You are on page 1of 195

Table of Contents

Learning Moroccan Arabic ......................................................................................................................... 1
Transcription of Moroccan Arabic ............................................................................................................. 1
Arabic script.5
the definite article..6
Lesson 1: Getting Started with Moroccan Arabic
Greetings ................................................................................................................................................. 7
Independent Pronouns ........................................................................................................................... 9
Possessive Pronouns ............................................................................................................................. 10
Masculine and Feminine Nouns ............................................................................................................ 11
Lesson 2: Describing Yourself
Nationalities, Cities, and Marital Status ............................................................................................... 12
The Possessive Word dyal .................................................................................................................. 15
Demonstrative Adjectives & Demonstrative Pronouns ........................................................................ 16
Asking about Possession ....................................................................................................................... 19
Lesson 3: Useful Expressions ........................................................................................................... 21
Lesson 4: Numbers
Cardinal Numbers ................................................................................................................................. 24
Ordinal Numbers / Fractions ............................................................................................................... 31
Time ...................................................................................................................................................... 32
Lesson 5: Getting Started Shopping
Money.................................................................................................................................................... 35
At the Hanut.......................................................................................................................................... 36
Verb to want ....................................................................................................................................... 38
Kayn for There is ................................................................................................................................ 39
Lesson 6: Family
Family Members ...................................................................................................................................40
Verb to have ....................................................................................................................................... 42
Lesson 7: Directions
Prepositions .......................................................................................................................................... 44
Directions .............................................................................................................................................. 45
Lesson 8: The Past
Time Vocabulary ................................................................................................................................... 47
Past Tense Regular Verbs ..................................................................................................................48
Past Tense Irregular Verbs ................................................................................................................ 50
Negation ................................................................................................................................................ 54
Have you ever... / Ive never... .............................................................................................................. 56
Object Pronouns ................................................................................................................................... 57
Using prepositions with pronoun endings and verbs.58
Question Words .................................................................................................................................... 63
Lesson 9: Daily Routines - The Present
Present Tense Regular Verbs ............................................................................................................. 65
Present Tense Irregular Verbs with Middle a ................................................................................. 67
Present Tense Irregular Verbs with Final a .................................................................................... 71
Using One Verb after Another .............................................................................................................. 75
The Imperative ...................................................................................................................................... 76
Lesson 10: Bargaining for Clothes
Bargaining ............................................................................................................................................. 78
Clothing ................................................................................................................................................ 80
Colors ....................................................................................................................................................82
Comparative and Superlative Adjectives ............................................................................................. 88
Lesson 11: Shopping For Food
Fruits and Vegetables............................................................................................................................ 91
Buying Produce .....................................................................................................................................93
Spices and Meat .................................................................................................................................... 95
Lesson 12: Food and Drink
Food and Drink .................................................................................................................................... 96
The Reflexive verb to please / to like ................................................................................................ 99
The Verb to need, to have to, must, should...................................................................................... 102
The Verb to want, to like .................................................................................................................. 103
Lesson 13: Health
Body Parts ........................................................................................................................................... 104
Health Problems ................................................................................................................................. 105
Lesson 14: Useful Expressions for Your Site ............................................................................... 107
Lesson 15: Travel - The Future
Future Tense ....................................................................................................................................... 109
Travel................................................................................................................................................... 113
Lesson 16: At the Hotel
Hotel Accommodation ......................................................................................................................... 117
The Conditional ................................................................................................................................... 118
Lesson 17: At the Post Office
The Post Office .................................................................................................................................... 120
Lesson 18: The Peace Corps Mission
Peace Corps ......................................................................................................................................... 122
Youth Development............................................................................................................................. 123
Lesson 19: Renting a House
Finding a House .................................................................................................................................. 124
Furnishing a House ............................................................................................................................. 126
Lesson 20: Safety and Security
Sexual Harassment ............................................................................................................................. 128
At the Taxi Stand ................................................................................................................................. 130
At Work ............................................................................................................................................... 131
Forgetting a Wallet in a Taxi / Filing a Report ................................................................................... 132
Butagas ................................................................................................................................................ 134
Hash .................................................................................................................................................... 135
Theft .................................................................................................................................................... 136
House Security / Doors and Windows ................................................................................................ 138
Political Harassment ........................................................................................................................... 140
Pronunciation of Moroccan Arabic
Understanding How Sounds Are Made .............................................................................................. 143
Pronunciation of Non-English Consonants ........................................................................................ 143
Pronunciation of Shedda..................................................................................................................... 145
Supplementary Grammar Lessons
Making Intransitive Verbs into Transitive Verbs................................................................................ 146
Passive Verbs ....................................................................................................................................... 147
The Past Progressive ........................................................................................................................... 148
The Verb to remain .......................................................................................................................... 149
Verb Participles ................................................................................................................................... 149
Conjunctions ....................................................................................................................................... 154
More Useful Expressions ................................................................................................................. 156
Moroccan Holidays
Religious Holidays .............................................................................................................................. 158
National Holidays ............................................................................................................................... 161
Glossary of Verbs ............................................................................................................................... 162
Learning Moroccan Arabic
Even under the best conditions, learning a new language can be challenging. Add to this challenge the
rigors of Peace Corps training, and youre faced with what will be one of the most demandingand
rewardingaspects of your Peace Corps experience: learning to communicate to Moroccans in their
own language. But it can be done. And rest assured that you can do it. Here are a few reasons why:
You are immersed in the language: Some people may need to hear a word three times to
remember it; others may need thirty. Learning Moroccan Arabic while living and training with
Moroccans gives you the chance to hear the language used again and again.
You have daily language classes with Moroccan teachers: Youre not just immersed in
the language; you also have the opportunity to receive feedback from native speakers on the
many questions that predictably crop up when one learns a new language.
Peace Corps has over fifty years of experience in Morocco: Your training, including
this manual, benefits from the collective experience gained by training thousands of Americans
to live and work in Morocco. You will benefit from and contribute to that legacy.
Despite these advantages, at times you may still feel like the task of learning Moroccan Arabic is too
much to handle. Remember that volunteers like you having been doing it for decades. One of the most
rewarding aspects of your time will be communicating with Moroccans in Arabic, surprising them and
yourself with how well you know the language. When that time arrives, your hard work will have been
worth it.

Transcription of Moroccan Arabic

In order for trainees to move quickly into Moroccan Arabic (also called Darija), Peace Corps uses a
system of transcription that substitutes characters of the Latin alphabet (a, b, c, d, . . . ) for characters
from Arabic script ( ). With this system, it isnt necessary for a trainee to learn all of
Arabic script before he or she begins to learn the language. On the contrary, once you become familiar
with the system of transcription, you will be able to read and write Moroccan Arabic fairly quickly
using characters you are familiar with. You will also learn Arabic script during training, but with
transcription it isnt necessary to know it right away. Throughout the book, therefore, you will always
see both the original Arabic script and the transcription. Becoming familiar with the Peace
Corps system of transcription is one of the best things you can do, early on, to help
yourself learn Moroccan Arabic. Practicing the different sounds of Moroccan Arabic
until you can reproduce them is another. This introduction is intended mainly to help you get
started with the system of transcription, and as a result it will mention only briefly the different sounds
of Arabic. However, a fuller explanation can be found on page 146.

Sounds You Already Know

The large majority of consonants in Moroccan Arabic are similar to sounds that we have in English.
The vowels in Arabic are also similar to English vowels. In the following table, each transcription
character that represents a sound you already know will be explained. The sounds are not
necessarily what you may expect, but each character was matched with a sound for good reasons.

Transcription Arabic
Character Character
a sometimes the // in father, sometimes the /a/ in mad

b the normal English sound /b/

d the normal English sound /d/

e the short e sound /e/ as in met (this transcription character is not used
often, only when confusion would be caused by using the transcription character a)
2 Moroccan Arabic

f the normal English sound /f/

g the normal English sound /g/ as in go

h the normal English sound /h/ as in hi.

i the long ee sound // as in meet

j the /zh/ sound represented by the s in pleasure

k the normal English sound /k/

l the normal English sound /l/

m the normal English sound /m/

n the normal English sound /n/

o the long o sound // as in bone (this transcription character is not used

often, mainly for French words that have entered Moroccan Arabic)

p the normal English sound /p/

this is not the normal English r, but a flap similar to the Spanish
r r or to the sound Americans make when they quickly say gotta
as in I gotta go.
s the normal English sound /s/

t the normal English sound /t/

u the long oo sound // as in food

v the normal English sound /v/

w the normal English sound /w/

y the normal English sound /y/

z the normal English sound /z/

the normal English sound /sh/ as in she

Some vowel combinations
ay the ay as in say

au the ow as in cow

iu the ee you as in see you later

Peace Corps / Morocco 3

New Sounds
There are eight consonants in Moroccan Arabic that we do not have in English. It may take you some
time to be able to pronounce these correctly. At this point, whats important is that you learn the
transcription character for each of these sounds. See page 144 for more information on how to
pronounce the sounds in Moroccan Arabic.

Transcription Arabic
Character Character
d the Arabic emphatic d
These sounds are pronounced like their
non-emphatic counterparts, but with a
s the Arabic emphatic s
lower pitch and a greater tension in the
tongue and throat.
t the Arabic emphatic t

q like the English /k/ but pronounced further back in the throat

x like the ch in the German Bach; some people use this sound to
say yech!
like the x sound above, but pronounced using your voice box;

similar to the French r

like the English h, except pronounce deep in the throat as a loud

raspy whisper.
This sound will be difficult at first. It can be approximated by
pronouncing the a in fat with the tongue against the bottom of the
mouth and from as deep in the throat as possible

If you see a transcription character doubled, that means that a shedda is over that character in
the Arabic script. For example, in the following table, you will see how the transcription changes for
shedda, and thus the pronunciation.

English Arabic
Transcription This small character,
Translation Script
which looks like a w,
woman mra is the shedda. That is
why the transcription
time (as in: Ive seen mrra has a doubled r.
him one time)

Notice that these two words are spelled differently in the transcription. The word woman does not
have a shedda on the r in Arabic script, and that is why there is only one r in the transcription. The
word time does have a shedda in the Arabic script, and that is why the transcription doubles the
letter r. These two words are pronounced differently, so you must pay attention to
doubled letters in transcription. To learn more about how we pronounce the shedda in Arabic,
see page 148. For now, whats important is that you understand the transcription.
4 Moroccan Arabic

Other Symbols
Sometimes, you will see a hyphen used in the transcription. This has three purposes:
1. It indicates the definite article: For some letters, the definite article (the word the) is made
by adding the letter l. For others, it is made by doubling the first letter. In both cases, a hyphen
will be used to indicate to you that the word has the definite article in front of it. See page 7 for
more info on the definite article.
2. It connects the present tense prefix: The present tense prefix (kan, kat, or kay) will be
connected to the verb with a hyphen. This will make it easier for you to understand what verb you
are looking at.
3. It connects the negative prefix (ma) and the negative suffix () to a verb.
In these instances, the hyphen does not necessarily indicate a change in pronunciation. The
hyphen is there to make it easy for you to see when a definite article is being used, for example, or
which verb is being used. It is a visual indicator, not an indicator of pronunciation. Sometimes the
rhythm of speech may seem to break with the hyphen; other times the letters before and after the
hyphen will be pronounced together.

Another symbol you will sometimes see is the apostrophe ( ' ). When you see an apostrophe, it
indicates a glottal stop, which is the break between vowels as heard in the English exclamation uh
oh. That is to say, if you see an apostrophe you should not connect the sounds before the apostrophe
with the sounds after the apostrophe. Pronounce them with a break in the middle.

Words & Syllables Without Vowels

Sometimes you will see words and syllables without any vowels written in them. This is normal in
Moroccan Arabic. To the English speaker, however, this seems impossible since we have always been
taught that all words must contain a vowel sound. Which side is correct? Well, in a sense they both
are. In reality, it is indeed possible to pronounce consonants together without articulating a vowel
sound; we do it a lot in English at the beginning of words. Think about the word street. We pronounce
three consonantss, t, and rwithout any vowels between them. So it is possible. The only challenge
with Arabic is that the consonant combinations are new for English speakers (we dont put the /sh/
sound next to the /m/ sound, for example, but in Arabic they do).
However, try for a moment to pronounce only the letters str, not the whole word street. In this
case, most English speakers will hear something that sounds like the word stir. With certain
consonant combinations, that is to say, it sounds to the English speaker like there is a vowel in the
middle, even if there isnt. The vowel is in reality just the normal sound made as one consonant
sound transitions to another.
Part of learning Moroccan Arabic is becoming comfortable with new consonant combinations and
practicing those combinations without necessarily placing a vowel in the middle. The transcription
words, you will notice, only include characters for vowels when there really is a vowel in the word. It
may seem difficult at first, but it is better to accustom yourself to this as early as you can.
Why Not Just Write sh?
A final point about the transcription. At times it may seem overly complicated to someone beginning
Moroccan Arabic. For example, why not just write sh for the /sh/ sound? The answer is this: every
sound must have just a single character to represent it. Why? Well, in Arabic it is normal for the /h/
sound to follow the /s/ sound. If we used sh to represent the /sh/ sound, there would not be any way
to represent an /s/ plus /h/ sound, because it too would look like sh. Using the symbol to represent
/sh/ makes it possible to represent /s/ plus /h/ and /sh/ plus /h/ (yes, in Arabic both these
combinations are used).
All of this concerns a larger point: the transcription system used in this book may appear
complex at first, but it has been carefully thought out, and in the end it is the easiest system
possible. That said, the sooner you can make the transition to reading Arabic script, the easier it will be
to pronounce Arabic correctly.
Peace Corps / Morocco 5

Arabic script
The Arabic alphabet contains 28 letters
Arabic is written from right to left.
Arabic letters change their shape according to their position in a word: ( initial, middle or final position).
The Arabic script is essentially a cursive script, much like handwritten English. i.e. almost all the letters within a
word are connected to each other. This necessitates certain changes in their shapes.
Take a look at the following table that summarizes the letters in the Arabic alphabet and their shapes according to
whether they are:
1) on their own (isolated), 2) at the start of a word 3) in the middle of a word or 4) at the end of a word.
6 Moroccan Arabic

* The six letters marked with an asterisk (*) cannot be connected to the left.
Peace Corps / Morocco 7

The Definite Article

In English, the definite article is the word the. It is different from the indefinite articles, which
are a and an. In English, the definite article speaks about something specific: I washed the dog
today (you know which dog Im speaking about). The indefinite articles talk about something non-
specific: I saw a dog today (you dont know the dog Im speaking about).
In Arabic, the definite article is not always used exactly as in English. When written in Arabic script, it
is composed of two letters, al ( ), attached to the beginning of a noun or an adjective. Here is the
Arabic script for the book:
the definite article

These two letters are always written in Arabic script for a definite article, but they are not always
pronounced. In Moroccan Arabic, the first letter, a ( ), is never pronounced. Two possibilities exist,
therefore, for pronouncing the definite article. Sometimes, the second letter, l ( ), is pronounced.
Other times, instead of pronouncing the l ( ), the first letter of the word is doubled with a shedda.
Whether the definite article is pronounced with l or by doubling the first letter with shedda is
determined by which letter is the first letter of the word. Lets look at these two different

The Moon Letters

In the first possibility, the Arabic definite article is pronounced with an l ( ) at the beginning of a word.
All words that begin with the following letters follow this rule:
i/y u/w h m k q f x b a

These letters are called moon letters, because the Arabic word for moon, qamar, begins with one of
the letters in the group. Notice in the following examples that the definite article is pronounced by
adding an l to the word:
a book ktab a girl bnt
the book l-ktab the girl l-bnt
a boy wld a moon qamar
the boy l-wld the moon l-qamar

The Sun Letters

In the second possibility, the Arabic definite article is pronounced by doubling the first letter of a word
with a shedda. All words that begin with the following letters follow this rule:
n l t d s s z r j t

These letters are known as sun letters, because the Arabic word for sun, ms, begins with one of the
letters in the group. Notice in the following examples that the definite article is pronounced by
doubling the first letter of the word by using shedda.
a house dar a street znqa
the house d-dar the street z-znqa
a man rajl a sun ms
the man r-rajl the sun -ms
8 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson1: Getting Started with Moroccan Arabic

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
greet people and introduce yourself
use independent pronouns to make simple sentences
use possessive pronouns to indicate possession
distinguish between masculine and feminine nouns

Cultural Points
Greetings and farewells (goodbyes) are two important aspects of Moroccan life. Greetings are not
to be compared with the quick American hi. It takes time for two people to exchange different
questions and answers about each other, their families, and life in general. Greetings change from one
region to another, both in the questions posed and in the fashion of the greeting (i.e. shaking hands,
kissing cheeks, head or hands, or putting ones hand over ones heart after shaking hands).
If you greet a group of people, then the way you greet the first person is the way you should greet
everyone in the group. Dont be surprised if you are greeted by a friend but he does not introduce you
to other people with whom he may be talking. Do not be surprised if you are in a group and you are not
greeted as others are in the group (people may be shy to greet a stranger.) It is also not necessary to
give an overly detailed response to a greetingonly the usual response is expected. For example, How
are you? requires only a simple Fine, thanks be to God.

