Khalaj language

Khalaj language

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Khalaj is a Turkic
Turkic languages
The Turkic languages constitute a language family of at least thirty five languages, spoken by Turkic peoples across a vast area from Eastern Europe and the Mediterranean to Siberia and Western China, and are considered to be part of the proposed Altaic language family.Turkic languages are spoken...

  language spoken in Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

.
It is a member of the Azerbaijani
Azerbaijani language
Azerbaijani or Azeri or Torki is a language belonging to the Turkic language family, spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people, primarily in Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran...

 subgroup of the Oghuz languages
Oghuz languages
The Oghuz languages, a major branch of the Turkic language family, are spoken by more than 110 million people in an area spanning from the Balkans to China.-Linguistic features:...

.
There were approximately 42,000 speakers of this language as of 2000. ISO 639-3 uses the name Turkic Khalaj to distinguish it from the Indo-Iranian language called "Khalaj".

Classification


Khalaj has traditionally been classified with Turkmen
Turkmen language
Turkmen is the national language of Turkmenistan...

 or Azerbaijani
Azerbaijani language
Azerbaijani or Azeri or Torki is a language belonging to the Turkic language family, spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people, primarily in Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran...

 dialects, primarily because of its proximity to those languages. However, it is not a dialect of Azerbaijani, as previously supposed. Further, features such as preservation of three vowel lengths, preservation of word-initial Proto-Turkic *h, and lack of the sound change *d > y has led to a non-Oghuz
Oghuz languages
The Oghuz languages, a major branch of the Turkic language family, are spoken by more than 110 million people in an area spanning from the Balkans to China.-Linguistic features:...

 classification of Khalaj. An example of these archaisms is present in the word hadaq ("foot"), which has preserved the initial *h and medial *d. The equivalent form in nearby Oghuz dialects is ayaq. Therefore it is an independent language that became distinct very early from other extant Turkic languages. Because of the preservation of these archaic features, some scholars have speculated that the Khalaj are the descendants of the Arghu Turks.

Geographical distribution


Khalaj is spoken mainly in Markazi Province
Markazi Province
Markazi Province is one of the 31 provinces of Iran. The word markazi means central in Persian. Markazi lies in western Iran. Its capital is Arak. Its population is estimated at 1.35 million...

 in Iran
Iran
Iran , officially the Islamic Republic of Iran , is a country in Southern and Western Asia. The name "Iran" has been in use natively since the Sassanian era and came into use internationally in 1935, before which the country was known to the Western world as Persia...

. Doerfer cites the number of speakers as approximately 17,000 in 1968; the Ethnologue
Ethnologue
Ethnologue: Languages of the World is a web and print publication of SIL International , a Christian linguistic service organization, which studies lesser-known languages, to provide the speakers with Bibles in their native language and support their efforts in language development.The Ethnologue...

 reports that the population of speakers grew to 42,107 by 2000. Most are bilingual in Persian; some children know only Persian.

Dialects


The main dialects of Khalaj are Northern and Southern. Within these dialect groupings, individual villages and groupings of speakers have distinct speech patterns.

Consonants

Consonant phonemes
  Labial
Labial consonant
Labial consonants are consonants in which one or both lips are the active articulator. This precludes linguolabials, in which the tip of the tongue reaches for the posterior side of the upper lip and which are considered coronals...

Alveolar
Alveolar consonant
Alveolar consonants are articulated with the tongue against or close to the superior alveolar ridge, which is called that because it contains the alveoli of the superior teeth...

Palatal
Palatal consonant
Palatal consonants are consonants articulated with the body of the tongue raised against the hard palate...

 or
postalveolar
Postalveolar consonant
Postalveolar consonants are consonants articulated with the tongue near or touching the back of the alveolar ridge, further back in the mouth than the alveolar consonants, which are at the ridge itself, but not as far back as the hard palate...

Velar
Velar consonant
Velars are consonants articulated with the back part of the tongue against the soft palate, the back part of the roof of the mouth, known also as the velum)....

