Languages are a medium to express ideas and thoughts. Languages are the source of learning about new cultures. India is home to diverse cultures, heritage, customs, and languages, which enhance the richness of the country.
The two main languages in India after English are Hindi and Bhojpuri.
- Hindi, an Indo-Aryan language, is one of India’s official languages and is spoken by a large portion of the country’s population.
- Bhojpuri, also an Indo-Aryan language, has a regional focus in the states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh and neighboring countries.
- Although both languages share a common linguistic ancestry, they exhibit vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation differences.
Hindi vs Bhojpuri
Hindi is a language that originates from northern India, was derived from Sanskrit and is spoken by over 250 million people in the world as their first language. Bhojpuri is an Indo-Aryan language that is native to the Bhojpur-Purvanchal region of India and is spoken by about 5% of the country’s population.
Hindi has originated in the 7th century. Hindi literature is classified into four types: Vir-Gatha Kal, Bhakti Kal poems, Riti or Srngar Kal poems, and Adhunik Kal.
Some prominent figures of the Hindi literature are Kabir, Surdas, Mirabai, Vrind, Bhushan, and others. The language has 44 alphabets, out of which there are 11 vowels and 33 consonants.
While Bhojpuri originated in the 19th century, the Bhojpuri literature is divided into three parts: the Initial period (between 1947 and 1961), the middle period (between 1961 and 1975), and the Modern period (After 1975).
The first Bhojpuri novel was Bindiã. Even the greatest saints and bhakts have contributed to the Bhojpuri literature. The language has 43 alphabets, out of which there are 11 vowels and 34 consonants.
|Parameters of Comparison||Hindi||Bhojpuri|
|Native origin||India, Nepal, and South Africa in the 7th century||India, Mauritius, and Nepal in the 19th century|
|Native speakers||Over 324 million native speakers||Over 50 million native speakers|
|Official language||Official language of various states of India like Bihar, Jharkhand, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, and others||Official language of Nepal, Guyana, Fiji, and Surinam|
|Writing script||Devanagari||Devanagari and Kaithi|
|Spread||India, Nepal, United States, Fiji, South Africa, Uganda, and Mauritius||India, Mauritius, Fiji, South Africa, Caribbean nations, Nepal, and parts of Bangladesh|
What is Hindi?
Hindi is an Indo-Aryan language. It is written in the Devanagari script. There are over 324 million native speakers of Hindi. The term Hindi was derived from Iranian Persian “hendi”, which means belonging to Hind or India.
The Hindi language is a descendant of the Sanskrit language. Hindi is the main dialect in northern India.
Hindi is also called the modern version of Sanskrit, while a major part of the language has the vocabulary from Saurasenī Prākrt. The various literary works in the Hindu language began to appear in the 12th century CE.
Some popular early works in Hindi are Prithviraj Raso, Dhola Maru, and Amir Khusrow. The most popular scholar to study the Hindustani Language is John Gilchrist.
Hindi is an official language in India and Fiji and is also recognized in the United Arab Emirates and South Africa. Bihar was the first state to accept Hindi as the sole official language.
In 1954, India standardized the grammar and the orthography of the language.
The Devanagari script, abugida, contains 11 vowels and 33 consonants. A process called Sanskritization replaces foreign words from the vocabulary of Hindi with new words from Sanskrit.
The language is written from left to right. The Hindi words are further classified into five categories based on their etymology: Tatsam, Ardhatatsam, Tadbhav, Deshaj, and Videshi words.
What is Bhojpuri?
Bhojpuri is an Indo-Aryan language. It is written in the Devanagari and Kaithi script. There are over 50 million native speakers of Bhojpuri. The term Bhojpuri is derived from Bhojpur.
Bhojpur is the name of two villages, Chhotka Bhojpur and Barka Bhojpur in Buxar. The Bhojpuri language is a descendant of Magadhi Prakrit.
The various literary works of Bhojpuri started in the 8th century AD. Some early works of literature are Siddha Sahitya, Charyapada, Devakshara Charita, Badmash Darpan, and other folklores.
Saints like Kabir had also contributed to the Bhojpuri literature. Some notable plays in the Bhojpuri are Bidesiya, Gabarghichor, and Beti Bachwa.
The first film in Bhojpuri was released in 1962. The film was Ganga Maiyya Tohe Piyari. Bhojpuri is spoken in India, Mauritius, Fiji, South Africa, Caribbean nations, Nepal, and parts of Bangladesh.
Indentured labourers of the 19th and 20th centuries in the British colonies spoke Bhojpuri. The language has allophonic variations in vowels. It has 10 vocoids and 6 vowels (phonemes).
Bhojpuri is considered to be a relative of languages like Magahi, Maithili, and even Assamese and Bengali. Bhojpuri is extensively an Indo-European language.
Bhojpuri has further other dialects like Northern Standard Bhojpuri, Southern Standard Bhojpuri, Nagpuria Bhojpuri, Bhojpuri Tharu, Domra, Madhesi, and Western Standard Bhojpuri. These dialects are prevalent in different regions.
Main Differences Between Hindi and Bhojpuri
- Hindi is widely spoken in India, Nepal, United States, Fiji, South Africa, Uganda, and Mauritius while Bhojpuri is widely spoken in India, Mauritius, Fiji, South Africa, Caribbean nations, Nepal, and parts of Bangladesh.
- Hindi is written only in Devanagari script, while Bhojpuri can be written in Devanagari as well as Kaithi script.
- Hindi is an Indo-Aryan language of Western Hindi or Hindustani, while Bhojpuri is an Indo-Aryan as well as the Indo-European language of Eastern Bihari.
- The dialects of Hindi are Awadhi, Braj, Haryanvi, Kannauji, Bagheli, Bundeli, and Chattisgarhi while the dialects of Bhojpuri are Northern Standard Bhojpuri, Southern Standard Bhojpuri, Nagpuria Bhojpuri, Bhojpuri Tharu, Domra, Madhesi, and Western Standard Bhojpuri.
- Hindi is similar to Sanskrit and Urdu languages, while Bhojpuri is similar to Maithili and Magahi.
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Emma Smith holds an MA degree in English from Irvine Valley College. She has been a Journalist since 2002, writing articles on the English language, Sports, and Law. Read more about me on her bio page.