How do people greet each other in

different cultures?

Greeting expressions and appropriate responses

A: Peace be upon you s-salamu alaykum
B: And peace be upon you (too) wa alaykum s-salam

A: Good morning sba l-xir

B: Good morning sba nnur

A: Good afternoon / evening msa l-xir

Name Smiya
Peace Corps / Morocco 9

Whats your name? nu smitk?

my name... smiti...

your name... smitk...

his name... smitu...

her name... smitha...

Nice to meet you. Mtrfin

How are you (to a man)? kif dayr?(often you will not
hear f in kif dayr/ dayra ?)

How are you (to a woman)? kif dayra?

Are you fine? labas?

Good, thanks be to God. labas, l-amdullah

Good, thanks be to God. bixir, l-amdullah

Everything is fine. kuli bixir

Good-bye Bslama

Good night layla saida

Good night tsbH la xir

Greetings Dialogue
John: s-salamu alaykum.

Mohamed: wa alaykum s-salam.

John: kif dayr?

Mohamed: labas, l-amdullah. u nta?

John: bixir, l-amdullah.

Mohamed: nu smitk?

John: smiti John. u nta?

Mohamed: smiti Mohamed.

John: mtrfin.

Mohamed: mtrfin.

Transcription Reminder see page 1 for the full table with all transcription characters.
: the /sh/ sound as in she a: the a in father or the a in mad
x: the ch in the German Bach or the i: the ee in meet
Scottish loch See page144. u: the oo in food
10 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Put this dialogue in the correct order.

Chris: sba l-xir.

Amy: mtrfin.

Chris: kif dayra?

Amy: nu smitk?

Chris: labas, l-amdullah.

Amy: smiti Amy.

Chris: smiti Chris. u nti?

Amy: sba l-xir.

Chris: mtrfin.

Amy: bixir, l-amdullah. u nta?

Independent Pronouns
We call the following pronouns independent because they are not attached to other words, such as
nouns, verbs, or prepositions (see Possessive Pronouns, next page, and Object Pronouns, page (58).
The pronouns are often used in a number of different ways.

I Ana

you (masc. singular) Nta

you (fem. singular) Nti

He Huwa

She Hiya

We na

you (plural) Ntuma

They Huma

When they are followed by a noun or an adjective, the verb to be is not necessary. It is implied
already, and simple sentences can be made by using independent pronouns with a nouns or adjectives.
I am a teacher. ana ustad.

She is tired. hiya iyana.

Transcription Reminder see page 1 for the full table with all transcription characters.
h: the normal English /h/ sound as in : like the English h, except pronounce it
hello. deep in the throat as a loud raspy
whisper. See page 145.
Peace Corps / Morocco 11

Possessive Pronouns
In Darija, a suffix (ending) may be added to the end of words in order to express possession.

My i / ya*

your (singular) k

His u / h*

her ha

our na

your (plural) kum

their hum

* For the my and his forms, the first ending is used for words ending in consonants, while the
second is used with words ending in vowels. For example, smiti (my name), but xuya (my brother).
Example of possessive pronouns with the noun book.

book ktab
my book ktabi
your (sing.) book ktabk
his book ktabu
her book ktabha
our book ktabna
your (plur.) book ktabkum
their book ktabhum

Most feminine nouns in Arabic have an a sound at the end of the word. In Arabic script, this a is
actually a silent t, But we do pronounce the t when we add a possessive pronoun suffix to these
nouns. So , all feminine words ending in this silent t ( ), we drop the sound a and substitute it with
t before adding a possessive pronoun. For example, the feminine noun magana (a watch).

watch magana
my watch maganti
your (sing.) watch magantk
his watch magantu
her watch magantha
our watch magantna
your (plur.) watch magantkum
their watch maganthum
12 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Use the following words with the appropriate possessive pronoun.
dar (house) blasa (place) ktab (book) wrqa (sheet of paper, ticket)
1. your (plur.) house 6. their place
2. my place 7. her house
3. his book 8. his ticket
4. our place 9. your (sing.) book
5. your (sing.) ticket 10. their house

Masculine and Feminine Nouns

In Arabic, all nouns are either masculine or feminine. In general, nouns ending in a (the silent t ( )
in Arabic script) are feminine. For example:
name smiya
city mdina
chicken (a single one) djaja
television tlfaza
The feminine is formed from the masculine (for nouns indicating professions or participles) by adding
a (the silent t ( ) in Arabic script) to the end of the word. For example:

male teacher ustad

female teacher ustada
working (masc. participle) xddam
working (fem. participle) xddama

Some words without a (the silent t ( ) in Arabic script) are nonetheless feminine. First, words and
proper names which are by their nature feminine:
mother om
Amal (girls name) amal
Second, most (though not all) parts of the body that come in pairs are feminine:
an eye in
a hand yd
a foot rjl
an ear udn

Third, a small number of nouns which do not fall into any category and yet are feminine:
the house d-dar
the sun -ms

Transcription Reminder see page 1 for the full table with all transcription characters.
j: the /zh/ sound, like the s in the Remember that if two characters in a row are
word pleasure. the same, a shedda is used, and we pronounce
: See page 148. that sound longer. See pages 3 and 148.

Note: you can use saHbi/ sadiqi and saHbti/ sadiqti to refer to my friend. But the words have
different connotations.
Peace Corps / Morocco 13

Lesson 2: Describing Yourself

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
ask and answer questions about nationalities, cities, age, and marital status
use the possessive word dyal to indicate possession
use demonstrative pronouns and adjectives in simple sentences
ask questions about possession
Cultural Points
Avoid asking about the salary and age (sometimes) of people, especially women. Men should not
enquire about the wives or other female relations of someonethis could be seen as expressing an
inappropriate interest. People wont always tell you about their jobs and other personal concerns if not
asked. Religion can be a sensitive issue and sometimes people are not willing to express their views.

Nationalities, Cities, and Marital Status

Vocabulary and Expressions
Where are you (masc.) from? mnin nta?
Where are you (fem.) from? mnin nti?
I am from the U.S. ana mn mirikan.
I am American. ana mirikani(ya).
I am from Morocco. ana mn l-mrib.
I am Moroccan. ana mribi(ya).
Are you ... ? we nta/nti ... ?
Are you from the U.S.? we nta/nti mn mirikan?
Where are you from in the U.S.? mnin nta/nti f mirikan?
And you? u nta/nti?
city mdina
state wilaya
big (fem.)/ (masc.) Kbira/ kbir /
small (fem.) / (masc.) Sira/ sir /
Excuse me. (to man / woman) sm li / smi li
I am not ... ana mai ...
But welakin
engaged (fem.) mxtuba
married (masc. / fem.) mzuwj / mzuwja
No, not yet. lla mazal / lla baqi
Are you a tourist? we nta/nti turist?
ana xddam(a) ma hay'at
I work with the Peace Corps.
14 Moroccan Arabic

Fatima: s-salamu alaykum.
Tom: wa alaykum s-salam.
Fatima: sm li, we nta fransawi?
Tom: lla, ana mirikani.
Fatima: mnin f mirikan?
Tom: mn mdint Seattle f wilayat
Washington. u nti?

Fatima: mn Rabat.
Tom: al f mrk?
Fatima: tnayn u rin am. u nta?
Tom: rba u tlatin am.
Fatima: we nta mzuwj wlla mazal?
Tom: mazal. u nti?
Fatima: lla, baqiya. we nta turist?
Tom: lla, ana xddam ma
hay'at s-salam.
Fatima: bslama.
n-ufk mn bd
Peace Corps / Morocco 15

Exercise: Complete each section of this dialogue.

16 Moroccan Arabic

The Possessive Word dyal

In Moroccan Arabic, you have already learned that possession can be expressed by adding the
possessive pronouns to the end of a word (see page 10). Another way to express possession is through
the word dyal. It is placed after a noun with the definite article the, which in Arabic may be either
the letter l or a doubling of the first consonant of a word (see page 6 for more information on the
Arabic definite article). The same possessive pronouns you learned before are attached to the end of
dyal. You can also use a name with dyal. Some examples:

Using Possessive Pronoun Using dyal

book ktab the book l-ktab

my book ktabi my book l-ktab dyali

Johns book l-ktab dyal John

Here is a list of dyal with all of the possessive pronoun endings:

my / mine dyali

your / yours (sing.) dyalk

his / his dyalu

her / hers dyalha

our / ours dyalna

your / yours dyalkum

their / theirs dyalhum

As the list above shows, the forms dyali, dyalk, etc. also mean mine, yours, etc.

This pen is mine. had s-stilo dyali.

That rug is yours. dik z-zrbiya dyalk.

Exercise: Substitute the underlined words with the corresponding possessive pronoun
1. s-stilo dyal John.

2. l-ktab dyal Amber.

3. d-dar dyal Driss u Zubida.

Peace Corps / Morocco 17

Demonstrative Adjectives & Demonstrative Pronouns

This, that, these, and those are used often in Arabic, like in English. But, unlike in English, in
Arabic we must be aware of whether they act as adjectives or pronouns. Think about how we use these
words in English. Sometimes, we use them before a noun. When we use them before a noun, they are
called demonstrative adjectives.
This car is Johns. I like these towels.
I want that book. Those flowers smell lovely.
Sometimes, we use them by themselves. In this case, they are called demonstrative pronouns.
This is Johns. I like these.
I want that. Those smell lovely.
It isnt necessary to know their names, but it is necessary to pay attention to whether they are before a
noun or not. Lets first look at the pronoun forms in Arabic, which you will use often even as a
Demonstrative Pronouns
this (masc.) hada

this (fem.) hadi

these (plur.) hadu

that (masc.) hadak

that (fem.) hadik

those (plur.) haduk

These forms may be used at the beginning of a sentence, in the middle or at the end of a sentence, or in
questions. In Arabic, these pronouns can represent people.

This is a chair. hada kursi.

This is a table. hadi tbla.

This is Abdallah. hada Abdallah.

This is Aicha. hadi Aicha.

Whats this? (masc. object) nu / a hada?

Whats this? (fem. object) nu / a hadi?

Who is this? (masc.) kun hada?

Who is this? (fem.) kun hadi?

What is that? (masc. object) nu / a hadak?

Who is that? (fem.) kun hadik?

At first, you may have difficulty knowing whether to use the masculine or feminine form of this or
that. Moroccans should understand you even if you make an error with gender, however.
18 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Write as many correct sentences as you can using the words from the
following table.

e.g. hada rajl mzyan.

(This is a good man.)

hada wld (masc. sing.) mzyan (masc. sing.)

hadi bnt (fem. sing.) mzyanin (masc. plur.)

hadu qhwa (fem. sing.) mzyana (fem. sing.)

hadak wlad (masc. plur.) mzyanat (fem. plur.)

hadik rajl (masc. sing.) kbir (masc. sing.)

haduk dar (fem. sing.) kbira (fem. sing.)

yalat (fem. plur.) kbar (masc./fem. plur.)

mdina (fem. sing.) fran (masc. sing.)

bnat (fem. plur.) franin (masc. plur.)

blad (masc. sing.) frana (fem. sing.)

franat (fem. plur.)

Transcription Reminder see page 1 for the full table with all transcription characters.
: the /sh/ sound as in she a: the a in father or the a in mad
x: the ch in the German Bach or the i: the ee in meet
Scottish loch See page 148. u: the oo in food
: the French r, like a light gargle k: the normal /k/ sound
See page 147. q: like the English /k/ but pronounced
t: pronounced like t, d, and s, but further back in the throat. See page 146.
d: with a lower pitch and a greater
tension in the tongue and throat.
s: See page 147.
Peace Corps / Morocco 19

Demonstrative Adjectives
this/these (masc. / fem. / plur.) had

that (masc.) dak

that (fem.) dik

those (plur.) duk

As you can see, the this/these form (had) is the same for masculine, feminine, and plural. For all the
demonstrative adjectives, you must use the definite article in front of the nouns that follow them. This
means using an l in front of moon letters or doubling the first letter of sun letters (see page 6).

this man had r-rajl

this woman had l-mra

these men had r-rjal

these women had l-yalat

This city is big. had l-mdina kbira.

That house is big. dik d-dar kbira.

Talking about a General Situation

Sometimes in English, we use the words this and that to talk about general situations, not about
specific things.
Some of the students are always late for class. I dont like that.
In Arabic, different expressions are used for these meanings.

this (general situation) had -i

that (general situation) dak -i

After some experience hearing native speakers, you should be able to know when to use the normal
demonstrative pronouns and when to use these expressions. Some examples:

What is this? (this thing, this

a hada?
What is this? (situation, affair) a had -i?
I want that. (that thing, that bit hadak.
Thats what I want. (a situation dak -i l-li bit.
or outcome)
20 Moroccan Arabic

Using a Demonstrative Pronoun to Express Duration

With a present tense verb form, an active participle expressing current activity, or an equational
sentence, the demonstrative pronoun hadi is used to express duration, like the English present perfect
tense or present perfect progressive tense. It is used with a time expression and u (and) followed by the
rest of the sentence:
hadi + time expression + u + rest of sentence

Ive been waiting for you for two

hadi satayn u ana
hours. (Literally: This is two kan-tsnak.
hours and I am waiting for you.)
Hes been asleep for a long
time. (Literally: This is a long Hadi mudda u huwa nas.
time and he is sleeping.)
Hes been in Morocco for three
hadi tlt snin u huwa
years. (Literally: This is three f l-marib.
years and he is in Morocco.)

Asking about Possession

The possessive word dyal ( ) may be used with mn ( ) to mean whose.

Whose book is this? dyal mn had l-ktab?

This is Ambers book. had l-ktab dyal Amber.

we had l-ktab dyal
Is this Hichams book?
No, its not his. lla, mai dyalu.

Whose house is this? dyal mn had d-dar?

This house is Malikas. had d-dar dyal Malika.

we had d-dar dyal
Is this house Malikas?
Yes, its hers. iyeh, dyalha.

we had d-dar dyal


Peace Corps / Morocco 21

Exercise: Ask a question about possession for each picture. Then, give the correct
answer. The first one is done for you.

Q: dyal mn had l-bisklit?
A: had l-bisklit dyal Hassan.

Q: _______________________?
A: ___________________Said.



Q: _______________________?
A: __________________Ahmed.


Q: _______________________?
A: ___________________Aziz.

22 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 3: Useful Expressions

Here are some expressions to help you with homestay, travel, and other situations where your language
may not yet be at a point where you are able to communicate well in Moroccan Arabic.
Mealtime Expressions
In the name of God (said when you
begin an activity: eating, drinking, bismillah
working, studying, traveling, etc.).

Thanks to God (said after finishing a

meal, or after expressing that all is well l-amdullah
in life).

I dont eat ... meat ma-kan-akul-...l-lm

eggs l-bid
fish l-ut
chicken d-djaj
kan-rb atay / l-qhwa
I drink tea / coffee without sugar. bla skkar.

I eat everything. kan-akul kuli.

I eat vegetables only. kan-akul ir l-xodra.

I dont feel like eating. ma-fiya ma-y-akul.

I want just/only ... bit ir ...

I dont want to have breakfast. ma-bit- n-ftr.

The food is delicious. l-makla bnina.

Im full. bt.

I want to learn how to cook. bit n-tllm n-tiyb.

May God replenish / reward you. lla y-xlf.
(said after a meal to thank host)

To your health (said to someone

after eating, drinking, coming out of the
hammam, wearing new clothes, having
a hair cut, etc.)

May God grant you health too. llah y-tik ssa

(response to the above)

Thanking Expressions
Thank you. ukran.

Youre welcome. bla jmil.

Peace Corps / Morocco 23

Expressions for Nighttime / Sleeping

Im tired. (male speaker) ana iyan.

Im tired. (female speaker) ana iyana.

I want to read a little bit. bit n-qra wiya.

I want to sleep. bit n-ns.

Where I am going to sleep? fin adi n-ns?

Excuse me, I want to go to bed. smu li, bit n-mi

(addressing a group of people) n-ns.
I want to go to bed early. bit n-ns bkri.

I want to get up early. bit n-fiq bkri.

I want a blanket. bit wad l-manta.

Hygiene/Cleanliness Expressions
I want to wash my hands with bit n-sl yddi b
soap. s-sabun.
I want to brush my teeth. bit n-sl snani.

I want hot water, please. bit l-ma s-sxun afak.

I want to take a shower. bit n-duw.

I want to go to the hammam. bit n-mi l-mmam.

I want to change my clothes. bit n-bddl wayji.

Excuse me, where is the toilet? fin bit l-ma Haak?

I want to do laundry. bit n-sbbn wayji.

Where can I do laundry? Fin ymkn n-sbbn wayji?

Offering Help / Asking for Favors

Can I help you? we n-awnk?

Excuse me. (to a man) sm li.

Excuse me. (to a woman) smi li.

Give me ... please. tini ... afak.

24 Moroccan Arabic

Being Sick
Im sick. (male speaker) ana mrid.

Im sick. (female speaker) ana mrida.

