Online English to Punjabi Typing

Want to type in Punjabi Online? But don't know how to type in Punjabi. Well, this tool is created for you then. You can just type in English & it will automatically convert it to Punjabi. You can enter any word, it will convert it to punjabi automatically. Simple enter anything & press space. Once you press space, it will convert that word to Punjabi. So let's check it out.

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History of Punjabi Language

One of the most widely spoken languages in India, Punjabi boasts of over 100 million native speakers in the country and across the globe in countries like Pakistan, Canada, and the UK. Originally, it was spoken by an ethnic group residing in the Punjab province which spanned the 5 administrative divisions of Delhi, Lahore, Rawalpindi, Jullundur, and Multan. 

In case you have always wondered, the word ‘Punjabi’ comes from the Persian word ‘Panj-ab’, meaning ‘Five Waters’. The five waters indicate the five main tributaries of the Indus River – Chenab, Jhelum, Ravi, Sutlej, and Beas. 

Linguistic Classification

Punjabi belongs to the Indo-Aryan sub-group of the Indo-European family of languages. It branched out of Sanskrit over a period of time through the Shauraseni Prakrit and Apabhramsa. 

Origin of Punjabi Language and The Various Dialects – 

Somewhere around the 600 BC, Vedic Sanskrit had started to degrade across India by the common people, in order to make communication much simpler. These Middle Indo-Aryan languages were known as Prakrits. Of the 21 Prakrits, Shauraseni was the most prevalent language in Northern India (including Eastern Punjab) while the then Western Punjab, mostly used ‘Kaikeyi’ Prakrit.

Between 500-600 AD, Prakrits became even more corrupted, to give rise to Apabhramsas. The major Apabhramsas were Takka (in Central Punjab), and Vrachada (in Southern Punjab). By the 10th century, Punjabi detached itself from the Apabhramsas and developed into an independent language. 

However, several dialects of Punjabi were spoken. The Takka Apabhramsa gave birth to the Lahori dialect while the Vrachada Apabhramsa evolved into the Multani dialect. Today, many other dialects of Punjabi also exist. These include Majhi, Shahpuri, Malwai, Puadhi, Doabi, Jhangochi, Jangli, and Chenavari. 

These are spoken across the Indian part of Punjab as well as Pakistani Punjab. However, it’s the Majhi dialect that is considered to be ‘Standard Punjabi’ and is spoken in the Majha region, which comprises of Lahore, Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Faisalabad, Sialkot, Sahiwal, Kasur, Tarn Taran, Chiniot, Narowal, and Gujranwala. 

You may have often noticed that Punjabi is closely related to Western Hindi. Well, this is because both, Hindi and Punjabi, descended from the same foremother – Shauraseni Prakrit. 

Punjabi Script – 

Currently, the Punjabi language is written in two scripts, namely, Gurumukhi and Shahmukhi. The former is an Inde-Script that was derived from the ‘Landa’ script in the 16th century, by Guru Angad. Therefore, Gurumukhi has been adopted by the Sikhs and is used only in India. You’ll see this script across the media, in the Guru Granth Sahib, and being taught in schools.

On the other hand, Shahmukhi is a Perso-Arabic script that was earlier used by the Sufi poets of Punjab. It is now only used by the Muslim Punjabis, residing in Pakistan. It is also used to write the ‘Pothohari’ dialect, spoken in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. 

Further Development of the Punjabi Language and Literature – 

Though Punjabi does have a rich literary tradition, it only came into existence much later in the 16th century, during the time of Guru Nanak. Let’s take a quick glance at its evolution:

  • The Medieval/Pre-Nanak Period (1300 – 1526)

The earliest written records include works of the Nath Yogis like Goraknath and Charpatnah. They wrote text surrounding mystical and spiritual themes. However, these works were written in Apabhramsa, adjoined with the language of the local people. This admixture later developed into Sant-Bhasa, containing elements from Sanskrit, Persian, Prakrit, and Apabhramsa.

Fariduddin Ganjshakar, a Sufi saint, was the first eminent poet who wrote some verses in the ‘Adi-Grantha’ in the Lhandi dialect. 

  • The Sikh & Mughal Era (1526 – 1818)

During this period, two main events took place – i) Sikhism was born. ii) The Indian sub-continent came under the Mughal rule. 