Uvular
Uvular consonant
Uvulars are consonants articulated with the back of the tongue against or near the uvula, that is, further back in the mouth than velar consonants. Uvulars may be plosives, fricatives, nasal stops, trills, or approximants, though the IPA does not provide a separate symbol for the approximant, and...

Glottal
Glottal consonant
Glottal consonants, also called laryngeal consonants, are consonants articulated with the glottis. Many phoneticians consider them, or at least the so-called fricative, to be transitional states of the glottis without a point of articulation as other consonants have; in fact, some do not consider...

Nasal
Nasal consonant
A nasal consonant is a type of consonant produced with a lowered velum in the mouth, allowing air to escape freely through the nose. Examples of nasal consonants in English are and , in words such as nose and mouth.- Definition :...

m n     ŋ        
Stop
Stop consonant
In phonetics, a plosive, also known as an occlusive or an oral stop, is a stop consonant in which the vocal tract is blocked so that all airflow ceases. The occlusion may be done with the tongue , lips , and &...

p b t d k ɡ q ɢ    
Fricative
Fricative consonant
Fricatives are consonants produced by forcing air through a narrow channel made by placing two articulators close together. These may be the lower lip against the upper teeth, in the case of ; the back of the tongue against the soft palate, in the case of German , the final consonant of Bach; or...

f v s z ʃ ʒ x ɣ     h  
Flap
Flap consonant
In phonetics, a flap or tap is a type of consonantal sound, which is produced with a single contraction of the muscles so that one articulator is thrown against another.-Contrast with stops and trills:...

    ɾ                
Approximant
Approximant consonant
Approximants are speech sounds that involve the articulators approaching each other but not narrowly enough or with enough articulatory precision to create turbulent airflow. Therefore, approximants fall between fricatives, which do produce a turbulent airstream, and vowels, which produce no...

    l j            

Vowels




Vowels in Khalaj occur in three lengths
Vowel length
In linguistics, vowel length is the perceived duration of a vowel sound. Often the chroneme, or the "longness", acts like a consonant, and may etymologically be one, such as in Australian English. While not distinctive in most dialects of English, vowel length is an important phonemic factor in...

: long (e.g. [qn] 'blood'), half-long (e.g. [bʃ] 'head'), and short (e.g. [hat] 'horse'). Additionally, some vowels are realized as falling diphthongs, as in [quo̯l] ('arm, sleeve').

Nouns


Nouns in Khalaj may receive a plural
Plural
In linguistics, plurality or [a] plural is a concept of quantity representing a value of more-than-one. Typically applied to nouns, a plural word or marker is used to distinguish a value other than the default quantity of a noun, which is typically one...

 marker or possessive
Possession (linguistics)
Possession, in the context of linguistics, is an asymmetric relationship between two constituents, the referent of one of which possesses the referent of the other ....

 marker. Cases
Declension
In linguistics, declension is the inflection of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and articles to indicate number , case , and gender...

 in Khalaj include genitive
Genitive case
In grammar, genitive is the grammatical case that marks a noun as modifying another noun...

, accusative
Accusative case
The accusative case of a noun is the grammatical case used to mark the direct object of a transitive verb. The same case is used in many languages for the objects of prepositions...

, dative
Dative case
The dative case is a grammatical case generally used to indicate the noun to whom something is given, as in "George gave Jamie a drink"....

, locative
Locative case
Locative is a grammatical case which indicates a location. It corresponds vaguely to the English prepositions "in", "on", "at", and "by"...

, ablative
Ablative case
In linguistics, ablative case is a name given to cases in various languages whose common characteristic is that they mark motion away from something, though the details in each language may differ...

, instrumental
Instrumental case
The instrumental case is a grammatical case used to indicate that a noun is the instrument or means by or with which the subject achieves or accomplishes an action...

, and equative
Equative case
Equative is a case with the meaning of comparison, or likening. The equative case has been used in very few languages in history. It was used in the Sumerian language....

.

