The Indo-Iranian languages or Indo-Iranic languages are the largest group of the Indo-European language family. They include the Indo-Aryan (Indic) and Iranic (Iranian) languages. They are mostly spoken in the Indian subcontinent and the Iranian plateau. Originally, they were spoken in Central Asia, to the east and the north of the Caspian Sea.
|Eastern Europe, Western Asia, South Asia|
The general location of Indo-European speakers in Europe and Asia.
There are about 221 Indo-Aryan (Indic) languages, with more than 800 million speakers.
Below are the most widely spoken Indo-Aryan languages.
- Punjabi (official language in India; regional de-facto co-official provincial language in Pakistan)
- Bengali (official language in Bangladesh; regional official language in India)
- Marathi (regional official language in India)
- Hindustani (in the form of Urdu; official language in Pakistan; regional official language in India alongside Hindi, another form of Hindustani)
Sanskrit, the sacred language of the Hindus, is also an Indo-Aryan language. Today it is spoken by around 14,000 people, is an official language in the Indian state of Uttarakhand, and is one of the 22 official languages of India.
There are about 86 Iranian languages, or Iranic languages as argued by some scholars, with between 150 and 200 million speakers.
Below are the most widely spoken Iranian languages.
- Persian (official language in Iran; also official as Dari in Afghanistan and as Tajik in Tajikistan)
- Pashto (official language in Afghanistan)
- Kurdish (official language in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq)
Nuristani, Bangani, and BadeshiEdit
Some scholars consider the Nuristani and Bangani languages as part of the Indo-Aryan subgroup, but some other scholars consider them as two separate subgroups of Indo-Iranian. The Badeshi language is also an unclassified Indo-Iranian language.
- Rowlett, Ralph M. "Research Directions in Early Indo-European Archaeology." (1990): 415-418.
- Heggarty, Paul. "Europe and western Asia: Indo-European linguistic history." The global prehistory of human migration (2015): 157-167.
- Kümmel, Martin Joachim. "Iranic vs. Iranian." Update of Mar 30 (2018).