An Iranian scholar is working on a dictionary that will contain over 15,000 Ottoman Turkish words and phrases originating from the Persian language.
“I never missed the book market of Istanbul on any of my trips to the city,” Farrokh Mostofi told the Persian service of MNA on Sunday.
“Rare antique books are offered at the bazaar, and every time, I have purchased some of them dating back to the Ottoman period for my library in Tehran,” he added.
“I found many words with Persian origins in these books,” he noted.
In his studies on the books, Mostofi found that there had been almost 50,000 Persian words and phrases in Ottoman Turkish before Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey, launched his Turkish language reform.
“I collected over 15,000 words from that number for my book, and wrote an etymology for each one,” he said, adding that the dictionary covers those words that were more common during the Ottoman Empire.
The collection is scheduled to be published this year in late autumn.
Mostofi said that the Atatürk language reform not only caused extensive damage to Turkish literature, but also opened a literary gap between the past and present.
“Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan noticed the gap a few years ago and ordered to have it filled in,” he stated. “Four centers are currently doing research on the Ottoman Turkish and Persian alphabet in order to connect them with their literature from the past.”