Persian or Farsi?
I would love to express my deepest respect and sincere love to all of you who have been visiting this site from across the globe and do care for our language and culture, as well as for our country.
I would also love to express my special thanks to those Iranians for their corrections. There is one term they have been focusing on repeatedly as ambiguous or insufficient on this site. This term is the word 'Farsi'.
Farsi is the 'Arabized' equivalent for 'Parsi'. Since there is no /p/ sound in Arabic language, the Arabs replaced /p/ of Parsi with /f/ after they invaded Iran. Parsi refers to Persia and means 'of Persia' or 'of Iran', the English version of which is Persian, while 'Farsi' conveys no message about the background of Iran (known as Persia in history). In this regard, 'Persian' is equal to 'Iranian'.
Today, the Iranians use the term Farsi for their language only. The English equivalent of 'Farsi' is 'Persian' (Like Deutsch and German). Persian has a broader meaning and could be used for all Iran-related items (such as Persian cat, Persian rug / carpet,Persian literature, Persian Gulf, and so on) while Farsi fails to do so.
In short, Persian language is the official language in Iran. The Iranians call this language 'Farsi'. There is one more thing to add to this short explanation and that is about 'Persian' and 'Iranian'. Remember that all Persians are Iranian,but not all Iranians are Persian! EX: All native New Yorkers are American, but not all Americans are New Yorkers! Iran today has wide variety of ethnic groups one of which is Persian. All of these ethnic groups (such as Persian, Kurd, Turk, Balouch and so on) are Iranian.However, not all of them are Persian.
I hope this definition is clear enough and is a good answer to 'Persian or Farsi?' discussions