Forms of case suffixes change based on vowel harmony and the consonants they follow. Case endings also interact with possessive suffixes. A table of basic case endings is provided below:
CaseSuffix
Nominative -
Dative
Accusative
Locative
Ablative
Instrumental
Equative

Verbs


Verbs in Khalaj are inflected
Inflection
In grammar, inflection or inflexion is the modification of a word to express different grammatical categories such as tense, grammatical mood, grammatical voice, aspect, person, number, gender and case...

 for voice, tense
Grammatical tense
A tense is a grammatical category that locates a situation in time, to indicate when the situation takes place.Bernard Comrie, Aspect, 1976:6:...

, aspect
Grammatical aspect
In linguistics, the grammatical aspect of a verb is a grammatical category that defines the temporal flow in a given action, event, or state, from the point of view of the speaker...

, and negation
Negation
In logic and mathematics, negation, also called logical complement, is an operation on propositions, truth values, or semantic values more generally. Intuitively, the negation of a proposition is true when that proposition is false, and vice versa. In classical logic negation is normally identified...

. Verbs consist of long strings of morpheme
Morpheme
In linguistics, a morpheme is the smallest semantically meaningful unit in a language. The field of study dedicated to morphemes is called morphology. A morpheme is not identical to a word, and the principal difference between the two is that a morpheme may or may not stand alone, whereas a word,...

s in the following array:
Stem + Voice + Negation + Tense/Aspect + Agreement

Vocabulary


The core of Khalaj vocabulary is Turkic, but many words have been borrowed from Persian
Persian language
Persian is an Iranian language within the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. It is primarily spoken in Iran, Afghanistan, Tajikistan and countries which historically came under Persian influence...

. Words from neighboring Turkic dialects, namely, Azerbaijani
Azerbaijani language
Azerbaijani or Azeri or Torki is a language belonging to the Turkic language family, spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people, primarily in Azerbaijan and northwestern Iran...

 have also made their way into Khalaj.

Numbers


Khalaj numbers are Turkic in form, but some speakers replace the forms for "80" and "90" with Persian terms:
  • 1 - [biː]
  • 2 - [æk.ki]
  • 3 - [yʃ]
  • 4 - [tœœɾt]
  • 5 - [bieʃ]
  • 6 - [al.ta]
  • 7 - [jæt.ti]
  • 8 - [sæk.kiz]
  • 9 - [toq.quz]
  • 10 - [uon]
  • 20 - [ji.iɾ.mi]
  • 30 - [hot.tuz]
  • 40 - [qiɾq]
  • 50 - [æl.li]
  • 60 - [alt.miʃ]
  • 70 - [yæt.miʃ]
  • 80 - [saj.san] (Turkic), [haʃ.tad] (Persian)
  • 90 - [toqx.san] (Turkic), [na.vad] (Persian)
  • 100 - [jyːz]
  • 1000 - [min], [miŋk]

Examples


Excerpt from Dorfer & Tezcan (1994) p. 158-9
Translation IPA
International Phonetic Alphabet
The International Phonetic Alphabet "The acronym 'IPA' strictly refers [...] to the 'International Phonetic Association'. But it is now such a common practice to use the acronym also to refer to the alphabet itself that resistance seems pedantic...

Once, Mullah Nasreddin had a son. biː ki.niː mol.laː nas.ɾæd.diː.niːn oɣ.lu vaːɾ-aɾ.ti
He said, "Oh Father, I want a wife." hay.dɨ ki "æj baː.ba, mæn ki.ʃi ʃæj.jo.ɾum"
He said, "My dear, we have a cow; take this cow and sell it. Come with the proceeds, we will buy you a wife! hay.dɨ ki "bɒː.ba bi.zym biː sɨ.ɣɨ.ɾɨ.myz vaːɾ, je.tib̥ bo sɨ.ɣɨ.ɾɨ saː.tɨ, naɣd ʃæj.i puˑ.lĩn, jæk biz sæ̃ ki.ʃi al.duq

External links