I want to rest a bit. bit n-rta wiya.

Do you feel better? briti wiya?

Transportation Expressions
I want to go to ... bit n-mi l ...

Take me to ... please. ddini l ... afak.

Stop here, please. wqf hna afak.

Is the meter on? we l-kuntur xddam?

Turn on the meter, please. xddm l-kuntur afak.

Responses to Problems/Difficulties/Apologies
Its not a problem. mai mukil.

There is no problem. ma-kayn mukil.

Congratulations. mbruk

Happy holiday. mbruk l-id.

May God grant you grace. Lla(h) y-bark fik.

(response to the above)

I dont understand. ma-fhmt-.

I dont know. ma-n-rf.

Slowly please. b wiya afak.

Repeat please. (to a man) awd afak.

Repeat please. (to a woman) awdi afak.

What did you say? nu glti?

Kifa Kangulu l hada b
How do you say this in Arabic?
Peace Corps / Morocco 25

Lesson 4: Numbers
Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to :
count in Moroccan Arabic
combine numbers with nouns to indicate amounts
ask and answer questions about time

When we talk about numerals, we want to be able to do two things. First, we have to be able to count.
That is, we have to learn our numbers. Second, we have to be able to use the numbers with objects. In
other words, we have to be able to say things like five apples or twenty-seven students or one
hundred forty-three volunteers.
In English, we never think of these two tasks separately. We simply use a number in combination with
the plural form of some object. In Arabic, however, we have to learn how to combine different numbers
with objects, sometimes using a plural form, sometimes a singular, sometimes with a letter in between
the two, sometimes not. As in all things Arabic, what seems difficult now becomes natural with time.

Cardinal Numbers
Cardinal numbers refer to the normal numbers we use (one, two, three...). They are different than
ordinal numbers (first, second, third...) and fractions (one-half, one-third, one-fourth...). For now, we
start with the cardinal numbers. We will work with ordinal numbers and fractions later.
Numbers 1 thru 10
In Moroccan Arabic, there are two ways to combine the numbers 3 thru 10 with an object. We some-
times use the full or normal form of the number, and sometimes we use a short form of the number.
Here is a table listing the full form of numbers 1 thru 10 and the short form of numbers 3 thru 10.

Full Forms Short Forms

one (masc.) wad

one (fem.) wda

two juj

three tlata tlt

four rba rb

five xmsa xms

Six stta stt

seven sba sb

eight tmnya tmn

nine tsud ts

Ten ra r
26 Moroccan Arabic

For the numbers 3 thru 10, we combine the full form of a number and a noun like this:
number (full form) + d ( )+ plural noun with definite article
For the numbers 3 thru 10, we combine the short form of a number and a noun like this:
number (short form) + plural noun (no definite article)

Eight books (using full form) tmnya d l-ktub

Five dirhams (using full form) xmsa d d-drahm

Five dirhams (using short form) xms drahm

The numbers one and two have some special qualities.

The number one (wad/wda) differs from all other numbers because in Arabic, it acts like an
adjective. This means that it comes after a noun, like other adjectives, and that it must agree in gender
with the noun, like other adjectives.

one book (book is masc.) ktab wad

one girl (girl is fem.) bnt wda

Sometimes, you may hear wad (not wda) used before a noun. In this case, it is not acting
as a number, but rather as an indefinite article (like the English a or an). Dont worry
about it now, just be aware of it.

a book wad l-ktab

a girl wad l-bnt

The number two (juj) can be used as a full or short form with plural nouns.

two books juj d l-ktub

two books juj ktub

However, when two is part of a compound number (as in twenty-two), a different form is used. Here,
we use the form tnayn ( ). This will be shown in the section on numbers from 20 thru 99.

Dual noun forms

In English, nouns have a singular and a plural form. In Arabic, nouns also have a singular and plural
form, but a small number of nouns also have a dual form. The dual form is used for these nouns
when we refer to two of something. For nouns that have a dual form, therefore, we dont use juj. The
dual form includes the idea of two. The dual form is usually made by adding ayn to the end of the
singular form. In the following tables, the first three examples have dual forms, but the last two are
normal and therefore use their plural form.
Peace Corps / Morocco 27

Singular Form Dual Form Plural form

day Yum yumayn yam

month hr hrayn hur

year am amayn snin


Singular Form Plural Form

week simana juj d s-simanat

minute dqiqa juj dqayq

Numbers 11 thru 19
The numbers 11 thru 19 do not have a short form. Only numbers 3 thru 10 have a short form.

Eleven da

Twelve tna

Thirteen tlta

Fourteen rbta

Fifteen xmsta

Sixteen stta

Seventeen sbta

Eighteen tmnta

Nineteen tsta

Yes the singular!

For numbers 11 thru 19, we can combine a number and a noun like this:
In Arabic, the plural
form is only used for
r () numbers 2 thru 10.
number + or + singular noun (no definite article) The singular is used
l () for everything else!

sixteen years stta r am

sixteen years stta l am
eighteen girls tmnta r bnt
eighteen girls tmnta l bnt
28 Moroccan Arabic

Numbers 20, 30, 40 ... 99

For a multiple of ten (20, 30, 40 etc.) in Arabic, we simply use the name for that number, like in
English. For numbers such as 21, 22, or 23, however, it is not like English. In Arabic, the ones digit is
pronounced first, followed by the word and, then followed by the tens digit. For example, in Arabic
the number 21 is literally one and twenty while the number 47 is literally seven and forty. Also,
remember that for the numbers 22, 32, 42, 52, 62, 72, 82, and 92, we do not use juj. Rather, we use
tnayn. Here is a list of the multiples of ten, with examples of numbers between each multiple:

Twenty rin

wad u rin
literally: one and twenty
literally: two and twenty tnayn u rin
Remember: tnayn, not juj

twenty-three tlata u rin

literally: three and twenty
twenty-four rba u rin

Thirty tlatin

thirty-one wad u tlatin

thirty-two tnayn u tlatin

thirty-three tlata u tlatin

Forty rbin

forty-one wad u rbin

forty-two tnayn u rbin

Fifty xmsin

Sixty sttin

Seventy sbin

Eighty tmanin

Ninety tsin

ninety-nine tsud u tsin

For numbers 20 thru 99, we can combine a number and a noun like this:
number + singular noun (no definite article)

tnayn u rbin am

tsin drhm

tmnya u tlatin ktab

Peace Corps / Morocco 29

Numbers 100, 200, 300 ... 999

The Arabic word for 100 is miya. For 200, there is a dual form of miyatayn. For 300 thru 900, we
use the short form of the numbers 3 thru 9 plus miya. For numbers such as 107 or 257, we will use the
appropriate multiple of 100 followed by the word and and then the rest of the number. Some

one hundred miya

one hundred one miya u wad

literally: one hundred and one

one hundred two miya u juj

literally: one hundred and two

one hundred ten miya u ra

literally: one hundred and ten

one hundred eleven

miya u da
literally: one hundred and eleven

one hundred twenty-one

literally: one hundred and one and miya u wad u rin

one hundred twenty-two

literally: one hundred and two and miya u tnayn u rin

one hundred ninety-nine miya u tsud u tsin

two hundred miyatayn

two hundred fifty-seven miyatayn u sba u

literally: two hundred and seven
and fifty

three hundred tlt miya

three hundred forty-five tlt miya u xmsa u

literally: three hundred and five and

four hundred rb miya

five hundred xms miya

six hundred stt miya

seven hundred sb miya

eight hundred tmn miya

nine hundred ts miya

ts miya u tsud u
nine hundred ninety-nine tsin

Exact multiples of 100 (100, 300, 400, etc. not 137 or 278) are combined with a noun like this:
number + t ( ) + singular noun
30 Moroccan Arabic

four hundred chairs rb miyat kursi

six hundred ryal stt miyat ryal

But when a number between 100 and 999 is not an exact multiple of 100 (e.g. 167, 492, 504), we
combine the number with a noun according to the rule for the final digits of the number.

105 books (use the rule for 5) miya u xmsa d l-ktub

214 books (use the rule for 14) miyatayn u rbta r ktab
stt miya u sba u xmsin
657 books (use the rule for 57) ktab

Exercise: Match the number with the correct Arabic translation.

199 miya u tsud u rbin

2 tsud u sttin

11 miya u stta u xmsin

149 xmsa u sbin

137 miya u tsud u tsin

75 da
69 miya u sba u tlatin

156 juj

Numbers 1000, 2000, 3000 ...

The word for thousand has the singular form alf, the dual form alfayn, and the plural form alaf.
The plural form is used with the short form of the numbers 3 thru 10 from 3 thousand to 10
thousand. Then we return to the singular form (like we do for all Arabic nouns). Like the word for
hundred, it is followed by and when the number is not an exact multiple of 1000 (e.g. 1027 or
4738). From 1000 onward:

one thousand alf

one thousand one alf u wad

one thousand fifteen alf u xmsta

one thousand three hundred
sixty-seven (literally: one alf u tlt miya u sba
thousand and three hundred and u sttin
seven and sixty)

two thousand alfayn

alfayn u tnayn u
two thousand twenty-two
three thousand tlt alaf
Peace Corps / Morocco 31

three thousand seven tlt alaf u sb miya u

hundred and fifty xmsin

four thousand rb alaf

five thousand xms alaf

six thousand stt alaf

seven thousand sb alaf

eight thousand tmn alaf

nine thousand ts alaf

nine thousand nine hundred ts alaf u ts miya u

ninety-nine tsud u tsin

ten thousand r alaf

eleven thousand da r alf

two hundred thousand miyatayn alf

ts miya u tsud u
999,999 tsin alf u ts miya
u tsud u tsin

Exact multiples of 1000 can be combined with nouns in two ways:

number + singular noun
number + d ( ) + plural noun with definite article

five thousand boys xms alaf wld

five thousand boys xms alaf d l-wlad

Numbers larger than 1000 that are not exact multiples of 1000 are combined with nouns according to
the rules for the final digits, as you saw with numbers that were not exact multiples of 100.

Larger Numbers
Singular Plural
million(s) mlyun mlayn

billion(s) mlyar mlayr

32 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Correctly combine numbers with nouns by filling in the blanks using the
following numbers and any necessary letters: 1, 3, 8, 13, 20, 400, or 1000.
There may be more than one correct answer for each.

3 d l-bnat (the girls) 3

dar (house)

stilu (pen)

drhm (dirham)

mutatawwi (volunteer)

rjal (men)

ustad (teacher)

otil (hotel)

magana (watch)
l-yalat women)

Ordinal Numbers / Fractions

Ordinal Numbers
For numbers 1 thru 12, there is a separate form for cardinal and ordinal numbers. From 13 on there is
no difference between the cardinal and ordinal number.

First / the first time l-luwl / awul mrra

second t-teni

third t-talt

fourth r-rab

fifth l-xams

sixth s-sat / s-sads

seventh s-sab

eighth t-tamn

ninth t-tas

tenth l-ar

eleventh l-ad

twelfth t-tan
Peace Corps / Morocco 33

Ordinal numbers act like adjectives, and therefore must agree in gender and number with the noun
they describe. Listed are the masculine singular forms. To make the feminine form, add a ( ) to the
ordinal number. To make it plural, add in ( ).
Masculine Feminine Plural
l-luwl l-luwla l-luwlin

t-talt t-talta t-taltin


half ns

third tulut

fourth rubu / rb

To express time, we use the demonstrative pronoun hadi and the appropriate number with the
definite article (see page 7 for more info on the definite article). This means that for 1:00, 5:00, 10:00,
and 11:00, we will use the letter l ( ) before the number, while for the others, we will double the first

one l-wda seven s-sba

two j-juj eight t-tmnya

three t-tlata nine t-tsud

four r-rba ten l-ra

five l-xmsa eleven l-da

Six s-stta twelve t-tna

Like in English, Arabic uses certain words to express things like quarter to five, half past seven, etc.

before ql twenty minutes tulut

and u half ns

exactly nian quarter to lla rob

quarter rb five minutes qsm

ten minutes qsmayn

34 Moroccan Arabic

Some examples of asking and answering about time:

What time is it? al (hadi) f s-saa?

It is exactly one oclock. hadi l-wda nian.

It is five minutes past two. hadi j-juj u qsm.

It is ten minutes past three. hadi t-tlata u qsmayn.
It is a quarter past four. hadi r-rba u rb.

It is twenty minutes past five. hadi l-xmsa u tulut.

hadi s-stta u xmsa u
It is twenty-five minutes past six.
It is seven thirty. hadi s-sba u ns.
hadi tmnya u xmsa u
It is eight thirty-five.
It is twenty minutes to nine. hadi t-tsud ql tulut.

It is a quarter to ten. hadi l-ra lla rob.

It is ten minutes to eleven hadi l-da ql qsmayn.

It is five minutes to twelve. hadi t-tna ql qsm.
6:30 A.M. s-stta u ns d s-sba
5:15 P.M. l-xmsa u rb d l-iya

Exercise: Match the times with the correct Arabic translation.

10:30 l-wda u qsm

12:00 l-da u qsmayn
1:05 t-tna nian
2:20 l-ra ql tulut

11:10 l-ra u ns
9:40 j-juj u tulut
Peace Corps / Morocco 35

Exercise: Give the time in Arabic for each clock or watch.

36 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 5: Getting Started Shopping

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
convert between dirhams, ryals, and franks
buy items you need from a store
use the verb ba in simple sentences to indicate a desire
indicate the presence or absence or someone or something with kayn


100 20
100 franc 1 dirham 20 ryal

100 20

When converting ryals to dirhams, divide by 20.

e.g. 100 ryals: 100 20 = 5 DH.

From francs to ryals, divide by 5. For example, 200 francs 5 = 40 ryals.

From francs to dirhams, divide by 100. For example, 200 francs 100 = 2 DH.
From ryals to dirhams, divide by 20. For example, 40 ryals 20 = 2 DH.
From ryals to francs, multiply by 5. For example, 40 ryals 5 = 200 francs.
From dirhams to ryals, multiply by 20. For example, 2 DH 20 = 40 ryals.
From dirhams to francs, multiply by 100. For example, 2 DH 100 = 200 francs.

Exercise: Convert the money amounts.

1. Convert to dirhams
35 ryal 150 ryal 365 ryal 270 ryal 555 ryal
2. Convert to ryals
10 DH 30 DH 25 DH 125 DH 19 DH
Peace Corps / Morocco 37

At the Hanut nd mul l-Hanut

store anut peanuts kaw kaw

store keeper mul l-anut almonds l-luz

soda l-monada bottle l-qra

chocolate -klat bottle of water qra d l-ma

candies l-lwa Kleenex kliniks

gum l-mska toilet paper
cookies l-biskwi tooth paste dontifris

juice l-asir soap s-sabun

bread l-xubz shampoo -ampwan

Jam l-konfitur detergent tid

butter z-zbda bleach javel

l-jrat d
eggs l-bid batteries
yogurt danon razor r-razwar

milk l-lib tobacco store s-saka

coffee l-qhwa cigarettes l-garru

Tea atay package(s) bakiya(t)

sugar s-skkar

cheese l-frmaj money l-flus

Oil z-zit change s-srf

Do you have ... ? we ndk ... ?

Yes, I do (have). iyeh, ndi.

No, I dont (have). lla, ma-ndi-.

Is there ... ? we kayn ... ?

Yes, there is. (masc.) iyeh, kayn / mujud

Yes, there is. (fem.) iyeh, kayna / mujuda

38 Moroccan Arabic

No, there isnt. (masc.) lla, ma-kayn-.

No, there isnt. (fem.) lla, ma-kayna-.

Give me ... please. tini ... afak.

What do you want madam / sir? nu biti a lalla/sidi?

How much? bal?

Do you have change? we ndk s-srf?

Do you have change for ... ? we ndk s-srf dyal..?

liter itru

liter rubu itru

liter ns itru

1 liter wad itru

2 liters juj itru

I want a liter of milk. bit ns itru d l-lib.

Shopping dialogue
Karla: s-salamu alaykum.
mul l-anut: wa alaykum s-salam.
nu biti a lalla?
Karla: we ndk klat?

mul l-anut: iyeh, mujud a lalla.

Karla: tini juj bakiyat.
mul l-anut: tna l drhm.

Karla: hak, barak llah u fik.

mul l-anut: bla jmil

1. fin kayna Karla? 1

2. we rat l-lib? 2
3. nu rat mn l-anut? 3
4. al mn bakiya? 4
5. bal? 5
Peace Corps / Morocco 39

Verb to want
In Moroccan Arabic, the verb to want is ba ( ). This verb uses the past tense but has a present
tense meaning. When conjugated in the present tense, ba means to like (see page 99).

I want bit

you want (sing.) biti

he wants ba

she wants bat

we want bina

you want (plur.) bitu

they want bau

Verb + Noun Examples

I want tea. bit atay.
we biti l-qhwa b
Do you want coffee with sugar? skkar?
Ali wants a glass of water. Ali ba kas d l-ma.
Driss and Fatima dont want Driss u Fatima ma-bau-
soda. l-monada.

