Dialogue - Arabic

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Vocabulary

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مـمـتاز [مـُمـْتاز] mumtaaz great, excellent
كل شيء [كـُلُّ شـَيء] kullu šayʾ everything
الحال [الحال] al-ḥal state
شكرا (Egyptian) [] šukran thank you
السلام عليكم / و عليكم السلام [السَلامُ عَلَيْكُم / وَ عَلَيْكُم السَلام] al-salāmu ʿalaykum / wa ʿalaykum al-salām peace be upon you / and peace be with you, too
و (Standard) [وَ] wa and
مرحبا [مَرْحَباً] marḥaban hello, hi; welcome
الحمد لله [الحـَمـْدُ لله] al-ḥamdu lilah thanks to God
بخير [بِخَيْر] biḫayr fine, I'm fine.
كيف (Standard) [كَيْف] kayfa how
تفضل [تـَـفَـضَّـل] tafaḍḍal welcome; come in!
أهلا [أَهْلاً] 'ahlan hello

Lesson Notes

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Grammar

Grammar point: Pronunciation of some difficult Arabic letters
خالد: السّلامٌ عـَلـَيـْكـُم
" Peace be upon you (= Hello)."


The pronunciation of Arabic is quite challenging; there are many sounds that are unfamiliar to English speakers. So we'll actually teach you the pronunciation in two installments. Today, we'll look at one set of unfamiliar sounds, and in lesson 3 we'll look at the rest. The first new sound is the glottal stop. In the Lesson Notes PDF, this one is indicated with an apostrophe. The glottal stop occurs in the word أهلا ('ahlan) for "hello". It is not so much what you hear as what you don't hear - there's a stop before the A, as in the English expression "uh-oh". The sound in the middle of "uh-oh" is a glottal stop.

Next, there's the ´ayn. The ´ayn is a sound that has to come from deep in the throat. In this lesson, we heard the ´ayn in the expression السلام عليكم (assalaam ´alaykum), "Peace be with you". Go to the vocabulary section in the Premium Learning Center and play this expression over and over to familiarize yourself with the sound of ´ayn.

Finally, the khaa. This one should be easy if you already learned German or Dutch. It's basically the same sound as in the name "Bach". In this lesson, it appeared in the name Khalid and also in the expression بخير (biḫayr), "good". Again, we recommend using the Premium Learning Center in order to familiarize yourself with the sound of this letter.

Cultural Insights

Cultural point: Greetings and replies Most of the times people use "السلام عليكم" (assalaam ´alaykum) as it works for any time of the day, with anyone, regardless of the age, cultural & social status, education or otherwise. Its both formal and informal, and always very polite to use. The second most common greeting is "مرحبا" (marhaban), which means Hello, and Hello back, also formal and informal. The third greeting, "أهلا" ('ahlan) is used the same way as "marhaban" and it is just as common. Most of the Arabic greetings are used equally formal and informal, the intonation makes the difference when addressing someone.

Lesson Transcript

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Intro

Natasha: Marhaban, it’s me Natasha.
Judith: Judith here. Absolute Beginner, Season 1, Lesson 1: “Making Arabic Introductions”. Hello and welcome to ArabicPod101.com, where we study modern Arabic in a fun and educational format.
Natasha: So brush up on the Arabic that you started learning long ago or start learning today.
Judith: Thanks for being here with us for this lesson. Natasha, what are we looking at in this lesson?
Natasha: In this lesson, you will learn how to greet people in Arabic.
Judith: This conversation takes places at Muhammad’s home. It’s his birthday and everyone has come to party.
Natasha: The conversation is between Muhammad, Halid and Maha.
Judith: This lesson is an informal Modern Standard Arabic. Let’s listen to the conversation.

