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Egyptian Mother’s Day: From Deities to Mortals

Considering the fact that Mother’s Day likely arose from deity worship in Ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome, it should come as no surprise that we have one day a year where we pamper our mothers. 

In this article, you’ll learn about Mother’s Day in Egypt and how this tradition got its start in modern-day Arab countries. Let’s get started.

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1. What is Mother’s Day?

Two Children Kissing Their Other on the Cheek

Odds are, you’re already familiar with the concept of عيد الأم (ʿiyd al-ʾum), or Mother’s Day—this holiday is widespread, celebrated in numerous countries around the world. While exact traditions and connotations may vary from one culture to another, one thing remains constant: Mother’s Day is a time to honor and show appreciation for one’s mother. But do you know the origins of this holiday?

Mother’s Day in Ancient Egypt

Deity worship played a major role in Ancient Egypt, with royalty and common folk alike worshipping a plethora of gods and goddesses. Many of the goddesses were viewed as Egyptian symbols for motherhood, femininity, sexuality, life, and even death—for this reason, women who wanted children would often pray to their goddess (or goddesses) of choice for their blessing and the general population would present offerings at their temples on a regular basis. Two of the most popular goddesses throughout Ancient Egypt were Isis and Hathor, both of whom had festivals held in their honor. Many believe these festivals to have been the precursor of Mother’s Day celebrations.

The worship of these goddesses died down over time, and people began to transfer their adoration and respect toward their own mothers. However, the idea of an official Mother’s Day in Egypt did not grow popular until 1943, when an Egyptian journalist named Mustafa Amin brought it up in his book Smiling America. The idea was largely rejected until 1956, when Mother’s Day was officially made a holiday. Keep reading to learn what prompted this change!

Today, Mother’s Day in the Arab world takes place on March 21 to correspond with the first day of spring. 

2. Mother’s Day Celebrations in Egypt

Chocolate Squares

In Egypt, Mother’s Day is celebrated much like it is in the rest of the world. Younger children often present their mothers with a gift of some sort, either handmade or bought from a store. Common Mother’s Day gifts in Egypt include flowers, cards, and شوكولاتة (šūkūlātah), or “chocolate.” Grown children are encouraged to go and visit their mother on this day, sometimes with gifts and other times just to catch up. 

It’s not uncommon for schools to hold a special إحتفال (ʾiḥtifal), or “celebration,” to honor mothers. During these events, the children perform songs dedicated to the topic of mothers.

But the celebration doesn’t end with one’s own أم (ʾum), or “mother”! It’s common for children to give cards or other gifts to their female teachers or other prominent female figures in their lives. In addition, some people choose to brighten the day for those women who either don’t have children or whose children have neglected them. They do this by visiting their homes and giving gifts, just like they would for their own mother. 

Because of the focus on gift-giving, the streets of Egypt—and, in fact, those of most Middle Eastern countries—are filled with flower boutiques, confectionery shops, and other places where you can go to purchase nice gifts for your mother. 

3. From Idea to Implementation: The Backstory

As mentioned, Egyptian Mother’s Day was first introduced by the journalist Mustafa Amin but was largely rejected for over a decade. Do you know what prompted people to begin taking it seriously? 

Not too long after the publishing of his book Smiling America, Mustafa Amin heard a real-life story of a إبن (ʾibn), or “son,” who left his devoted mother all alone and rarely visited after getting married. The mother’s heart was completely broken because she had given everything for him. Saddened by the story, Amin worked even harder to popularize his idea of Mother’s Day. Because he was so driven, he was able to change people’s minds and the holiday was implemented in 1956.

4. Essential Mother’s Day Vocabulary

A Single Red Rose

Whether you’re trying to impress an Arabic-speaking mother-in-law or just want to add some new words to your arsonal, here’s some Arabic Mother’s Day vocabulary you should memorize!

  • عشاء (ʿašāʾ) – “dinner” [noun, masculine]
  • الأحد (al-ʾaḥad) – “Sunday” [noun, masculine]
  • ابنه (ibnah) – “daughter” [noun, feminine]
  • إبن (ʾibn) – “son” [noun, masculine]
  • وردة (warda) – “rose” [noun, feminine]
  • شوكولاتة (šūkūlātah) – “chocolate” [noun, feminine]
  • يحب (yuḥib) – “love” [verb, masculine]
  • أم (ʾum) – “mother” [noun, feminine]
  • هدية (hedeyyah) – “present” [noun, feminine]
  • عيد الأم (ʿiyd al-ʾum) – “Mother’s Day” [noun, masculine]
  • يحتفل (yaḥtafil) – “celebrate” [verb]
  • حب (ḥub) – “love” [noun, masculine]
  • فطور في السرير (fuṭūr fī al-sarīr) – “breakfast in bed” [phrase, masculine]
  • كارت عيد الأم (kārt ʿīd al-ʾum) – “Mother’s Day greeting card” [noun, masculine]
  • إحتفال (ʾiḥtifal) – “celebration” [noun, masculine]

To hear and practice the pronunciation of each word, please visit our Mother’s Day vocabulary list

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about Arab Mother’s Day traditions and the history behind this worldwide-famous holiday. How do you celebrate Mother’s Day? 