Exercise: Make as many sentences as you can.

e.g. Hicham ba kuka.

Hicham bgit atay

hiya ba l-lib

Fatima bau lwa b klat

huwa bat l-qhwa

huma biti asir l-limun

ana bina qhwa bla skkar

na bitu kuka



40 Moroccan Arabic

Listening Exercise
garsun: s-salamu alaykum.
Amy, Jack,
&Chris: wa alaykum s-salam.
garsun: a b l-xatr?

Jack: ana bit asir l-limun.

garsun: waxxa a sidi, u nta?

Chris: ana bit qhwa ns ns.

garsun: waxxa a sidi, u nti?

Amy: bit qhwa kla.

garsun: Waxxa, Mrba a lalla.

1. nu ba Jack? 1
2. we Amy bat lib sxun? 2
3. nu ba Chris? 3

Kayn for There is

The words kayn, kayna, and kaynin are actually the participles for the verb to be. In Darija,
however, we use them most often in the sense of there is or there are.
there is (masc. sing.) kayn

there is (fem. sing.) kayna

there are (plur.) kaynin

there is not (masc. sing.) ma-kayn-

there is not (fem. sing.) ma-kayna-

there are not (plur.) ma-kaynin-

Driss is at home. kayn Driss f d-dar.

Is there water in the bottle? we kayn l-ma f l-qra?

Tom is not at the caf. ma-kayn- Tom f l-qhwa.

There is food in the fridge. kayna l-makla f t-tlaja.

There are many books on the kaynin bzzaf d l-ktub
table. fuq tbla.
Peace Corps / Morocco 41

Lesson 6: Family Moroccan wisdom : aji a mmi nwrrik dar xwali

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
describe family members
use the verb to have in simple sentences
Cultural Points
Family ties are very strong in Morocco. Children remain in touch or live with the family even if
they get married (taking into consideration space available within the house). Men are not expected to
help in the kitchen. Roles of men and women may differ in the city and in the country.

Family Members
woman/wife mra in-law(s) nsib / nsab

man/husband rajl step-son rbib

girl/daughter bnt step-daughter rbiba

boy/son wld grandfather jdd

girls/daughters bnat grandmother jdda

boys/sons/ wlad mm
uncle (paternal)
the parents l-walidin aunt (paternal) mma

uncle (maternal) xal

the father l'ab These forms are aunt (maternal) xala

rarely used in
Moroccan Arabic. my nephew
the mother l'om wld xuya
Sometimes they (brothers side)
are used with
l'ax dyal. More my niece bnt xuya
the brother
often, we use the (brothers side)
forms my father, my nephew
the sister l'oxt my sister, etc. wld xti
(sisters side)
my niece
bnt xti
(sisters side)

xu(ya) my cousin wld mm(t)i

(my) brother
(mas., paternal)
my cousin
brothers/ siblings xut wld xal(t)i
(mas., maternal)

xt(i) my cousin bnt mm(t)i

(my) sister
(fem, paternal)

xwatat my cousin bnt xal(t)i

(fem, maternal)
42 Moroccan Arabic

For father, mother, brother, sister, aunt, and uncle, the word is almost always used with a possessive
pronoun. Thus, we say my father or his mother or your brother. The words brother, sister, aunt,
and uncle take the possessive pronoun endings you already learned (see page 10), but father and
mother have a couple irregularities.

my father bba my mother mmi

your father bbak your mother mmk

his father bbah his mother mmu

her father bbaha her mother mha

Exercise: Add the possessive endings to the following:

sister xt

brother xu

uncle mm

aunt mma

How is Mohamed related to a kay-jeek Mohamed?
How is Amina related to you? a kat-jeek Amina?

My mom doesnt work. mmi ma-xddama-.

My mom and dad are divorced. bba u mmi mtllqin.

I have two twin siblings. ndi juj xut twam.

How many siblings do you al d l-xut ndk?

How many sisters do you have? al mn xt/oxt ndk?

Whats your fathers name? nu smit bbak?

How old is your brother? al f mr xuk?

I have a younger brother. ndi xuya sr mnni.

My (male) cousin and I are the ana u wld mmi qd qd.
same age.
xti lli kbr mnni
My older sister is a teacher.
My younger brother studies at xuya lli sr mnni
the university. kay-qra f l-jamia.
Peace Corps / Morocco 43

Exercise: Describe the relationships between family members for each arrow.

Verb to have
The verb to have nd ( ) in the present tense:

I have ndi

you have (sing.) ndk

he has ndu

she has ndha

we have ndna

you have (plur.) ndkum

they have ndhum

Moha and Fatima have two Moha u Fatima ndhum juj

daughters and a son. bnat u wld.
We have a good teacher. ndna ustad mzyan.

To negate the verb, use ma ... ( ).

Do you have a house in

we ndk dar f l-mrib?
No, I dont. I have a house in lla, ma-ndi-. ndi dar
the U.S. f mirikan.
44 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Put the verb nd in the correct form.

1. xti _________ 24 am. 24 .1
2. xuya _________ 2 wlad. 2 .2
3. na _________ wld u tlata d
4. huma _________ famila kbira. .4
5. we Mohamed _________ tomobil? .5
lla, _________.

Exercise: Put sentences A thru I in the correct order for this letter from Karim to Tom.
sabi Tom,
bitini n-hdr lik la l-famila dyali?
A. bba smitu Ali. .A
B. mmi ndha ir 52 am. 52 .B
C. Hassan ndu 15 am u Mohamed ndu
20 am. 20 15 .C
D. (kay-sknu mana f d-dar) welakin
xti mzuwja.
E. rajlha smitu Moha. ndhum wad
l-bnt smitha Nadia. .E
F. ndoo 26 am. 26 .F
G. smitha Hakima .G
H. ndi juj xut. .H
I. ana deba xal! .I
hdr liya la l-famila dyalk ta nta.
sabk, Karim

Practice Text
smiti John. baba smitu Stephen u
mama smitha Judy. ndi tlata d
l-xut: juj bnat u wld. xuya smitu
Brian. huwa xddam f wad -arika.
xti Kathy. mzuwja u ndha juj
drari: wld u bnt. l-wld mazal sir
ndu tlt hur. l-bnt ndha tmn snin
u kat-mi l l-mdrasa. xti s-sira,
Mary, mazal kat-qra f l-jamia.
1. bat John, nu smitu? 1
2. u mmu, nu smitha? 2
3. al d l-xut nd John? 3
4. kun s-sir f l-a'ila d John? 4
5. we bnt xt John xddama? 5
Peace Corps / Morocco 45

Lesson 7: Directions
Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
use prepositions to describe the locations of objects
give and receive directions to places around town

to / for l until tta l

in / at f above / on fuq

from mn below / under tt

with ma qddam
in front of
with / by / by b mqabl ma
means of
without bla behind mura

on / about la next to da

between bin before qbl

of, belonging d / dyal bd


Kura snduq
Exercise: fin l-kura?

1 2

l-kora fuq s-snduq.

4 5 6
46 Moroccan Arabic

hotel l-otil university l-jamia

hospital /
post office l-bosta s-sbitar
health center
train station la-gar pharmacy l-frmasyan
l-matta d j-jam
bus station mosque
l-matta d
Taxi stand public phone t-telebutik

l-matta d
city bus stop weekly market s-suq

bank l-banka store l-anut

public bath l-mmam avenue -ari

restaurant r-ristora street z-znqa

caf l-qhwa alley d-drb

cyber caf s-siber far (from) bid (mn)

l-mdrasa close (to) qrib (mn)
middle school here hna
high school there tmma

Where is ... please? fin kayn(a) ... afak.
we kayn(a) i ...
Is there a ... close? qrib(a)?
Go straight. sir nian.

Turn right. dur l(a) limn.

Turn left. dur l(a) lisr.

Go ahead a bit. zid wiya l qddam.

Pass the first street. fut z-znqa l-luwla.

The 2nd street, yes. z-znqa tenya iyeh.

Peace Corps / Morocco 47

Jason u Brahim f l-matta d l-kiran.
Jason: s-salamu alaykum.

Brahim: wa alaykum s-salam.

Jason: fin la-gar afak?

Brahim: sir nian tta l z-znqa
t-talta u dur l lisr, u
mn bd zid nian tta l
l-bar u dur l limn.
tmma la-gar.
Jason: barak llah u fik.
Brahim: kat-tkllm l-rbiya
Jason: wiya u safi.

Brahim: we nta fransawi?

Jason: lla, ana mirikani. lla
Brahim: bslama.

Exercise: Using the same map, give each person directions.

1. Dave is in the sbitar and wants to go to l-bosta.
2. Anna is in the matta and wants to go to l-otil.
3. Stephen is in the mari and wants to go to s-siber.
4. Hakim is in the jrda and wants to go to l-banka.
48 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 8: The Past

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
talk about past activities with regular and irregular verbs
talk about what you did not do using negative sentences
ask about past experiences (Have you ever...) and respond (Ive never...)
use object pronouns with verbs
ask varied questions with different question words

Time Vocabulary
Before we begin the past tense, lets learn some words that will help us describe when past events took
place. Then we will be ready to talk about some of our past activities.
Days of the Week
day yum / nhar Tuesday t-tlat

week simana Wednesday l-arb

Sunday l-dd Thursday l-xmis

Monday l-tnin Friday j-jma

Saturday s-sbt

Months of the Year

month hr June yunyu

year am July yulyuz

January yanayr August ut

February fbrayr September utanbir

March mars October oktobr

April abril November nuwanbir

May may December dujanbir

The Seasons
season fasl summer s-sif

seasons fosul fall l-xrif

spring r-rbi winter -ta

For information about the months of the Islamic calendar and some of the major religious events
of the year, see Moroccan Holidays on page 162.
Peace Corps / Morocco 49

this year had l-am

last year l-am lli fat
last month -hr lli fat
last week s-simana lli fatt
yesterday l-bar
today l-yum
on (+ day of the week) nhar
on Friday nhar j-jma
in (+ month) f hr

f hr ut
in August
f hr tmnya

at (+ time) f / ma
at 9:00 f t-tsud
at dawn f l-fjr
in the morning f s-sba
in the afternoon / evening f l-iya
at night f l-lil
at midnight f ns l-lil

Past Tense Regular Verbs

Verbs in General
When learning verbs in a foreign language, we usually learn the infinitive form of the verb (e.g. to
eat), and then learn how to conjugate from that infinitive (I eat, he eats, they eat). In Arabic, there
are not infinitives for verbs in this way. Rather, we learn the he form of the verb (i.e. third person
masculine singular) in the past tense, and then learn how to conjugate the other forms (I, you, she,
etc.) from the he form. Because we use this past tense he form like an infinitive for the purposes of
learning verbs, if you see something referred to as an infinitive, it is this form. Some examples:

he drank rb
past tense
he form: he hit drb
like an infinitive
he sat gls

Whenever you are given a new verb in this book or by your teacher, it will be given to you in this form.
You will be able to conjugate verbs in the past or present tense based upon this infinitive form.
The vast majority of Darija (Moroccan Arabic) verbs are made up of three letters (see the verbs
above). To these stems we can add prefixes (letters that we attach to the beginning of a word) and
suffixes (letters we attach to the end of a word) in order to conjugate the verb. Stems with a vowel in
the middle and stems with a vowel at the end will differ from verbs with three consonants.
50 Moroccan Arabic

Regular Verbs in the Past Tense

When we say regular verb, we mean a verb that is conjugated according to rules that the large
majority of verbs in the language use. An irregular verb is conjugated according to different rules.
There are regular and irregular verbs for both the past and present tense in Darija. However, irregular
verbs that are similar in the past may be different in the present. So, you need to realize that the groups
of verbs categorized together for the past tense may not always correspond to the groups in the present
In general, regular verb refers to:
All 3-letter verbs without the long vowel a ( ) in the middle or end position
(i.e. 3-letter verbs made up only of consonants)
All verbs with more than 3 letters and not ending in a ( )
To conjugate a regular verb in the past tense, we add the following suffixes (endings):

to write ktb
that the I wrote ktbt
infinitive is
the same as you wrote (masc. sing.) ktbti
the past
tense he you wrote (fem. sing.) ktbti
he wrote ktb In the past
tense, you
she wrote ktbat (masc.) and
you (fem.)
we wrote ktbna are the same.
In the present
ktbtu tense, they
you wrote (plur.)
will be
they wrote ktbu

Some Regular Verbs

to drink rb to understand fhm

to know rf to work xdm

to play lb to hit drb

to draw rsm to stop / stand up wqf

to sleep ns to arrive wsl

to wear lbs to hear / listen sm

to stay / sit gls to ask suwl

to enter dxl to travel safr

to go out xrj to help awn

to return rj to send sift

to watch tfrrj to wash sl

to use stml to speak tkllm

Peace Corps / Morocco 51

Some examples:
Yesterday, I drank tea without l-bar, rbt atay bla
sugar. skkar.

Last week, Said wrote a letter to s-simana lli fatt, Said

his friend. ktb bra l sabu.

Last year, we traveled to New l-am lli fat, safrna l

York. New York.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

Mohamed: we (ns) bkri l-bar?

Hassan: lla

Mohamed: la?

Hassan: (gls) ma l-a'ila dyali

u (tkllm) mahum wiya.
mn bd, {na}(xrj). mlli
(rj), (lb) l-karta u
(tfrrj) f t-tlfaza. mn
bd {ana}(dxl) l l-bit
dyali u (ns).

l-dd lli fat,ana (awn) xti f

l-kuzina: (sl) l-mman u (tiyb)

Past Tense Irregular Verbs

When we speak about irregular verbs for the past tense, we refer to three categories: 1. three-letter
verbs with the long vowel a ( ) in the middle position, 2. any verb with the long vowel a ( ) at the
end, and 3. two-letter verbs.

1st Category: long vowel a ( ) in the middle position

To conjugate a three-letter verb in the past tense with the long vowel a in the middle position, remove
the long vowel a for the I, you (sing.), we, and you (plur.) forms before adding the past tense
endings. For the she form, only add a t. The he and they forms are like regular verbs.

to be kan
In these forms,
we remove the
I was knt
middle a and you were (masc. sing.) knti
then add the
endings. you were (fem. sing.) knti
he was kan
she was kant
we were knna
In these forms, you were (plur.) kntu
we keep the
middle a and they were kanu
then add the
52 Moroccan Arabic

Some Irregular Verbs with long vowel a ( ) in the middle position

af to get up /
to see nad
stand up
to do / make dar to throw la
to swim am to pass / pass by daz
to sell ba to pass fat
to love / be
to bring jab mat la
dying for
to say/ to tell gal to increase zad
to fast sam to be scared xaf
to drive sag to live a

Some examples:

This morning I got up at 7:00. had s-sba ndt f s-sba.

What did you do yesterday? nu drti l-bar?

Whats done is done. (proverb) lli fat mat.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

s-simana lli fatt, ana u sabi (am)
f la-ppisin.
Sara (a) f mirikan amayn.
nhar s-sbt f l-iya, ana u sabati
(kan) f l-mmam. mlli xrjna (daz) l

2nd Category: long vowel a ( ) at the end

To conjugate a verb with the long vowel a at the end, change the vowel to i for the I, you (sing.),
we, and you (plur.) forms, then add the normal endings. For the she form, only add a t. The he
and they forms are like regular verbs.

to eat kla
In these forms,
we change the I ate klit
final a to i
then add the you ate (masc. sing.) kliti
you ate (fem. sing.) kliti
he ate kla
she ate klat
In these forms, we ate klina
we keep the final
a and then add you ate (plur.) klitu
the endings.
they ate klau
Peace Corps / Morocco 53

Some Irregular Verbs with the long vowel a ( ) at the end

to go ma to rent kra

to start bda to run jra

to buy ra to finish sala

to sing nna to have lunch tdda

to give ta to have dinner ta

to forget nsa to hope tmnna

to cry bka to wait tsnna

to want ba to read / study qra

to take xda to meet tlaqa

to come ja

Some examples:

Last Sunday, I went to the l-dd lli fat, mit l

medina and bought a jellaba. l-mdina u rit jllaba.

They sang at the party on huma nnau f l-fla nhar

Saturday. s-sbt.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

John u Amy (kra) dar zwina f
l-bar ana u Paul (tlaqa) ma
sabna f r-ristora u (tdda)
s-simana lli fatt, huma (sala)
l-xdma dyalhum f l-mrib.

