| Dictionary of Some Languages and
Dialects of Afghanistan
Monograph No. 48 - Transliterated, Translated,
and Edited by Hamid Badghisi
Introduction by A. Richard Diebold, Jr.
Originally compiled in Pashto by Shah Abdullah Badakhshi and published in Kabul in 1960
After prefatory comments by the author, Shah Abdullah Badakshi, and the translator, Hamid Badghisi, a preface by editor A. Richard Diebold, Jr. provides an invaluable guide to this transliterated and translated mine of information. Diebold shows how in consequence of primarily prehistoric movements of people from Iran into India, Proto-Indo-Iranian evolved into four distinct families, namely: Iranian, whose various languages and dialects today extend from Iran over most of Afghanistan, Nuristani or Kafr, a remote isolate surviving in the center of Afghanistan, Indo-Aryan, and Dardic which survives in Chitral and Kashmir.
The two major languages of Afghanistan are therefore both modern Iranian. Of these, Farsi is modern Southwestern Iranian, and predominates in northwestern Afghan adjacent to Iran, while Pushtu (Badghisi's Pashto) spoken throughout southeastern Afghanistan, adjacent to India, is modern Southeastern Iranian. But perhaps the most valuable part of Badakshi's work is his unique coverage of a little researched group of Southwestern Iranian isolates in the Pamirs: Shughni, Sanglichi, Wakhi, Ishkashmi, and Manji.
Dictionary of Some Languages and Dialects of Afghanistan comprises an exact translation of Badakshi's dictionary comparing Farsi, Pushtu and the five Pamir isolates. It is consequently a most valuable resource for students of Iranian – and, only less directly, for students of Sanskrit and the many Indo-European languages of modern India.
JIES Private Individual Subscribers receive 20% discount