Moroccan Arabic - Grammar - Verbs

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Structured data parsed from Wikipedia. Verbs Introduction Introduction The regular Moroccan Arabic verb conjugates with a series of prefixes and suffixes. The stem of the conjugated verb may change a bit, depending on the conjugation: The stem of the Moroccan Arabic verb for 'to write' is kteb. kteb Past tense Past tense The past tense of kteb (write) is as follows: kteb I wrote: kteb t kteb t You wrote: kteb ti (some regions tend to differentiate between masculine and feminine, the masculine form is kteb t, the feminine kteb ti) kteb ti kteb t kteb ti He/it wrote: kteb (can also be an order to write; kteb er rissala: Write the letter) kteb She/it wrote: ketb et ketb et We wrote: kteb na kteb na You (plural) wrote: kteb tu / kteb tiu kteb tu kteb tiu They wrote: ketb u ketb u The stem kteb turns into ketb before a vowel suffix because of the process of inversion described above. kteb ketb inversion Present tense Present tense The present tense of kteb is as follows: kteb I am writing: ka ne kteb ka ne kteb You/ae (masculine) writing: ka te kteb ka te kteb You are (feminine) writing: ka t ketb i ka t ketb i He's/it is writing: ka ye kteb ka ye kteb She is/it is writing: ka te kteb ka te kteb We are writing: ka n ketb u ka n ketb u You (plural) are writing: ka t ketb u ka t ketb u They are writing: ka y ketb u ka y ketb u The stem kteb turns into ketb before a vowel suffix because of the process of inversion described above. Between the prefix ka n , ka t , ka y and the stem kteb, an e appears but not between the prefix and the transformed stem ketb because of the same restriction that produces inversion. kteb ketb inversion ka n , ka t , ka y kteb e ketb In the north, you are writing' is always ka de kteb regardless of who is addressed.This is also the case of de in de kteb as northerners prefer to use de and southerners prefer te. you are writing' is always regardless of who is addressed. de de kteb de te Instead of the prefix ka, some speakers prefer the use of ta (ta ne kteb 'I am writing'). The coexistence of these two prefixes is from historic differences. In general, ka is more used in the north and ta in the south, some other prefixes like la, a, qa are less used. In some regions like in the east (Oujda), most speakers use no preverb (ne kteb, te kteb, y kteb, etc.). ka ta ta ne kteb ka ta la a qa ne kteb te kteb y kteb Other tenses Other tenses To form the future tense, the prefix ka /ta is removed and replaced with the prefix ġa , ġad or ġadi instead (e.g. ġa ne kteb 'I will write', ġad ketb u (north) or ġadi t ketb u 'You (plural) will write'). ka /ta ġa ġad ġadi ġa ne kteb ġad ketb u ġadi t ketb u For the subjunctive and infinitive, the ka is removed (bġit ne kteb 'I want to write', bġit te kteb 'I want 'you to write'). ka bġit ne kteb bġit te kteb The imperative is conjugated with the suffixes of the present tense but without any prefixes or preverbs: kteb Write! (masculine singular) kteb ketb i Write! (feminine singular) ketb i ketb u Write! (plural) ketb u Negation Negation One characteristic of Moroccan Arabic syntax, which it shares with other North African varieties as well as some southern Levantine dialect areas, is in the two part negative verbal circumfix /ma ... ʃi/. (In many regions, including Marrakech, the final /i/ vowel is not pronounced so it becomes /ma ... ʃ/.) /ma ... ʃi/ /i/ /ma ... ʃ/ /kteb/ /ma kteb ʃi/ /ka y kteb/ /ma ka y kteb ʃi/ /ma / comes from the Classical Arabic negator /ma/. / ʃi/ is a development of Classical /ʃayʔ/ 'thing'. The development of a circumfix is similar to the French circumfix ne ... pas in which ne comes from Latin non 'not' and pas comes from Latin passus 'step'. (Originally, pas would have been used specifically with motion verbs, as in 'I did not walk a step'. It was generalised to other verbs.) ne ... pas ne non pas passus pas The negative circumfix surrounds the entire verbal composite, including direct and indirect object pronouns: /ma kteb hom li ʃi/ /ma ka y kteb hom li ʃi/ /ma ɣadi y kteb hom li ʃi/ /waʃ ma kteb hom li ʃi/ / waʃ ma ka y kteb hom li ʃi/ /waʃ ma ɣadi y kteb hom li ʃi/ Future and interrogative sentences use the same /ma ... ʃi/ circumfix (unlike, for example, in Egyptian Arabic). Also, unlike in Egyptian Arabic, there are no phonological changes to the verbal cluster as a result of adding the circumfix. In Egyptian Arabic, adding the circumfix can trigger stress shifting, vowel lengthening and shortening, elision when /ma / comes into contact with a vowel, addition or deletion of a short vowel, etc. However, they do not ccur in Moroccan Arabic (MA): /ma ... ʃi/ Negative pronouns such as walu 'nothing', ḥta ḥaja 'nothing' and ḥta waḥed 'nobody' can be added to the sentence without ši as a suffix: walu ḥta ḥaja ḥta waḥed ši ma ġa ne kteb walu ma te kteb ḥta ḥaja ḥta waḥed ma ġa ye kteb wellah ma ne kteb or wellah ma ġa ne kteb Note that wellah ma ne kteb could be a response to a command to write kteb while wellah ma ġa ne kteb could be an answer to a question like waš ġa te kteb? 