BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page has been archived and is no longer updated. Find out more about page archiving.

29 October 2014
Your Voice

BBC Homepage

Contact Us

Elsewhere on BBCi
BBC Asian Network
Panjabi community in Gloucestershire
Elsewhere on the web
Panjabi publications
Panjab Radio
Desi Radio

In Your Area
What do you think about your local accent?
Talk about Voices in your area

Did You Know?
If you speak more than one language, scientists suggest you're less likely to develop Alzheimer's.
Being bilingual 'protects brain'

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external Web sites.
Page 3 of 3
Panjabi today
The history of Panjabi
Names and writing system

More about Panjabi

The writing system
Panjabi is generally written in a script called Gurmukhi (meaning 'proceeding from the mouth of the guru') devised by the second of the ten great teachers of Sikhism. Gurmukhi is a syllabic writing system, characterised by an almost continuous horizontal line running along the top. Like most other Indian languages, it runs from left to right and hangs from - rather than resting on - the line.
Panjabi writing
Muslims write Panjabi in the same Perso-Arabic script which is used for Urdu.

Sikh names
The naming system will differ according to the religion of the speaker. For Muslims, see Urdu names; for Hindus, see Hindu names.Sikh names have three parts:
First nameMiddle nameFamily name
The first name is the personal name. Most can be used for males and females and many end in -jit, -inder or -want. Personal names are chosen when the priest opens the holy book at random. The first letter of the first prayer is the initial of the name.The middle name is the religious name: boys and men are called Singh (or lion); girls and women are Kaur (or princess). First and religious names are normally used together.The family or sub-caste name indicates caste position. Since the Sikh religion opposes caste, Sikhs traditionally do not use their family name.Sikhs have accommodated to naming systems outside India either by using their actual family name or by using Singh as the family name for everyone.


About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy