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check2010

Conjugating Verbs Without 3 Root Letters?

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In the Arabic-English dictionary I have, I'm finding verb entries that don't follow the verb form I'm used to (three root letters with a fatah short vowel after each). Some of the verbs I find don't fit this form. Any help on how to conjugate these correctly will be appreciated!

 

Examples:

 

to step, pace, walk: I see ÎØæ in parenthesis, followed by ÎØÇ and the transliteration, followed by a "u", then "katw" in parenthesis. I can't write the exact entry the way it is in the book due to not having access to some letters I need.

 

For this verb, why is ÎØæ in parenthesis? What does it mean? Are the three root letters for this verb Ç Ø Î? The transliteration given doesn't follow the verb pattern I'm used to, that I mentioned above. What would "he walked", "she walked", and "I walked"? I know that the vowel change to the present tense will be a waaw because of the "g", but because this verb doesn't follow the pattern I'm used to, I don't know to incorporate it.

 

to return, come back: I see ËæÈ in parenthesis, followed by ËÇÈ and the transliteration, followed by a "u".

 

Would the three root letters be È Ç Ë? The transliteration given is "taba", with a line below the t and a line above the a. Pronouncing this does not give me the "three root letters with fatah after each one" form I'm used to.

 

Thanks very much! I'm sure I will have more verb questions, but am limited on time right now, but I will ask them later. :sl:

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Hi Check2010,

 

Welcome to the world of Arabic verbs. Grammar is not so bad. Morphology is killer but that is where the Arabic language really shines.

Almost all Arabic words have three root letters. The examples you gave above each have one weak letter e.g. (Ç or í or æ)

Unlike regular letters these weak letters can change between each other depending on the word. It is important to note that alif (Ç) is never a root letter which is why you see waw (æ) in your examples.

 

This should be explained in The Fundamentals of Classical Arabic.

I use (you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetamazon(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/201-Arabic-Verbs-verbs/dp/0812005473"]this book[/url] to help me quickly conjugate/decipher verbs.

What dictionary are you using? I would recommend Hans Wehr's dictionary as it is structured by root letters and verb forms.

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Hi again Check2010.

 

If you are serious about the Arabic language have consider taking one of these courses. I have taken some of them and found them to be brilliant though a bit pricey: (you are not allowed to post links yet)"you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetsunnipath(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/Curriculum/Miftah/"]you can't post links until you reach 50 posts_you are not allowed to post links yetsunnipath(contact admin if its a beneficial link)/Curriculum/Miftah/[/url]

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Thanks for the timely response Aussie :sl:

 

I am indeed using Hans Wehr's dictionary - I'm borrowing it from my Arabic professor. My professor actually gave me a copy of Harrap's Pocket Guide to the Arabic Language, which I saw from the contents goes over weak and hollow verbs. At the present time, I have very little knowledge of them, but I'll be sure to reference that part of the guide when I am around it next (it's in my dorm, and I'm at home for the weekend).

 

You said that almost all Arabic verbs have three root letters. While I don't have a particular example right now, what if I came across a verb such as "kanima". Now I have no idea if that is a real verb, but let's say that it is. I would expect the verb to instead be "kanama". Would I still treat "kanima" is "he blank-ed", and conjugate it just as I would "kanama"?

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I dont know what that verb means but for illustration purposes I will have a go at explaining.

 

On your Hans Wehr you will notice roman numerals (e.g I = blah blah IV = blah blah X - Blah) these Roman numerals indicate the form of the verb. You will learn about that later. What you need to know now is their are six types of form one verb. I am sure there is chart in you "The Fundamentals of Classical Arabic" book. These verbs each have slightly different haraka for both the past tense and the present tense forms.

So it is possible that you may find past tense verbs like this:

 

kanima - kasra in middle

kanama - fatah in middle

kanuma - domma in middle

 

The good news is they all follow the same form I pattern I am sure you have memorised :sl:

e.g.

Kanima (3MS) - Kanimaa (3M2)- Kanimu (3MP) - Kanimat (3FS) - kanimata (3F2) etc.

Kanama (3MS) - Kanamaa (3M2)- Kanamu (3MP) - Kanamat (3FS) - kanamata (3F2) etc.

Kanuma (3MS) - Kanumaa (3M2)- Kanumu (3MP) - Kanumat (3FS) - kanumata (3F2) etc.

 

You will notice that only the end case changes and can have a letter added. Grammar usually only changes the end of words.

Edited by Aussie

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I see! Thank you. Another question regarding Hans Wehr's dictionary:

 

Let's take "to muddle, to confuse" for example, as it seems to apply here :sl: The word is "rabaka." In the dictionary, it has "rabaka u." I have no problem with that as I know what it means. That means that the present tense will be "he confuses" = "yarbuk", "she confuses" = "tarbuk", and "I confuse" = "Arbuk." Then, in parenthesis, it has rabk. I'm not sure what this (rabk) means. Is it the verbal noun? This is on page 323 of the first volume of the dictionary, or at least of the publication I have.

 

Of course, saying "I was confused" or "I am confused" is something entirely different. I'm assuming there's a word for "confused" and I'd simply conjugate the verb "to be" to fit the scenario.

 

:sl:

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Sounds like rabk is the verbal noun or rabkun (if last haraka pronounced).

Regarding "I was confused" and "I am confused" you would use the passive voice verb

 

e.g.

Fa-a-la = he did

Fu-i-la = it was done

 

rabaktu = I confused

rubaktu = I was confused

 

I think that is right but rabaktuhu (it confused me)

Edited by Aussie

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