Lesson conversation

خالد: السلام عليكم
محمد: و عليكم السلام، تـفضـل
مها: مرحبا خالد!
خالد: أهلا مها، كيف الحال؟
مها: كل شيء ممتاز شكرا!
محمد: بخير و الحمد لله
Judith:Now, slowly.
Judith: Now, with the translation.
خالد: السلام عليكم
Judith: Peace be upon you, meaning “hello.”
محمد: و عليكم السلام، تـفضـل
Judith: And peace be with you, meaning, “hello back.” Come in.
مها: مرحبا خالد!
Judith: Hello, Halid.
خالد: أهلا مها، كيف الحال؟
Judith: Hello, Maha. How are things?
مها: كل شيء ممتاز شكرا!
Judith: All is great. Thanks.
محمد: بخير و الحمد لله
Judith: Good, thanks to God.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Judith: All right, so we’ve seen a couple of greetings here. We’ve seen “peace be upon you”. We’ve seen several versions of “hello”. Can you tell us a bit about when to use these?
Natasha: Most of the times, people use "السلام عليكم" (assalaam ´alaykum) as it works for any time of the day with anyone regardless of the age, cultural and social status, education or otherwise.
Judith: Yes, this is both formal and informal. It’s always very polite to use. You can use it with anyone.
Natasha: The second most common greeting is "مرحبا" (marḥaban) which means “hello” and “hello back” also formal and informal.
Judith: And the third one?
Natasha: The third greeting is "أهلا" ('ahlan) is used the same way as "marhaban" and it is just as common. Most of the Arabic greetings are used equally formal and informal. The intonation makes the difference when addressing someone.
VOCABULARY AND PHRASES
Judith: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson. The first word we shall look at is?
Natasha: السلام عليكم / و عليكم السلام (al-salāmu ʿalaykum / wa ʿalaykum al-salām)
Judith: Peace be upon you and peace be with you too.
Natasha: السلام عليكم / و عليكم السلام (al-salāmu ʿalaykum / wa ʿalaykum al-salām)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: و (wa)
Judith: And.
Natasha: و (wa)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: تفضل (tafaḍḍal)
Judith: Welcome. Come in.
Natasha: تفضل (tafaḍḍal)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: مرحبا (marḥaban)
Judith: Hello, hi or welcome.
Natasha: مرحبا (marḥaban)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: أهلا ('ahlan)
Judith: Hello.
Natasha: أهلا ('ahlan)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: كيف (kayfa)
Judith: How.
Natasha: كيف (kayfa)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: الحال (al-ḥal)
Judith: State.
Natasha: الحال (al-ḥal)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: كـل شـيء (kullu šayʾ)
Judith: Everything.
Natasha: كـل شـيء (kullu šayʾ)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: مـمـتاز (mumtaaz)
Judith: Great, excellent.
Natasha: مـمـتاز (mumtaaz)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: شكرا (shukran)
Judith: Thank you.
Natasha: شكرا (shukran)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: بخير (biḫayr)
Judith: Fine, I’m fine.
Natasha: بخير (biḫayr)
Judith: Next.
Natasha: الحمد لله (al-ḥamdu lilah)
Judith: Thanks to God.
Natasha: الحمد لله (al-ḥamdu lilah)
KEY VOCABULARY AND PHRASES
Judith: Okay, let’s have a closer look at the usage for some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Natasha: The first phrase we’ll look at is بخير (biḫayr). The Holy Quran encourages Muslim to use the word “God” often when they speak. Because of this, you will find a lot of phrases in Arabic that wouldn’t be said as often in English. "Alhamdulillah"…
Judith: “Thanks to God”.
Natasha: …is one of these and if you have Arab friends, you may also hear "insha'allah".
Judith: “God willing”. Learning a language is more than just learning the vocabulary and the grammar. You also have to learn the local conversation patterns.

Lesson focus

Judith: For our grammar point, we’ll look at the pronunciation of some difficult Arabic letters.
Natasha: The pronunciation of Arabic is quite challenging. There are many sounds that are unfamiliar to English speakers. Judith: So we’ll actually teach you the pronunciation in two installments. Today, we’ll look at one set of unfamiliar sounds. And in lesson three, we’ll look at the rest.
Natasha: The first new sound is the glottal stop.
Judith: In the lesson note’s PDF, this one is indicated with an apostrophe.
Natasha: The glottal stop occurs in the word أهلا ('ahlan)
Judith: For “hello”. It is not so much what you hear as what you don’t hear. There is a stop before the “A” as in the English expression: “O-oh”. The sound in the middle of “O-oh” is a glottal stop.
Natasha: Next there is ´ayn. ´ayn is similar to the sound you make when throwing up. It has to come from deep in the throat. In this lesson, we heard the ´ayn in the expression "السّلامٌ عـَلـَيـْكـُم" (assalaam ´alaykum).
Judith: “Peace be with you.” Go to the vocabulary section in the premium learning center and play this expression over and over to familiarize yourself with the sound of ´ayn..
Natasha: Finally the khaa..
Judith: This one should be easy if you already learned German or Dutch. It’s basically the same sound as in the name "Bach".
Natasha: In this lesson, it appeared in the name Halid and also in the expression "بـِخـَيـْرٍ" (biḫayr).
Judith: Good. That just about does it for today.
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Natasha: Get this easy instruction at ArabicPod101.com/Arabic-phrases.
Judith: Okay, see you next week.