Differences between Persian vs Arabic

Last Updated on March 19, 2022 by QCity Editorial Stuff

Persian and Arabic are both Semitic languages, but they have a lot of differences. The way they read their letters is different, the alphabet order is also different. There are many more differences such as sentence structure and vocabulary. Persian has been influenced by other languages like French, English, Turkish and Turkic languages while Arabic has not been influenced by any other language to this extent.

The two languages are not mutually intelligible, meaning that a person who knows one of the languages cannot understand the other without learning it. Additionally, the writing systems for both languages are very different. Persian is written in the Perso-Arabic script, while Arabic is written in an alphabet derived from Aramaic. There are also some pronunciation differences between the two languages. Finally, there are significant cultural differences between Iranians and Arabs. Iranians tend to be more secular, while Arabs tend to be more religious. All of these factors make learning either language difficult for someone who is not familiar with them.

Comparison between  Persian and Arabic

Parameters of ComparisonPersianArabic
WriteRight to leftLeft to right
Letter32 letters28 letter
Article and prepositionThere are no articles (a/an) or prepositions (of) in Persianthere are articles and prepositions in Arabic  
NounsIn Persian, nouns don’t change based on their genderThey change
Official language20 countriesOnly Iran

What is Persian?

Persian is a language that is thought to have originated in Iran. It is classified as an Indo-European language and is the official language of Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan. There are approximately 100 million speakers of Persian worldwide. The language has a rich history and culture that spans thousands of years. In this blog post, we will explore some of the key features of the Persian language and take a look at some of its most important dialects.

Persian is a Western Asian language that belongs to the Indo-Iranian branch of the Indo-European languages. Persian literature, which consists of poetry and prose, has been one of the most influential literary traditions in Iran. The authenticity and integrity of this tradition may be seen in its long history; it goes back more than 1000 years. For instance, “The Shahnameh”, an epic poem written by Ferdowsi between c. 977 and 1010 AD, is considered as one of the masterpieces not only in Persian literature but also in the world’s literature. 

mehrshad rajabi BRVpzGwNzzI unsplash Compressmyimage.com

10 Differences between Persian and Arabic

1. Arabic is written from right to left, while Persian is written from left to right.

2. The alphabet in Arabic consists of 28 letters and the alphabet in Persian consists of 32 letters.

3. There are no articles (a/an) or prepositions (of) in Persian, but there are articles and prepositions in Arabic. 

4. In Persian, nouns don’t change based on their gender like they do with Arabic.

5. You can use “y” as a substitute for “and” at the end of sentences when you’re writing in Persian; however, this isn’t allowed when writing in Arabic. 

6. The word order within a sentence is different between the two languages – for example, if you want to say “the man saw her,” it would be said as “she saw the man” if you were speaking Persian; however, it would be said as “saw man her” if you were speaking Arabi.

7. Arabic is the official language of more than 20 countries, while Persian is only spoken in Iran.

8. Persian dates back to 600 BC and was written using an Arabic script until the 1920s.

9. Persian has a richer literature tradition than Arabic, with many works that have been translated into English.

10. The first Muslims were Persians who converted to Islam during Muhammad’s lifetime. 

Interesting Statistics or Facts of Persian

1. Persian is the 4th most spoken language in the world.

2. There are 1,000 words for rice in Persian.

3. The first woman to speak out against a man’s rule was Queen Shushandukht from Persia.

4. In ancient Persia, women had more rights than they did under Islamic law – they could own property and inherit wealth.

5. Persians were among the first people to use silk as an export commodity.

6. The name “Iran” comes from Eran meaning ‘Land of Aryans’ or ‘Aryan Land.

Interesting Statistics or Facts of Arabic

1. Arabic is the 6th most spoken language in the world.

2. The word “Arabic” comes from a Greek word meaning “of Arabia”.

3. There are over 100 million native speakers of Arabic and it is also an official language in 26 countries.

4. More than 20% of all books published worldwide are translated into Arabic every year. 

5. The first known written text in Arabic was created around 800 AD by a scribe named Ibn Muqlah. 

6. Arab traders played an important role in spreading Islam to Africa, Asia, and Europe.


There are many differences between Persian and Arabic, but they share a common root that has influenced the languages. The scripts of these two cultures also differ vastly as does their writing direction (from right to left for Persians and from top to bottom for Arabs). Some words in one language may not be shared with the other; however, there is an indication that this can change over time depending on how often both dialects come into contact. Keep your eyes peeled.

Persian and Arabic are closely related languages with many similarities, but also some differences. For example, Persian is written in the Arabo-Persian script which has only one alphabet; while Arabic uses alphabets that represent different sounds depending on where they appear in a word. Both languages have rich histories intertwined with each other through trade routes and conquests. But for all of their shared history, there are still many things to learn about them both.


Resource 01: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Persian_language
Resource 02: https://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Arabic

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