Learning the Name of Animals in Persian?
Animals? At first glance, learning the name of animals in other languages might seem fruitless because you may wonder whether they are of any use in daily talks. However, if you think carefully you will find reasons to learn at least 10-15 of them in Farsi. Have difficulty finding vindications to learn animals’ names? Here are some hints for you:
If you are not a vegan, then you eat animal products. So you need to learn at least 15 names to buy these products or order foods. Can’t you remember all edible animals? No problem, here you can find a few of them:
Crab, shrimp, fish, squid, caw, ship, pig, hen, goose, duck, turkey, rabbit, etc.
Remember that in Farsi we say “gušt” for meat, so beef becomes “gušt-e gâv” (c0w’s meat) and lamb is “gušt-e gusfand” (lamb’s meat) in Farsi.
Keep also in mind that in different religions, eating some animals’ products is forbidden. For instance, in Islamic countries pork, “gušt-e xuk”, is prohibited.
You may use animals’ names for the time you get angry or annoyed. Donkey, “xar” in Farsi, is the most commonly used word among animals’ names. “xar” can also mean extremely a lot wherever it is used as a prefix. Take “xarxun” and “xarpul” as examples. The former means a person who is not intelligent but studies a lot, while the latter means a person who is super wealthy but usually does not know how to spend it.
Animals in Persian Literature
There are many other animal names that can be found in Persian poetry, especially various bird species, gazelle, and butterfly. In many fables or moral anecdotes, animals are the main characters and they talk together about very complicated philosophical topics. Moreover, animals play an important role in Persian proverbs and idioms, because they symbolize different characters. They can sometimes bring a good luck or a hard luck to our lives, too. For example, pigeons are messengers and symbol of freedom, foxes are famous for being cunning, cats die hard because they have seven lives and they are malicious, butterflies are lovers who are burning in love, owls bring bad luck, crows symbolize death and nightingales sing love songs.
One of the most famous poems about birds is “manteq-ol teyr”, the Conference of Birds, by Attâr. In this story, all birds gather together to search for the king of birds who is called “Simorq”, literally means thirty birds. The birds have to cross seven valleys to find their God. During this journey, some of these birds get tired and do not continue. In the end, 30 birds reach the final stage and figure out that they are “simorq” themselves. The conversations between birds reveal a very complicated philosophy about Sufism and self-knowledge.