Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics

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Subject: Language and Linguistics

Managing Editors Online Edition: Lutz Edzard and Rudolf de Jong

The Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics Online comprehensively covers all aspects of Arabic languages and linguistics. It is interdisciplinary in scope and represents different schools and approaches in order to be as objective and versatile as possible. The Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics Online is cross-searchable and cross-referenced, and is equipped with a browsable index. All relevant fields in Arabic linguistics, both general and language specific are covered and the Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics Online includes topics from interdisciplinary fields, such as anthropology, psychology, sociology, philosophy, and computer science.

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Cairo Arabic

(6,132 words)

Author(s): Manfred Woidich
1. General Cairo Arabic, often simply called Egyptian Arabic, is the main linguistic vehicle used all over Egypt. Originally the dialect of the capital Cairo, it is being adopted by millions of speakers all over Egypt, in particular in urban areas, as a language of daily life. The number of native speakers is also several millions. The variety described here is spoken by the middle class as it is also commonly heard in the media (radio, television, movies). Owing to the cultural export of Egypt to other Arab countries, Cairo Arabic is widely understood in the whole Arab world. Cairo Arabic is…

Cameroon Arabic

(4,152 words)

Author(s): George Echu
1. Language situation in Cameroon Cameroon is a highly dense multilingual country in which 279 indigenous languages (cf. Ethnologue 2004) belonging to three different African language families (the Nilo-Saharan, the Afro-Asiatic, and the Niger-Congo) are spoken. Onto this already complex linguistic situation have been superimposed English and French, the two official languages of colonial heritage, and Cameroon Pidgin English, the leading lingua franca in the country. With a population of about 16,184,748 inhabitants (July 2002 estimate), Cameroon is by a…

Caretaker Talk

(2,897 words)

Author(s): Khawla Aljenaie
1. Definition The term ‘ caretaker talk’ is used in the areas of developmental psycholinguistics and first language acquisition to describe the language adults use to address young children, and sometimes that of an older to a younger child. It is a register distinct from adult-adult speech (Snow 1986) and describes the modifications found in adult-child speech. It is also known as ‘child directed speech’ and as ‘caregiver’ or ‘caretaker language’. Some researchers have used ‘ motherese’ to refer to the language used by mothers, as if only mothers use a special way of a…

Case Roles

(2,824 words)

Author(s): Hussein Abdul-Raof
Case roles are part of the case grammar hypothesis, which is based on Fillmore's use of case relations for semantic functions. A proposition consists of a verb and a set of case phrases, each of which includes a case ‘flag’ (Latin casus) and a noun phrase. There is, however, little agreement on the set of case roles and their nature. At times, some case roles are inconsistently interchanged with each other and at other times their features differ from one linguist to another. Fillmore's case grammar evolved as an alternative to the kind of transform…

Case Theory

(3,850 words)

Author(s): Mark S. LeTourneau
The medieval grammarians posited that each case is assigned under government; nominative and accusative cases in (1) are assigned by the verb kataba, and genitive case by the preposition ( ʿamal ). Each case is associated with a set of syntactic and semantic (participant) roles that a noun phrase (NP) may bear. In general, nominative case is assigned to subjects of root clauses (Abdul-Raof 2001:109–110), accusative case to objects (direct and indirect) of verbs, and genitive case to objects of prepositions (Gaballa 1986:54–56). It should b…


(1,027 words)

Author(s): Yishai Peled
Whereas sentences (1) are simple, sentences (2) are complex sentences introduced by a clause rather than by a verb or a phrase. What is common to all six sentences above is that they display a non-basic constituent order. Indeed, one may argue based on the above data that cataphoric pronouns in written Arabic are restricted to topical constituents. Both ṣadīqa-hu in (1a) and the adverbial constituent in (1c) function as topics, whereas in (1b) ṣadīqa-hu is topical relative to zayd. Similarly, in (2) the introductory clause in each of the sentences functions as topic with r…


(3,061 words)

Author(s): Adrian Macelaru
1. Defining the causative construction The causative construction is a linguistic structure rendering an event viewed by the speaker as being causally dependent on some other event, although not overtly specified (Kemmer and Verhagen 1994:117). Accordingly, the following Literary Arabic sentences express causative constructions: (1) jaʿala zaydun hindan taktubu ‘Zayd made Hind write’ (2) ʾajlastu-hu ‘I made him sit down’ (3) kasarta l-ġuṣna ‘you broke the branch’ All of these sentences involve events (Hind's writing, his sitting down, the branch breaking) broug…

C (Cachia, Pierre J.E. - Christie, W.)

(2,012 words)

Cachia, Pierre J.E. Ḥāl, Interjection, Istiṯnāʾ, Majāz Cadora, Frederic J. Bedouinization, Hamza caesura Rhyme Caetani, Leone Nisba, Proper Names, Proper Names Čagatay → Chagatay Cairene Arabic Adverbs, Argument, Article, Indefinite, Bedouinization, Beirut Arabic, Bʿēri Arabic, Bʿēri Arabic, Bʿēri Arabic, Binding, Cairo Arabic, Classicism, Colloquial, Colloquial, Communal Dialects, Convergence, Demonstratives, Dialect Geography, Dialect Koine, Dialects: Classification, Dialects: Classification, Diathesis, Educated Arab…

C (Christmann, Jakob - compound, verbal)

(1,804 words)

Christmann, Jakob Arabic Studies in Europe Chtatou, Mohamed Berber Loanwords Chugtai, Shaheen Language Policies and Language Planning, Language Policies and Language Planning Church Slavonic, Old Slavonic Languages church, Latin Sicily Churchyard, Henry Mechanisms of Linguistic Change Chuvash Slavonic Languages Chyet, Michael Kurdish Cifoletti, Guido Italian, Tunisia Cigal Cameroon Arabic Cilicia Cilician Arabic, Syria, Turkey Cilician Arabic Anatolian Arabic, Cilician Arabic, Gender, Possession, Prepositions, Syria, Turkish Loanwords, cinema Convergence, Dama…

C (comprehensibility, mutual - Corriente, Federico C.)

(1,576 words)

comprehensibility, mutual Speech Accommodation, Speech Accommodation comprehension First Language Acquisition computational Computational Linguistics computational system Minimalism Comrie, Bernard Argument, Linguistics and Arabic, Locatives, Locatives, Maltese, Possession, Pseudoverb, Relative Clause, Tense, Tense, Transformational Grammar, Word Order conative Indonesian/Malay concatenation Automatic Language Processing, Automatic Language Processing, Automatic Language Processing, Epenthesis concatenation, morpheme Epenthesis, Phonology concate…

C (corroboration - Czech, Arabic loanwords in)

(559 words)

corroboration Collocation corroborative Apposition, Tamyīz corruption of speech Grammatical Tradition: History, Lingua Franca corvee-texts Thamudic Corvetto, Ines Intonation Coseriu, Eugenio Dialects: Genesis Côte française des Somalis Djibouti/Eritrea Couba Djibouti/Eritrea Coulmas, Florian Indirect Speech Council of Florence Arabic Studies in Europe counterfactual Cairo Arabic, Creole Arabic, Damascus Arabic, Negev Arabic, Palestinian Arabic counterfactual conditional Meccan Arabic counterintuitive Asseverative Particle counting unit Tunis Arabic Couper-…