If you would like to continue delving into Arab culture and holidays, we recommend the following pages on

Whether you have an Arabic-speaking mother-in-law you need to impress or you just enjoy learning about languages and cultures, know that can help you reach your goals. On our website, you’ll find tons of fun and useful lessons, vocabulary lists, and blog posts just like this one. Create your free lifetime account today and start learning Arabic like never before!

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Islamic Holidays: Observing the Day of Arafah

A popular saying about the Day of Arafah goes:

There is no day on which Allah sets free more slaves from Hell than He does on the Day of `Arafah.

In this article, we’ll focus on the importance of the Day of Arafah for Muslims, go over how it’s celebrated, and introduce you to some useful Arabic vocabulary. 

Let’s get started!

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1. What is the Day of Arafah?

The Religious Site of Arafah in Egypt

The word Arafah comes from the word Ta’aruf, which means “to know one another.” However, there’s no definite information about why this day was called Arafah. Some researchers say it’s because people get to know one another on this day. Others say it’s because Arafah was where Adam and Eve met for the first time and recognized each other after being sent down to reside on Earth.

The Day of Arafah, sometimes called the Day of Forgiveness, is one of the most significant holidays in the Muslim religion. It marks the second day of the Hajj, the Muslim يحج (yeḥeǧǧ), or “pilgrimage,” to Mecca. This is considered a time of repentance, forgiveness, and دعاء (duʿāʾ), or “supplication.” 

So, what happened on the Day of Arafah that gave it this status? 

Many Muslims believe that the Prophet Muhammad gave his final sermon on the mountain of Arafah. This sermon indicated the perfection of the Muslim religion and the completion of God’s blessings (that is, His forgiveness of their sins).

2. When is the Day of Arafah This Year?

A Crescent Moon in a Black Sky

Here’s a list of this holiday’s date on the Gregorian calendar for the next ten years.

  • 2020: July 30
  • 2021: July 19
  • 2022: July 9
  • 2023: June 28
  • 2024: June 16
  • 2025: June 6
  • 2026: May 26
  • 2027: May 16
  • 2028: May 4 
  • 2029: April 23

3. Customs and Traditions for the Day of Arafah

A Muslim Woman Praying in Front of a Tree

As mentioned, this is the second day of the pilgrimage to Mecca. At dawn, pilgrimaging Muslims say a special prayer as they prepare to leave Mina. Before arriving at the holiest site called كعبة (kaʿbah), or “Kaaba,” in Mecca, Muslims gather at Arafah. This gathering place is so important to the pilgrimage that the entire journey is seen as invalid without this stop.

At Arafah, they say prayers, make supplications and invocations, and ask forgiveness from Allah. Supplication on the Day of Arafah, often called Dua, refers to speaking with Allah. One may speak with Allah for help in one’s own life or ask for His interference in a loved one’s life. On the Day of Arafah, Dua is often done while prostrating on the ground, facing the Kaaba. It’s also said that anyone who asks for Allah’s forgiveness on this day will receive it. Muslims listen to a خطبة (ḫuṭbah), or “sermon,” from the Pilgrim’s Imam while at Arafah, which takes place before the noon prayer. 

Those who are unable to make the pilgrimage are encouraged to fast. Fasting on the Day of Arafah is said to ensure Allah’s forgiveness for the current year and the next year, even if they didn’t participate in the pilgrimage. 

On or before the Day of Arafah, many Muslim mothers buy new هدوم خروج (hodūm ḫorūg), or “outerwear,” and pajamas for their children. They then encourage their children to wear the new pajamas for feast night on the Day of Arafah, because this provides an opportunity to teach them about the virtues and meaning of the holiday.

4. Popular Dua for the Day of Arafah

We’ve mentioned supplications (Dua) quite a few times in this article, but what exactly do these sound like? 

Well, Muslims are allowed to make supplication in their own words, but there are a few popular Dua that Muslims like to use. For example, there are many Dua for fasting on the Day of Arafah and for breaking fasts (such as the fast of Ramadan). 

Possibly the most popular Dua on the Day of Arafah, though, is:

There is absolutely no god worthy of being worshipped except Allah, Alone, without any partner. To Him belongs the Kingdom, and all praise is due to Him, and He is Powerful over everything.

