if the word containing it is a loanword. ي happens to be the only form of the letter ى in the Arabic alphabet.(Notice this second one doesn't have two dots below it) Farsi alphabet doesn't contain ي but does have ی.
My point is, ي won't be alien to a Farsi speaker. For example, if every native English speaker can tell how Ñ sounds or what words in English (although loanword) may contain it, it can be counted as a part of English alphabet.(But it's not)

I certainly hope that made sense! I may be able to clarify further, but you'll need to point the ambiguous parts.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lizsue

Yeah, I was thinking of how "Farsi uses the Arabic alphabet" is a lot more accurate than, for example, "Farsi uses the Latin alphabet" or "Farsi uses the Hangul alphabet" is. ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aria487

:D Although that's partially inaccurate itself, "Farsi uses Farsi alphabet" is the most accurate term! :D


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Borbotrincess

THeir abc is not that hard. What I found the hardest about it was the calligraphy. And the pinglish varies from person to person, I believe.

Make your life easier and learn both at the same time. I would put flashcards all over my house with the words in Farsi for "bed" or "wall" and would learn words and writing at the same time.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Liebert_

Ok, Ill try that.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam20072021

Hi, a native Farsi speaker here. The ABC in Farsi is seriously different than Arabic. (And to be honest, I think Farsi is the hardest language of all time after Chinese. )


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam20072021

مگه نه آریا؟


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam20072021

If it was Arabic it would be : مَکِ نَ آریَا.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam20072021

The whole point is that: Farsi is damn took harder than you think it is.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sam20072021

But the main reason that marked Farsi very difficult, I'd that the spoken language is so very too differnet than what we write. For example we want to say Jack gave the book to me In written language we say: جک کتاب را به من داد. But In spoken one we say: جک کتابو داد به من. Or: جک کتابرو به من داد. Or: جک کتابرو داد به من.

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