A group of language
s making up the Indic branch
, Indo-Iranian subfamily
, of the Indo-European language family
, including Assamese
, the Pahari
group of languages, Gujarati
, the Bihari
group of languages, and the Rajasthani
group of langauges.
The Indo-Aryan languages are generally assigned into three major linguistic periods: Old, Middle, and New Indo-Aryan. Old Indo-Aryan includes different dialects and linguistic states referred to in common as Sanskrit. Middle Indo-Aryan includes both the dialects of the inscriptions from the 3rd century BC to the 4th century AD and literary languages and are referred to in common as Prakrits. However, the later stage of Middle Indo-Aryan is customarily referred to as Apabhramsa. New Indo-Aryan is represented by such modern vernaculars as Hindi and Bengali, which began to emerge from about the 10th century AD.
The languages of the Indo-Aryan branch are spoken in Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. The total number of Indo-Aryan speakers is well over 650 million. There are 547 mother tongues of the Indo-Aryan group in use within the country of India.