You can read more about common Dua on

5. Must-Know Day of Arafah Vocabulary

The Kaaba in Mecca, the Holiest Muslim Site

Let’s review some of the vocabulary words and phrases from this article!

EnglishArabicRomanizationPart of Speech + Gender
MountainجبلǧabalNoun, masculine
ResearcherباحثbāḥeṯNoun, masculine
Day of Arafahيوم عرفةyūm ʿarafahNoun, masculine
ArafahعرفةʿarafahNoun, masculine
KaabaكعبةkaʿbahNoun, feminine
RiteمنسكmansakNoun, masculine
SacrosanctحرمḥaramNoun, masculine
SupplicationدعاءduʿāʾNoun, masculine
InvocationابتهالebtehālNoun, masculine
SermonخطبةḫuṭbahNoun, feminine
Outerwearهدوم خروجhodūm ḫorūgNoun, feminine
PajamaبيچامةbīǧāmahNoun, feminine

Remember that you can find each of these words with an audio pronunciation on our Day of Arafah vocabulary list

Final Thoughts

The significance of the Day of Arafah for Muslims can’t be overstated. This is a day of incredible forgiveness, a chance to show one’s love and devotion to Allah, and also a time to get to know fellow Muslims. 

What are your thoughts on the Day of Arafah? And what are some of the biggest religious celebrations or events in your country? Let us know in the comments! 

If you want to continue learning about Egyptian culture and Islamic holidays, has several free resources for you, straight from our blog:

Whatever your reasons for wanting to learn Arabic or explore Egyptian culture, ArabicPod101 has your back! Create your free lifetime account today, and take advantage of our numerous resources, including audio/video lessons, themed vocabulary lists, spaced-repetition flashcards, and much more! 

Happy learning, and stay safe out there!

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Remembering the June 30 Uprising in Egypt


When was the last time you thought something was unfair? How did you react?

Most people see fairness and justice as necessary elements of daily life, especially at the governmental level. But these elements don’t always exist or shine through the clouds of politics!

The 2012-2013 Egyptian protests marked a period of immense dissatisfaction toward Egypt’s government and leaders of the time. In this article, you’ll learn about the events leading up to the June 30 uprising in Egypt, the انقلاب (enqelāb), or “coup,” that brought it to an end, and how the country commemorates these events.

Looking at this important, and quite recent, moment in Egypt’s history will help you better understand its culture and values.

Let’s get started.

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1. What was the June 30 Uprising?

A Clenched Fist against a Dark Background

Egypt’s 2013 revolution, or ثورة (sawrah), was the result of widespread political unrest that began in early 2011. This was the year that the country’s corrupt رئيس (raʾīs), or “president,” Hosni Mubarak, resigned after pressure from an angered population. This resignation sparked great instability, and the next two years saw much political machination among various groups trying to grab power. Most noteworthy of these groups were the Muslim Brotherhood and former members of the National Democratic Party.

In 2012, Mohamed Morsi was elected as president, largely due to the influence of the Muslim Brotherhood on the military. It’s important to note that a couple of months prior to this, SCAF (Supreme Council of the Armed Forces) was given great control over the military. It didn’t take long for Egyptians to begin protesting again, in what came to be called the 2012-13 Egyptian protests.

For this conflict in Egypt, 2013 was a big year. Tensions heightened for several days in late June, and on June 30, 2013, Egyptians—both those for and those against Morsi—began marching through Cairo and Alexandria. Close to midnight, the Muslim Brotherhood’s headquarters was attacked by protesters, and eventually torched and looted.

Protests continued for several days, which led General el-Sisi to perform a coup d’etat. Egypt’s 2013 protests started to die down following the coup, and both Morsi and leaders of the Muslim Brotherhood were arrested. Additionally, Morsi was forced to يستقيل (yestaqīl), or “resign,” and Adly Mansour took his place as مؤقت (moʾaqqat), or “temporary,” president.

2. How Do Egyptians Commemorate the Uprising?

A Silhouette of People Waving Flags and Raising Their Arms

There are no specific traditions for commemorating the June 30 uprising in Egypt, though this is a day for Egyptians to reflect on the events that took place.

Newspapers and other forms of media may publish special pieces concerning the political unrest in Egypt in 2013, oftentimes giving a recap of the most important events. Considering the heavy casualties and bitter feelings associated with the uprising, this is a time of solemn contemplation and an opportunity to look ahead to a brighter future.

3. Adly Mansour

Someone Putting a Ballot in a Box

While in office, Mansour proposed amendments to Egypt’s constitution at the time, chose Mohammed ElBaradei as his Vice President, and gave Hazem el-Biblawi the position of Prime Minister.

