HOME
The Info List - Modern Standard Arabic



--- Advertisement ---


(i) (i)

MODERN STANDARD ARABIC (MSA; Arabic
Arabic
: اللغة العربية الفصحى‎‎ _al-lughat ul-ʻArabīyat ul-fuṣḥá_ 'the most eloquent Arabic
Arabic
language'), STANDARD ARABIC, or LITERARY ARABIC is the standardized and literary variety of Arabic
Arabic
used in writing and in most formal speech throughout the Arab world to facilitate communication. It is considered a pluricentric language .

Most Western scholars distinguish two standard _(al-)fuṣḥá_ (الفصحى) varieties of Arabic: the CLASSICAL ARABIC (CA) (اللغة العربية التراثية _al-lughah al-ʻArabīyah al-turāthīyah_) of the Quran
Quran
and early Islamic (7th to 9th centuries) literature , and MODERN STANDARD ARABIC (MSA) (اللغة العربية المعيارية الحديثة _al-lughah al-ʻArabīyah al-miʻyārīyah al-ḥadīthah_), the standard language in use today. MSA is based on classical Arabic, and differences between the two varieties of the language are directly related to modernizing and simplification, both in speaking and writing styles. Most Arabic
Arabic
speakers consider the two varieties to be two registers of one language, although the two registers can be referred to in Arabic
Arabic
as فصح ى العصر _fuṣḥá l-ʻaṣr_ (MSA) and فصح ى التراث _fuṣḥá t-turāth_ (CA).

CONTENTS

* 1 Classical Arabic * 2 Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic

* 3 Phonology

* 3.1 Consonants * 3.2 Vowels

* 4 Differences between Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
and Classical Arabic

* 4.1 Differences in syntax * 4.2 Differences in terminology * 4.3 Differences in pronunciation * 4.4 Differences in punctuation * 4.5 Differences in style

* 5 Regional variants * 6 Speakers * 7 Grammar * 8 Common phrases * 9 See also * 10 Notes * 11 References * 12 External links

CLASSICAL ARABIC

Main article: Classical Arabic

Classical Arabic, also known as Quranic Arabic
Arabic
(although the term is not entirely accurate ), is the language used in the Quran
Quran
as well as in numerous literary texts from Umayyad
Umayyad
and Abbasid
Abbasid
times (7th to 9th centuries). Many Muslims study Classical Arabic in order to read the Quran
Quran
in its original language. It is important to note that written Classical Arabic underwent fundamental changes during the early Islamic era, adding dots to distinguish similarly written letters, and adding the Tashkeel (diacritical markings that guide pronunciation) by Abu al-Aswad al-Du\'ali , Al-Khalil ibn Ahmad al-Farahidi , and other scholars. It was the lingua franca across the Middle East
Middle East
, North Africa , Horn of Africa during ancient times.

MODERN STANDARD ARABIC

Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
(MSA) is the literary standard across the Middle East
Middle East
, North Africa
North Africa
, Horn of Africa and is one of the six official languages of the United Nations
United Nations
. Most printed material by the Arab League —including most books, newspapers, magazines, official documents, and reading primers for small children—is written in MSA. It was developed in the early part of the 19th century. "Colloquial" Arabic
Arabic
refers to the many regional dialects derived from Classical Arabic spoken daily across the region and learned as a first language , and as second language if people speak other languages native to their particular country. They are not normally written, although a certain amount of literature (particularly plays and poetry (including songs)) exists in many of them. Literary Arabic
Arabic
(MSA) is the official language of all Arab League countries and is the only form of Arabic
Arabic
taught in schools at all stages. Additionally, some Christian Arabic
Arabic
speakers recite prayers in it, as it is considered the literary language , Bibles are written in MSA aside from Classical Arabic. MSA is also used in modernized versions of literary forms of the Qur'an, and some Muslim Arabic
Arabic
speakers recite prayers in it; revised editions of numerous literary texts from Umayyad
Umayyad
and Abbasid
Abbasid
times also are written in MSA.