Moroccan Wisdom:
l-li ba l-sl y-sbr l qris n-nl.
The one who wants honey must tolerate bee stings.
English equivalent: Every rose has its thorn.
54 Moroccan Arabic

3rd Category: two-letter verbs

When we say two-letter verbs, some confusion can arise. When we write them in Arabic, they have
only two letters. However, there is a shedda on the second letter (see pages 3 and 146), so in the
transcription we double the second letter, making them look like three-letter verbs. In this case, you
can still recognize them because the second and third letters are the same. Or, look at the Arabic script
and you can be sure of the fact that they are, indeed, two-letter verbs.
To conjugate this type of verb, we add the long vowel i to the I, you (sing.), we, and you (plur.)
forms, then add the normal endings. The he, she, and they forms are like regular verbs.

to open ll
In these forms,
we add i to the
I opened llit
verb, then add
the normal
you opened (masc. sing.) lliti A two-letter
endings. verb with
you opened (fem. sing.) lliti
shedda on
he opened ll the second
she opened llat
In these forms, we opened llina
we simply add
the normal you opened (plur.) llitu
they opened llu

Some two-letter verbs

to close sdd to be able qdd

to smell mm to pick up hzz

to hand mdd to think dnn

to answer / rdd mll
to be bored
return back
to pour kbb to take / catch dd

to feel ss to pull / drag jrr

To correct SHH to put tt

Some examples:
I opened the window and I llit s-srjm u sddit
closed the door. l-bab.
I felt cold. ssit b l-brd.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

l-bar f s-sba, Mary (rdd) l-ktab l
mlli kan l-jaj, {ana} (sdd) s-srajm.
{na} (tt) l-wayj f l-makina d
Peace Corps / Morocco 55

Normal Negative Form
In order to express the negative of a verb (i.e. didnt, or dont, or doesnt), we add the prefix ma ( )
to the beginning of a verb and the suffix ( ) to the end of a verb.

We drank. rbna

We didnt drink. ma-rbna-

Exercise: Conjugate the verbs in parentheses in the negative form.

- huwa (safr) s-simana lli fatt. -
- l-bar f l-lil (qra) l-ktab dyali
it knt iyan.
- iya (gls) mana it (sala) l-xdma
- na (ns) bkri it (ta) bkri. -
- Kari (lbs) l-kswa j-jdida f l-fla
it (kan) ndha l-wqt.
- mlli ja l l-mrib (sift) bra l
l-walidin dyalu.
- Hit kan l-brd {ana} (ll) s-srajm. -

Additional Negative Forms

The following negative forms replace the ( ) we use for the normal negative form. We still use ma ( )
before the verb, but we use these forms after the verb or, sometimes, before the verb (and thus before

nothing walu

nothing tta aja

nothing tta i

no one tta wad

no one (tta) dd

neither ... nor la ... wala

only / just ir

Some examples:

I knew nothing. ma-rft walu.

I ate nothing. ma-klit tta aja. .

No one came. tta wad ma-ja.

He saw no one. ma-af tta wad / dd. .

56 Moroccan Arabic

I met neither Mohamed nor ma-tlaqit la Mohamed

Amber. wala Amber.
I drank only water. ma-rbt ir l-ma. .

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the proper form.

l-dd lli fat (gls) f d-dar,
(xrj negative) laqqa (kan) -ta.
f l-iya sabi (ja) u (ma) l
s-siber bjooj. mn bd (ma) l
s-sinima. (af) wad l-film zwin.
mlli (xrj), (daz) l s-suq. (ra)
l-xodra. mn bd (dd) tobis u (rj)
l d-dar.

Exercise: Write a paragraph from these pictures.

Peace Corps / Morocco 57

Have you ever... / Ive never...

Have you ever...?
We can use the word mmr ( ) to express the English equivalent of the present perfect tense: Have
you ever...? and I have never... We conjugate it as follows:

Have you (sing.) ever... we mmrk

Has he ever... we mmru

Has she ever... we mmrha

Have we ever... we mmrna

Have you (plur.) ever... we mmrkum

Have they ever... we mmrhum

Have I ever... we mmri / mmrni

The verb that follows mmr is often in the past tense. Some examples:

Have you ever gone to France? we mmrk miti l Fransa?

Have they ever eaten couscous? we mmrhum klau l-ksksu?

Have you ever drunk mint tea in we mmrkum rbtu atay b

America? n-nna f mirikan?

Ive never...
This is like the conjugation above, with the addition of ma ( ) at the beginning of mmr ( ).

I have never... ma-mmri / ma-mmrni

you (sing.) have never... ma-mmrk

he has never... ma-mmru

she has never... ma-mmrha

we have never... ma-mmrna

you (plur.) have never... ma-mmrkum

they have never... ma-mmrhum

Some examples:

Ive never eaten hamburger. ma-mmrni klit l-hamborgr.

She has never been abroad. ma-mmrha safrat l l-xarij.

He has never spoken Arabic. ma-mmru tkllm l-rbiya.

58 Moroccan Arabic

Object Pronouns
In English, we have pronouns for the subject of a sentence: I, you, he, she, we, and they. But we also
have object pronouns that we use after verbs:
He hit me. I saw her.
Ask him a question. We gave them some cake.
So far, you have learned the independent pronouns (see page 10) and the possessive pronouns (see
page 11). Here are the object pronouns that we use in Moroccan Arabic after verbs:

me ni

you (sing.) k

him / it u / h

her / it ha

us na

you (plur.) kum

them hum

These pronouns are the same as the possessive pronouns, with the exception of me. The him form
uses u after consonants and h after vowels, exactly like the possessive pronoun form. Some examples:

Omar gave a book to omar ta wad l-ktab l

Mohamed. Mohamed.
Omar gave it to Mohamed. omar tah l Mohamed. -
Did you write the letter to we ktbti l-bra l
Hassan? Hassan?
Yes, I wrote it to Hassan. iyeh, ktbtha l Hassan. -
Why did you leave us with la xllitina mah?
She saw me at the movie aftni f s-sinima. -
As you can see, these pronouns are attached directly to the verb. As a result, when a verb with an
object pronoun is made negative, the ( ) is used after the pronoun. Some examples:

You saw me. ftini

You didnt see me. ma-ftini-

Did you see Hakima and we fti Hakima u Karim?
No, I didnt see them. lla, ma-fthum-.

Exercise: Replace the underlined nouns with the corresponding pronouns.

1. qrit dik l-jarida l-bar f
Peace Corps / Morocco 59

2. nsau s-sarut dyalhum f d-dar.

3. zrt duk n-nas f Fes l-bar.

4. ddau wldhum mahum l s-sinima.

5. wqqfna ffar f z-znqa.

Using Prepositions with Pronoun Endings & Verbs

Learning how to use prepositions correctly can sometimes be tricky. First, the prepositions dont
always correspond directly to English prepositions . Thus, at different times in Moroccan Arabic we
will use different prepositions for what would be the same preposition in English. Second, prepositions
sometimes change in meaning depending upon the verb they are used with. This is true in English, too:
She spoke on the rights of homeless people. (on means on the subject of)
I put the book on the table. (on means on top of)
With these challenges, it may take awhile for you to be a master of Darija prepositions. But with
continued use and exposure, they will become natural for you, just as greetings are now natural for you.
In this section, we will look at two aspects of prepositions: 1. how to connect prepositions with pronoun
endings, and 2. which verbs use certain prepositions.
Some prepositions you have already learned (such as dyal) simply add the normal pronoun endings
(ex. dyali, dyalk, etc.). The following prepositions, however, change slightly when pronoun endings
are added:

to / for l

on / about la

with ma

in / at / about f

with / by b

The Preposition l
The preposition l ( ) often means to (ex. I gave something to you) or for (ex. I did something for
you). It may also be used with certain verbs simply to express the meaning of the verb; in these cases, it
doesnt translate into anything in English. To add the pronoun endings:

to / for l

to / for me liya / li

to / for you (sing.) lik

to / for him lih / lu

to / for her liha

to / for us lina

to / for you (plur.) likum

to / for them lihum

60 Moroccan Arabic

Some verbs that go with this preposition:

excuse sm l send (to) sift (l)

explain (to) fssr (l) bring (to) jab (l)

say (to) gal (l) to be possible (for...) ymkn (l)

Some examples:
Kristin siftat bra
Kristin sent a letter to Chad.
l Chad.
Kristin sent a letter to him. Kristin siftat bra lih.
Thomas ra wad l-kadu
Thomas bought a present for l Jessica f id l-milad
Jessica on her birthday. dyalha.
Thomas bought it for her. Thomas rah liha.

Excuse me. sm liya.

Can I (i.e. is it possible for me) talk with we ymkn liya n-hdr
you? mak?
I cant (i.e. it is not possible for me) go out ma-ymkn- liya n-xrj
now. deba.
As you can see in the example Excuse me above, sometimes the Arabic verb requires the preposition
in order to be equivalent to the English verb. In these cases, the English translation doesnt have a
preposition, but the Arabic still requires it.
The Preposition la
The preposition la is used with many verbs and expressions, and as a result it translates into many
English prepositions, including: on, about, to, at, and others. With pronoun endings:

on (and others) la

on me liya

on you (sing.) lik

on him lih

on her liha

on us lina

on you (plur.) likum

on them lihum

Some verbs that go with this preposition:

defend daf la lie (to) kdb (la)

look/search qllb (la) laugh (at) dk (la)

Peace Corps / Morocco 61

to love (i.e. to
speak (about) tkllm (la) mat (la)
be dying for)

In the first verb, defend, the preposition la does not have an English translation since it is required
in order to translate the Arabic verb into defend. In the second verb, look/search, however, the
preposition la is basically equivalent to the English for. Some examples:
we tkllmna la d-dawr
Did we talk about the role of
dyal hay'at s-salam f
Peace Corps in Morocco? l-mrib?
Yes, we talked about it. iyeh, tkllmna lih.
Were you looking for a house we qllbti la dar l
to rent? l-kra?
Yes, I was looking for it. iyeh, qllbt liha.

The Preposition ma
The preposition ma almost always translates into the English with. With pronouns:

with ma

with me maya

with you (sing.) mak

with him mah

with her maha

with us mana

with you (plur.) makum

with them mahum

Some verbs that go with this preposition:

laugh (with) dk (ma) meet (with) tlaqa (ma)

be helpful
tawn (ma) stay (with) bqa (ma)
shake hands
tsalm (ma) argue (with) txasm (ma)

Some examples:
I met (with) Samir in the post tlaqit ma Samir f
office. l-bosta.
I met (with) him in the post
tlaqit mah f l-bosta.
I was just kidding! (with you) ir dkt mak!
62 Moroccan Arabic

The Preposition f
Like la, the preposition f has many different English translations, including: in, about, at, on,
and others. When used with pronouns:

in f

in me fiya

in you (sing.) fik

in him fih

in her fiha

in us fina

in you (plur.) fikum

in them fihum

Some verbs that go with this preposition:

ask (about) suwl (f) participate (in) ark (f)

think (about) fkkr (f) take care (of) thlla (f)

talk (about) a taq (f)

hdr (f) trust (in)

Some examples:
I came over (asked about you) suwlt fik l-bar,
yesterday, but I didnt find you. welakin ma-lqitk-.
We trusted (in) him, but he tqna fih, u dr bina.
betrayed us.
Take care of yourself. thlla f rask.

This preposition, with pronouns, can also have the meaning of the verb to be.

I am hungry. fiya j-ju.

I am thirsty. fiya l-t.

He has a fever. fih s-sxana.

And sometimes it takes the meaning of to have in the expression to have in it/them.
had d-dar fiha xmsa d
This house has five rooms.
Peace Corps / Morocco 63

The Preposition b
The preposition b usually has the meaning of with (I eat with my hands), but can also be used for:
by, in, about, for, and others. With pronouns:

with b
with me biya
with you (sing.) bik
with him bih
with her biha
with us bina
with you (plur.) bikum
with them bihum

Some verbs that go with this preposition:

believe (in) amn (b) marry (with) tzuwj (b)

dream (about) lm (b) welcome rb b

be responsible tkllf (b) want to be sepa- sxa (b)

(for) rated (from)
Some examples:
She married (with) him last year. tzuwjat bih l-am l-li fat.

They welcomed me into their house. rbu biya f darhum.

I dreamed about him. lmt bih.

Exercise: Replace the underlined nouns with the corresponding pronouns.

Sometimes you will need to use a preposition and pronoun together.
Example: l-qt kla l-ut. l-qt klah.
1. Tony rb l-lib. 1
2. Ahmed ra tumubil. 2
3. l-mutatawwiin mau l s-suq. 3
4. Latifa ddat d-drari l l-mdrasa. 4
5. we nsiti l-magana f d-dar? 5
6. Greg ta l-flus l Amy. 6
7. d-drari safru ma sabhum. 7
8. Sara klat l-lm. 8
9. sllm la mwalin d-dar. 9
10. Jerry xaf mn Tom. 10
64 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Make all of the above verb forms negative.

Question Words
Some of these you already know. Some will be new for you.

who kun

Who are you? kun nta / nti?

what a / nu / anu

What did you do yesterday? nu drti l-bar?

which amn

Which city-bus did you take? amn tobis xditi?

where fin / fayn

Where did you eat pizza ? fin kliti l-ppitza?

how kifa

How did you make this bread? kifa drti had lxubz?

from where Mnin

Where did you come from? mnin jiti?

when fuqa / imta

When did you sleep yesterday? fuqa nsti l-bar?

When did you arrive? imta wslti?

why la

Why did you come late? la jiti mttl?

Because I didnt wake up early. laqqa ma-fqt- bkri.

The word mn ( ) is used after some prepositions to create question words.

with whom ma mn

With whom did you travel to

Rabat? (In the US: Who did you travel ma mn safrti l Rabat?
to Rabat with?)

whose dyal mn

Whose pen is this? Dyal mn had stilu?

how many / how much al

Peace Corps / Morocco 65

The question word al ( ) may is followed by either d ( ) or mn ( ), depending upon the noun
following it. Uncountable nouns are nouns that do not have a plural because they speak about
something that can be measured, but not counted (e.g. tea, air). Countable nouns are nouns that
have plural forms and, therefore, nouns with which we use numbers (e.g. 5 cats, 3 books). With al:
al + d + singular uncountable noun
al + d + plural countable noun
al + mn + singular countable noun

How much time ? al d l-wqt?

How many books did you read? al d l-ktub qriti?

How many books? al mn ktab?

In referring to prices, al is almost always preceded by the preposition b ( ).

How much is this shirt? bal had l-qamija?

How much did you pay for
bal ritihum?

Exercise: Write your time line of activities for last Sunday. Use the following time
expressions and verbs to write as many sentences as you can.

e.g. f l-weekend tit ma sabi f


Time Expressions Verbs

f l-weekend tfrrj ta

f s-sba bkri dar safr

f l-iya awn tsnna

f l-lil sam ja

mn bd kbb ma

l-dd lli fat dqq Tlaqa

f (time) xaf wsl

af qra

duw tkllm

lbs sift
66 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 9: Daily Routines- the Present

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
talk about your daily activities using the present tense
use one verb after another to express complex thoughts
give commands with the imperative

Present Tense Regular Verbs

Present Tense in General
In Arabic, the present tense normally expresses both habitual and progressive actions.
habitual action: I eat couscous every Friday.
progressive action: I am eating couscous now.
For a small number of verbs, the present tense expresses only habitual actions (see page 150 for more
information on these verbs).
Unlike the past tense, which uses only suffixes (endings) to conjugate a verb, the present tense uses
both suffixes and prefixes. The present tense prefix is written with ka ( ) and another letter (n, t,
or y). Present tense suffixes (i or u) may be added as well.

Regular Verbs in the Present Tense

Verbs that were regular in the past tense are still regular in the present tense. In addition to these,
two-letter verbs are also regular in the present tense. Therefore, they will be conjugated like ktb
( ) in the present tense. See page 54 for more information on two-letter verbs.
Here is the conjugation of the verb ktb in the present tense, with prefixes and suffixes underlined:

to write Ktb

I write kan-ktb

you write (masc. sing.) kat-ktb

Yes, these
are the kat-ktbi
you write (fem. sing.)
same. You
These have
he writes kay-ktb different
the speaker
by context.
she writes kat-ktb In the past
tense, they
we write kan-ktbu had the same
you write (plur.) kat-ktbu

they write kay-ktbu

Q: What changes are brought to the verb when conjugated in the present tense?
Peace Corps / Morocco 67

Time Expressions
always Dima

usually aliban

sometimes bd l-mrrat

from time to time mrra mrra

once a ... mrra f ...

once a year mrra f l-am

once a month mrra f l-hr

once a week mrra f s-simana

everyday Yawmiyan

on (day of the week) nhar ...

on Saturday nhar s-sbt

every ... kul ...

every morning kul sba

every Friday kul jma

now Daba

Some examples:
Greg speaks Darija well from Greg kay-tkllm d-darija
time to time. mzyan mrra mrra.
Malika drinks milk every Malika kat-rb l-lib kul
morning. sba.

Amina and her friend travel to Amina u sabtha kay-safru

France once a year. l fransa mrra f l-am.

Aicha is pouring tea now. Aicha kat-kbb atay now.

ma-kan-rb- l-qhwa
I dont drink coffee usually.

Exercise: Answer the following sentences (based on the examples above) in the negative.
1. we Greg kay-tkllm tamazit mzyan? 1

2. we Malika kat-rb atay kul sba? 2

3. we Amina u sabtha kay-safru l
mirikan mrra f l-am?
4. we Aicha kat-kbb l-ma? 4
68 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?



