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  • Category: Miscellaneous

    Linguistics - Bengali "V" and "B"

    I am new here and before anybody start spewing acrimony let me say that I am from southern most part of India - Kerala.

    My only reason for this post is that we Indians seems to have a lot of acrimony stored in us against other States.
    Mr Sun's post could have been handled in a better manner than getting into a north - south - east - west tussle.
    I am not a linguist and they may have a valid explanation for Mr. Sun's query.
    However I have traveled the wide world and have observed quaint idiosyncrasies in spoken language.
    Now the part were B and V in Bengali is mixed up. I have worked in WB for some time and sorry to say this Mr. Sun, have not heard anybody say "begitable".
    The reason for the mix up may lie in that in Bengali lipi B ('ba) and V ('va) is written in the same way. Somehow the 'ba in Bengali seems to have missed the cross or dot that almost all other indian languages in Devanagari script.
    Remember our National Anthem (which has been creating a lot of heat these days)? Punjab, Sindh, Gujaratha, Maratha, Dravida, Utkala, Benga, the last word was taught to us as "Venga"( note those exta "h"s? pronounce them without and it would be like "Tata")
    Hence I propose that the first consonant that comes in the aksharamala is used most when spoken from a written document (blame the Firangi for this).
    The next issue I have to point out is the extra 'h" in the south. I could refute almost all those from the North and East who seemed to be bent on making this a State tussle.
    Sanskrit is Sanskrit in the South in English. But the word is actually spoken as "Samskritham" (note the extra "h').
    But, if you take our lipis t and th have two different consonants. So ?????? in Devanagiri converts not into Sultan (as the Americans pronounce it) but into "sulthan" in Indian languages.
    The extra "h" makes the difference!
    Quaintness is not a sin. Accent is acquired due to very many local and other effects.
    Post Script (if there is an issue with p.s)
    Try to answer a question with an intelligent answer rather than getting into Ego trips.
    What does it matter whether it is "v" or "b"? Live and let Live. Sanathan Dharamam requires that. Note the h there? It cannot be Darmam as in Dance or Dandy. Or even Dharam! as it is spoken in the North. I am biassed and it is evident here. So is all who contributed to that issue. When do we get out of this sloop and be "Unity in Diversity"?
    Regards to all
  • #591255
    In some states they have their own way of writing and conversing according to their teaching and preaching and we cannot say anything against that. For a Bengali they spell V as B. For them Vinay Kumar is Binay Kumar. Kali Bari is Kali Badi. Lakshmi is Lokky. We cannot blame them for this as every one talks in the same manner and thus adjustment and understanding takes place. In Tamil and Telugu , some names like Subramaniyan in Tamil is called and corrected as Subramaiam in Telugu. So every state has there own way of talking and conversing and we cannot draw equals and conclusions on them.
    K Mohan
    'Idhuvum Kadandhu Pogum "
    Even this challenging situation would ease

  • #591259
    My simple question is - Do the Bengali has the alphabet Vee in their language?

    If NO, it is acceptable, If YES, they should learn to pronounce the alphabet V as vee not bee.

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591261
    Yes, Bengalis do pronounce 'V'. For example, Bear ('valoo' in Hindi) is called 'valook' in Bengali.
    Caution: Explosive. Handle with care.

  • #591263
    Bengali language has a V. I do not want to get personal here but do read the posts carefully. Once again FYI.

    Now the part were B and V in Bengali is mixed up. I have worked in WB for some time and sorry to say this Mr. Sun, have not heard anybody say "begitable".
    The reason for the mix up may lie in that in Bengali lipi B ('ba) and V ('va) is written in the same way. Somehow the 'ba"in Bengali seems to have missed the cross or dot that almost all other indian languages in Devanagari script have.
    Hence I propose that the first consonant that comes in the aksharamala is used most when spoken from a written document (blame the Firangi for this).

  • #591267
    Bear is known as Bhaaloo - (in writing 'bha', 'aa ki matra', 'la' and 'badi oo ki matra') - in Hindi.
    Thanks & Regards

  • #591274
    Mr. Partha,
    If a Bengali can pronounce VALOOK rightly as Valook with Vee , what is the problem in pronouncing Vegetable as Vegetable ? Why they pronounce it as Begetable?

    You are a highly educated Bengali guy. How do you pronounce Vegetable?

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591275
    Mr. Sun: I am not properly educated. Haven't heard any word 'Vegitable'.
    Caution: Explosive. Handle with care.

  • #591286
    Sorry Partha,
    It was a typo copied from the authors word begitable. Now you can read it as'VEGETABLE' and respond to my question.
    @ I corrected my'I' mistake.

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591287
    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591288
    Mr. Sun: According to you, Bengalis pronounce 'vegetable' as 'begitable'. You know, English is a foreign language for Bengalis. So, they pronounce it in this manner, just like some Tamizhans pronounce Hindi in the following manner: "Khaana hai, Lekin baet parke khaa nahi sakthaa."
    Caution: Explosive. Handle with care.

  • #591292
    Mr. Partha,
    English is not like Hindi and Tamil. English is the simplest language with the least alphabets(26) with 5 vowels. Tamil has 12 vowels and 18 consonants and 12x18=216 Vowel Consonants. Hindi has lot that I do not know. Next to English, Tamil is the most simple Indian language. Yet the Tamils pronounce English words as per English.

