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  5. "رَجُل أَمْريكِيّ عَرَبِيّ"

"رَجُل أَمْريكِيّ عَرَبِيّ"

Translation:an Arab American man

July 5, 2019



When and why is the 'u' or 'un' sound put between words?


I read somewhere else in these forums that it is done to express the fact that there is no "the" in front of "man" but "a". So if it's "a man", then the 'un' sound is appended when pronouncing 'رَجُل'. However, if it's "the man", there is no 'un' sound at the end.

To be honest, it confuses the hell out of me too. It's very distracting.


The "-un" is also used to show that the noun and adjective(s) are in the nominative/subjective case, showing the subject of the sentence. When you want to say "the" instead of "a" or "an", the word "al/ال " is used.


MikitaD, Sven91126:

Mostly the "-u" and "-un" ending sounds (in a word) are used when the word is in the nominative case -- like benton.1 has said.

Just for the simplification. The difference between the -u and -un is that, the first is applied for the definitive noun (ال) while the later is for the indefinitive noun (without ال).

For example:

الرجلُ : ar-rajulu

رجلٌ : rajulun

For the speaking concern, the -u and -un are pronounced in the Formal way (or Standard) while in Dialect and informal way, both -u and -un are not spelled.

Nb: if we are confused by this matter, it is normal. Oftentimes, many Arabs themselves make mistakes in Arabic Grammar :))


How can i improve on figuring out word order


I'm trying to remember it by thinking of adjectives as being visually in "English order" (left to right), even though the sentence would be written right to left. If that makes sense?


I think the word closest to the noun is the "more important one." So "an Arab American man" is like "Arab (American man)" vs. "American (Arab man)".




In English, adjectives come before the nouns they modify. In Arabic, adjectives come after the nouns they modify. In this sentence, "Arab" is used as an adjective describing what kind of American (also an adjective in this sentence) the man (a noun) is. So, in English it is "An (arab) AMERICAN man, while in Arabic it is "(a) Man AMERICAN (arab)".

According to grammatical rules, adjectives do not modify other adjectives. However, the way we speak of nationalities these days, they seem to. I like to look at "Arab" in this sentence, both in Arabic and English, as an adjective describing/modifing the adjective "American".

I hope I've been able to help a bit.


Why don't I receive any introductory words in the earlier lessons but get the test to fill the blank suddenly( which I have to guess the answer because there was no earlier introduction to the partivular word or phrase that just suddenly popped up)?


The word order literally says أمرتكيّ American عربيّ Arab, so why is "Arab American" correct but "American Arab" is wrong?


Because you are supposed to be translating into the correct grammar in the language you are writing in. American Arab is not something we say in English. Also, adjectives are not written in the same order in English as in Arabic so you can't translate them in identical order. You need to translate appropriately for the language you are translating into.


an American Arabian man & an Arab American man have the same meaning


Not really. An American Arab is an Arab person with an American background. An Arab American is an American with an Arab background.


We don't say American Arab or American Arabian in America. We only say Arab American.

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