<< Previous

Final Spelling Rules

In this lesson we'll cover a few more spelling rules you'll need under your belt to read any Hindi you come across.

Anusvaar (N Dot)
A dot call Anusvaar above a consonant can be used to represent an "N" before the consonant. This means you can spell words using either conjuncts with "N" or with Anusvaar. A common example of this is the word Hindi.

Hindii

(notice the dot)

Both ways of spelling Hindi are considered correct. You will see Anusvaar used quite often.

Chandrabindu (Moon Dot)
Say the vowel "a". Now pinch your nose and say it again. This is a "Nasalised" vowel. The Hindi vowels can be Nasalised by putting a Chandrabindu over the vowel. Chandrabindu means Moon Dot and it is a little crescent shape with a dot on top.

If there is already some diacritics above the line due to vowels then it is too crowded to fit the Chandrabindu so it gets simplified to just a dot (Bindu). This will of course make things confusing for you as a beginner because you won't be sure if the dot represents an Anuusvar or a Chandrabindu.

Bindu Chandrabindu


For transliteration purposes Nasalised vowels are usually indicated with a Tilda over them, though sometimes they are written with an "n" after them.

Here are the regular vowels side-by-side with their Nasalised versions:

NormalNasal
 
a
a
ã
aa
aa
ãã
i
i
ĩ
ii
ii
ĩĩ
u
u
ũ
uu
uu
ũũ
e
e
ai
ai
ãĩ
o
o
õ
au
au
ãũ


Silent Vowel
You know that each Consonant has an inherent vowel of "a". However there are a couple of cases where this inherent vowel are not pronounced.

Word Endings:
When the last letter in a word is a consonant the inherent final vowel is usually not pronounced.

Mountain

parvat

There are a few exceptions, notably short words or words ending in Conjuncts that are made easier to pronounce by including the final "a" sound.


Silent Middle:
The inherent vowel between the 2nd consonant and 3rd consonant is usually not pronounced.
Girl

larkii
This tends to happen if the 3rd consonant is a Conjunct or if it has a vowel specified.