Despite his strong leadership as interim president, Mansour decided not to run for president again after his term was over, and instead returned to his post on the constitutional court. He was replaced by former وزير الدفاع (wazīr el-defāʿ), or “Defence Minister,” Abdel Fattah el-Sisi in June 2014. Sisi is still Egypt’s president today, and continues to participate in a variety of governmental bodies.

4. Vocab for Talking About the June 30 Uprising

an army marching

Ready to review some of the vocabulary words from this article? Here’s a quick table for you!

ArabicRomanizationEnglishPart of Speech + Gender
رئيسraʾīs“president”N. masc
مليونmelyūn“one million”N. masc
جيشǧayš“army”N. masc
ثورةsawrah“revolution”N. fem
وزير الدفاعwazīr el-defāʿ“Defence Minister”N. masc
متظاهرmotaẓāher“protester”N. masc
انقلابenqelāb“coup”N. masc
حزبḥezb“party”N. masc

If you want to hear the pronunciation of each word, visit our Arabic June 30 Uprising vocabulary list.

Final Thoughts

For Egypt, June 30, 2013, marked a major political turning point. We hope you learned something new today about this series of events and their impact on the country as a whole.

What were some of the most defining moments in your country’s history? Tell us about them in the comments!

If you want more information on Arabic culture and the Arabic language, has several free resources for you, straight from our blog:

This only scratches the surface of everything has to offer the aspiring Arabic learner. Create your free lifetime account today to make the most of your study time, or upgrade to our Premium or Premium PLUS plans for access to exclusive content and lessons.

Stay safe out there, and happy learning!

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UAE Etiquette: Body Language in Arab Culture


If you tie up an Arab’s hands while he’s speaking, you might as well have tied up his tongue.

So goes an old saying about the importance of body language in Arab cultures. And there’s a lot of truth to it, which is why we’re going over UAE etiquette in today’s article.

It doesn’t matter how many times you’ve repeated after your teacher or your textbook to nail the perfect Arabic accent. If you aren’t aware of how your body language impacts your communication, you’ll stick out as a foreigner at best—and actually impede your meaning at worst.

Of course, there are many different “Arab cultures” out there, and each one is going to have slight differences in what’s considered normal in terms of gestures when speaking.

But there are several key things to keep in mind, both in terms of what you should do and what you should try to avoid. These rules for body gestures in Arabic cultures tend to be applicable no matter where you go.

In this guide, you’ll get a glimpse at some of these subtle nuances in body language and gestures in Arabic cultures, and by taking them to heart, you’ll be all set to enjoy truly seamless communication in the Arab world! Start with a bonus, and download your FREE cheat sheet – How to Improve Your Arabic Skills! (Logged-In Member Only)

Table of Contents

  1. Interesting and Indispensable Gestures and Body Language in Arab Culture
  2. Things You Shouldn’t Do
  3. Conclusion

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1. Interesting and Indispensable Gestures and Body Language in Arab Culture

1- The Right-Hand Rule

No, you’re not back in calculus class. In fact, this is a cultural rule in tons of places all over the world, not just Arab cultures.

The idea is that your right hand (or both hands) should be used for everything, whenever you have a choice.

Why’s that? Some kind of obscure discrimination against the left-handed among us?

Not exactly. It’s just that the left hand is associated with using the toilet. Traditionally, in a lot of cultures, you save the left hand for that less-than-clean purpose.

So that’s where everyone’s mind goes when you stick out your left hand to do anything, from giving a high five to accepting a contract.

If you happen to be left-handed, make an effort to use your right hand for giving and receiving things as much as possible. That’s the bare minimum of respect-the-right-hand that you should try to achieve.

2- Smiling

Woman Smiling

Who doesn’t love a big ol’ smile to ease the mood?

Actually, in different places around the world, smiling can mean very different things. Americans tend to wear a smile, practically as their default expression, whereas in East Asia, a smile can show that you’re uncomfortable and want to change the subject.

Big grins are an important part of creating a friendly personal relationship in the West. In Arab countries, though, it’s likely to come across as insincere.

People also tend not to smile or wave at strangers on the street.

This doesn’t mean that you have to give up your smiling habit entirely. Just be aware that the “standard” for smiling is a bit higher in other places, and it might not be returned with the same enthusiasm.

3- Handshakes

Two People Shaking Hands

Let’s dive a little deeper into what you can do with your hands, specifically in terms of Arabic greeting hand gestures.

In the West, handshakes are for introductions and greetings (though lots of people nowadays hug each other, which we’ll get to shortly). If you see someone several times a day, it would be quite strange to shake their hand every time, right?

In Arab culture, you not only shake hands every time you see someone, you do it every time you leave, too!

It’s important to note here that many Muslim women are uncomfortable with being touched by men. And if you’re a woman visiting an Arab country, being forward with handshakes might be taken the wrong way.