The sociolinguistic situation of Arabic
Arabic
in modern times provides a prime example of the linguistic phenomenon of diglossia – the use of two distinct varieties of the same language, usually in different social contexts. This diglossic situation facilitates code-switching in which a speaker switches back and forth between the two dialects of the language, sometimes even within the same sentence. People speak MSA as a third language if they speak other languages native to a country as their first language and colloquial Arabic
Arabic
dialects as their second language. Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
is also spoken by people of Arab descent outside the Arab world when people of Arab descent speaking different dialects communicate to each other. As there is a prestige or standard dialect of vernacular Arabic, speakers of standard colloquial dialects code-switch between these particular dialects and MSA.

Classical Arabic is considered normative; a few contemporary authors attempt (with varying degrees of success) to follow the syntactic and grammatical norms laid down by classical grammarians (such as Sibawayh ) and to use the vocabulary defined in classical dictionaries (such as the _Lisan al-Arab_ ِلِسَان العَرَب).

However, the exigencies of modernity have led to the adoption of numerous terms which would have been mysterious to a classical author, whether taken from other languages (e. g. فلم _film_) or coined from existing lexical resources (e. g. هاتف _hātif_ "caller" > "telephone"). Structural influence from foreign languages or from the vernaculars has also affected Modern Standard Arabic: for example, MSA texts sometimes use the format "A, B, C, and D" when listing things, whereas Classical Arabic prefers "A and B and C and D", and subject-initial sentences may be more common in MSA than in Classical Arabic. For these reasons, Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
is generally treated separately in non-Arab sources. Arabic
Arabic
sources generally tend to regard MSA and Classical Arabic as different registers of one and the same language. Speakers of Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
do not always observe the intricate rules of Classical Arabic grammar. Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
principally differs from Classical Arabic in three areas: lexicon, stylistics, and certain innovations on the periphery that are not strictly regulated by the classical authorities. On the whole, Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
is not homogeneous; there are authors who write in a style very close to the classical models and others who try to create new stylistic patterns. Add to this regional differences in vocabulary depending upon the influence of the local Arabic
Arabic
varieties and the influences of foreign languages, such as French in Africa and Lebanon
Lebanon
or English in Egypt, Jordan, and other countries. As MSA is a revised and simplified form of Classical Arabic, MSA in terms of lexicon omitted the obsolete words used in Classical Arabic. As diglossia is involved, various Arabic
Arabic
dialects freely borrow words from MSA, this situation is similar to Romance languages , wherein scores of words were borrowed directly from formal Latin (most literate Romance speakers were also literate in Latin); educated speakers of standard colloquial dialects speak in this kind of communication.

Reading out loud in MSA for various reasons is becoming increasingly simpler, using less strict rules compared to CA, notably the inflection is omitted, making it closer to spoken varieties of Arabic . It depends on the speaker's knowledge and attitude to the grammar of Classical Arabic, as well as the region and the intended audience.

Pronunciation of native words, loanwords, foreign names in MSA is loose, names can be pronounced or even spelled differently in different regions and by different speakers. Pronunciation also depends on the person's education, linguistic knowledge and abilities. There may be sounds used, which are missing in the Classical Arabic but may exist in colloquial varieties - consonants - /v /, /p /, /t͡ʃ / (often realized as +), these consonants may or may not be written with special letters; and vowels - , (both short and long), there are no special letters in Arabic
Arabic
to distinguish between and pairs but the sounds o and e (short and long) exist in the colloquial varieties of Arabic
Arabic
and some foreign words in MSA. The differentiation of pronunciation of informal dialects is the influence from other languages previously spoken and some still presently spoken in the regions, such as Coptic in Egypt, French , Ottoman Turkish , Italian , Spanish , Berber , Punic or Phoenician in North Africa, Himyaritic , Modern South Arabian and Old South Arabian
Old South Arabian
in Yemen
Yemen
and Aramaic in the Levant.

