Sylheti (Sylheti: ছিলটী/छीलहटी Sīlôṭī; Bengali: সিলেটী Sileṭī) is the language of Sylhet, which is also known as the Surma Valley and is located in the north-eastern region of Bangladesh, and also spoken in parts of the Northeast Indian states of Assam (the Barak Valley) and Tripura (the North Tripura district). It is also spoken by a significant population in the other north-eastern states of India and amongst the large expatriate communities in the United Kingdom, United States, and countries of the Gulf States.
Sylheti language in antiquity was a branch of Indo-Aryan language, which used to be written in Devanagari alphabet by the Aryan people of Sylhet. Scripture of Aryan people such as Vedas are written in Devanagari. The traditional Devanagari alphabet is still used in India and Nepal to write Hindi and Nepalese respectively, but in Sylhet it has been tampered with in early nineteenth century to reduce the number of vowels and consonants, and eradicated all compound letters, to make it simple for the common folks. Sylheti is often either considered a dialect of Bengali as well as a separate language due to significant differences between them all and lack of mutual intelligibility. On its own right, it is accepted as a separate language, however it has not been given an official status by the Government of Bangladesh. There is much debate to whether it should be recognized, for example there is greater differences of Sylheti to Bengali, than Assamese to Bengali, which is recognised as separate. Most Sylhetis are at least bilingual to some degree, as they are taught Bengali at all levels of education in Bangladesh. Sylhet was part of the ancient kingdom of Kamarupa, and has many common features with Assamese, including the existence of a larger set of fricatives than other East Indo-Aryan languages. According to George Abraham Grierson, "The inflections also differ from those of regular Bengali, and in one or two instances assimilate to those of Assamese". Indeed it was formerly written in its own script, Sylheti Nagari, similar in style to Kaithi but with differences, though nowadays it is almost invariably written in Bengali script.
Other articles related to "sylheti language, sylheti, languages":
... Sylheti is distinguished by a wide range of fricative sounds, which correspond to aspirated stops in closely related languages such as Bengali a lack of the breathy voiced stops ... Sylheti is spoken by about 10 percent of Bangladeshis, but has affected the course of standard Bengali in the rest of the state ... A notable characteristic of spoken Sylheti is the correspondence of the /x/, pronounced between and from like the "ch" in Scottish "Loch" or the "j" in Latin American ...
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