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Hindi language

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Hindui (हिंदुई)
The word "Hindi" in Devanagari script
Native toIndia
Significant communities in Nepal
Native speakers
(180 million[1] cited 1991)
Total, including Urdu: 490 million[2]
Hindi Braille
Official status
Official language in
Regulated byCentral Hindi Directorate (India)[4]
Language codes
ISO 639-1hi
ISO 639-2hin
ISO 639-3hin
Part of a series on
Constitutionally recognised languages of India
22 Official Languages of the Indian Republic
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Spoken Hindi
The man speaks Hindi in recorded in Taoquan City, Taiwan, China.

Hindi, Indian language Hindi bhasha; historically known as Hindui (हिंदुई),[5] is an Indo-Aryan language. It is the main language in India. About 800 million people speak Hindi in India. The Devanāgarī script is used to write Hindi. Previously Hindi was known as Hindui. It is also the official national language of India.

Hindi is widely written, spoken and understood in North India and some other places in India. In 1997, a survey found that 45% of Indians can speak Hindi. It has taken words from the Dravidian languages of South India, as well as the Arabic, Persian, Chagatai, English and Portuguese languages.[citation needed]

Hindi and Urdu were considered the same language but have evolved into separate dialects. However, to this day, both languages are mutually intelligible, meaning their speakers can understand each other without knowing the other language. Urdu, however, is written in the completely different Arabic alphabet.

Hindi developed from Sanskrit, the ancient Indo-Aryan language of India. Hindi started to develop in the 7th century as "Apabhramsha" and became stable by the 10th century. Some famous Hindi poets are Tulsidas and Kabir.

Dialects of Hindi include: Avadhi, Braj, Bhojpuri, Bundeli, Bagheli, Chhattisgarhi, Dogri and Marwari.

Hindi is also spoken with regional accents like Haryanvi and Rajasthani. Bombay Hindi is spreading because Bollywood films use it.

Hindi Diwas is an annual celebration on 14th September. It commemorates the law of 1949 that made Hindi the legal language of the Republic.

Distribution of L1 self-reported speakers of Hindi in India as per the 2011 Census.



  1. Ethnologue, "Hindi"
  2. "BBC: A Guide to Urdu". Archived from the original on 2012-05-25. Retrieved 2013-03-08. Unknown parameter |url-status= ignored (help)
  3. Hindustani (2005). Keith Brown, ed. Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics (2 ed.). Elsevier. ISBN 0-08-044299-4. Search this book on
  4. Central Hindi Directorate regulates the use of Devanagari script and Hindi spelling in India. Source: Central Hindi Directorate: Introduction Archived 2010-04-15 at the Wayback Machine
  5. Dwyer, Rachel. "Hindi/Hindustani". Key Concepts in Modern Indian Studies, edited by Gita Dharampal-Frick, Monika Kirloskar-Steinbach and Jahnavi Phalkey, New York, USA: New York University Press, 2016, pp. 102-103.