Rajpal Advanced Learner’s Hindi—English Dictionary is the culmination of Dr. Hardev Bahri’s lifelong expertise and experience. Dr. Bahri is acknowledged as India’s foremost lexicographer whose contribution in this field is unparalleled. Dr. Bahri’s most important contribution has been the introduction of the concept of a “learner’s” dictionary which, with its emphasis on examples and usage goes beyond providing mere word meanings and actually teaches the use of the language.
The first Indian bilingual dictionary based on this co: was the ‘Rajpal Learner’s Hindi—English Dictionary’ (Rs. 210/-). Published in 1980 and in print since then, it is recognised as an important landmark in the field of bilingual dictionaries. While realising the important contribution that this dictionary has made to generations of students, Dr. Bahri was keenly aware of the need to enlarge its scope to make it more relevant to today’s users of Hindi, both within and outside India.
With this objective of fulfilling the need for a more contemporary and comprehensive dictionary Dr. Bahri devoted ten years to creating and compiling this two-volume Rajpal Advanced Learner’s Hindi-English Dictionary
Dr. Hardev Bahri (1907—2000) is acknowledged as India’s foremost lexicographer. After acquiring the highest degrees in linguistics, along with pursuing a career in teaching, he compiled and edited more than twenty dictionaries and an equal number of scholarly books.
He was invited by the governments of USSR and Germany to prepare bilingual dictionaries for them. He made several trips to these countries and spent considerable time there.
For his everlasting contribution in the field of lexicography, Dr. Bahri was honored by the government of India and various state governments. He was also conferred the title ‘Sahitya Vachaspati’ by the Hindi Sahitya Sammelan.
Hindi is amongst the five most widely spoken languages in the world. It is spoken not only by those whose mother tongue is Hindi, but also by an ever increasing number of non-traditional Hindi speakers i. e. those whose mother tongue is not Hindi but they speak and understand it.
Within India, despite the fact that there are eighteen officially recognized languages and a large number of vernaculars, Hindi is the most widely spoken and understood language across the length and breadth of the country. Declaration of Hindi as the country’s official language provided a great impetus leading to its increased use in all spheres of work, and helped standardize its script and spellings.
Outside India, Hindi is spoken wherever there are Indians. And the Indian diaspora is found in every country of the world today. The Hindi cinema has been and continues to be a major contributing factor in the spread of Hindi especially amongst the non-traditional Hindi users, both within and outside India.
Hindi is a constantly evolving language as people living in different regions with India and in foreign countries are adapting it to suit their own specific needs. It is also influenced by the forces of globalization, the spread of English, and the emergence of e-mail and Mobile telephony as the new channels of communications. Thus the Hindi language, as is spoken and used today, is quite different from what it was fifty or even twenty years ago.
Against this background there was perceived a need for a comprehensive, modern Hindi dictionary to cater to an audience comprising of the traditional Hindi speaking audience. As well as the global non-traditional number of non-traditional users, it had to be through the medium of English, the emerging global link language.
Dr. Hardev Bahri, the renowned lexicographer who has more than two dozen dictionaries to his credit, worked for ten long years to develop this Rajpal Advance Learner’s Hindi-English Dictionary. It is hoped that this dictionary will fulfill the long-felt need of Hindi language users across the world.
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