Feb 1, 2017 - Sanskrit was spoken in Bengal since the first millennium BCE. During the Gupta Empire, Bengal was a hub of Sanskrit literature. Bengali emerged in the first.
1 • INTRODUCTION Bengalis live in the northeastern part of the South Asian subcontinent. Historically, the area was known as Banga, after local peoples (the Bang) who settled in the region over one thousand years ago. This ancient term survives in many modern names. These include the region of Bengal, the Bengali (or Bangla) language, and the country of Bangladesh (literally, 'the land of the Bengali people'). Bengal has been ruled by many political empires. It was ruled by the Buddhist Pala dynasty from the eighth to the twelfth centuries AD. By the late sixteenth century it was part of the Moghal Empire.
In the mid-eighteenth century the British established a colonial base there. Bengal remained under British rule for nearly two hundred years.
The eastern part of Bengal, where Muslims were most numerous, became part of Pakistan. East Pakistan, as it was known, became the independent nation of Bangladesh in 1971, following a bloody civil war between Bengalis and West Pakistanis. 2 • LOCATION There are just over 174 million Bengalis.
Where Do They Speak Bengali
Most live in Bangladesh (106 million). The remainder live in the Indian state of West Bengal (68 million). Large communities of Bengali-speaking peoples, totaling perhaps ten million or more, are distributed throughout other states in northeastern India.
Countries Where Bengali Is Spoken
Bengalis have also emigrated in large numbers to the United Kingdom, Canada, and the United States. The worldwide population of Bengalis, including the nonresident communities, is estimated to be around 205 million. The lower plains and vast delta of the Ganges and Brahmaputra rivers lie at the heart of the Bengal region. The many rivers that cross the landscape provide an important means of transportation. They also hinder land travel. Frequent floods in the region cause extensive damage and loss of life. In the extreme north, a narrow strip of West Bengal State reaches into the foothills of the Himalayas.