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Lucknow is a city that prides itself on its diverse culture, which is a harmonious coming together of different people, their food, their fashion and their language.

The city is known as the land of adab and tehzeeb, which is pretty evident in the language the locals use. It is very easy to identify a Lucknowite in any crowd because of their distinct dialect and the warmth with which they speak. You hear someone say- hum and aap, undoubtedly the person is a Lucknowite. We area a soft spoken community as a whole and our language too is sweeter than honey.

"Shabdon mein misri ki si mithaas hai yahan"

The language that Lucknow speaks is a mix of pure Hindi and pure Urdu. The sophisticated blend of these two languages gives birth a sublime "boli" popularly known as Lakhnawi. Which, is a more popular and casual way of talking and honestly, just much more poetic!

So, here's an extremely Lakhnawi list of 10 words you need to know for a smooth sailing in the city and to add a dash of 'nazakat' to your vocabulary!

1. Guftagu

Credit: Abeer Rizvi

Guftagu simply means 'a conversation'. But isn't this a better way to say that you were indeed conversing with someone? Guftagu is so much more poetic than saying anything else.

You can use it saying "Kya guftagu chal rahi hai", or "Are ham bas mausam ke baare mein guftagu kar kare the".

2. Tashreef

When you say "tashreef laiye" or "tashreef rakhiye", you're honouring the person you're addressing. Tashreef comes from the Arabic word "sharaf" which means 'honour'. So instead of telling someone 'come here', you're saying something similar to 'grace us with the honour of your presence', just much simples!

Use it as "Arey Tashreef laiye, taqalluf ki kya zaroorat hai?", or "Miya tashreef rakhiye"

3. Khairiyat

Khairiyat is another beautiful word you can use in everyday life to ask about someone's 'well being'. Simply put, "sab khairiyat toh hai?" would translate to "Is everything well and good?", while "Sab khairiyat hai" would be "Everything is well & good".

4. Khushnuma

Lively or cheerful, khushnuma is a word that describes its essence. Something like, "Maahaul bohot khushnuma hai aaj" would translate to "The ambience is quite cheerful today".

5. Nosh Farmaiye

Simply put, “nosh farmana” means- to feast on something. Be it food, drink or any form of consumption, ‘nosh’ has found its way into Bollywood dialogues as well.

"Miya ye Lucknow hai, yahan aaye aur kebab na khaya to kya kiya. Lijiye nosh farmaiye"

6. Lihaaz

Let's be honest we've heard this one from our parents and elders. Every time you put a toe out of line, lose your senses or speak to your folks in a raised voice, you should be ready to hear "Bade-chhote ka adab-lihaaz nahin hai apko?" Need not be said, it corresponds to respect.

7. Takalluf

You know you're a Lucknowite when you hear yourself go "Arey itna takalluf mat kijiye". The word is a staple in our vocabulary and we cannot stop ourselves from using it. Formality(takalluf) isn’t a norm nowadays, is it?

Aakhir log taqalluf hi itna karte hain!

8. Nazakat

You've heard your mother say this, you've heard your baaju wali aunty say this. Nazakat or grace is something that is synonymous to Lucknow. It is this nazakat in our language, in the culture, in fashion and in food that distinguishes Lucknow from any other place.

9. Lazeez

Lucknow is a culinary goldmine; the city has a ton to offer when it comes to food. "Lazeez" or scrumptious is the best way to describe the city's cuisine. So the next time someone offers you a kebab tell them how 'lazeez' it is!

10. Rukhsat

On this note, let's bid farewell, "'Rukhsat' lete hain" and remember the splendid culture with the beautiful words.

Add these to your vocabulary and feel the words melt like honey on your tongue, and make everything you say a bit sweeter.

Ye Lakhnau hai janaab, yahaan ki boli mein bhi mithas hai!

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