To stay on the safe side, you can touch your right palm to your heart in lieu of a handshake, or simply wave hello.

This palm-to-the-heart gesture is actually done by default after the handshake.

4- Man Hugs & Holding Hands

Two Men Hugging

Nobody ever called Arab men distant or unaffectionate.

It’s perfectly common in Arab culture for two men to walk down the street hand-in-hand, or to give each other a friendly hug upon meeting. Childhood, teenagerhood, adulthood—even hardened military men will do this.

Arab expressions of masculinity simply don’t restrict touching other men. Try that in the West, though, and a lot of men will look at you funny or even become quite offended.

So what does it mean if an Arab man doesn’t touch you (assuming you’re a Western man)?

One of two things, really. He either doesn’t like you, or he respects your culture enough to know that you probably don’t like to be touched.

And the signal you’re sending by not touching them—pulling away from a handshake early, for instance, or not putting your hand on their shoulder when telling a good joke—is the same in reverse.

You’re subtly implying that they’re not your good friends and that you may, in fact, be made uncomfortable by their presence.

All of this goes right out the window, of course, when we talk about contact between members of the opposite sex. This same-sex touching isn’t affection, it’s friendship.

Affection is culturally regulated much, much more. Public displays of affection are strongly frowned upon, and anything that could be mistaken for an advance probably will be.

Beware that holding hands is only appropriate in actual Arabic countries (Persian Gulf countries). In North African or Levantine countries with Arabic political systems, it’s not appropriate for men to hold hands as it is in countries like the UAE.

5- Kissing on the Cheek

Two People Giving Air Kisses

So we’ve covered hugging and handshakes—two very important parts of the first impression.

And yet there’s still one more body language element to Arab greetings that can really be a sticking point for some people: the cheek kiss.

It’s not actually a smack on the cheek. All you do is kiss the air right next to someone’s cheek. Men do this to men, and women do this to women, for the most part.

But the main question is, how many times? And where do you start, right or left?

Unfortunately, some people have grown up starting with the left cheek, but there’s just no way of knowing who these poor souls are.

It’s best to clearly telegraph your intentions and always, always head for the right cheek first, because that’s what most people do. Fingers crossed, you won’t run into any embarrassing mishaps.

6- Measuring Things with Your Arm

Finally, an example that won’t communicate bad intentions or start any international incidents.

In the West, we tend to hold our hands a certain distance apart to say how large certain things are. “The spider was thiiiis big!”

In some Arab countries, people do exactly the same gesture, but in a unique way. They measure things on their left arm instead, marking off the distance from their right hand to their left via the forearm.

Interestingly, different people may mean slightly different things when using the same gesture. Are you measuring from your right palm to your left palm, or to your left fingertips? Ask your friends!

2. Things You Shouldn’t Do

So we’ve covered how certain things might be interpreted differently between Western culture and Arab culture.

But while that kind of anthropology is interesting, it’s probably not exactly why you’re here.

You want to know what might get you in trouble. You want to know about body gestures considered rude in Arabic cultures.

For that reason, the following examples are things you ought to make an effort to avoid as best you can.

Please don’t:

1- Give a Thumbs-Up

Thumbs Up

Actually, this is really tricky to say. Widespread exportation of Western culture has diluted the meaning of many body gestures that used to be limited to specific contexts.

So no matter what different sources tell you, there will always be people that take things one way and people that take things another.

With the thumbs-up sign, though, the consequences of “getting it wrong” can be more serious than you bargained for.

Believe it or not, more traditional or conservative Arabs won’t take this well at all. To them, it’s something like saying “Up yours!”

Now, as with the other “don’ts” in this article, the fact that you’re a foreigner is probably going to give you charisma points when speaking with others. Using the thumbs-up is, as I mentioned, quite common in international media these days.

Just don’t be offended if someone quietly takes you aside and mentions that you shouldn’t do it around Grandpa.

2- Point at Someone with the Index Finger

People Pointing at Other People

Pointing is rude! Even more so if you’re face-to-face with someone and you start jabbing your finger in their face.

Perhaps this one is rude for you as well, so you wouldn’t be caught doing it in the first place. What about when you want to refer to someone, say “that guy over there?”

Simply gesture with your whole hand instead, as if you were showing someone the way to somewhere.

Using the whole hand (the right hand, naturally) removes any suspicion that you’re talking negatively about the other party. It’s almost like a gesture of welcome to join the conversation.

3- Slap Your Fist into Your Hand

This sounds obvious when it’s written out like that. It makes me think of some goon in a trenchcoat lurking in a back alley.

However, I’ve personally seen quite a few Westerners do this gesture when impatiently waiting for something.

