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Devanagari consists of 11 vowels and 33 consonants and is written from left to right.
Unlike for Sanskrit, Devanagari is not entirely phonetic for Hindi, especially failing to mark schwa dropping in spoken Standard Hindi.
The term Hindī originally was used to refer to inhabitants of the region east of the Indus.
It was borrowed from Classical Persian Hindī (Iranian Persian Hendi), meaning "Indian", from the proper noun Hind "India".
Outside India, several other languages are recognized officially as "Hindi" but do not refer to the Standard Hindi language described here and instead descend from other dialects of Hindustani, such as Awadhi and Bhojpuri.
Such languages include Fiji Hindi, which is official in Fiji, and Caribbean Hindustani, which is a recognized language in Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, and Suriname.
Apart from this, Hindi is spoken by the large Indian diaspora which hails from, or has its origin from the "Hindi Belt" of India.
Apart from specialized vocabulary, Hindi is mutually intelligible with Standard Urdu, another recognized register of Hindustani.
Individually, as a linguistic variety, Hindi is the fourth most-spoken first language in the world, after Mandarin, Spanish and English.
On 14 September 1949, the Constituent Assembly of India adopted Hindi written in Devanagari script as the official language of the Republic of India.
To this end, several stalwarts rallied and lobbied pan-India in favor of Hindi, most notably Beohar Rajendra Simha along with Hazari Prasad Dwivedi, Kaka Kalelkar, Maithili Sharan Gupt and Seth Govind Das who even debated in Parliament on this issue.