We have 179 languages and 544 dialects in our country. Gor Banjara people call their dialect as Gor Boli or Gormati. Almost 2 crore people speak Gormati dialect in India today. It is spoken in about 17 provinces. Gor Banjara have also learned the language of other provinces and still maintained their own Gor dialect. Even today a Gor Banjara speaks in Gor Boli with another fellow of his community. Gor Banjara does not have a separate script. It can be written in the regional scripts. It is possible that Gor Banjara is one of the ancient dialects. It might have been derived from Sanskrit, Prakrit and Shaurseni. While researching on the origin of the dialect we need to study its original place and geographical area. The main and sub-language of the region certainly affects any other dialect. Likewise the effect of Rajasthani Dingle-Pingle language and Marwari language is seen on Gor Boli. Gorvamshiya ruled the mountain regions for many years. Since this mountain region was near Malwa–Nimad region the effect of Marwari, Gujrathi and other languages of bordering regions is seen on Gor Banjaras.

The folk literature is the sole source to study the form of ancient dialect. Gor Boli has similarity with Malawi and Nimadi languages. The study of Gor Banjara and Nimadi folk literature reveals that almost 80% words from Malawi and Nimadi languages have crept into Gor Boli. Therefore it is clear that the Gor Boli might be a sub-type of Rajasthani language like Malawi and Nimadi language. As per the saying ‘Water changes on 4 Kos (a measurement of distance) while the language on every 10 Kos’, the style of pronunciation changes after a specific distance. The basic meaning of the word is not affected. Dr. Premprakash Rastogi says about Banjara Boli: ‘Banjara tribe presents the form of Banjari Rajasthani. These people are distributed in whole India. The number of people speaking this language was 1,58,500 (page 114)’. In the same way according to Dr. Devendrakumar Shastri, Banjari Boli is a sub-language of Nemadi. In his book ‘Bhasha Shastra and Hindi Bhasha Ki Roopresha’ he says: The sub-languages of Nemadi are: 1) Banjari 2) Kunabi 3) Gujari 4) Nagari. Further the Malawi and Nemadi are related to a version of Avanti (page 283). It means that Gors were living in Malawa (Awanti) region. The dialect, which is spoken there, is called as Banjara Boli.

Dr. Griyarson had studied the Indian languages on the basis of 1920 Census. In it, he says about Banjara dialect: ‘Labhani or Banjara dialect is the dialect of Banjara. Banjara is a nomadic tribe. They wonder in the West as well as South India. Their other name is Labhani. They use the languages of the regions wherever they live. But they have their own language in Berar, Mumbai, Central Province, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Central India. Their names change according to the local names of the tribes. Their language is a mixed one everywhere. As for the form of language the total basis of this language is a Western form of Rajasthani language [Bharatiya Bhasha Sarvekshan, Sir George Abraham Griyerson, Hindi Tr. by Dr. Udai Narain Tiwari]’. On the basis of 1920 Census Griyarson has given the number of people speaking Gor Boli as 1,58,500. As per 1961 Census 42 thousand people were speaking Gor Banjara Boli in Bihar [Bihar Ke Adiwasi, Jiya-ud-din Ahmed, page 134]. According to Dr. Rameshwar Prasad Gor Banjara is a language of nomadic tribes. They speak the same dialect for their livelihood, which is different from the dialect of the region.

Labhani dialect is spoken in the North and Eastern part of Balaghat district (Bharatiya Bhasha Ka Sarvekshan, Dr. Rameshwar Prasad, page 122). The renowned language expert Dr. Bholanath Tiwari accepts a dialect mixed with Rajasthani, Punjabi and Gujrathi. Rajendra Dwivedi in his book Bhasha Vigyan says: ‘Banjara is a class speaking Lambadi language. Lambadi is a primitive sub-language. The number of people speaking this language is 6,28,168 in North India, 74,754 in South and 53,341 in Central India (page 226)’. Dr. Prem Narain Tandon in his book ‘Bharatiya Boli’ says that the number of people speaking Lambadi in India is 3,32,917. A researcher of Rajasthani languages Sitaram Lala has classified the sub-languages as follows:

Rajasthani language: Marwari/Thali Marwari/Mewari/Kendriya-Jaipuri/Hadauti

West Hindi: Northeast Mewadi/Ahirani/Malawi Rangadi/Nimbadi/Labhani

[Banjari Rajasthani Dictionary, page 15]. Hiralal Shukla in his book Janbhasha and Sahitya’ says: The Arya language family comprises Group languages. The Nimadi and Banjara Gor dialects are referred in Bhilli Group.
In nutshell, all language experts have studied the Gor dialect. They have been given different names like Labhani, Banajari, Rathauri, Pawari, Ahim Boli, Gypsy etc. In case of nomadic language the number of people speaking this language is shown different. It has two reasons. In the form of Census there is a column on language. Here numbers of Gor Banjaras have filled in the regional language as their mother tongue instead of Banjara Boli. As per the Census the Gor Banjara speaking people in Maharashtra would have been 13,50,000. The Gor Banjara dialect has not been studied in the perspective like Rajasthani sub-languages. This ancient Gor Boli should be researched. Today we find its impression in the folk literature. There is no clarity in written and spoken form of the Gor Banjara e.g. jem om jem. Here the last syllable of Om is pronounced with a stress in Gor Boli. The meaning is likely to be distorted while reading. Hence it becomes difficult to write Gor Boli in Devanagari script also. Dr. Sitaram Lala has given the map of Rajasthani and major languages in Indian Union. There in he has mentioned the geographical area of Banjara dialect. The boundaries of the place of origin of Gors are also given. The Banjara Boli is spoken with these boundaries. According to it Gor Banjara is spoken in Southeast part of Malawa plateau and North-South part of Nimad. That is why there is not much distance in Malawi and Nimadi compared to Rajasthani and Gujrathi. As the Gor people lived in the mountain of Nimad and plateau of Malawa, there is different in pronunciation of the dialect in rural and urban areas.

