List of English Words of Hindi or Urdu Origin

, Staff Writer
Updated January 28, 2021
english word bandana from Hindi Urdu
    english word bandana from Hindi Urdu
    jessicaphoto / E+ / Getty Images

Would you like a list of English words of Hindi or Urdu origin? These two languages are very similar and provide the origin of many English words. Discover a selection of Hindi and Urdu words in English along with some information about the Hindi and Urdu languages.

List of English Words of Hindi or Urdu Origin

Explore a few Hindi and Urdu words that have made their way into the English language:

  • avatar - incarnation; representation of a person or being (comes from avatara)
  • bandana - a head scarf (comes from badhnu and baandhana)
  • bangle - a bracelet (comes from bamgri)
  • bungalow - type of house (comes from bangla)
  • calico - cloth made of cotton which usually has a colorful pattern printed on it (comes from Calicut, the town in India where this fabric was originally made)
  • cashmere - wool from a particular type of goat (comes from Kashmir, the place where these goats can be found in abundance)
  • chit - a slip of paper; a voucher (comes from chitthi)
  • chutney - pickled fruit condiment that’s sweet, spicy and tangy (comes from chatṭni)
  • cot - portable bed (comes from khats)
  • cummerbund - piece of material worn around the waist (comes from kamarband)
  • cushy - soft, easy; tasks that provide maximum benefit from minimal effort (from khusi)
  • dinghy - a small boat (comes from dinghi)
  • dungarees - pants made of a heavy denim fabric (comes from dungri)
  • guru - teacher or spiritual guide (comes from guruh)
  • juggernaut - a force or institution that is so powerful as to be overwhelming (from jagannāth)
  • jungle - forest or wilderness (from jaṅgal)
  • karma - results from a person’s actions; consequences of actions (comes from karman)
  • khaki - a grayish tan color; a type of cotton fabric (from khākī)
  • loot - to steal, often during a riot, war or following a disaster (from luṭ)
  • punch - the beverage, made from different juices or other flavored drinks (from paanch)
  • pundit - subject matter expert who shares opinions with the public (from pandit)
  • pajamas - clothing worn to sleep in with a separate top and bottom (from pāyjāma)
  • shampoo - to massage (from champo, cāmpnā)
  • thug - thief, trickster (comes from thag)
  • typhoon - tropical cyclone storm that forms in the either the Indian or Pacific ocean (comes from tufan)
  • veranda - covered ground-level courtyard or patio (from baraṇḍā and barāmdā)
  • yoga - spiritual practice involving postures and deep breathing; provides meditation, relaxation and fitness (comes from from yujir and yuj)

Hindi and Urdu Languages

Many Hindi and Urdu words have Sanskrit roots. Hindi is a blanket term for many languages and dialects spoken in Pakistan, India, Surinam, Fiji, and Mauritius. Urdu is one of the two national languages of Pakistan.

  • Many linguists consider Hindi and Urdu to be versions of the same language.
  • The main differences between Urdu and Hindi is that Hindi got much of its vocabulary from Sanskrit, while Urdu drew words from some other languages, like Persian, Turkish and Arabic.
  • Sanskrit is the official language of Uttarakhand, a state in northern India. It is one of the oldest languages on Earth, being the language of the Rigveda, and dating back to 1500 B.C.

Since you have a list of English words of Hindi or Urdu origin, maybe you would like a little information about the primary countries (India and Pakistan) where these languages are spoken.



Hindi is the primary language for several states within India, but it is not the only language spoken in India. Many people in India speak Urdu. India is called the Republic of India and is found in South Asia. It is the most populated democratic country in the world with over a billion people. Its land borders are China, Nepal, Pakistan, Bhutan, Burma, and Bangladesh. Its water borders are the Indian Ocean, the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea. The Himalayan Mountains are partially in India. Mount Everest, which is in the Himalayas, is north of India, in Nepal. Learn more about the country with some fun facts about India.


Urdu is an official language of Pakistan. The country’s other official language is English. Pakistan borders India on the northwestern side and is officially known as the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. It is bordered by Iran, Afghanistan, India, and China. The country’s water borders are the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea.


Discover More English Words of Foreign Origin

Many words in the English language are derived from other languages. If you love these languages, explore some essential and beautiful Hindi words. Now that you know some of the English words derived from Hindi and Urdu, chances are you’re wondering what other terms you use regularly that actually originate from another language. Expand your horizons by exploring a list of English words of foreign origin. From there, move on to learning about root word definitions and meanings.