|Spoken in||Pakistan, Iran, Afghanistan, Turkmenistan, UAE, Oman|
|Total speakers||7–8 million (1998, Ethnologue) not include Northern Balochi|
|Official language in||Balochistan, Pakistan|
|Regulated by||No official regulation|
bal – Baluchi (generic)
bgp – Eastern Balochi
bgn – Western Balochi
bcc – Southern Balochi
Balochi (بلوچی also Baluchi) is a Northwestern Iranian language. It is the principal language of the Baloch of Balochistan, Pakistan, eastern Iran and southern Afghanistan. It is also spoken as a second language by some Brahui. It is designated as one of nine official languages of Pakistan.
The Balochi vowel system has at least eight vowels: five long vowels and three short vowels. The long vowels are /aː/, /eː/, /iː/, /oː/, and /uː/. The short vowels are /a/, /i/ and /u/. The short vowels have more centralized phonetic qualities than the long vowels.
Southern Balochi (at least as spoken in Karachi) also has nasalized vowels, most importantly /ẽː/ and /ãː/.
The following consonants are common to both Western Balochi and Southern Balochi. The place of articulation of the consonants /s/, /z/, /n/, /ɾ/ and /l/ is claimed to be alveolar in Western Balochi, while at least the /ɾ/ is claimed to be dental in Southern Balochi. The stops /t/ and /d/ are claimed to be dental in both dialects.
|Stop||p b||t d||ʈ ɖ||k ɡ|
|Fricative||s z||ʃ ʒ[cn 1]||h[cn 2]|
In addition, /f/ is listed for Southern Balochi, but is found in few words. /x/ (voiceless velar fricative) in some loanwords in Southern Balochi corresponding to /χ/ (voiceless uvular fricative) in Western Balochi; and /ɣ/ (voiced velar fricative) in some loanwords in Southern Balochi corresponding to /ʁ/ (voiced uvular fricative) in Western Balochi.
The normal word order is Subject Object Verb. Like many other Indo-Iranian languages, Balochi has split ergativity. In the present tense or future tense, the subject is marked as nominative, and the object is marked as accusative. In the past tense, however, the subject of a transitive verb is marked as oblique, and the verb agrees with the object.
Balochi is closely related to other Northwestern Iranian languages such as Kurdish.
Before the 19th century, Balochi was an unwritten language. The official written language was Persian, although Balochi was still spoken at the Baloch courts. British linguists and political historians wrote form with the Roman script, but following the creation of Pakistan, Baloch scholars adopted Urdu Arabic script. Sayad Zahurshah Hashomi was the first scholar who wrote a comprehensive guidance on the usage of Urdu Arabic script. This earned Sayad Hashomi the title of 'the Father of Balochi'. Sayad's guidances are widely used in Eastern and Western Balochistan. In Afghanistan, however, Balochi is written in a modified Arabic script based on what is used for Pashto.
ا آ ب پ ت ٹ ج چ د ڈ ر ڑ ز ژ س ش ک گ ل م ن و ھ ء ی ے
The following Latin-script based orthography was adopted in the International Workshop on "Balochi Roman Orthography" (University of Uppsala, Sweden, May 28-30, 2000).
a á b c d ď e f g ĝ h i í j k l m n o p q r ř s š t ť u ú v w x y z ž ay aw
(33 letters and 2 digraphs)
A/a amb (mango), angúr (grape), bagg (camel-caravan), sardar (naked-head), namb (mist)
Á/á dár (wood), árt (flour), bahá (price), pád (foot), áhag (to come), áhán (them)
B/b (be) barp (snow, ice), bám (dawn), bágpán (gardner), baktáwar (lucky)
C/c (che) cattr (umbrella), bacc (son), kárc (knife), Karácí, Kulánc, Cákar, Bálác
D/d (de) dard (pain), drad (rainshower), dárú (medicine), wád (salt)
Ď/ď is same as Ř/ř (ře) so this latter is preferably used to simplify the orthography.
E/e eš (this), cer (below), eraht (end of date harvest), pešraw (leader, forerunner), kamer (ploughshare)
F/f (fe) To be used only in loan words where its use is inevitable, like Fráns (France), fármaysí (pharmacy)
G/g (ge) gapp (talk), ganok (mad), bág (garden), bagg (herd of camels), pádag (foot), Bagdád (Baghdad)
Ĝ/ĝ (like ĝhaen in Perso-Arabic script) Only in loan words and in eastern dialects
H/h (he) hár (flood), máh (moon), koh (mountain), mahár (rein), hon (blood)
I/i (i) istál (star), idá (here), pit/piss (father), bigir (take), kirr (near)
Í/í (í) ímmán (faith), šír (milk), pakír (beggar), samín (breeze), gálí (carpet)
J/j (je) jang (war), janag (to beat), jing (lark), ganj (treasure), sajjí (roasted meat)
K/k (ke) Kirmán (Kirman), kárc (knife), náko (uncle), gwask (calf), kasán (small)
L/l (le) láp (stomach), gal (joy), gall (party, organization), gull (cheek), gul (rose)
M/m (me) mát/más (mother), bám (dawn), camm (eye), mastir (leader, bigger).
N/n (ne) nán/nagan/nagan (bread), nok (new, new moon), dann (outside), kwahn (old), náko (uncle)
O/o (o) oštag (to stop), ožnág (swim), roc (sun), dor (pain), socag (to burn)
P/p (pe) Pád (foot), šap (night), šapád (bare-footed), gapp (talk), aptád (70)
Q/q (qú) Used in loan words, like Qábús
R/r (re) Rustum (a name), rek (sand), barag (to take away), girag (to get), garrag (to bray), gurrag (to roar), šarr (good), sarag (head), sarrag (a kind of donkey's braying)
Ř/ř (ře) řák (post), řukkál (famine), gařř (urial), guřř (last), guřřag (to chop).
S/s (se) sarag (head), kass (someone), kasán (little), bass (enough), ás (fire)
Š/š (še) šap (night), šád (happy), meš (sheep), šuwánag (shepherd), wašš (happy, tasty).
T/t (te) tagird (mat), tahná (alone) tás (bowl), kilítt (kay), masítt (mosque), battí (lantern)
Ť/ť (ťe) ťung (hole), ťíllo (bell), baťť (cooked rice), baťťág (eggplant).
U/u uštir (camel), šumá (you), ustád (teacher), gužn (hunger), buz (goat)
Ú/ú (ú, sounds like the "oo" in English word "root") úrt (thin), zúrag (to take), bizú (take), dúr (distant)
V/v (ve) used in loanwords only, like in the English word service, very.
W/w (we) warag (food, to eat), wardin (provision), dawár (abode), wád (salt), kawwás (learned)
X/x (khe) Xudá (God),
Y/y (ye) yád (remembrance), yár (friend), yázdah (eleven), biryání (roasted meat), raydyo (radio), yakk (one)
Z/z (ze) zarr (monay), zí (yesterday), muzz (wages), moz (banana), nazzíkk (nearby), bazgar (tenant)
Ž/ž (že) žand (tired), žáng (bells), pažm (wool), gažžag (to swell), gužnag (hungry).
ay (h)ayrán (surprise), ayrát (distribution), say (3), may (our), kay (who), šumay (your)
Aw/aw kawr (river), hawr (rain), kissaw (story), dawl (sort), dawr (jump), awlád (off-spring), kawl (promise), gawk (neck).