Staring off into the distance, they’ll swing their arms back and forth, and usually wind up clapping one fist into the other hand.

It might be a baseball thing—as I said, it’s mostly just Americans who do this.

In North Africa and Morocco specifically, this gesture refers to sexual intercourse.

In any case, no matter how much the Arabs nearby are into baseball, seeing someone punch their own palm tends to make people uneasy. If you’ve got to fidget in some way while waiting, try twiddling your thumbs or adjusting your shirt.

4- Check Your Watch While Talking to Someone

Man Checking His Watch

As you can imagine, checking your watch while in the middle of a conversation sends a strong signal that you’re bored and can’t wait to get out of there.

Interestingly, in business meetings, a similar gesture is not uncommon. Checking one’s phone in a meeting and shooting off a quick text isn’t seen as particularly rude in many Arab countries.

Why the difference? The meeting is often a more casual event in Arab society. Using your phone is something that you’d likely have to do regularly during the work day anyway, so taking a few moments to quickly send a message isn’t seen as interrupting any kind of pattern.

On the other hand, looking at your watch is only about knowing how much time is left until something else happens. It certainly happens from time to time, and in a lively conversation with someone you know it will probably be overlooked, but it’s better to avoid this one if you can.

5- Bite Your Finger

You may not have been inclined to bite your finger in the first place. Have you even washed your hands today?

But it’s good to recognize what it means if you ever see it done.

When you take your right index finger and lightly bite down on it (horizontal in your mouth) it’s showing that you can’t stand the situation a minute longer.

Imagine gritting your teeth, but way, way more intense. It’s like you’ve got to bite down on a piece of leather to stop from screaming, and your finger is the first thing that comes to mind.

Your temper is about to burst, so woe betide those who stand in your way.

6- Put Your Palm Up with All Your Fingertips Touching

Man Making Fingertips Gesture

What was that? It’s a stereotypical Italian hand gesture, or perhaps that of someone commenting on a fine wine.

In the Arab world, this is a sign of…well, not quite anger, not quite frustration, but more the implication that you’d better listen to me

Something like that. People pull it out when scolding their kids, when describing someone who really grinds their gears, and even when in the middle of particularly heated phone conversations.

Since it might not be natural to you, try to avoid picking it up unless you’ve really been immersed in the culture for a long time. Otherwise, it might come off as strange or even a little mocking.


Are you worried about how your body language might come across when you hang out with Arabs?

To be honest, you really shouldn’t be.

Middle Easterners are not only famous for their hospitality, they’re also extremely warm toward people who’ve made the effort to get to know the local culture and/or language.

It doesn’t matter if you end up making little mistakes. Simply reading an article like this and keeping an open mind goes a long, long way toward having a fantastic cultural exchange. Start with a bonus, and download your FREE cheat sheet – How to Improve Your Arabic Skills! (Logged-In Member Only)

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Author: Yassir Sahnoun is a HubSpot certified content strategist, copywriter and polyglot who works with language learning companies. He helps companies attract sales using content strategy, copywriting, blogging, email marketing & more.

How to be a Good Lover in Egypt

Click here to listen how to pronounce those lovely words!

أنا أحبك.
ʾanā ʾuḥibbuka.
I love you.

أنت تعني الكثير بالنسبة لي.
ʾanta taʿnī al-kaṯiīra bilnisbaẗi liī.
You mean so much to me.

هل يمكنك أن تكون رفيقي في عيد الحب؟
halla kunta ḥabībī fiī ʿiīdi al-ḥubb?
Will you be my Valentine?

أنت جميلة جداً.
ʾanti ǧamīlah ǧiddan.
You’re so beautiful.

أعتبرك أكثر من صديق.
ʾaʿtabiruki ʾakṯar min ṣadiīq.
I think of you as more than a friend.

مئة قلب لن يكونوا كافيين لحمل حبي لكي.
miʾaẗu qalbin lan yakūnūā kaāfiīīn liḥamli ḥubī lakī.
A hundred hearts would be too few to carry all my love for you.

الحب هو الحب. لا يمكن أبدا تفسيره.
al-ḥubbu huwa al-ḥubbu. laā yumkinu ʾabadan tafsiīruhu.
Love is just love. It can never be explained.

أنت وسيم جداً.
ʾanta wasīmun ǧiddan.
You’re so handsome.

أنا معجب بك.
ʾanā muʿǧabun biki.
I’ve got a crush on you.

أنت تجعليني أريد أن أكون رجلا أفضل.
ʾanti taǧʿaliīnī ʾurīdu ʾan ʾakūna raǧulan ʾafḍal.
You make me want to be a better man.

إجعل كل شيئ تفعله مفعماً بالحب.
ʾiǧʿal kulla šaīʾin tafʿaluhu mufʿaman bilḥubbi.
Let all that you do be done in love.