    The Tamils irrespective of educated or illiterate, roaming in the North India will speak excellent Hindi with no error in their pronunciation. All the North Indians except Bengalis pronounce V as V, and only the Bengalis pronounce V as B whether they are educated or illiterate. This makes us to feel that Bengalis do not have the alphabet V in their language.

    I am a Tamil and I can pronounce English like the British. I may not pronounce Hindi due to its difficult literature and inexperience, and unwillingness to develop my Hindi learning.

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591294
    Yes, Mr. Sun! Tamil is one of the easiest languages of the world with 12 vowels, 18 consonants and 216 vowel-consonants (what are those?). The pronunciation is easier! Till now I haven't understood how to pronounce the name of the eldest son of Karunanidhi (Azhagiri/Alhagiri) and daughter of Karunanidhi (Kanimojhi/Kanimohi)!
    Caution: Explosive. Handle with care.

  • #591295
    Tamil is the easiest language to learn. If you had taken more initiative and interest to learn through the books and a master, you could have learned to pronounce the words Azhagiri and Kanimozhi. Even the word fruit in Tamil is called "Pazham", Tamil is to be written as Tamizh.

    Just imagine the Hindi alphabets Ka Kha Ga Gha (and many such consonants ) represented by one single alphabet Ka and spelt differently according to the words that need to be learned and practiced. Tamil is easy for those who want to learn it with interest.

    The English alphabet L in Tamil has three types of pronunciation, L -LL - ZH
    L is simple with the tip of the tongue touching the upper gums without any tongue folding. LL is pronounced with the tip of the tongue folded and touching the inner part of the upper gums. ZH is same like LL but with a opening of the mouth a bit.

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591296
    I don't wish to take the topic of the thread (the pronunication of the letter V) but I just could not help reacting to the outrageous statement "Next to English, Tamil is the most simple Indian language." Definitely not Sun!

    If you are comparing Tamil and Bengali, I think it is so much easier to say, for example, sorry in Bengali than in Tamil. And if I want to yell for help or tell somebody to call the police, I would find the Bengali words far easier than its multi-lettered counterparts. By the time I get those letters off, I would be beyond all help I would think.

    Just a thought - did we not discuss this pronunciation aspect of 'V' and 'B' earlier in the forum last year?

    Keep day life will get tired of upsetting you.

  • #591297
    Each one learns another language through mother tongue. The influence of mother tongue occurs in the new language learned especially in oral expression in that language. Many people correct it by and by more exposure and usage and with the help of those who have the language as their mother tongue or by living in a place where that language is prevalent.

    No one need to feel superior or inferior on their language. Each language has its own beauty and uniqueness.

    Gangadharan has touched a lot of valid points in this regard. Spoken language becomes dialect and may not exactly mimic written language. Similarly people who are more educated and/or exposed to more and wide communication and refinement may not suffer from much fault in pronunciation.

    Most of Indian languages have their roots in Sanskrit or Samskrutam/Samskrutham. Such languages have more variety and lipi or alphabet to pronounce more precisely as soft or hard or double. However there are certain other languages which do not have the soft-hard difference lipis. Such languages will have some handicap when trying to pronounce words in other languages having more lipis. Hence those people have to hear the one language spoken by those who have the language as mother tongue and also who have refined their own pronunciation by education or practiced under guidance. They cannot learn a new language through their own mother tongue perfectly.

    To be proud of one's own language is good. But, if some one claims their language is superior and finds fault with other languages, then we have only to sympathise with them for their lack of wider perspective, lack of wide exposure and knowledge in that language and just having a parochial mind.

  • #591300
    An additional thing to keep in mind - why consider one's own language to be the simplest or the best or the easiest? I think each language does have its own unique position and just cannot be compared to any other in sort of hierarchical terms, placing some languages above others as being superior.
    Keep day life will get tired of upsetting you.

  • #591301
    Among the four South Indian languages of India, Tamil is the easiest language for its scripts. Tamil is different from Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada which has many alphabets like Hindi, whereas Tamil has the limited alphabet of 12 vowels and 18 consonants only. In that respect, I would say that Tamil is easy to learn, understand and speak. A North Indian can easily pick up Tamil than Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada.

    No life without Sun ¤

  • #591305
    Tamil is one of the difficult language to learn and especially scripts. This is what I heard from non Tamilians. I don't know how far this is true.

  • #591307
    Deleted being duplicate
    No life without Sun ¤

  • #592451
    This has gone beyond any reason. We are still at it. Why the urge to prove one is better than the other. The Indian attitude to show others in a bad light is so obvious here.
    Sentience is our (Human race) only grace. All other peculiarities (as observed by many above) are acquired due to geography, climate, available resources etc. No race or creed has the right to claim superiority. We all are aware of Hitler and what ensued.
    I may produce ample theories of how one language works and others do not. However that will not prove or disprove any thing.
    One caution here. Wikipedia is not considered as a credible source of information. Relying on it would lead to misinformation.
    Please cease and desist from this vein. Learn to live and let live.

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