'Are you going to write?' wellah ma ne kteb kteb wellah ma ġa ne kteb waš ġa te kteb? In the north, ''you are writing' is always ka de kteb regardless of who is addressed. It is also the case of de in de kteb, as northerners prefer to use de and southerners prefer te. ka de kteb de de kteb de te Instead of the prefix ka, some speakers prefer the use of ta (ta ne kteb 'I am writing'). The co existence of these two prefixes is from historical differences. In general ka is more used in the north and ta in the south. In some regions like the east (Oujda), most speakers ue no preverb: ka ta ta ne kteb ka ta ka ma ġadi ši te kteb?! In detail In detail Verbs in Moroccan Arabic are based on a consonantal root composed of three or four consonants. The set of consonants communicates the basic meaning of a verb. Changes to the vowels between the consonants, along with prefixes and/or suffixes, specify grammatical functions such as tense, person and number in addition to changes in the meaning of the verb that embody grammatical concepts such as causative, intensive, passive or reflexive. Each particular lexical verb is specified by two stems, one used for the past tense and one used for non past tenses, along with subjunctive and imperative moods. To the former stem, suffixes are added to mark the verb for person, number and gender. To the latter stem, a combination of prefixes and suffixes are added. (Very approximately, the prefixes specify the person and the suffixes indicate number and gender.) The third person masculine singular past tense form serves as the 'dictionary form' used to identify a verb like the infinitive in English. (Arabic has no infinitive.) For example, the verb meaning 'write' is often specified as kteb, which actually means 'he wrote'. In the paradigms below, a verb will be specified as kteb/ykteb (kteb means 'he wrote' and ykteb means 'he writes'), indicating the past stem (kteb ) and the non past stem (also kteb , obtained by removing the prefix y ). kteb kteb/ykteb kteb ykteb kteb kteb y The verb classes in Moroccan Arabic are formed along two axes. The first or derivational axis (described as 'form I', 'form II', etc.) is used to specify grammatical concepts such as causative, intensive, passive or reflexive and mostly involves varying the consonants of a stem form. For example, from the root K T B 'write' are derived form I kteb/ykteb 'write', form II ketteb/yketteb 'cause to write', form III kateb/ykateb 'correspond with (someone)' etc. The second or weakness axis (described as 'strong', 'weak', 'hollow', 'doubled' or 'assimilated') is determined by the specific consonants making up the root, especially whether a particular consonant is a 'w' or ' y', and mostly involves varying the nature and location of the vowels of a stem form. For example, so called weak verbs have one of those two letters as the last root consonant, which is reflected in the stem as a final vowel instead of a final consonant (ṛma/yṛmi 'throw' from Ṛ M Y). Meanwhile, hollow verbs are usually caused by one of those two letters as the middle root consonant, and the stems of such verbs have a full vowel (/a/, /i/ or /u/) before the final consonant, often along with only two consonants (žab/yžib 'bring' from Ž Y B). derivational kteb/ykteb ketteb/yketteb kateb/ykateb weakness weak ṛma/yṛmi hollow žab/yžib It is important to distinguish between strong, weak, etc. stems and strong, weak, etc. roots. For example, X W F is a hollow root, but the corresponding form II stem xuwwef/yxuwwef 'frighten' is a strong stem: stems roots root xuwwef/ 'frighten' is a strong : w y w y sman iḥmáṛṛ/yiḥmáṛṛ w y Table of verb forms Table of verb forms In this section, all verb classes and their corresponding stems are listed, excluding the small number of irregular verbs described above. Verb roots are indicated schematically using capital letters to stand for consonants in the root: Hence, the root F M L stands for all three consonant roots, and F S T L stands for all four consonant roots. (Traditional Arabic grammar uses F ʕ L and F ʕ L L, respectively, but the system used here appears in a number of grammars of spoken Arabic dialects and is probably less confusing for English speakers since the forms are easier to pronounce than those involving /ʕ/.) The following table lists the prefixes and suffixes to be added to mark tense, person, number, gender and the stem form to which they are added. The forms involving a vowel initial suffix and corresponding stem PAv or NPv are highlighted in silver. The forms involving a consonant initial suffix and corresponding stem PAc are highlighted in gold. The forms involving no suffix and corresponding stem PA0 or NP0 are not highlighted. PAv v NPv v PAc c PA0 0 NP0 0

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