The English Language

Borrowed Words From
Farsi

36 Words Listed


Farsi Language Notes

Farsi (also called Persian and Iranian) is an Indo-European language spoken in Iran and Afghanistan.

Many of the words from this language came into English via India or Arabia.

There are several food terms ("biryani", "lime", "spinach"), some colours ("azure", "lilac"), and clothing terms ("pyjama", "shawl"). Chess terms (including "checkmate") are also present.

The unit of weight that many English speakers in the UK and USA consider part of their culture (the "ounce") is also from this language.


WordMeaningNotes
-stan land of Examples: Afghanistan, Uzbekistan, etc
azure   Blue - one of many colour words from Farsi.
Barbican house gate From 'bab khanah'
bazaar   A market place.
beggar without work  
biryani fried A rice dish from India and Pakistani.
caravan   The original meaning is a caravan of pack animals (like camels) carrying goods.
checkmate from 'shah-k-mate',
the king is dead
A chess term.
dervish poor Muslim holy man vowed to austerity.
divan   One of many furniture or clothing items from Farsi.
jackal   A dog-like animal.
jasmine   Fragrant shrub.
julep rose water  
khaki dusty Dull fabric used by the military.
kiosk    
lemon   A citrus fruit.
lilac   A bluish colour.
lime   A citrus fruit.
ounce   A unit of weight (= 2.835 ? 10-2 kg).
pagoda temple of idols  
pistachio   A type of nut.
pyjama   Item of clothing worn in Asia (and in Europe while sleeping).
rhubarb   A plant used as a sweet.
rice   Grass used as a food.
rook castle A chess term.
sash turban Item of clothing worn across the body.
scarlet   Red.
serendipity   Finding something by sheer luck.
shawl   Item of clothing named after its town of origin in India.
spinach   Green leaf vegetable - a delicacy in Asia.
taffeta twist Fine silk.
talc    
tambourine    
tiara    
tiger   Large carnivorous cat.
turban   Item of clothing worn on the head.

[Borrowed Words (Faroese)] [Borrowed Words (Finnish)]

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