ABŪZAYDĀBĀDĪ (Būzābādī for short), a variety of the local dialects of Kāšān province, spoken in the village of Abūzaydābād and its farms, and belonging to the Central or Median group of Iranian dialects. In general features, Abūzaydābādī resembles Abyānaʾī (q.v., as a sample of the Kāšān province local dialects). In phonology, worthy of note is the ž < original j (Ir. ǰ, IE. g2, gh2), which shows considerable variety in Kāšānī dialects (y in Arānī-Bīdgolī and Qohrūdī; ǰ in Jewish Kāšānī, Bādrūdī, Abyānaʾī, and Jowšaqānī); e.g., žan “wife;” `ūya “alive.”

The nominal system is based on two genders, masc. and fem., two numbers, sing. and plur. and generally one case. Substantives do not show grammatical gender formally, but only through the accord of adjectives (marked by -a and -e for masc. and fem., respectively); demonstrative adjectives, which are used also as demonstrative and personal pronouns (ne/nem for the proximate and na/nön for the remote); and the 3rd pers. sing. of the simple past tenses of verbs, which distinguish the gender, e.g., bar görd-a bar-kat “the big door (masc.) fell,” nač-e doča dar-kat-a “the nice girl fell.” The perfect and the pluperfect distinguish the gender also in 1st and 2nd pers. sing., the past participle used in these tenses taking -a for masc. and -e for the fem. and plur., e.g., ba-kata-y-o/ba-kat-e-y-o “I have fallen (masc./fem.).” In the past transitive verbs which have an ergative construction, sing. verbs accord in gender with their logical object in careful speech, e.g., i esba-m beköšta/i xarguš-am beköšte “I have killed a dog (masc.)/a hare (fem.).” In practice this accord is often ignored, particularly with inanimate objects. The plural marker is -e (stressed) for nouns and adjectives in both genders. Occasionally also -on, the original plural marker for the oblique, appears (e.g., doton “daughters”) without, however, case differentiation. Abūzaydābādī possesses only one set of freestanding personal pronouns: ma te na/nön (masc. and fem.), hama, šema, nönü. The proximate demonstratives ne/nem, plur. nemü can also be used as personal pronouns. The corresponding affixed pronouns, which are chiefly used as possessive pronouns and as agent pronouns in ergative constructions, are m, a, e, mo(n), do(n), yon, -n appearing before vowels; as the pronominal agents of the transitive imperfect, which begins with the durative marker a-, the singular of these pronouns assumes the following forms: m, d-, y-, the 2nd person having preserved the old dental.

The verbal system is based on two stems, the present (for the imperative, present indicative, and subjunctive) and the past (for the preterite, perfect, pluperfect, and imperfect); modal prefixes, be- (of which the vowel is liable to change according to its environment) for the imperative, subjunctive, preterite, and perfects, and a- for the present and imperfect; and the personal endings—three for the sing. and three for the plur. The endings, which are used with all tenses, except the past tenses of transitive verbs, are: -o, e, -e; -em, -iya, -an; only the endings for 2nd pers. sing. imperative and 3rd pers. sing. preterite are nil. The endings serve also as copula except in the 3rd pers. sing., whose form is -a. In past transitive verbs, the affixed pronouns serve to indicate the person. The modal prefix be- is dropped when the verb has a prefix or a nominal complement. Examples: be-viyar “tear!”, hā-ge “take, buy!”, dur-ves “throw away!”; ār-a-gir-o “I buy,” ba-kat-o “I fell,” ba-kata-böd-o “I had fallen,” a-t-amed-o “I was coming, I used to come” (-t- is a buffer consonant). Rūje dö gūsban yon-a-köš “each day they would slaughter two sheep,” bā-e a-sāt “he used to make spade(s).”

Some words of interest may be noted here: may/māma “mother,” dādu “brother,” dādā “sister,” pür “son,” pürija “boy,” žan “wife,” žange “woman,” mālji “cat,” esba “dog,” maš “fly,” zong “knee,” düm “face,” haya “today,” peš “after” (in peš-peš-aya “three days hence”), heze “yesterday,” say “stone,” ved “willow,” piša “bone,” hiye “barley,” bure “come!”, hā-gel “come back!”, dāq na “open!” (lit., leave odd), ves “throw!” čin-/češ- “to sit,” tej-/tat- “to run,” xās-/xāt- “to sleep,” borom- “to weep,” boq- “to hit,” veh-/vat- “to weave,” yüž-/yöš- “to find,” xmar- “to break,” ren-/rid- “to buy.”

See also Central Dialects


Pierre Lecoq, “Le dialect d’Abu Zeyd Ābād,” Acta Iranica 5, 1975, pp. 15-38.

The general features of Kāšān dialects are discussed in K. J. Krahnke, “Linguistic Relationships in Central Iran,” doctoral dissertation, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, 1976 (unpubl.).

(E. Yarshater)

Originally Published: December 15, 1983

Last Updated: July 21, 2011

This article is available in print.
Vol. I, Fasc. 4, pp. 401-402

Cite this entry:

E. Yarshater, “ABŪZAYDĀBĀDĪ,” Encyclopædia Iranica, I/4, pp. 401-402; an updated version is available online at http://www.iranicaonline.org/articles/abuzaydabadi (accessed on 31 January 2014).