Latest Oxford dictionary includes more Hindi words

Latest Oxford dictionary includes more Hindi words
London, Apr 25 (PTI) English is being spiced up with sprinkling of some more words from Hindi.

In the latest edition of the Oxford English Dictionary, there is already a host of Hindi words, including 'Angrez' (English person) and 'badmash' (naughty) while many more are being entered into the Collins Bank of English, which screens words for entry.

The Hindi words likely to find a place in the English Dictionary are: Achha (OK, or is that so?), Aloo (Indian potato), Arre (used to express surprise), Chuddi (underwear), Desi (local, indigenous), filmi (related to Bollywood), Very filmi (Drama queen or king), Gora (white person), Jungli (uncultured) and Yaar (friendly form of address).

According to a report in 'The Observer' today, Arfaan Khan, a linguist based at Reading University, told a major conference at the University of Newcastle this month to expect a 'whole new dialect' to emerge.

"This will be an increasing trend," said Jeremy Butterfield, editor-in-chief of the Collins dictionaries.

"If new words are used enough, they will end up in the dictionary, and once they are there they become English words, too. With our increasingly multi-cultural society, in 50 years English will have adopted a mass of words from all the different cultures living on this island." And those who complain about the loss of the purity of the language are simply misguided, according to experts.

"English is a mongrel language, and always has been," said Bufferfield.

Many Asian words have already been naturalized into English. Bungalow, cheetahs, ganja have all been shipped over from the sub-continent.

And every time Jamie Oliver kisses his fingers and cries 'pukka', he is speaking Hindi.

It is within 'culinary speak' that the largest changes are expected. "The British food habit has been transformed by the arrival of Asian people in the community," said Mahendra Verma, director of Hindi Programme at York University.

"The words are entering local vocabularies. Masala is replacing spice, mooli means white radish, and the word balti is actually Hindi for the type of pan that the dish is cooked in." Accepting the words into the dictionary will also help British viewers to understand what is being said when actors in Anglo-Indian comedies use Hindi and Urdu phrases, the report said.

Spoof television programmes such as The Kumars at No 42 and Goodness Gracious Me have had a massive influence on English, with dictionary compilers keeping an eye on the lingo used by star Meera Syal to monitor shifts.

Syal, the actress who plays the grandmother in the Kumars, has already been credited with fast-tracking the word 'chuddies' (underpants) into everyday use.

A study in Birmingham, looking at mixed groups of Punjabi Sikhs and whites in youth clubs, found that white teenagers quickly absorbed derogatory Punjabi words to use as insults.

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