An apocope of “courtly Persian,” fārsi-ye dari is, along with Pashto, one of the principal Persian languages spoken contemporarily in Afghanistan (especially in the capital and the southern and western regions).

This language is also known as “Persian,” “Persawan,” or “Afghan Persian.”

Over half the population are native speakers of this language, and it is the principal tongue of the Hazara and Aimay (Chahar Aimaq) peoples.  It is the common tongue among the various tribes and peoples of Afghanistan, and has consequently become the lingua franca for the region.

In ancient times this region was known as Ariana and was, over the course of time, part of the Aquemenid Persian Empire, the Hellenistic Bactrian Kingdom, the Kushan Empire, and the Sassanid Persian Empire.  With the disappearance of the Hellenistic Kingdom, the area converted to Buddhism and to Hinduism, and later to Islam with the arrival of Arab Moslems in 636 AD (year 14 on the Hegira calendar).

The State of Afghanistan was created in 1747.  British influence began to be exerted as of 1837 in the country, and on August 19th, 1919 the country obtained its independence from the United Kingdom.

In 1973 a coup d’etat toppled the monarchy and the Republic was installed.

Five years later communist forces took control, however guerrilla insurgency provoked a Soviet intervention which lasted until 1989.  In 1996 the Taliban assumed power and imposed Sharia Law on the country.

Following the attacks of September 11th, Afghanistan has been a State only in name as the country has become a de facto protectorate of the United States, NATO and the United Nations.