|Era||term for Hindustani, 17th–18th centuries|
Rekhta (Urdu: ریختہ, Hindi: रेख़्ता rextā) was the Hindustani language as its dialectal basis shifted to the Khariboli dialect of Delhi. Rekhta means "scattered", and implies that it was not as strongly Persianized as happened later. The term Rekhta was in greatest use from the late 17th century until the late 18th century, when it was largely supplanted by Hindi/Hindwi (Hindavi) and later by Hindustani and Urdu, though it continued to be used sporadically until the late 19th century. Rekhta-style poetry is still produced today by Urdu speakers.
The following popular sher by Mirza Ghalib also tells us that the linguistic term rekhta was extended in 19th century North India to poetry written in the 'rekhta' vernacular (as opposed to poetry written in Persian, then considered the classical language)
Rexte ke tum hī ustād nahīṅ ho ğālib (ريختہ کے تم ہی استاد نہیں ہو غالب),
Kihte haiṅ kisi zamāne meṅ koī mīr bhī thā. (کہتے ہیں اگلے زمانے میں کوئی میر بھی تھا).
The grammatically feminine counterpart of rekhta is rekhti, a term first popularized by the eighteenth-century poet Sa'adat Yar Khan 'Rangin' to designate verses written in the colloquial speech of women. The Lucknow poet Insha Allah Khan 'Insha' was another well-known poet who composed rekhtis, according to Urdu scholar C M Naim.
- Nordhoff, Sebastian; Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2013). "Rekhta". Glottolog. Leipzig: Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology.
- Hindustani (2005). Keith Brown, ed. Encyclopedia of Language and Linguistics (2 ed.). Elsevier. ISBN 0-08-044299-4.
- UCLA Language Materials Project: Urdu