i have been interested recently to try to learn farsi how difficult or easy do persons who have already studied these languages find the script to read or write ? this has put me off from learning these languages for a long time
Learning 30 or so characters is not a problem. It just takes a few days of practicing it.
As of question, that you can’t get the pronunciation of new/unknown words from the written form… It may feel scary at first, but it’s not a real problem. If fact it is not different from e.g. English - its orthography seems completely unpredictable at first too.
When using paper dictionary, the pronunciation is there. When using online dictionaries, just use the audio-recording for the lesson or separate search in forvo.com to get the pronunciation.
Once you reach ~3000-5000 known words (for Farsi), you’ll be able to guess the pronunciation of new words quite successfully.
Calligraphic forms of the script are another story, they can be reeeeealy enigmatic. But… nothing that cannot be eventually coped with.
I do not know anything about Farsi but I am trying to familiarize myself with the Urdu script, which I think is based on Farsi, and I think it is anything but easy, but I do not think it is one of the most difficult in the world.
On the other hand Urdu and Hindi are almost the same except in writing systems.
Just a small hint:
Learning a new script and language at the same time seems to me to be too much work. Therefore I usually learn new script separately, before even starting with the language.
Just spending some time reading small chunks of text once in a while. Letter by letter, with terrible pronunciation, without understanding what I read. Just to get familiar with the letters. You can even try writing
few sentences in your mother language using it.
Once I feel, I can glimpse over a text and instantly recognize all the letters, I’m ready to start with the language itself.
Farsi and Urdu are based on the Arabic script, of course. I learned the Arabic script easily enough. I found a small book specifically about writing, and it did a good job of introducing it in manageable pieces, giving a few Arabic words with each step as you learned more letters. I later took a couple of evening classes in Arabic, and the teacher approached it basically the same way – learn a few letters and some words formed with those letters, and put some simple sentences together with those words. Rinse and repeat. BTW, my primary target language is Russian. As I recall, my freshman high school Russian teacher used the same method to teach the Russian alphabet.
Some sources make a big deal that there are three forms of each Arabic/Farsi/Urdu letter. I didn’t find that a problem. It simply has to do with whether they’re joined to other letters to the left or right, or standing alone. The shapes are related, and it’s no harder than learning that “B” and “b” are the same letter. BTW, there are no upper- and lower-case distinctions, so it lacks that complication.
My biggest problem with the script is that most fonts render it way too small for my eyes. Reading glasses must sell very well in Arab lands. My biggest problem with the use of the script is the omission of most vowels. I never progressed very far, but others have said that as you gain familiarity with the language that becomes less of a barrier and it all begins to make sense in its own way.
The script is beautiful and fun to write. I don’t know about Farsi, but in Arabic it’s pretty phonetic, meaning that it’s much easier to spell and read than English.