Present Tense Irregular Verbs with Middle a

Irregular Verbs in General
Categories of Present Tense Irregular Verbs
Irregular verbs in the present tense are
more complicated than in the past tense.
a becomes u
In the past tense, verbs with the same
structure (a in the middle, a at the long vowel
a in a becomes i
end) were conjugated the same way. In the middle
the present tense, verbs that look the
same in their infinitive form may be a remains a
conjugated differently. Present
As a result of this difference, in the Irregular
present tense you will have to remember Verbs
a becomes i
which category of conjugation each
irregular verb belongs to. These catego- long
ries are listed in the diagram to the right, vowel a a remains a
and each will be shown individually. The at the
glossary of verbs in the appendix (see internal changes
page 166) also shows, by example, how an
irregular verb is conjugated.
We will deal with two large groups of irregular verbs: 3-letter verbs with a long vowel a in the middle
and all verbs with a long vowel a at the end. Within each of these general groups, there will be three
categories of different conjugations. At times, it may seem like too much information to handle. But
Peace Corps trainees have been learning the irregular present tense for years; youll do great. Practicing
irregular verbs with your homestay family is one way to remember how each verb is conjugated. The
more you use the verbs, the quicker they will stick in your memory.
Peace Corps / Morocco 69

1st Category: Long a Becomes Long u

Remember, here we are dealing with 3-letter verbs with a ( ) in the middle. The long vowel a ( ) changes
to the long vowel u ( ), with the same prefixes and suffixes as regular verbs in the present tense.

to say gal

I say kan-gul

you say (masc. sing.) kat-gul

you say (fem. sing.) kat-guli

he says kay-gul

she says kat-gul

we say kan-gulu

you say (plur.) kat-gulu

they say kay-gulu

Verbs like gal

to be kan to pass fat

to blame lam to see af

to die mat to swim am

to drive / ride sag to taste daq

to fast sam to throw la

to melt dab to turn dar

to pass daz to visit zar

Some examples:
Muslims fast during Ramadan l-mslmin kay-sumu rmdan
every year. kul am.
Lisa swims well. Lisa kat-um mzyan.
had -ifur ma-kay-sug-
This driver doesnt drive well.
When the verb to be, kan ( ) is conjugated in the present tense, it expresses a habitual action or
activity, not a current state or condition.
Where are you (every) Saturday fin kat-kun nhar s-sbt f
afternoon? l-iya?
70 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?

4 3

2nd Category: Long a Becomes Long i

In this category, the long vowel a ( ) in the middle of the verb changes to the long vowel i ( ), with the
same prefixes and suffixes as regular verbs in the present tense.

to bring jab

I bring kan-jib

you bring (masc. sing.) kat-jib

you bring (fem. sing.) kat-jibi

he brings kay-jib

she brings kat-jib

we bring kan-jibu

you bring (plur.) kat-jibu

they bring kay-jibu

Verbs like jab

to add zad to fly tar

to be absent ab to leak sal

to be cooked tab to wake up faq

to do / make dar sell ba

to fall ta to touch qas

to trust taq
Peace Corps / Morocco 71

Some examples:
Hassan sells (is selling) Hassan kay-bi l-xodra f
vegetables in the souq. s-suq.
I dont wake up early on ma-kan-fiq- bkri nhar
Sundays. l-dd.
What do you do on Saturdays? nu kat-dir nhar s-sbt?

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?

1 4

3rd Category: Long a Remains the same

In this category, the long vowel a ( ) remains the same, without any changes, with the same prefixes
and suffixes as regular verbs in the present tense.

to spend the night bat

I spend the night kan-bat

you spend the night

(masc. sing.)
you spend the night kat-bati
(fem. sing.)
he spends the night kay-bat

she spends the night kat-bat

we spend the night kan-batu

you spend the night kat-batu

they spend the night kay-batu

Verbs like bat

to appear ban to owe sal

to look like ban bal to be scared xaf

72 Moroccan Arabic

Some examples:

The mouse is scared of the cat. l-far kay-xaf mn l-qt.

You look like you are sick. kat-ban bal ila mrid.

Present Tense Irregular Verbs with Final a

Now we change our focus from verbs with a long vowel a ( ) in the middle of the verb to those with a
long vowel a ( ) at the end of the verb.

1st Category: Long a Becomes Long i

In this category, the long vowel a ( ) changes to the long vowel i ( ), with the same prefixes and
suffixes as regular verbs in the present tense.

to run jra

I run kan-jri
These have
the same you run (masc. sing.) kat-jri
conjugation in
this category.
you run (fem. sing.) kat-jri

he runs kay-jri

she runs kat-jri

we run kan-jriu

you run (plur.) kat-jriu

they run kay-jriu

Verbs like jra

to build bna to go ma

to buy ra to pray slla

to cry bka to like / love ba

to clean nqqa to show wrra

to come ja to sing nna

to fold twa to smoke kma

to fry qla to teach qrra

to finish sala to turn off tfa

Peace Corps / Morocco 73

Some examples:
Hassan sings (is singing) in the
Hassan kay-nni f d-du.
I dont smoke cigarettes. ma-kan-kmi- lgarru.

Do you run every morning? we kat-jri kul sba?

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?


4 6

2nd Category: Long a Remains the same

In this category, the long vowel a ( ) remains the same, without any changes, with the same prefixes
and suffixes as regular verbs in the present tense.

to read / study qra

I read kan-qra

you read (masc. sing.) kat-qra

you read (fem. sing.) kat-qray

he reads kay-qra

she reads kat-qra

we read kan-qrau

you read (plur.) kat-qrau

they read kay-qrau

74 Moroccan Arabic

Verbs like qra

to forget nsa to defy tdda

to find lqa to eat lunch tdda

to hope tmnna to eat dinner ta

to meet tlaqa to be cured bra

to go shopping tqdda to be finished tsala

to take care
to walk around tsara thlla (f)

Some examples:
From time to time we eat dinner mrra mrra kan-tau f
at the restaurant. r-ristora.
I dont go shopping every day. ma-kan-tqdda- kul yum.

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?

1 2 4

5 6 7

Moroccan Wisdom:
drb l-did maddu sxun.
Strike while the iron is hot.
Peace Corps / Morocco 75

3rd Category: Verb Has Internal Changes

Two verbs in Moroccan Arabic are conjugated in the present tense by changing their internal structure
in addition to adding the normal prefixes and suffixes.

to eat kla

I eat kan-akul
In these forms, the
u is pronounced you eat (masc. sing.) kat-akul
very quickly. Thus,
one shouldnt say you eat (fem. sing.) kat-akuli
but rather he eats kay-akul
she eats kat-akul

we eat kan-aklu

you eat (plur.) kat-aklu

they eat kay-aklu

Another Verb like kla

to take xda

Some examples:

Every Friday we eat couscous. kul jma kan-aklu ksksu.

She takes medicine before she kat-axud d-dwa qbl
goes to bed. ma t-ns.

Exercise: Describe the following activities in the present tense.

nu kay-dir / kat-dir / kay-diru?

4 3
76 Moroccan Arabic

Using One Verb after Another

Sometimes, we will want to use one verb directly after another. This is true in English:
I want to read. He likes to cook.
We forgot to call you. She began to study yesterday.
As the examples show, in English we use the infinitive after a verb (to read, to cook, to call, to study).
But in Arabic, as you recall, there isnt actually an infinitive for verbs (see page 48). Instead, we use the
present tense of a verb without the opening ka. This will serve as the equivalent of the
English infinitive when we use one verb after another.

Present Without
Used after ba
Tense ka
I want to go. kan-mi n-mi bit n-mi
kat-mi t-mi biti t-mi
want to go.
He wants to go. kay-mi y-mi ba y-mi

She wants to go. kat-mi t-mi bat t-mi

We want to go. kan-miu n-miu bina n-miu

You(pl.) want to
kat-miu t-miu bitu t-miu
They want to go. kay-miu y-miu bau y-miu

Some more examples:

kan-tmnna n-tkllm
I hope to speak Darija well.
d-darija mzyan.
He forgot to bring the book. nsa y-jib l-ktab.

Using with Other Expressions

This same construction is used after other words and expressions. The most important of these is ba
( ). This word is the equivalent of the English in order to. Some examples:

Latifa went to the post office Latifa mat l l-bosta

in order to send a letter. ba t-sift bra.
I went to Marrakech in order mit l Marrakech
to see my friend. ba n-uf sabti.

Exercise: Combine the following words into sentences, using the proper conjugations
of verbs and pronouns.
1. Amina / ma / l l-bosta / ba / ra / kart d t-tilifun.
2. huwa / ba / ma / l mirikan / ba / qra.
3. na / ja / l l-mrib / ba / awn / nas dyalu / u / trrf / lihum / u /
{huma} rf {na} / mzyan.
Peace Corps / Morocco 77

The Imperative
The imperative is used to give commands: Go to the store! Open the window! Study Arabic! The
positive imperative tells someone to do something, the negative imperative tells someone not to do
The positive imperative is formed by dropping both the ka ( ) and the prefix t ( ) from the singular
and plural you forms of the present tense. In the following table, all the examples are equal to the
English command, Write!
Present Tense Imperative
you (masc. sing.) write kat-ktb Write! ktb
you (fem. sing.) write kat-ktbi Write! ktbi
you (plural) write kat-ktbu Write! ktbu

The negative imperative is formed by dropping the ka ( ) and using the negative form ma... ( ).
In the following table, the first verb is gls, to sit, and the negative imperatives are equivalent to the
English Dont sit! The second verb is wqf, to stand / stop and the negative imperatives are
equivalent to the English Dont stand up!

Present Tense Imperative Negative Imperative

you (masc. sing.) kat-gls gls ma-t-gls-
you (fem. sing.) kat-glsi glsi ma-t-glsi-
you (plural) kat-glsu glsu ma-t-glsu-

you (masc. sing.) kat-wqf wqf ma-t-wqf-

you (fem. sing.) kat-wqfi wqfi ma-t-wqfi-
you (plural) kat-wqfu wqfu ma-t-wqfu-

Some Irregular Imperatives in the three forms

For the following three verbs, the positive imperative is not regular.
1. to go ma
sir ma-t-mi-
Go. siri Dont go. ma-t-mi-
siru ma-t-miu-
2. to come ja
aji ma-t-ji-
Come. aji Dont come. ma-t-ji-
ajiu ma-t-jiu-
3. to give ta / ara
ara ma-t-tini-
Give me. aray Dont give me. ma-t-tini-
arau ma-t-tiuni-
78 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form; then arrange the sentences
in the correct order.
A. mn bd (lbs) wayji.
B. (sl) wjhi u snan, mn bd (fiyq) d-drari.
C. ana (nad) f 7:30. 7:30
D. f l-iya (tqdda) wlla (xmml) d-dar.
E. ana (xdm) tta l 1:00 mn bd (tdda). 1:00
F. (wjd) l-ftur.
G. na (ta) mjmuin.
H. ana (ns) aliban f 11:00. 11:00
I. ana (dd) t-tubis f 8:00 ba (ma) l-xdma. 8:00
J. d-drari (ns) f 8:00. 8:00
Exercise: Write a paragraph using these pictures.



Text: listening comprehension

kifa kat-duwz n-nhar?
Susan mutatawia ma hay'at s-salam. kul
nhar kat-fiq bkri u kat-jri. mn bd
kat-duw u kat-ftr. dima f s-sba kat-xdm
tta l 11:30. mlli kat-sali, kat-rj l 11:30
d-dar. kat-wjjd l-makla u kat-tdda. f
l-iya kat-tqdda u bd l-mrrat kat-tlaqa
sabha wlla kat-mi l s-siber. f l-lil
kat-ta u dima kat-qra qbl ma t-ns.
1. nu kat-dir Susan? we turist? 1
2. we kat-xdm f l-iya? 2
3. nu kat-dir qbl ma t-ns? 3
4. nu kat-dir kul nhar? 4
Peace Corps / Morocco 79

Lesson 10: Bargaining for Clothes

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
bargain for basic items, such as clothing
describe the colors of items
use masculine, feminine, and plural adjectives correctly
describe differences between objects using the comparative and superlative

General Bargaining Information
In Morocco, bargaining is a part of life. It can sometimes be tiring for people not used to it, but with
some cultural and language skills, it can become much easier. Some information about bargaining can
also make the process simpler.
First of all, you need to know what items should be bargained for, and what items normally have fixed
prices, even for Moroccans. This is not always easy to determine, since the place where you buy some
things may determine whether the price is fixed or not. For example, some items that are sold at fixed
prices in a anut (e.g. laundry soap, vegetables, eggs) may be bargained for in the souk or from a street
vendor. Ask your host family or watch other Moroccans in order to find out. Here are some general
guidelines for whether prices are fixed or not:
Usually Bargained For Seldom Bargained For
any article of clothing things which are literally bought every day:
any household or kitchen utensil, appliance, mint, parsley, bread, coriander
or furniture refill on a butagas
rent for a house or apartment cigarettes and alcohol
taxi fares on unscheduled runs meals or beverages in restaurants
anything bought in a souk (e.g. grains in bus fares between scheduled stops
bulk, animals, rugs, etc.) taxi fares on regular runs
anything bought from a street vendor who price-controlled staple foods: sugar, oil, tea,
has no regular shop flour, milk, butter, etc.
petit taxi fares if the meter does not work anything bought in a pharmacy
anything used or second-hand meat and vegetables, if the price per kilo is
domestic help and services (maid, plumber, posted
electrician, etc. Determine the price before school supplies
the work is done.)
It is also good to be aware of some of the standard tactics that are used between the buyer and the seller
in Morocco. If you watch Moroccans, you will see many of these.
The Buyers Tactics The Sellers Tactics
not showing too much enthusiasm for buying not showing too much enthusiasm for selling
walking away when the seller has named the turning away when the buyer has named the
lowest price highest price
pointing out defects in the merchandise noting the superior quality in the merchandise
quoting a lower price for an identical item in insisting that goods in other shops are not of
another shop the same quality
claiming not to have enough money to meet claiming that in selling at the buyers highest
the seller's lowest price price he would be taking a loss
complimenting or flattering the seller (on his complimenting or flattering the buyer (on his
shop, merchandise, children, friendliness) or her language ability, friendliness, expertise
in bargaining)
80 Moroccan Arabic

The Buyers Tactics The Sellers Tactics

acting insulted by the sellers price acting insulted by the buyers offer
arguing that the difference between the arguing that the difference between the
sellers price and the price offered is buyers price and his price is insignificant and
insignificant; i.e. the seller should come the buyer should come up
down to the offered price
pulling out one's money as if the offered price wrapping up the purchase as if the asking
has been agreed upon price has been agreed upon
When you are looking to buy an item that you know you will have to bargain for, there are a few things
that you should probably try to avoid. These include:
showing too much interest in, or too great a need for, a particular item
carrying large sums of money, carrying expensive, previously-bought items, looking like a tourist
having no idea what an item is really worth, or what is a fair price for that type of item
being in a hurry
buying with a guide (he gets a percentage of what you pay)
Always be prepared to pay a price you have named. Do not get too far into bargaining for something if
you do not intend to buy it. If you are not clear on the currency in which you are bargaining (i.e. ryals),
proceed slowly. In the end, dont let a bargaining scenario ruin your day. Most of us go unbothered by
the sometimes huge markups on big-ticket items in America, yet we can be easily frustrated by a
Moroccan merchant who makes an extra dollar or two off of us. Remember that ones peace of mind is
worth something, too.
Bargaining Expressions
Its too expensive! ali bzzaf!

Lower the price. nqs wiya.

Give a good price. sawb maya f t-taman.

I wont add even a ryal. ma-n-zid tta ryal.

Ill add nothing. ma-n-zid walu.

Its too much for me. bzzaf liya.

A good price. i taman mzyan.

A reasonable price. i taman mnasb.

Whats the last price? axir taman, al?

How much will I get it for? bal t-xllih (ha)?

Thats what I have (money)! had -i l-li ndi!

hada huwa axir taman
Thats my last price!
Peace Corps / Morocco 81

Clothing Vocabulary clothes l-wayj

1. sufitma 11. fista

2. jean 12. jakita

3. srwal 13. pijama

4. qamija ns kmm 14. kbbut

5. qamija 15. smta

6. grafata 16. T-shirt

7. jili 17. ort

8. kustim 18. al

9. triko 19. slip

10. triko col v 20. saya

Moroccan dress)
82 Moroccan Arabic

1. kswa 11. sbrdila

2. zif / fular 12. butyu

3. jllaba 13. sbbat

4. gndura 14. sndala

5. liba 15. maya

6. sutyanat 16. xatm

7. ligat 17. alaqat

8. kaskita 18. qiq

9. tagiya 19. snsla

10. tqar 20. mdl

21. bla

Clothing Expressions
Is there anything else? we kayna i aja xora?

Give me size ... please. tini n-nmra ... afak.

Try this one on.(masc./fem.) qiys hada / hadi.

Do you want another color? we biti i lun axor?

I prefer this color. kan-fdl had l-lun.

It goes well with you. (masc./fem.) ja / jat mak.

