hindu once again

iao omar at astro.ocis.temple.edu
Tue Jun 24 00:48:56 UTC 1997

Dear Members of the List:

The word 'hind' is always understood as referring to the region east of 
the Indus, that is India. Both in Arabic as well as Persian it has no 
derogatory meaning. I am not too familiar with Turkish though. I know of 
several Arabs having their last name 'hindi', implying either their 
ancesters migrated from the east (India) or that they had some sort of 
trade or educational pursuit relating to India.

In fact, deriving its significance from Persian, perhaps, in Urdu, hindu 
often meant a 'pandit' or a learned man, (or a long-haired man). But 
anyhow I have never heard (and believe me I have heard a lot of things 
about hindus growing up as a muslim in India) the implication 'chor'.


Irfan Omar
Temple University

 On Fri, 20 Jun 1997, Inst. Of Asian Cultures wrote:

> I have heard, but cannot confirm it, that one of the meanings of hindu, or
> a derivation of it, in Arabic/Turk/Persian language(s) means 'chor'
> (thief). Perhaps that's a possible reason the term 'hindu' is considered
> derogatory. 
> Sushil Jain  

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