[ Home ]
[ Language ] [ Culture ] [ Geography ]
[ Further Study ]
is one of the most spoken languages in the world with over 200
million speakers. It is spoken in 24 countries and is the official
language of all the countries of northern Africa, the Arabian
peninsula, and in much of the Middle East, including Iraq, Syria,
Lebanon, Jordan and the Holy Land. As the religious language
of Islam, it is also the second language of millions of Muslims
around the world. It is one of the six official languages of
the United Nations.
Arabic is belongs
to the Afro-Asiatic
family of languages, and is a member of the Semitic subfamily.
Arabic is closely related to Hebrew, which is spoken in Israel
and Amharic which is spoken in Ethiopia. Many English words come
from Arabic. Here
is a list of them.
language takes many forms and can be divided into three main
or Classical Arabic: This is the Arabic of Islam's holy
book, the Quran (or Koran). It is archaic, which means that
it is very old, dating from the late 600's when the Quran
was written down. It is used in the Quran and in the holy
books of Islam. No one speaks Classical Arabic as a native,
nor is it used for conversation. It is learned primarily
for reciting and reading the Quran.
or Modern Standard Arabic (MSA): This is an updated version
of Classical Arabic which is taught in the schools of Arab
countries. It is the language of the news, modern literature
and education. No one speaks it as a native language but
it is used as a common language for people who speak very
different varieties of Arabic or by second-language speakers.
or Colloquial Arabic: There are many local varieties
of Arabic, many languages in their own right. The most widely
spoken and understood of these is Egyptian Arabic. Other
distinct varieties are Iraqi, Levantine (Lebanese/Syrian/Jordanian/Palestinian)
and Moroccan Arabic.
Arabic alphabet is written from right to left, the opposite of
how we write. It has 18 basic forms which are changed slightly
by the addition of dots to make up the 28 letters of the Arabic
alphabet. Only three of the letters are vowels and two of these
(waw and ya) represent either a long vowel or the semivowels
[w] and [y]. Otherwise, short vowels are represented by dashes
above or below the letters, but these are only used in religious
texts or texts for children and learners. Newspapers and other
written materials for adults assume you know the vowels from
There are no
capital and lower case letters in Arabic. It is a cursive system,
which means that all the writing is connected. Most of the letters
in Arabic have four forms: stand alone, word initial, medial
and word ending. Six of the 28 letters do not connect
to the letters which follow.
alphabet is the second most used writing system in the world
(our Latin alphabet is the first) and it is used to write languages
unrelated to Arabic such as Farsi (spoken in Iran), Urdu (spoken
in Pakistan) and Pashto (spoken in Afghanistan).
with Arabic: Please go through this online tutorial
in the Arabic alphabet. Click on "Take the Tour" first
and then move on to "The
Alphabet". Be sure to click on the "More" button
on each letter page to learn vocabulary with each letter.
Try to do 5-6 letters a day and you should get through it
in under a week.
and Features of Arabic script and language. Read this page
from Omniglot to learn the basics about the Arabic writing
system. Includes links to Arabic fonts and lessons. More examples
and historical details can be found at the Sakkal
in Arabic. Numbers in Arabic are written left to right,
the opposite of how words are written in Arabic, but the same
as we write both.
There are many
sounds which occur in Arabic which do not occur in English. Many
of them are pronounced in the back of the throat are are called "gutterals." There
are also "emphatic consonants" which may seem difficult
to tell apart at first, but get easier to recognize with more
practice. Practice listening to and pronouncing the sounds
of Arabic here.
Arabic words and phrases from Arabic 2000. You can click
on the icon uncer pronunciation to hear how they are spoken.
Arabic phrases including numbers, colors, questions and
in Arabic. Learn how to say and read coffee, tea, milk
and a very wide assortment of juices in Arabic! Click on the
Arabic word to hear it pronounced.
links are advertisements and not necessarily endorsed by this
Copyright 2000 - 2009 Plumsite.com