Peace Corps / Morocco 83

colors l-lwan

Masculine Singular Feminine Singular Plural

white byd bida bidin

blue zrq zrqa zrqin

black kl kla klin

red mr mra mrin

yellow sfr sfra sfrin

green xdr xdra xdrin

brown qhwi qhwiya qhwiyin

orange limuni limuniya limuniyin

pink wrdi wrdiya wrdiyin

jri jriya jriyin

mdadi mdadiya mdadiyin

grey rmadi rmadiya rmadiyin

golden dhbi dhbiya dhbiyin

dark mluq mluqa mluqin

light mftu mftua mftuin

bright nas nasa nasin

faded baht bahta bahtin

As you can see in the table above, feminine forms of colors are made by adding an a sound to the
masculine form, and plurals are made by adding in to the masculine form.

Michael: s-salamu alaykum.

mul l-wayj: wa alaykum s-salam.

Michael: bit jllaba afak!

mul l-wayj: mujud a sidi, amn nmra?

Michael: ma-n-rf.
84 Moroccan Arabic

mul l-wayj: qiys hadi. Ah jat mak!

Michael: kayna ir f had l-lun?

mul l-wayj: kayna f l-byd u s-sfr u
Michael: ara n-uf l-byd afak.
mul l-wayj: hak a sidi.

Michael: bal had -i?

mul l-wayj: hadi a sidi b 8000 ryal. 8000

Michael: aliya bzzaf, adi 3000
n-tik ir 3000 ryal.

mul l-wayj: lla, nqsti bzzaf. xudha 6000

b 6000.
Michael: lla bzzaf. bslama.
mul l-wayj: aji, aji, tini ir 5000
Michael: adi n-tik 3500 ryal. 3500
biti mzyan ma-biti-
lla y-shl.
mul l-wayj: ara a sidi 3500 ryal. i 3500
bas ma-kayn.

Exercise: Read the text and answer the questions.

Saida ndha bzzaf d t-tsbin l-yum:
s-srwal r-rmadi u l-qamija l-bida
dyal rajlha. jean u T-shirt dyal
wldha. l-kswa l-mra u j-jakita
z-zrqa dyal bntha. s-saya l-xdra u
z-zif l-byd dyal Saida. welakin,
dyal mn t-tqar l-klin?

1. dyal mn s-srwal r-rmadi? 1

2. dyal mn T-shirt? nu l-lun dyalu? 2
3. we l-kswa l-mra dyal Saida? 3

4. we s-saya dyal Saida zrqa? 4

5. nu l-lun dyal t-tqar? 5
Peace Corps / Morocco 85

Exercise: Write a dialogue for the following pictures. Try to write it without looking at
the previous pages.
2 1

4 3

6 5

8 7
86 Moroccan Arabic

Adjectives come after the nouns they modify and must agree in gender and number. For example, if a
noun is feminine and singular then the adjective that follows must be feminine and singular as well.
Feminine and plural forms of adjectives are derived from the masculine base form. The feminine form
is made by adding an a ( ) to the end of the masculine form. The plural form, like with nouns, is not
always predictable. There are two most common patterns: 1. adding in ( ) to the masculine
form, or 2. replacing the long vowel i ( ) in the middle of an adjective with the long vowel a ( ). An
example of each plural form:
happy Fran franin we add in to form the plural
big Kbir kbar we change i to a to form the plural
Adjectives in this first group (forming the plural with in) also have a feminine plural form that is used
when all the members of a group are feminine. If there is a mixture of masculine and feminine people
or objects, the masculine plural (often just called plural) is used. The feminine plural is formed by
adding at to the masculine singular base form.
Common Adjectives
Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine
Singular Singular Plural Plural
good Mzyan mzyana mzyanin mzyanat

pretty / hand- Zwin zwina zwinin zwinat

some / good
bad / ugly xayb xayba xaybin xaybat

happy fran frana franin franat

sad / angry mqllq mqllqa mqllqin mqllqat

clean nqi nqiya nqiyin nqiyat

dirty mussx mussxa mussxin mussxat

hurried mzrub mzruba mzrubin mzrubat

late mttl mttla mttlin mttlat

soft rtb rtba rtbin rtbat

harsh r ra rin rat

fresh tri triya triyin triyat

Peace Corps / Morocco 87

Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine

Singular Singular Plural Plural
present adr adra adrin adrat

absent ayb ayba aybin aybat

sweet lu luwa luwin luwat

salty mal mala malin malat

bland / tasteless mssus mssusa mssusin mssusat

spicy arr arra arrin arrat

open mlul mlula mlulin mlulat

closed msdud msduda msdudin msdudat

fried / grilled mqli mqliya mqliyin mqliyat

hungry jian jiana jianin jianat

thirsty tan tana tanin tanat

busy mul mula mulin mulat

lazy mgaz mgaza mgazin mgazat

tired iyan iyana iyanin iyanat

reasonable / serious mqul mqula mqulin mqulat

enough kafi kafiya kafiyin kafiyat

expensive ali aliya aliyin aliyat

wide / large was wasa wasin wasat

married mzuwj mzuwja mzuwjin mzuwjat

old (something) qdim qdima qdam

big (something) kbir kbira kbar

old (someone)
88 Moroccan Arabic

Masculine Feminine Masculine Feminine

Singular Singular Plural Plural
small (something) sir sira sar
young (someone)
new jdid jdida jdad

far bid bida bad

near qrib qriba qrab

tall / long twil twila twal

short qsir qsira qsar

strong / correct si sia sa

weak dif difa daf

simple / easy bsit bsita bsat

cheap rxis rxisa rxas

poor mskin mskina msakn

sick mrid mrida mrad

Exercise: Describe the following pictures using adjectives.

1. hada kmm qsir.

3 4

2. hada kmm _______. 11



8 9
Peace Corps / Morocco 89

Comparative and Superlative Adjectives

Comparative Adjectives
We use comparative adjectives when we are comparing two objects based upon some quality or
characteristic. For example, in English we can say: I am taller than John. Taller than is the
comparative form of the adjective tall. Here are the comparative forms for some Arabic adjectives:

Adjectives Comparatives
good mzyan better sn (mn)

nice drif nicer drf (mn)

tall / long twil taller / longer twl (mn)

short qsir shorter qsr (mn)

big / old kbir bigger / older kbr (mn)

small / young sir smaller / sr (mn)

heavy tqil heavier tql (mn)

light xfif lighter xff (mn)

old (thing) qdim older (thing) qdm (mn)

few qlil fewer qll (mn)
cheap rxis cheaper rxs (mn)

ali more la (mn)

sweet lu sweeter la (mn)
less than qll mn more than Ktr mn

As you can see above, for many adjectives (but not all) the comparative is formed by removing the long
vowel i from the word. Here are some examples:

Sadia is younger than Malika. Sadia sr mn Malika.

The train is better than the bus. t-tran sn mn l-kar.

Comparing Like Objects

In order to express that two things/people/etc. are the same, we can use either of two expressions:

the same / alike bal bal

the same / alike kif kif

Some examples:
Which is better: a blue shirt or a ama sn: qamijja zrqa
green one? wlla xdra?
They are the same. bal bal.

As the example shows, the word ama ( ) is used for comparisons when we mean which.
90 Moroccan Arabic

Superlative Adjectives
The superlative adjective in Moroccan Arabic can be formed in two ways.
First, by using the definite article with the adjective and inserting the personal pronoun:

Omar is bright. Omar mujtahid.

Omar is the brightest student in Omar huwa l-mujtahid f
the class. l-qism.
Susan is a pretty girl. Susan bnt zwina.

Susan is the prettiest. Susan hiya z-zwina.

Second, by prefixing a ( ) to the comparative adjective:

Casablanca is the largest city in d-dar l-bida akbr mdina

Morocco. f l-mrib.
Toubkal is the highest mountain tubqal ala jbl f
in Morocco. l-mrib.

Exercise: Compare each pair using comparative adjectives.

t-tomobil dyal Mary

t-tomobil dyal Mike

Driss Hassan

d-dar dyal Mohamed d-dar dyal Judy

-klat l-xubz

Peace Corps / Morocco 91

Exercise: Answer the following questions based upon the drawing.

d-dlla l-banan l-nb

1. ama la l-nb wlla l-banan? 1

2. ama rxs d-dlla wlla l-nb? 2

3. ama sn d-dlla wlla l-banan? 3
4. ama la l-nb wlla d-dlla? 4
5. we l-nb huwa ala fakiha? 5

6. nu hiya l-fakiha r-rxisa? 6

Moroccan Wisdom:
l-li ddu l-n, kay-xaf mn l-bl.
The one bitten by a snake is afraid of ropes.
English equivalent: Once bitten, twice shy.
92 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 11: Shopping for Food

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
shop for produce, meats, and spices

l-xd ra

Vegetables l-xodra
1. xizu Carrot 11. l-ful Fava beans

2. -iflur Cauliflower 12. l-fjl Radish

3. lquq Artichoke 13. l-gra Squash

4. l-btata potato 14. t-tuma Garlic

5. l-flfla Green pepper 15. l-bsla Onion

6. d-dnjal Eggplant 16. l-barba Beets

7. lxyar Cucumber 17. l-lft Turnip

8. matia Tomato 18. l-mkuwr Cabbage

9. j-jlbana Peas 19. l-lubya Beans

10. l-krafs Celery 20. l-korjit Zucchini

Peace Corps / Morocco 93

quince s-sfrjl parsley l-mdnus

gourd s-slawi mint n-nna

okra l-mluxiya absinth -iba

Cilantro l-qsbur verbena l-lwiza

Fruit l-fakiha/dissir
1. l-nb Grapes 9. n-ngas
2. l-limun Orange bowid

3. t-tfa Apple 10. t-tut Berry

4. l-friz Strawberry 11. lavoka Avocado

5. l-brquq Plum / prune 12. lananas Pineapple

6. l-banan Banana 13. d-dlla Watermelon

7. l-xux Peach 14. blmluk Cherries

8. l-amd Lemon 15. -hdiya Nectarine

r-rmman Pomegranate l-mzaH
l-mma Apricots l-kiwi kiwi
94 Moroccan Arabic

Buying Produce
Units of Measurement
scale l-mizan

gram gram

kilogram kilu

rubu kilu
kilogram rb kilu

kilogram ns kilu

kilogram kilu lla rob

2 kilograms juj kilu

Give me a kilo of ... tini kilu d ...

Weigh me ... br / wzn liya ...

Give me some ... tini wiya d ...

More ... please zidni ... afak

How much is a kilo of ... ? bal kilu d ... ?

What do you need? nu xssk?

What else? nu axor?

I need ... xssni ...

No, thats enough. Only 1 kilo, lla baraka. ir kilu
thats all! safi!
Peace Corps / Morocco 95

shopping t-tqdya

Susan: sba l-xir.

sba l-xir. a b
l-xatr a lalla?
Susan: bit juj kilu d xizu, u
kilu d matia u ns kilu
d l-barba u xtar liya i
aja mzyana. br liya
kilu u rubu d l-bsla.
l-xddar: safi a lalla?
Susan: bal t-tfa?

l-xddar: stta l drhm l l-kilu.

Susan: waxxa, br liya kilu
lla rob. aah! nsit
tini wiya d l-qsbur
u l-mdnus.
l-xddar: haki a lalla.
Susan: bal kuli?
l-xddar: ndk a lalla ts miya u
sttin ryal.
Susan: al mn drhm?

l-xddar: 48 drhm. 48
Susan: hak a sidi, lla y-awn.

l-xddar: lla y-xlf a lalla.

1. fin Susan? 1
2. nu rat Susan? 2
3. al rat mn kul aja? 3
4. we rat i aja xora? 4

5. al xllsat? 5
96 Moroccan Arabic

Spices and Meat

Spices l-triya Saffron z-zfran

Salt l-mla Turmeric l-xrqum

Black pepper l-bzar l-flfla

Hot pepper
skinjbir l-ara

l-kamun Red hot s-sudaniya

Cinnamon l-qrfa Cloves l-qrnfl

Oregano z-ztr Basil l-bq

Nutmeg l-guza Paprika t-tmira

At the Butchers
Butcher l-gzzar

Meat l-lm

Lamb l-nmi

Beef l-bgri

Goat meat l-mzi

Liver l-kbda

Ground meat l-kfta

Meat w/o
Chicken d-djaj

Exercise: You have guests for dinner and you want to serve them tea with cakes, then
a tagine. List the items you need for preparing tea/cakes and a tagine and
write your shopping list. Then, write a shopping list for an American dish.
Peace Corps / Morocco 97

Lesson 12: Food and Drink

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
use the correct words and expressions concerning food and drink
express likes and dislikes using jb to please
express necessity or obligation with xss to need / to have to
use ba to want / to like with the proper tense

Food and Drink

food l-makla fish l-ut

breakfast l-ftur beans l-lubya

lunch l-da lentils l-ds

dinner l-a chick peas l-mms

steamed pasta with
tagine t-tajin cinnamon and sugar

salad -lada vermicelli -riya

French fries l-frit l-rira
olives z-zitun s-suba
bastila l-bstila rice r-ruz

meat l-lm couscous l-ksksu

chicken d-djaj pizza l-ppitza

At a Caf
the waiter (to catch the waiters l-garsun
eye you can use: xuya and xti)
black coffee qhwa kla
coffee with milk Qhwa lib

half coffee, half milk qhwa ns ns

hot milk lib sxun

weak coffee qhwa xfifa

strong coffee qhwa qasa

coffee with a little milk qhwa mhrsa

orange juice asir l-limun

98 Moroccan Arabic

apple & milk shake asir t-tfa

banana & milk shake asir l-banan

almond & milk shake asir l-luz

pot of tea brrad d atay

glass of tea kas d atay

with mint b n-nna

Not very sweet. Ma-y-kun- lu bzzaf.

Some sugar, please. wiya d s-skkar, afak.

A glass of cold water kas d l-ma bard.

Tap water Lma d rubini

At a Restaurant
the menu l-menu

Please bring me ... afak jib liya ...

Do you have ... ? we ndkum ... ?

What do you have? nu ndkum?

we kayna i makla bla
Is there any food without meat? lm?
I want a tagine without meat. bit tajin bla lm.

What do you have for dessert? nu ndkum f d-disir?

We want a table for (four bina wad t-tbla dyal

people). (rba d n-nas).
outside la brra

inside ldaxl

The bill, please. l-sab afak.

To your health. b s-sa.

To your health (response). lla y-tik s-sa.

How do you like the food? kif jatk l-makla?

I have no complaints. ma ndi mangul.

The food is delicious. l-makla ldida / bnina.

Peace Corps / Morocco 99

Karla u Jason f r-ristora
l-garsun: t-fddlu! mrbabikum.
Jason: ukran. we kayna i
tbla dyal juj d n-nas?

l-garsun: yih kayna. fin bitu t-

Jason: bina wad t-tbla da
l-garsun: nu bitu t-aklu?
Karla: nu ndkum?
l-garsun: ha l-menu.
Karla: ana bit lada u ksksu b
l-garsun: waxxa a lalla. u nta a
Jason: ana kan-akul ir l-xdra.
we kayna i makla bla
l-garsun: iyeh! kayna l-lubya.
Jason: waxxa. jib liya lada u
tbsil d l-lubya.
l-garsun: we bitu t-rbu i
Karla: ana bit kuka barda.
Jason: ana bit ir l-ma afak.
Jason: l-sab afak.
l-garsun: 60 drhm. 60
Jason: hak a sidi.
l-garsun: lla y-xlf. jbatkum
Karla/Jason: bnina! jbatna bzzaf.
l-garsun: b s-sa u r-raa.
Karla/Jason: lla y-tik s-sa.

1. fin Karla u Jason mau? 1

2. nu klau? 2
3. we rbu i aja? nu rbu? 3
4. al xlsu? 4
5. we jbathum l-makla? 5
100 Moroccan Arabic

The Reflexive verb to please / to like

In Darija, it is not common to say, literally, I like something. Rather, we use the construction,
Something pleases me. In reality, this phrase would translate into the English I like something, but
what is important is that you understand that the person who likes is actually the object of the
sentence, and the thing liked is the subject. At first, it will seem backward; in fact, it is (from an
English speakers perspective). In time you will use this construction naturally.
How to Conjugate to please
The verb to please is jb. It can be tricky to conjugate because, as we said, the subject of the verb is
actually the object that is liked, and the object is the person who likes. Thus, if I want to say, He
likes them, I literally need to say, They please him. Also, as a result of this, the verb must always
agree in gender and number with the subject, that is, the thing liked. In the present
tense, therefore, the conjugation of the verb can be outlined in the following manner:
Introduce Present Verb For Plural Object
Tense Root Form Only Pronouns
(masc. sing.) k
u / h
(fem. sing.) jb u ha
(masc/fem plur.) kum
Some examples:
It (masc. sing.) pleases me. kay-jbni
(i.e. I like it.)
It (fem. sing.) pleases me. kat-jbni
(i.e. I like it.)
They (masc. plur.) please me. kay-jbuni
(i.e. I like them.)
They (fem. plur.) please me.
(i.e. I like them.)

