I know Hindi very well. I can understand some of the words and partial sentences of Nepali. But I am not able to understand full meaning. What are some ways that can help me to understand it? Like I have noticed that the word x is used sometimes, like in "kuxa". I can make out of it that it means something related to "karna". Can you tell me some common differences like this?

1 Answer 1


How can a Hindi speaker understand Nepali?

With a fair amount of practice reading and listening in Nepali would be helpful here. As the old saying goes practice makes perfect.

Are Hindi and Nepali mutually intelligible?

No, they are very similair but no they are not mutually intelligible. However if you learn to read Hindi you can read Nepali, and learning one would make it very easy to learn the other. I would say they are maybe like Spanish and Italian. Sometimes when I listen to or read Nepali I can understand some things or it sounds kind of funny like Hindi with an accent, but its not engough to actaully understand the whole paragraph. Heres an example of Nepali/Hindi with basic phrases so you can see how diffrent they are:

Nepali: तपाईंलाई कस्तो छ? tapailai kasto cha? (how are you?)

Hindi: आप कैसे हैं? Aap kaise hain? (how are you?)

Nepali: तपाईंको नाम के हो? Taapiko naam ke ho? (Whats your name?)

Hindi: आपका नाम क्या है? aapka naam kya hai? (What's your name?)

Nepali: मैले बुझिन maile bujhna (I dont understand)

Hindi: मैं समझती नहीं हूँ main samjhti nahi hoon

Nepali: सन्चै छ sanchai cha (I'm good)

Hindi: मैं ठीक हूँ main theek hoon (I'm good)

Hindi probably has more intelligibilty with Punjabi, however Nepali and Hindi are close, so if you wanted to learn one you could eaisly learn the other.

There are many differences and similarities between Hindi and Nepali, but not enough similarities to make translating Nepali to Hindi something like second nature. It takes time to learn the language and with study and listening.

Hindi vs Nepali

Hindi and Nepali are the two prominent languages spoken in South Asia. Hindi and Nepali are very similar to each other, but they have some differences.

Both countries are multilingual. While Hindi is spoken by about 180 million natives, Nepali is spoken by 13.9 million natives. Nepali or Nepalese is spoken by 70 percent of the people in Nepal, and Hindi is spoken by a mere 41 percent of the people in India. Both languages are spoken in India as well as Nepal. As per the census of 1991, there are 489,578 Hindi speakers present in Nepal. The population of Nepali speakers in India is 2,500,000 according to the 2001 census.

Hindi is spoken mainly in the Republic of India, and Nepali is the main language of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal. Both Hindi and Nepali are Indo-Aryan languages. They follow the same script which is the Devanagari script. The Devanagari script, which is generally known as Nagari, is written from left to right. The order of the letters made up of vowels and consonants is known as the “varnamala” which means the “garland of flowers.” In the Unicode Conventional, the Devanagari is constituted in three blocks. U+0900–U+097F comprises the Devanagari, U+1CD0–U+1CFF comprises the Devanagari Extended, and U+A8E0–U+A8FF comprises the Vedic Extension. The gray areas within these indicate the non-assigned value factors.


Nepali is the official language of the Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal. It was initially called Gorkhali which was later changed to Nepali which is adapted from the word Newari. The language has three major dialects which are eastern, western, and central.

In Nepali there is almost a negligible difference between the sounds /s/ and /sh/, /g/, /jure/, and /f/. Also the sound of “swah” and /^/ are the same. The Nepali language lacks articles. The nouns are either masculine or feminine. Nepali distinguishes between existential and definitive functions of verb “to be.” For instance, “pānī ho?” means “is this water?” while “pānī cha?” means “is there any water?” It also uses numeral classifiers as in “tīnjanā mānche,” which means “three men pointing towards a person.” When talking about an object such as a chair, we have the verb “tīnva ā mec” which means “three chairs.”


Hindi is the main and most spoken language of the Republic of India, but unlike Nepali, it does not enjoy the status of being the national language. Hindi is supposed to have originated in the 4th century. The original Hindi used a Brahmi script. The present form, called standard Hindi, makes use of the Devanagari script.

Like Nepali, Hindi also has masculine or feminine nouns. However, it lacks any differentiation between the existential and definitive function of verb “to be.”

In order to more fluently understand, Nepali, I would recommend reading and listening to this language as time permits. Watching movies and videos in Nepali would also be beneficial. The more one could be immersed into the Nepali culture the faster one would pick up this language as a second nature.

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