أنت لي شروق الشمس، يا حبي.
ʾanti lī šurūqa al-ššamsi, yaā ḥubbī.
You are my sunshine, my love.

كان مقدراً لنا أن نكون معاً.
kāna muqaddaran lanā ʾan nakūna maʿan.
We were meant to be together.

إذا كنت تفكر بشخص ما في أثناء قراءة هذا، فأنت بالتأكيد واقع في الحب.
ʾiḏā kunta tufakkiru bišaḫṣin maā fiī ʾaṯnāʾi qarāʾaẗi haḏā, faʾnta bal-ttaʾkiīd waāqiʿun fiī al-ḥunb.
If you were thinking about someone while reading this, you’re definitely in love.

Break up? Want to impress friends? Learn Arabic with our other vocabulary lists!

Top 15 tips to remember words when learning Arabic

Hey Arabic learner!

We recently gave you some shortcuts to learn Arabic.
In your journey to become fluent and conversational in less time that is needed to say “Gotta catch ’em all”, we will this time give you the Top 15 tips to remember words!

1. Use repetition: reading, writing and speaking words over and over again.

2. Associate words with drawings, pictures and funny scenes.

3. Try to use the language routinely in the context of daily life.

4. Reading as much as possible, especially the newspaper, helps you to remember words.

Click Here To Start Learning Arabic Right Now!

5. Learn about the roots of words and how different words are related to each other.

6. Speak as often as possible with native speakers.

7. Categorize new words with other related words that you already know.

8. Be persistent in practicing everyday by talking to your family or your dog, even though they don’t understand you.

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9. Say words out loud so that you can actually hear them.

10. Associate new words with words that sound similar in your native language.

11. Listen to songs and memorize the lyrics.

12. Often watch TV or YouTube videos that are designed for young children.

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13. Associate new words with stories, games or movies.

14. Try to use the new word in a simple sentence so you learn whole phrases, not just individual words.

15. Try to think in Arabic, so it becomes natural to your thought process.

No money, no credit card required, just you and the ton of lessons!

If you follow all those tips, you will be a step closer to reach your goal. And remember, if you’re really interested in getting on the fast-track to fluency, sign up for a FREE lifetime account at!

Introducing Our Brand New Dashboard!

Hey Listeners!

Guess what? Your language learning goals just got a little easier!

As you’ve probably realized by now, there have been some major improvements made to your dashboard! These updates have been designed to improve your overall experience with the website and help keep you organized and on-track! Here are a few of the changes:

  • Your progress is now tracked right, smack in the middle of the page to keep you motivated and organized.
  • A new, sleek and easy to navigate design allows you to worry less about where to click and more on learning Arabic!
  • An enlarged profile picture that gives your dashboard a unique and more personal feel.
  • A new layout for the “Latest News” feed to keep you informed on all of the most recent updates.
  • Bigger buttons to make it easier on the eyes. Locate your all of your lessons and materials faster than ever.

Stay tuned, as more updates are being rolled out later in the month!

Enjoy your new dashboard,

Team ArabicPod101

P.S. Get Access To Our My Teacher Tool For Extra Help!
As you may have noticed, on the left side of your dashboard is our My Teacher feature. This tool allows you to have 1-on-1 interaction with your very own personal teacher! This is only available to our Premium Plus subscribers, so be sure to upgrade if you want to take your studies to the next level!

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The Top 5 Reasons To Learn A New Language… NOW!

Click Here To Learn Arabic NOW!

Are you currently debating whether or not to learn Arabic?

You aren’t alone. Learning a new language requires a huge investment of time, and often money as well. That’s why so many people are hesitant to spend the amount of effort required to become fluent in another language. However, learning a new language can be one of the most rewarding experiences in life and there are a number of reasons why you should start studying one… and start studying now!

Click Here And Start Learning Arabic With A FREE Account!

Start Studying Arabic Now!

More Opportunities
That’s right. It’s not rocket science. A new language can open up many new doors. You’re able to work in countries other than your own, leading to a world of new opportunities. It can also qualify you for many new jobs in your home country as well! There are tons of employers who look to hire multilingual professionals every year!

Meeting New People
This may be one of the most rewarding parts of learning a new language. You’ll be able to get to know speakers of other languages on a more personal level. Meeting people from around the world is one of the main reasons people begin to study a language, so don’t ever feel like making new friends isn’t a good enough reason to start studying!

Exploring A Different Culture
Whether you decide to live abroad, or you’re just taking a vacation, knowing the local language will give you the ability to better understand the people and culture of a different country. This can open your eyes to not only their country, but your country as well! You can understand how people see your home from their perspective.

