Valentine’s Day is tomorrow and in this post we are going to learn how to say, “I love you” in Hindi. I teach children I have not been teaching this phrase in the context of romantic love rather love for parents, siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles etc.
First let’s learn the Hindi word for love, pyaar. Click below to hear how it’s pronounced.
Don’t confuse this with pyaaz (onion). It’s pyaar.
I Love You in Hindi For Beginners
For beginners I recommend learning this phrase in Hinglish (Hindi + English) vs. totally in Hindi. Why? Because the sentence is kinda long and a bit complicated for those who are just starting to learn Hindi and have not learned Hindi grammar.
I Love You in Hindi For Intermediate and Advanced
The phrase for beginners is a Hinglish phrase – a combo of Hindi and English. The phrase for intermediate and advanced students is all Hindi – no English. I make this distinction because the all-Hindi phrase is long and can be complicated for those who are just starting with Hindi.
Hindi is a highly inflectional language – word endings change based on gender, quantity, age, formality vs. informality. The all-Hindi phrase inflects based on gender – the verb conjugates differently for male vs. female.
It also introduces more complicated pronouns such as “aapko” whereas my beginner students have only learned the core subject pronouns: mai, aap, vah, vo, and hum.
So for these reasons I make the distinction between the simple Hinglish phrase for beginners and the all-Hindi phrase for more advanced students.
Hindi Words For Love
Hindi is a poetic as well as a precise language. Did you know that there are several words for love inHindi, and they each have slightly different meanings.
Pyaar – general word for love that is used in conversational Hindi.
Prem – pure unconditional love that leads to selfless devotion. This word is not used as often in conversational Hindi, rather more in songs and poetry. It’s also a popular name for boys. For example Prem was the name of Salman Khan’s character in Hum Saath Saath Hain (by the way, a Bollywood movie that’s kid-friendly and on Amazon Prime).
Mamta – mother’s love for her child(ren). This is a specific type of love – the love that a mother has for her child. Mamta is a common girl’s name and coincidentally in the same movie above, Hum Saath Saath Hain, the mother’s name was in fact Mamta – surely planned by the creators of the movie.
Ishq – this is actually an Urdu word and it means eternal love. Similar to the word, “prem” this word is mostly used in songs and poems versus everyday conversational Hindi.
Mohabbat – is also an Urdu word and means deep, divine love – when you don’t want your beloved to ever be separated from you. For example you may have heard of the Hindi movie Mohabbatein which means love stories.
Urdu vs. Hindi
Urdu is the national language of India’s neighbor – Pakistan. What’s really interesting is that many words in Urdu are understood and used in Hindi and vice versa. For example dhanyavaad is Hindi for “thank you”. But in everyday Hindi conversation it’s very common for people to say, “shukriya” which is “thank you” in Urdu.
The written forms of both languages, however, are totally different from one another.
In this article you learned how to say, I love you in Hindi…the easy, Hinglish way that I teach to beginners as well as the full phrase for more advanced learners.
Hindi is a precise and poetic language. There are many words for love that express degrees and types. The most commonly used word in conversational Hindi is pyaar. But through Bollywood we are exposed to ishq, prem, mohabbat and others often enough that they are recognizable.
Wishing you a very happy Valentine’s Day!
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About Samta Aunty
I try to be like the quintessential cool Masi, to all of my students. Smiling, loving, and ALWAYS trying to make them laugh.
Welcome and thank you for joining me today! I set out to create an educational platform for desi children to learn conversational Hindi (no reading, no wriring) and their culture in a fun, no stress, and convenient way. Students across the globe take our classes right from the convenience of their living room!
I learned Hindi at home while growing up in southern California. My parents were amongst the first Indian and South Asian immigrants to this country and I appreciated their efforts and those of the Uncles and Aunty’s that worked hard to foster cultural and religious awareness for us first generation American-born desi kids. Especially when they themselves were establishing their lives in a new country.
And now I’m in a position to continue their work. Language connects people. And for the children I teach I’m helping them connect to their grandparents and other loved ones.