Peninsular Arabic

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Peninsular Arabic
Geographic
distribution
Arabian Peninsula
Linguistic classificationAfro-Asiatic
Glottologarab1393
Penninsular Arabic.svg
An overview of the different Arabic varieties

Peninsular Arabic are the varieties of Arabic spoken throughout the Arabian Peninsula. This includes the countries of Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Oman, United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, Southern Iran, and Southern Iraq.[1]

The modern dialects spoken in the Arabian Peninsula are closer to Classical Arabic than elsewhere.[2][3] Some of the local dialects have retained many archaic features lost in other dialects, such as the conservation of nunation for indeterminate nouns. They retain most Classical syntax and vocabulary but still have some differences from Classical Arabic like the other dialects.

Varieties[edit]

Approximate historical distribution of Semitic languages

Ingham[4] and Holes[5] both note the existence of two peninsular dialect groups:

  1. A southwestern dialect group that includes most of the dialects of South Arabia, stretching as far north as Al Bahah. Holes generalizes it to a "sedentary" or "peripheral" group that also includes dialects of historically sedentary populations on the Persian Gulf coast, such as Omani Arabic and Bahrani Arabic. These dialects share certain syntactic features with Modern South Arabian languages.
  2. A central-eastern dialect group originating in the center, that spread with the migration of Arab tribes. This group includes the dialects of most bedouin tribes in the peninsula, spanning an area extending from the Syrian Desert to the Empty Quarter. Its most notable examples are Najdi Arabic and Gulf Arabic.

The following varieties are usually noted:

The following table compares the Arabic terms between Saudi dialects of urban Hejazi and urban Najdi in addition to the dialect of the Harb tribe[6] with its parts (Najdi and Hejazi parts) which shows a correlation between those dialects:

