Words In English That Originated in India

By  Shreesha Ghosh

August 31, 2022


A large, colourful, printed handkerchief, usually tied around the head or neck. The word stems from the Hindi word bandhna, meaning to tie something. Bandana is said to have come into usage around the mid-18th century.

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Juggernaut means a huge, powerful, unstoppable force. In British English, it refers to a large, heavy vehicle such as a lorry. The word is said to have come into use in English in the 19th century. Juggernaut's origin is said to be derived from the Sanskrit word Jagannath, an avatar of the Hindu deity Lord Vishnu.

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We all use this daily, but do you know where this word comes from? Shampoo is a liquid preparation for washing hair, a common household item. The word's origin stems back to the mid-18th century, from the Hindi word champo, which means to massage.

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It means a one-storied house with a low-pitched roof. The word comes from the Hindi word bangla meaning in the style of or belonging to Bengal. In English, the word bungalow originated in the 17th century and was used to refer to a type of cottage specially made for European settlers living in Bengal.

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The Cheetah is known to be a long-legged big cat from Africa, the fastest land animal on Earth. Its black spots provide a clue to the origins of its name in English in the late 18th century. It derives from the Hindi word chitraya, meaning speckled or variegated.

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A thick, pickled condiment made from fruit, vinegar, spices and sugar of Indian origin, typically consumed with dishes like pani puri, bhel, ragda pattice and others. This word made its way into the English language in the 19th century and originated from the Hindi word chatni, which means the same as the English word.

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The word yoga entered English in the 19th century. It was originally a Sanskrit word Yuj, meaning yoking or union. It is considered an ancient practice that focuses on breathing, flexibility and acquiring the strength to boost mental and overall wellbeing.

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A cot typically means a high-sided child's bed and is derived from the Hindi word khat, meaning a bedstead or hammock. The word arrived in the English language during the 17th century.

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