bengali language Bengali or Bangla , language belonging to the Indic group of the Indo-Iranian subfamily of the Indo-European family of languages. Bengali is one of the most widely spoken languages of the world. Bengali is the main language spoken in Bangladesh. Bengali has more speakers-some 190 million-than all but a handful of other languages of the world. Like other Modern Indo-Aryan languages, Bengali has drastically reduced the complex inflectional system of Old Indo-Aryan.


Bengali belongs to the easternmost branch, called Aryan or Indo-Iranian, of the Indo-European family of languages. Its direct ancestor is a form of Prakrit or Middle Indo-Aryan which descended from Sanskrit or Old Indo-Aryan. Sanskrit was the spoken as well as the literary language of Aryandom until circa 500 B.C., after which it remained for nearly two thousand years the dominant literary languages as well as the lingua franca among the cultured and the erudite throughout the subcontinent.

Like Sanskrit, Apabhramsa-Avahattha was a literary language, and in the available records it shows remarkably little local variation; practically the same form of the language appears in the poems written in Gujrat and in Bengal. But the spoken language conditioned by the regional linguistic and ethnic environments took up the different regional New Indo-Aryan languages. The emergence of these New Indo-Aryan speeches was not all synchronized. But some of them, including Bengali, certainly originated by the middle of the tenth century at the latest.


Bangladesh is ethnically homogeneous, with 98% of the population being Bengalis, though Bengalis are a heterogeneous and physically diverse ethnic group. They speak Bangla, an eastern Indo-Aryan language. The remainder of the population is comprised mostly of Biharis and various tribal groups.

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