PHONOLOGY

Main article: Modern Standard Arabic phonology

CONSONANTS

Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
Consonant phonemes

LABIAL DENTAL DENTI-ALVEOLAR Palato- alveolar PALATAL VELAR UVULAR PHARYNGEAL GLOTTAL

PLAIN EMPHATIC

NASAL m م

n ن

STOP VOICELESS

t ت tˤ ط

k ك q ق

ʔ ء

VOICED b ب

d د dˤ ض d͡ʒ ج

FRICATIVE VOICELESS f ف θ ث s س sˤ ص ʃ ش

x ~ χ خ ħ ح h ه

VOICED

ð ذ z ز ðˤ ظ

ɣ ~ ʁ غ ʕ ع

TRILL

r ر

APPROXIMANT

l ل (ɫ )

j ي w و

Notes:

* the marginal phoneme /ɫ / only occurs in the word الله /aɫːaːh/ ('The God') and words derived from it.

VOWELS

Modern Standard Arabic, like Classical Arabic before it, has three pairs of long and short vowels: /a/, /i/, and /u/:

Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
Vowel phonemes

SHORT LONG

FRONT BACK FRONT BACK

CLOSE i u iː uː

OPEN a aː

NOTE: Across North Africa
North Africa
and West Asia, /i/ may be realized as before or adjacent to emphatic consonants and , , , . /u/ can also have different realizations, i.e. . They are distinct phonemes in loan words. Sometimes with one value for each vowel in both short and long lengths or two different values for each short and long lengths. In Egypt, close vowels have different values; short initial or medial: , ← instead of /i, u/. /i~ɪ/ and /u~ʊ/ completely become /e/ and /o/ respectively in some other particular dialects. Allophones of /a/ & /aː/ include and text-decoration: none">jīm_ ج as by Egyptians), though other traits may show the speaker's region, such as the stress and the exact value of vowels and the pronunciation of other consonants. People who speak MSA also mix vernacular and Classical in pronunciation, words, and grammatical forms. Classical/vernacular mixing in formal writing can also be found (e.g., in some Egyptian newspaper editorials); others are written in Modern Standard/vernacular mixing, including entertainment news.

SPEAKERS

See also: Literacy in Arab league countries

People who are literate in Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
are primarily found in most countries of the Arab League . It may be assumed that the number of speakers of the language to be the number of literate people in this region, because it is compulsory in schools of most of the Arab League to learn Modern Standard Arabic. People who are literate in the language are usually more so passively, as they mostly use the language in reading and writing, not in speaking. It is also spoken by Muslims in Northern Nigeria by people with Islamic education (especially the Hausa and Fulani people).

The countries with the largest populations that mandate MSA be taught in all schools are, with rounded-up numbers:

* Egypt
Egypt
(84 million; 74% literacy) * Algeria
Algeria
(32 million; 80% literacy) * Iraq
Iraq
(31 million; 79% literacy) * Sudan
Sudan
(31 million; 72% literacy) * Saudi Arabia
Saudi Arabia
(28 million; 87% literacy) * Yemen
Yemen
(24 million; 65% literacy) * Morocco
Morocco
(22.6 million; 68.5% literacy) * Syria
Syria
(22 million; 84% literacy)

GRAMMAR

Main article: Arabic grammar

COMMON PHRASES

TRANSLATION PHRASE IPA ROMANIZATION ( ALA-LC )

Arabic العربية /alʕaraˈbij.ja/ al-ʻArabīyah

hello/welcome مرحباً, أهلاً وسهلاً /marħaban, ˈʔahlan wa ˈsahlan/ marḥaban, ahlan wa-sahlā

peace with you (lit. upon you) السلام عليكم /assaˈlaːmu ʕaˈlajkum/ as-salāmu ʻalaykum

how are you? كيف حالك؟ /ˈkajfa ˈħaːluk/ kayfa ḥāluk

see you إل ى اللقاء /ʔila l.liqaːʔ/ ilá al-liqāʼ

goodbye مع السلامة /maʕa s.saˈlaːma/ maʻa as-salāmah

please من فضلك /min ˈfadˤlik/ min faḍlik

thanks شكراً /ˈʃukran/ shukran

that (one) ذلك /ˈðaːlik/ dhālik

How much/How many? كم؟ /kam/ kam?

English الإنجليزية/الإنكليزية/الإنقليزية (varies) /alʔing(i)li(ː)ˈzij.ja/ (may vary) al-inglīzīyah

What is your name? ما اسمك؟ /masmuk/ (may vary)masmuka / -ki?