Sikhism, one of the youngest religions around the world, came into being around the late 15th century. It was established by the 1st of the 10 Gurus of Sikhs, Guru Nanak. He wrote several poems in Braj Bhasha, appended by the Delhi speech and a bit of Punjabi. His ‘Japji’ is a true gem amongst all the hymns found in the Guru Granth Sahib. 

Guru Angad, the 2nd Sikh Guru, gathered all the hymns written by Guru Nanak, and gave them a more refined shape by introducing the ‘Gurumukhi’ script. The 5th Sikh Guru, Guru Arjan, then compiled all of the previous hosannas under the name ‘Adi-Granth’ (aka Guru Granth Sahib). This is the most important scripture in Sikhism that is also the oldest written record using the Braj Bhasa, Kosali, and Punjabi languages. 

Other notable Sikh poets such as Bhai Gurdas also contributed majorly to the Punjabi literature. He transcribed the Adi Granth over 19 years and finally published it under the guidance of Guru Arjan. 

A lot of ‘Janam Sakhis’ were also written during this time, serving as the earliest prose works in Punjabi literature. These were basically birth stories, revolving around the life of Guru Nanak. 

Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th and the last of the Sikh Gurus, brought 52 poets together who wrote Neo-Classical Hindi poetry. These were also written using the Gurumukhi script. Unfortunately, most of them were lost. Bhai Mani Singh, the priest of the Golden temple, assembled the remaining verses and added them as the Granth of the 10th Sikh Guru. 

‘Prem Samarag’, a highly eminent work written in old Punjabi was also written. It throws light on the Sikh society and their way of life. 

This period was also the time of Sufi Saints and poets who sermonized Punjabi. Their works were mostly written in pure western Punjabi. One of the most famous poets from this time is Bulleh Shah, who wrote ‘Kafis’. Kafis were short poems written in classical Sufi style.  

Sufi poetry also evolved under other poets like Shah Hussain, Sultan Bahu, Shah Saraf, Waris Shah, Khwaja Ghylam Farid, Mian Muhammad Baksg, and Saleh Muhammad Safoori. 

Another form of literature called ‘Qisse’ also developed during this period. These were written on various themes like love, passion, betrayal, sacrifice, and social values. One of the most famous quissas is Waris Shah’s ‘Heer Ranjha’. 

‘Vaar’ (sometimes written as ‘Var’) were odes to Punjabi heroes and historical events. The most popular ones include Nadir Shah di Var by Najabat, Chandi di Var by Guru Gobind Singh, and Jangnama by Shah Mohammad. 

  • The British Colonial Period:

The British took over India and introduced their own system of education. This led to an influence on Punjabi literature, giving rise to free verse and ‘Modernism’. However, it was also the time when the Sikhs were angry with the proselytizing process being carried out by Christians, Arya Samaj, Brahmo Samaj, and the Aligarh Movement. This led to the ‘Singh Sabha Movement’ which aimed to restore Sikhism and publish books on their religion and history. 

Later in 1894, Bhai Vir Singh created the Khalsa Tract Society in order to endorse the objectives of the Singh Sabha Movement. He wrote an epical poem called ‘Rana Surat Singh’ which were basically biographies of Guru Nanak and Guru Gobind Singh. 

This era was also known as the Amrita Pritam - Mohan Singh period as they were the pioneers of early modern Punjabi literature. Mohan Singh had a very modern outlook in life and wrote poems like ‘Sanve Pattar’ and ‘Buhe’ while Amrita Pritam’s works expressed the tragedy of the partition. 

There were also several other great writers like Bhai Puran Singh (referred to as ‘The Tagore of Punjab) who wrote ‘Sisters of the Spinning Wheel’ and tons of other notable books and poems. 

  • Post Independence Period:

While other local languages spoken across India were grouped into defined provincial languages, Punjabi took ages to get to this stage. This is mainly because the earlier governments preferred to use ‘Hindustani’, a blend of Urdu and Hindi, given the population majority. The Sikh Empire was in fact taken down during the British rule. 

However, after India got its independence in 1947, Punjabi finally came to be recognized as an official language. And despite all the challenges along the way, the language never ceased to flourish. 

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