Comparison between a number of dialects in Saudi Arabia
Term Standard Arabic Urban Hejazi Ḥarb tribe (Hejazi) Ḥarb tribe (Najdi) Urban Najdi
"water" ماء māʼ موية mōya ما mā or موية mōya موية mōya
"I want" أريد ʼurīd أبغى ʼabḡa or rarely أبى ʼaba أبى ʼaba أبي ʼabi
"where?" أين ʼayn فين fēn وين wēn
"what?" ماذا māḏā إيش ʾēš ويش wēš وش wiš
"why?" لماذا limāḏā ليش lēš or ليه lēh
"early morning" ضُحَى ḍuḥā ضُحَى ḍuḥa ضَحى ẓaḥa (ظَحى)
"now" الآن alʼān دحين daḥīn or daḥēn ذحين daḥīn هالحين hal-ḥīn الحين il-ḥīn
"coffee" قَهْوَة qahwa قَهْوَة gahwa قْهَوَة ghawa قْهَوَة ghawa or قَهْوَة gahwa
"bread" خُبْز ḵubz خُبْز ḵubuz or عيش ʿēš عيش ʿayš خِبْز ḵibz خِبْز ḵibz
"also" أيْضًا ʾayḍan or كَذَٰلِكَ ka-ḏālika كمان kamān or برضه barḍu كمان kamān or برضه barẓu (برظه) كَذَٰلِكَ ka-ḏālik بَعَد baʿad
"run" يَرْكُض yarkuḍu or يَجْرِي yajrī يِجْري yijri يَجْرِي yajri يَرْكُض yarkiẓ (يَرْكِظ)
"maybe" يُمْكِن yumkin يِمْكِن yimkin يِمْكِن yimkin
"we were" كُنَّا kunnā كُنَّا kunna كِنَّا kinna
"they said" قالوا qālū قالوا gālu قالوا gālaw قالوا gālaw or قالوا gālu
"cows" بَقَر baqar بَقَر bagar بُقَر bugar بِقَر bigar
"neck" رَقَبة raqaba رَقَبة ragaba رْقُبة rguba رْقَبة rgaba
"little" قَليل qalīl قَليل galīl قِليل gilīl
"strong" قَوِيّ qawiyy قَوي gawi قُوي guwi
"talked to you" كَلَّمَكَ kallamaka كَلَّمَك kallamak كَلَّمْك kallamk
"all" كُلّ kull كُلّ kull كِل kill
"got bigger" كَبُرَ kabura كِبِر kibir كِبَر kibar
"he drank" شَرِب šarib شِرِب širib شِرَب širab
"he inhabited" سَكَن sakan سَكَن sakan سِكَن sikan
"he told the truth" صَدَق ṣadaqa صَدَق ṣadag صِدَق ṣidag
"he knows" يَعْرِف yaʿrif يِعْرِف yiʿrif يْعَرِف yʿarif
"he wrote" كَتَبَ kataba كَتَب katab كِتَب kitab
"he writes" يَكْتُبُ yaktubu يِكْتُب yiktub يَكْتِب yaktib يَكْتِب yaktib or يْكَتِب ykatib
"he enters" يَدْخُل yadḵul يِدْخُل yidḵul يَدْخِل yadḵil
"we count" نَحْسِبُ naḥsibu نِحْسِب niḥsib نْحَسِب nḥasib نْحَسِب nḥasib or نِحْسِب niḥsib
"piece of wood" خَشَبَة ḵašaba خَشَبَة ḵašaba خْشِبَة ḵšiba خْشِبَة ḵšiba or خَشَبَة ḵašaba
"she sits" تَقْعُد taqʿud تِقْعُد tigʿud تَقْعُد tagʿud تَقْعِد tagʿid
"I said" قُلْت qult قُلْت gult قِلْت gilt
"he woke up" صَحِيَ ṣaḥiya صِحِي ṣiḥi صَحَى ṣaḥa
"dig" اِحْفِرْ iḥfir اَحْفُر aḥfur اِحْفِرْ iḥfir
"take!" خُذْ ḵuḏ خُذْ ḵud (خُد) خُذْ ḵuḏ خِذْ ḵiḏ
"say!" قُل qul قول gūl قِل gil or rarely قول gūl
"go!" اِذْهَب iḏhab روح rūḥ رح riḥ or rarely روح rūḥ
"leave!" خَلِّ ḵalli خَلِّي ḵalli خل ḵall
"tomb" قَبْر qabr قَبُر gabur قبر gabir
"poverty" فَقْر faqr فَقِر fagir فَقُر fagur فَقِر fagir
"afternoon" عَصْر ʿaṣr عَصُر ʿaṣur عَصِر ʿaṣir
"camel" جَمَل jamal جَمَل jamal جِمَل jimal جِمَل jimal or جَمَل jamal
"truth" حَقيقة ḥaqīqa حَقيقة ḥagīga حِقيقة ḥigīga
"big" كَبير kabīr كَبير kabīr كِبير kibīr كِبير kibīr or كَبير kabīr
"it dried" يَبِس yabisa يِبِس yibis يِبَس yibas
"we" نَحْن naḥnu احنا iḥna or نحنا niḥna حنا ḥinna
"them" هُم hum َّهُم humma هُم hum
"he" هُوَ huwa هُوَّ huwwa هو hū or huw or huwah or اهو ihwa هو hū or huw
"this" هذا hāḏā هذا hāda (هدا) هذا hāḏa
"like" مِثْل miṯl or كما kama زَي zay مِثْل miṯl or كما kima or زَي zay مِثْل miṯl or زَي zay

See also[edit]

Footnotes[edit]

  1. ^ Holes, Clive (2001). Dialect, Culture, and Society in Eastern Arabia: Glossary. Clive Holes. pp. XIX. ISBN 9004107630.
  2. ^ Zhluktenko, Y. A. (1988). Interlanguage relations and language policy. Capitalist states and countries of the "Third World". Naukova dumka. p. 190. ISBN 9785120001410.
  3. ^ Alexeyev, B. A. (2003). All Asia. Geographical handbook. АСТ. p. 311. ISBN 9785897371518.
  4. ^ Ingham, Bruce (1994). Najdi Arabic : central Arabian. Amsterdam: J. Benjamins Pub. Co. p. 8. ISBN 155619725X.
  5. ^ Holes, Clive (2006). "The Arabic dialects of Arabia". Proceedings of the Seminar for Arabian Studies. 36: 25–34. ISSN 0308-8421. JSTOR 41223878.
  6. ^ Il-Hazmy (1975:234)

Bibliography[edit]