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Urdu is a language originally spoken in the Indian subcontinent.[1] It was first spoken near Delhi in the 12th century.

Scholars describe Urdu and Hindi as sister languages, due to their shared roots.[1] However, Urdu was heavily influenced by the Arabic and Persian languages, while Hindi was more influenced by Sanskrit. The two languages use different alphabets.

After the 1947 partition into the two countries of India and Pakistan Urdu became an official language of Pakistan.[1] However, India has more Urdu speakers than Pakistan, and Urdu's literature has had many writers who were not muslims.

Urdu speakers are now found in many countries.[1]