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23 September 2014
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Who do you speak Persian/Farsi with?
"I use it when I'm in Iran and also in the house with family. We have a Persian community in Derbyshire and when we meet, we all speak Persian, dance with Persian music and eat Persian food." Yasamin"I use Persian at home and with Iranian friends as well" Farzaneh"I do still lapse into Farsi when speaking to my mother (who now lives in America) on the phone and I do occasionally speak Farsi within my religious community." MaryAbout Persian/Farsi:
"This is language which is from Iran, there are big communities of Farsi speaking people in the UK" Farnaz"Farsi is a written language as well as a spoken one. It is not dissimilar from Arabic as the characters are written from left to right in, what might appear to be, squiggly lines punctuated with occasional dots, above or beneath those lines." MaryHow you feel about speaking Persian/Farsi:
"I am proud of speaking Farsi as it is very old language. It is written language." Farnaz"I am comfortable and enjoy many things which I cannot still feel and understand in English. I am not a part of the Iranian community." Farzaneh"I'm happy that I'm fluent in two languages because I think it'll help me in the future and makes me stand out in some cases." Yasamin"I used to speak Farsi quite fluently to my mother but as time has gone on and I have not practiced my Farsi on a very regular basis, I have lost a bit of the ease at which I used to speak this unique language.When I hear Farsi spoken I have a sense of understanding for the culture in which this ancient language emerged. Persians are extremely generous people and tend to "tarof" a lot: this means that they insist that you do something like try their homemade cakes, even if you don't necessarily want to do so. For this reason, much of the Farsi language is animated. It is a highly expressive language, usually accompanied by hand gestures and interesting facial expressions.For me, Farsi is pleasing to the ear and gives me a sense of childhood solace." Mary
Elsewhere on BBCi
Hamid sings in Farsi
World Service in Persian
Elsewhere on the web
Learn Persian
About Iran, with a few phrases


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The British Isles has seven officially recognised minority languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority languages. They are: Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, Irish Gaelic, Cornish, Lowland Scots, Ulster Scots and British Sign Language.
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Persian/Farsi in the British Isles by Viv Edwards

Persian is the English name for the language known as Farsi by its speakers. It is the official language of Iran, but is also spoken in the neighbouring territories of Afghanistan, Bahrain, Tajikistan and parts of Uzbekistan.

There have been several waves of migrants from Iran to the UK. In the 1960s, most arrivals were students, either of secondary school age or at university. From 1977, in the lead up to the Revolution, until the outbreak of the Iran-Iraq war in 1980, most new arrivals were middle class professionals. Those who have continued to arrive after this time have tended to come from a wider range of backgrounds. By 1990 the Farsi speaking community in the UK was estimated to number 130,000; of these some 100,000 were living in the London area. Other important communities are to be found in Brighton, Birmingham, Manchester, Newcastle and Cardiff.In Iran, one of the signs of the Islamic reforms following the Revolution was the growing influence of Arabic on Farsi. Iranians living in the UK, however, tend to consciously resist the new terminology. Many of the children of the original student settlers from the 1960s have made strenuous efforts to maintain their cultural and linguistic links. Farsi is used at home with relatives and friends, and in religious and cultural gatherings. Some speakers, like Mary above, talk in terms of Farsi being pleasing to the ear and giving a sense of childhood solace; others report feelings of pride at being able to speak both Farsi and English.


Your Comments
What is your experience of Persian/Farsi?

Hamed currently living in leeds but from hamburg
Right now I am 17 and I am speaking 3 languages one of them is farsi. I am looking forward to learn at least one more because first of all people are always going to be impressed by people who speak more than 1 language and you will have lots of advantages for example when you are applying for a job. So I would recommend to everyone to learn persian if they have resources such as farsi speaking relatives or parents. So all in all it is always a good thing to learn languages because it wont ever be a disadvantage.

MM from Birmingham, UK
Once I received a letter written in Farsi (A mate of mine asked his Persian friend to write a letter in Farsi to reply to a letter I sent to him in Japanese as a part of joke.), and I was very well impressed by the way it was written. It was almost a work of art---Spoken Farsi is very classy and sophisticated, and written Farsi looks so elegant and beautiful.

Alireza from US
I speak farsi with whoever is persian,even in middle of my English as a second language class! Persian is a language that born of other language is from.For example, English, at least, has 360 common words which has a persian root, such as star, suger ,name ,bad ,no ,lip ,eyebrow and etc. And how do I feel about being persian?Ofcourse that I'm very proud of being iranian or persian.If I want to talk about history,History will show you that persia had a first and greatest civilization.If I want to talk about what iranian did for the world, I can say the most important inventions such as post system, navigation and medicine, start right in what we call it iran. Our culture, our country, our history and our people,is what should we proud of ourselves.

farid from leeds
I am proud to be persian, our history goes back thousands and thousands of years. The persian empire was the first civilised empire in which influenced the world we live in today. People fail to realise that it was the persians who brought about democracy and free will, we was a massive power, iraq, pakistan, india, afgan, parts of russia was all part of persia. We over powered the greeks and the romans for many years, we were the great force of world. Don't believe me research yourselves its wriiten in history.

Shervin Azita
farsi is the persian word for persian

Yasmin-Nottingham
I am so proud to be Persian. For my Project at college i am creating a Cd-Rom about Persia. It's beggining to look very sexy :D. I think i will get the best result. Thats it for now, tata xxx

ariamehr
i love it and i m so happy to speak farsi cuz i m persian !!!

Bijan from london
The Iranian people are proud of thier great history,in terms of culture and civilisation and I get disapointed when some people think we Iranian are arab i do not want to be associted with them we ruled them under Persian empire, and they enormously affected by the Persian science in particular.So that's something to be proud be poud of.

Arash
Farsi is the Arabic form of "Persian", have you ever known?

Toby from Canada
I came to Canada when I was 4 years old, My mother spoke farsi with us, but it has faded away, I have to say I try my best to speak Farsi I really do, but then I switch back, Iam fourth year linguistic student, So my whole study is about language, I try to speak Farsi Than I code switch, to English I am proud of my culture and language If I have to speak Farsi I try my best to speak farsi if not then I don't.

Mojtaba from Birmingham
Persian is language of the poem





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