I don't know لا أعرف /laː ˈʔaʕrif/ lā aʻrif

SEE ALSO

* Asia portal * Africa portal * Languages portal

* Arabic language
Arabic language
* Varieties of Arabic * Arabic literature * Arab League * Geographic distribution of Arabic * Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic * Arabic English Lexicon * Diglossia * Arabic phonology * Help:IPA/ Arabic
Arabic
* Pluricentric language

NOTES

* ^ Spelling for the final letter _yāʼ_ differs in Egypt, Sudan and sometimes other regions as Yemen. It is always undotted ى , HENCE عرب ى فصيح.

* ^ Pronunciation varies regionally. The following are examples:

* The Levant
Levant
: , colloquially: * Hejaz
Hejaz
: * East central Arabia: , colloquially: * Egypt: , colloquially: * Libya: , colloquially: * Tunisia: , colloquially: * Algeria, Morocco: , colloquially:

* ^ Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
at _ Ethnologue _ (18th ed., 2015) * ^ Wright, 2001, p. 492. * ^ Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin; Bank, Sebastian, eds. (2016). "Standard Arabic". _ Glottolog 2.7 _. Jena: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History. * ^ Alaa Elgibali and El-Said M. Badawi. _Understanding Arabic: Essays in Contemporary Arabic
Arabic
Linguistics in Honor of El-Said M. Badawi_, 1996. Page 105. * ^ "العربية المعيارية الحديثة". _msarabic.com_. Retrieved 2016-08-03. * ^ Farghaly, A., Shaalan, K. Arabic
Arabic
Natural Language Processing: Challenges and Solutions, ACM Transactions on Asian Language Information Processing (TALIP), the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM), 8(4)1-22, December 2009. * ^ Alan S. Kaye (1991). "The Hamzat al-Waṣl in Contemporary Modern Standard Arabic". _Journal of the American Oriental Society_. American Oriental Society. 111 (3): 572–574. JSTOR 604273 . doi :10.2307/604273 . * ^ http://www.londonarabictuition.com/lessons.php?type=2 London Arabic
Arabic
Tuition * ^ https://asianabsolute.co.uk/arabic-language-dialects/ Arabic Language Dialects * ^ Wolfdietrich Fischer. 1997. "Classical Arabic," _The Semitic Languages_. London: Routledge. Pg 189. * ^ Watson (2002 :16) * ^ "العربية المعيارية الحديثة". _msarabic.com_. Retrieved 2016-08-22. * ^ الأرابيك, مؤسسة. "الدراسة". _msarabic.com_. Retrieved 2016-08-22. * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ Arabic, AL. "White Paper". _msarabic.com_. Retrieved 2016-08-22. * ^ محمد, د. علي. "ورقة عمل حول التعريب اللفظي في اللغة العربية". _al-arabic.com_. Retrieved 2016-08-22. * ^ Official Egyptian Population clock * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ _E_ _F_ _G_ _H_ The World Factbook. Cia.gov. Retrieved on 2014-04-28. * ^ Population of Algeria
Algeria
by CIA World Factbook * ^ _A_ _B_ _C_ _D_ "World Population Prospects, Table A.1" (PDF). 2008 revision. United Nations
United Nations
Department of Economic and Social Affairs . 2009: 17. Retrieved 22 September 2010. * ^ http://www.cbs.gov.sd 2008 Sudanese census * ^ Population of Marocco by CIA World Factbook

REFERENCES

* Holes, Clive (2004) Modern Arabic: Structures, Functions, and Varieties Georgetown University Press. ISBN 1-58901-022-1

EXTERNAL LINKS

_ Look up CLASSICAL ARABIC _ in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

_ Look up MODERN STANDARD ARABIC _ in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

_ Look up FUS-HA _ in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.

* Modern Standard Arabic * Online Classical Arabic Reader * Learn Arabic
Arabic
WikiBook * Yamli Editor - The Smart Arabic
Arabic
Keyboard (with automatic conversions and dictionary for better selections) * Rule-based analysis and generation of Modern Standard Arabic

LINKS TO RELATED ARTICLES

*

.