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Start Studying Arabic Now!

Health Benefits
Good news! Studying a new language actually comes with health benefits! Studying a new language helps keep your brain sharp! By studying every day, you’re helping your mind fight off the old age and stay fresh!

Because It’s Fun
When it comes down to it, learning a new language is just plain fun! There’s always something new to learn and the rewards are endless! Whether your goal is to meet new people or to get a job in a new country, language learning is something that is actually enjoyable!

Start Learning Arabic For Free By Clicking Here!

There are millions of reasons to learn a new language, so what are you waiting for? Dive in head first and start studying with us! You can sign up for a FREE lifetime account and start achieving your Arabic language goals today!

3 Tactics For Boosting Your Arabic Listening Skills at ArabicPod101

3 Tactics For Boosting Your Listening Skills

Hello Listeners,

When it comes to listening to and understanding Arabic, most beginners struggle. They hear the few words they know. And the rest just fly in one ear and out the other. Does this happen to you too?

In this post, you’re going to learn about 3 tactics that are guaranteed to sharpen your listening comprehension skills!

1. Try Our Listening Comprehension Series

Try Our Listening Comprehension Series!

Click Here To Check Out Our Absolute Beginner Videos!

This is a complete lesson series dedicated purely to testing and improving your listening skills. You can find all of the videos from this series in the “Bonus Video Lessons” section of our site! In the video lesson, you’ll hear a dialogue in your target language. Then, you’ll be asked to answer a question about the dialogue to check if you understood the sentences. There are no translations except for the subtitles, so everything you hear is in your target language!

2. Review The Dialogue Again And Again

Review The Dialogue Again And Again!

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Most learners listen to a listen and simply move on, but by reviewing it again, you make sure that you fully understand what you hear. The key to fully understanding a dialogue is to review it over and over again. With our audio lessons, you get the dialogue track so you can listen to the conversation without distractions.

3. Read Along With Our Line-By-Line Feature

Read Along With Our Line-By-Line Feature!

Click Here To Start Learning Arabic Now!

Reading along is the best way to get the meaning instantly. With the Line-by-Line feature, or the PDF lesson notes, reading along is easier than ever! You can get the transcript of the dialogue in the target language, the transliterated version, or the translated version. This is available for all of the lessons in this series!

With these 3 tactics, you’re sure to improve your listening comprehension skills and get one step closer to your language learning goals! Try it out and let us know what you think!

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Special Invitation To Get Our New App & Free Daily Language Lessons

Get Your Daily Dose of Language for the iPhone & iPad!

Hello Listener,

We’re inviting you to download your new secret weapon for learning language in 2016. You’ll learn in minutes a day, every day, guaranteed, with mini-lessons delivered directly to you. Learn words, phrases, grammar and more with a quick daily dose!

Easy to learn. Easy to finish. Easy to keep going, every day.

All you have to do is download our new, free App.

Click Here to Get the Daily Dose App for the iPhone & iPad!

Click Here to Get the Free App, Daily Dose, for the iPhone & iPad!

How does the Daily Dose work? Every day, you get a new, free lesson!
And every day, it’ll be different – you’ll learn phrases, slang, vocabulary, cultural points and much more. Reviewing it will take a minute or less. Then, you can go about your busy day. Tomorrow, there’ll be a new lesson, your daily dose of language, to keep you going.

And the results?

  • You learn in minutes a day
  • Your target language improves easily
  • You get addicted to learning every day
  • You don’t get overwhelmed

Let’s take a look at what’s inside your Daily Dose App:

  • Daily Alerts for New Mini-Lessons: Every Day is Different!
  • Lessons Covering Grammar, Phrases, Vocab, Slang, Culture & More
  • Native Pronunciations, Translations and In-Depth Explanations
  • How to Say Today’s Date in Your Target Language
  • A Calendar Overview of Your Lessons
  • Audio and Video Lessons for Every Mini-Lesson (Requires Subscription)
  • Access to Past Mini-Lessons (Requires Subscription)

Click Here to Download the Daily Dose App!

Premium and Premium PLUS users: You have FULL access to this App! This means you get the library of past mini-lessons as well as the bonus audio and video lessons.

The Daily Dose App is currently available on the iPhone and iPad and in 10 languages – Chinese, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish and Thai. Don’t worry, we’ll be adding even more languages soon, so stay tuned. Download the App right now and let us know what you think! Android version coming soon.

To your fluency,
Team ArabicPod101

P.S. You’ll Learn Language in Minutes a Day, Every Day, Guaranteed. And you’ll never feel overwhelmed. The Daily Dose App is designed to make language learning quick and easy so you can progress fast. Be sure to download it right now.

Click Here to Get Your Daily Dose of Language for the iPhone & iPad!