The General form of Gor Boli and its characteristics

The strong syllables are used more in Gor Boli like the Dingal Pingal dialect e.g. t, th, d dh, na, lam etc. Words like dungar (mountain), dokra etc. are more common. La instead of l and na instead of n is used. E.g. Dholo (white), Kalo (black) etc. The syllable pronounced for the vocal chord seems to have originated from the nose. Hence the nasal sounds are more in Gor Boli. E.g. Panim (Pani), Tuzen (Tonha).

Gor Boli does not have respectable nouns. Only father-in-law and mother-in-law are referred to with respect. All others are treated with a common expression. Number of words is used to denote a single meaning. E.g. Tandari, Goranli, Beer etc. for wife. Dungar, Gatala, Kholla, Pahad, Tekada, Tekadi etc. for forest. One word may have two meanings, which are understood by the construction of the sentence. E.g. Katara. It means a dog and also means ‘for how much?’ Shall I die? Shall I stay back?’

Owing to the similarity between Nimadi, Malawi and Gor Boli sometimes it feels that they are the same languages. E.g. a proverb ‘Jem Sar Om Sarajo’ is used in Nimadi; the same proverb in Gor Boli is ‘Jemas Sar Omas Sarajo.’ It means ‘try only there where it is feasible.’ The original form of any dialect is expressed in its folk literature. As regards phrases, proverbs, folk tales and songs there is lot of similarity between Nimadi, Malawi and Gor Boli. They seem to be sisters of each other and Rajasthani is their mother. Let us consider a song for child:

’हलो झुला हालोरो’ – Nimadi

’हालर गुलर खेतवाडी’ – Gor Boli

The rhythmic ‘halo’ and ‘halar’ are the same in this song. One more song for children is there:

’इरिंग मिरिंग लवंग तरिंग’ – Malawi

’इरिंग मिरिंग और नारै’ – Gor Boli

The word combinations, akulya-makulya, atkan-matkan, chyaoo-myaoon are same in Nimadi and Malawi. Some parallel words in Nimadi and Gor Boli and their Hindi & English counterparts are given below:

Nimadi Gor Hindi English
स्याळो सिंयाळो थंडकाल Winter
उदाळो उदाळो धुपकाल Summer
आंगणो आंगळो आँगन Courtyard
घागरो घाघरो लेहँगा Pajama
शहर शहर शहर City
महेल मेल महल Palace
भुक्या भुको भूखा Hungry
धापोज धापगो पेटभर Stomach full
वीरा वीरा भाई Brother
धवळो धोळो सफेद White
अंगलाई आंगळी उँगली Finger
घणों घणों ज्यादा More
तातो तातो गरम Hot
अम्बे आम्बा आम Mango
म्हारो मारो मेरा Mine
थारो तारो तेरा Your
छे छ है Is
छेई छेनी नही No

The syllable ‘d’ is attached to show more respect e.g. Ladali-Ladi, Bhen-Bhenad, Veera-Veerada, Ba-Bapudi, Ya-Yadi etc.

The Pronunciations in Gor Boli

Ma, ham, wo, e, tu, maro, taro, woro, yen, won, ken I, oo etc.

Anyay Forms – Oonduro Won, Par, Mai, Upar, Het etc.

Verb Forms – Hansali (to make laugh), Besalon (to sit), Uthalo (to get up), Sowalon (to sleep), Rono (to cry), risolon (to get angry).

Gender Action Verb form Masculine Feminine Gor Hindi English छोरा छोरी अब अब ग़्दृ् कुँडा कुँडी आतरा

English meaning of some sentences

Gor English

तार नाम काई छ? What is your name?

तार वाया वेगो कांई? Are you married?

तु केर काम करेछी। For whom do you work?

तारो उ कुळं छ। What is your relation with him?

गावडी आवगी। Cow has come.

कतरा भूकरोछ। The dog is barking.

कुकडो बाँग देरोछ। The cock is giving a call.

कागला बोलरो छ। The crow is croaking.

The present form of Gor Boli

The prose form of Gor Boli is given in folk tales. Now-a-days Gor Boli is being used in written form. Since there is a similarity between Hindi and Gor Boli, the later is being written in Devnagari Script. Especially in Maharashtra this is in vogue. 3-4 publications are being brought out in this Boli. They provide a platform for Gor Boli through poetry and prose in Devanagari script. The educated people are now treating Gor Boli as their mother tongue. Gor Boli is now becoming a hallmark of Gor Vamsha. Gor Boli is now being used for internal transactions in the tribe. The invitation cards for marriages and other social functions are now being printed in Gor Boliz