Present Tense Examples

In the following examples, we use the translation to like. The literal translation would be to please.
jb with masculine singular subject
I like couscous. kay-jbni ksksu.
I like chocolate. kay-jbni -klat.
She likes tea. kay-jbha atay.
We like drawing. kay-jbna r-rasm.
He likes the tagine. kay-jbu t-tajin.

jb with feminine singular subject

I like salad. kat-jbni -lada.
Do you like sports? we kat-jbk ryada?
She does not like coffee. ma-kat-jbha- l-qhwa.
Peace Corps / Morocco 101

jb with masculine/feminine plural subject

kay-jbuni n-nas d
I like the people of Morocco.
He likes books. kay-jbuh l-ktub.

Do you (plur.) like snakes? we kay-jbukum l-Hna-?

We dont like them. ma-kay-jbuna-.

Past Tense Examples

The verb jb can also be used in the past tense, as in I liked it or It pleased me. It is conjugated
like all regular verbs in the past tense.
jb with masculine singular subject
I liked dinner. jbni l-a.

He liked mint tea. jbu atay b n-nna.

She didnt like lard bread. ma-jbha- xubz -ma.

Did you like the chicken? we jbk d-djaj?

jb with feminine singular subject

I liked the soup. jbatni l-rira.

He didnt like the salad. ma-jbatu- -lada.

we jbatk l-mdina
Did you like the old medina?

jb with masculine/feminine plural subject

jbuni n-nas dyal
I liked the people of my village.
d-duwar dyali.
Did you like these books? we jbuk had l-ktub?

She didnt like the colors. ma-jbuha- l-luwan.

Followed by Another Verb

jb can be followed by another verb. The second verb is always conjugated in the present, according to
the same rule that you already learned regarding verbs following other verbs (see page 75). Remember
that for the second verb, therefore, we remove the ka ( ) to place it after jb.
kay-jbni n-ns mura
I like to sleep after lunch. l-da.
He likes to play soccer. kay-jbu y-lb l-kura.
She doesnt like to wake up ma-kay-jbha- t-fiq
early. bkri.
Do you like to run early in the we kay-jbk t-jri
morning? (f)s-sba bkri?
What do you like to do on the nu kay-jbk t-dir f
weekend? l-weekend?
102 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Make correct sentences using jb.

kat-jbk dyalk?
We kat-jbu l-xdma dyalu?
kat-jbha dyalha?

Iyeh kat-jbu

Exercise: Make as many sentences (affirmative and negative) as you can with jb
using these pictures.





Moroccan Wisdom:
ma-ri- l-ut f ql l-br.
Dont buy fish on the bottom of the sea.
English equivalent: Dont count your chickens before they hatch.
Peace Corps / Morocco 103

The Verb to need, to have to, must, should

The verb xss ( ) translates into all of the following in English: to need or to have to or must or
should. It is conjugated by adding the object pronouns (see page 57) to the end of the verb. You do
not normally conjugate it like a present tense verb; that is, you do not add kay or kat before the verb.
Like other verbs, however, xss may be followed by a second verb which is conjugated in the present
tense, but without the prefix ka (see page 75). Some examples:
xssni n-tllm l-rbiya
I have to learn Arabic well.
You should be on time. xssk t-ji f l-wqt.
You shouldnt stay up late. ma-xssk- t-shr.
I have to go. xssni n-mi.

The meaning in the above examples depends largely on the context. However, when xss is followed by
a noun, it only means to need. Some examples:

I need cigarettes. xssni l-garru.

She needs a notebook. xssha dftar.

The past tense of xss is formed by adding the verb kan before it. You do not conjugate kan if xss is
followed by another verb. If xss is followed by a noun, however, kan and xss must agree in gender and
number with that noun. Examples:

I had to study yesterday. kan xssni n-qra l-bar.

I needed a book. kan xssni ktab.
kant xassani/ xssatni
I needed a ticket.
I needed books. kanu xassini l-ktub.

Exercise: Write the expressions that go along with these signs using the verb xss.

Exercise: Answer the following question in Moroccan Arabic.

nu xssk ba t-kun mutatawwi naj?
104 Moroccan Arabic

The Verb to want, to like

The verb ba translates into the English to want and to like. When conjugated in the past tense,
the verb expresses to want, but with a present tense meaning (see page 38). When conjugated in the
present tense, the verb expresses to like, also with a present tense meaning. An example:

I like mint tea. kan-bi atay b n-nna.

When the verb is used with object pronouns (see page 58) in the present tense, it means to love or to
like someone. Examples:

I love you / I like you. kan-bik.

I love him / I like him. kan-bih.

I love her / I like her. kan-biha.

When this verb is followed by another verb, the second verb is always conjugated in the present tense
without the prefix ka (see page 75). Some examples:
I like to drink coffee in the kan-bi n-rb l-qhwa f
morning. s-sba.
He likes to read at night. kay-bi y-qra b l-lil.

Because the past tense of ba expresses a present tense meaning of to want, to express a past tense
meaning of to want, you must first use a past tense conjugated form of the verb kan, followed by the
past tense form of ba. Examples:

I wanted to leave early. knt bit n-xrj bkri.

She wanted to tell him kant bat t-gul lih i
something. aja.

Exercise: For each meal, write at least three sentences in which you express Moroccan
food you like or dislike for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
l-ftur l-da l-a
1. kan-bi l-bid f
1. 1.
l-ftur 2. 2.
2. 3. 3.
Peace Corps / Morocco 105

Lesson 13: Health Moroccan Wisdom: fin wdnk a jHa, haaaa hiya
Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
describe, in Darija, body parts and common illnesses

Body ddat
106 Moroccan Arabic

Health Problems
Whats wrong with you? nu ndk?

Whats the matter? malek?

What ails you? ba mrid?

What aches? nu kay-drk?

I have a fever fiya s-sxana.

I have a cold. fiya rwa / drbni l-brd.

I have a sore throat. fiya l-laqm.

Im constipated. ndi l-qbt / kri qasa.

Im allergic to... ndi l-asasiya d . . .

. . . kay-dir/kat-dir
liya l-asasiya.
I have a headache. kay-drni rasi.

My ear aches. kat-drni wdni.

I feel dizzy. kan-s b d-duxa.

Im injured. tjrt.

I burned myself. trqt.

I have a toothache. kat-drni wad d-drsa.

My ... hurts. kay-drni ...

I am vomiting / throwing up. kan-tqiya.

I need to see a doctor. xssni n-uf t-tbib.

Are you OK! Wes/ yak labas? /

Peace Corps / Morocco 107

Latifa: malek, nti labas?

Amy: kat-drni kri.

Latifa: we kat-drk bzzaf?

Amy: ay, bzzaf!

Latifa: sbri wiya, adi n-tbx
lik wad l-kas d
z-ztr mzyan!
Amy: lla lla afak, ma-ymkn-
n-rb l-ub.
Latifa: waxxa, kifa ymkn n-
Amy: soni afak l had r-raqm
d hay'at s-salam ba y-
tklmu maya.
Latifa: Waxxa,daba,llah iafi.

Amy: Amin.

1. ba mrida Amy? 1

2. we tatha Latifa i dwa? 2

3. la ma-bat- Amy t-rb l-ub? 3

4. we mat Amy l t-tbib? 4

Exercise: What might you say if you were the person in each picture?
108 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 14: Useful site Expressions for

your site

Here are some useful expressions you may need once you get to your final site.

My name is ... I am a volunteer smiti ... ana mutatawwi

with Peace Corps. ma hay'at s-salam.
I will be working here for two adi n-xdm hna amayn f
years at the youth center. dar dar -bab
Im going to spend 2 weeks adi n-gls makum juj d
with you (to host family). simanat.

Where is the youth center? fin kayna dar -bab?

Where is the hospital / fin kayn s-sbitar /
delegation? l-mndubiya?
Where is the womens center? fin kayn nnadi niswi?

Where is the post office? fin kayna l-bosta?

Please, I want to open a post lla y-xllik, bit n-ft
office box. bwat postal.
What do I have to do? nu xssni n-dir?
How much do I have to pay for al xssni n-xls
a year? l l-am?
fin kayna l-banka afak?
Where is the bank, please?
(l-bnk -bi)
Where is the Gendarme / police fin j-jondarm /
station, please? l-kumisariya, afak?
we ymkn lik t-tini rqm
Can you give me your phone
t-tilifun dyalkum,
number, please?

What do I need to do to renew nu xssni ndir ba njdd

my carte de sejour.? la-kart d sijur dyali?

Is there a pharmacy here? we kayn i frmasyan hna?

Is there a cyber here? we kayn i cyber hna?

we kat-bi la-kart d
Do you sell cell phone cards?
Which service is available here: we kayna INWI wlla
INWI, Meditel or Maroc Meditel wlla Maroc
Telecom? Telecom?

Is there cell phone reception / we kayn r-rizo?

Peace Corps / Morocco 109

How far is it from here? al bida mn hna?

Which day is the souk? amn nhar kay-kun s-suq?

Are there any associations We kaynin i jmiyat hna?

Fin kayna lqiyada wlla
Where is the main government
lbaawiaya wlla
office? lmoqataa ?

Moroccan Wisdom:
nqta b nqta kay-ml l-wad.
Drop by drop the river rises.
English equivalent: Rome wasnt built in a day.
110 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 15: Travel- The Future

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
describe future activities
identify means of transportation and use appropriate expressions for travel

Future Tense
Depending upon where you are in Morocco, people may form the future tense differently. Everyone in
Morocco, however, should understand you regardless of which way you form the future tense.
Forming the Future Tense
To form the future tense, take the present tense form, drop the prefix ka, and add adi. Thus:

to travel safr

I will travel adi n-safr

you will travel (masc. sing.) adi t-safr

you will travel (fem. sing.) adi t-safri

he will travel adi y-safr

she will travel adi t-safr

we will travel adi n-safru

you will travel (plur.) adi t-safru

they will travel adi y-safru

In some places, adi is also used with a feminine form, adya, and a plural form, adyin. In this
case, the future tense would be as follows:

to travel safr

I will travel (masc.) adi n-safr

I will travel (fem.) adya n-safr

you will travel (masc. sing.) adi t-safr

you will travel (fem. sing.) adya t-safri

he will travel adi y-safr

she will travel adya t-safr

we will travel adyin n-safru

you will travel (plur.) adyin t-safru

they will travel adyin y-safru

Peace Corps / Morocco 111

Sometimes, adi is contracted to a. The future tense in this case:

to travel safr

I will travel an-safr

you will travel (masc. sing.) at-safr

you will travel (fem. sing.) at-safri

he will travel ay-safr

she will travel at-safr

we will travel an-safru

you will travel (plur.) at-safru

they will travel ay-safru

Negation of the Future Tense

To form the negative of the future tense, add ma... ( ) to adi, adya, or adyin.
we adi t-safr s-simana
Will you travel next week? j-jaya?
No, I will not travel. lla, ma-adi- n-safr.

To express will never, we do not use the future tense, but rather ma mmr ( ) and the present
tense of a verb without the prefix ka.

I will never smoke. ma mmri n-kmi.

ma mmrna n-safru b
We will never travel at night. l-lil.
To express not yet when speaking about the future, use mazal ma ( ) or baqi ma ( ) with
the future tense.

We will not go to bed yet. mazal ma adi n-nsu.

I will not get married yet. baqi ma adi n-tzuwj.

For the remainder of the book, all of the different forms of the future tense will be used
in order for you to become familiar with all of them.
112 Moroccan Arabic

Using the Participle adi to Mean Going

In English, we have two ways of expressing the future.
I will speak to him tomorrow.
I am going to speak to him tomorrow.
Both of these ways of expressing the future are expressed by the future tense in Moroccan Arabic. In
the following examples, therefore, both English translations can be given for the Arabic expressions.
What will I wear?
nu adi n-lbs?
What am I going to wear?
I will sleep.
adi n-ns.
I am going to sleep.
When the word adi is preceded by the conjugated past tense of the verb kan, to be, it indicates a
past intention or a past future. Some examples:
He was going to travel to kan adi y-safr l mirikan
America, but he didnt have a welakin
visa. (i.e. he had intended...) ma-kan- ndu l-viza.
She was going to get married kant adi t-tzuwj l-am
last year. (i.e. she had l-li fat.
The use of adi to indicate future or past future should be distinguished from its use as a participle to
indicating that someone is literally going somewhere at the present moment (or was going at a past
moment). In other words, besides its role as an auxiliary verb to indicate future, adi also acts as the
active participle of the verb ma, to go. Thus, ma is used only to express a habitual action when it
is conjugated in the present tense. To express a current action, the participle adi is used.
I go to the souk on Tuesdays. kan-mi l s-suq nhar
(habitual) t-tlat.
I am going to souk. (now) ana adi l s-suq.
Where do you go every fin kat-mi kul weekend?
weekend? (habitual)
Where are you going? (now) fin adi?

This idea of a current, progressive action may also be expressed in the past, and should be
distinguished, again, from the idea of past intention or past future that was discussed above.
He was going to the souk when kan adi l s-suq mlli
he saw his friend. (past
af sabu.
progressive action)
I was not going to lie to you! ma-knt- adi n-kdb
(negative past intention) lik!
I was not going to the souk!
(negative past progressive ma-knt- adi l s-suq!
Peace Corps / Morocco 113

Time Expressions
tomorrow dda

day after tomorrow bd dda

tomorrow morning dda f s-sba

tomorrow afternoon/evening dda f l-iya

next Saturday s-sbt j-jay

next week s-simana j-jaya

next month -hr j-jay

next year l-am j-jay

next summer s-sif j-jay

in a week / month / year mn hna simana / hr / am

one day / some day wad nhar / i nhar

after lunch / dinner mn bd l-da / l-a

Some examples of the future tense using time expressions:

Are you going to go to the we adi t-mi l
cinema in this afternoon? s-sinima had l-iya?
No, Im not going to go. Im lla, ma-adi- n-mi.
going to sleep a little bit. adi n-ns wiya.
mura l-a, adi
After dinner, Ill read my book. n-qra l-ktab dyali.
Someday, I will speak Arabic i nhar, adi n-tkllm
well. l-rbiya mzyan.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the future tense.

Zahra: fuqa (nad) dda?

Chad: (faq) f 7:00. 7:00

Zahra: nu (dar) mn bd?

Chad: (ftr) u (xrj).

Zahra: fin (ma) mn bd?

Chad: (ma) l l-xdma dyali f 12:00
12:00. (tdda) ma sabi
Tom f mtm s-salam. mn
bd (rj )l d-dar. f 3:00
wiya l-rbiya ma 3:00
l-ustad dyali.
Zahra: we (ja) (ta) mana
dda inallah?
Chad: waxxa! n-ufkum dda
114 Moroccan Arabic

Mohamed: fuqa adya t-mi l
Karla: ltnin f t-tmnya u ns.
Mohamed: amn wqt adya t-tlaqay
l-ustad dyalk?
Karla: t-tlat f j-juj u tulut.
Mohamed: fuqa adia t-ufi
Karla: larb f t-tsud u rb.
Mohamed: fuqa adya t-lbi
Karla: l-xmis f r-rba lla rub.
Mohamed: imta adya t-ufi
Karla: j-jma f l-da nian.

Mohamed: imta adya t-tqday?

Karla: s-sbt f l-xmsa ql xmsa.

Mohamed: amn wqt adi y-xrj
t-tran fa adya
Karla: l-dd f l-ra ql

Exercise: Read the dialogue again quickly and write down Karlas plan for the week
(write down the times using numbers, not words). Then, write your own
schedule for the upcoming week. What will you be doing each day? At
what time?

General Travel Information
Public transport in Morocco is both inexpensive and easy to use. Between major cities, trains are the
quickest and most comfortable means of travel, although they can be crowded at certain times of year.
Buses are the cheapest choice and can vary in terms of speed and comfort.
Traveling Between Cities
CTM: This is the national bus line, very comfortable, on schedule, seats are reserved and can be
purchased in advance in most places. Unaccompanied baggage can be sent via CTM.
Souk buses: In each large town there is a bus station, such as Quamra in Rabat. One can buy a ticket
one day in advance and fares are set. Sometimes the ticket is for a reserved seat, other times it is for
whatever seat is open when the bus goes through town. A ticket does not necessarily mean there is a
real seat either. Sometimes there are additional places set-up in the aisle. You have to bargain for the
price you pay for your luggage if this gets stored on top of the bus. The price depends upon the size of
the piece. It is advisable to carry smaller pieces of luggage you can store in the bus itself. Souk buses
do not always leave or arrive on time. They may stop in the middle of nowhere. They may also stop in
towns along the way looking for additional passengers.
Peace Corps / Morocco 115

Train: the train network is run by the Office National des Chemins de Fer (ONCF; in
French). There are two lines that carry passengers: the line from Tangier in the north down to
Marrakesh , and the line from Oujda in the northeast, also to Marrakech, joining with thw Tangier line
at sidi Kacem.
There are two classes. The price of any train car with air conditioning will be higher. Also there are
printed schedules in large stations as well as a current website with accurate times and prices.
Grand taxis: This is for travel between large towns and cities. They carry 6 passengers and since the
fare is per seat, if you want you can pay for empty seats so that the taxi leaves earlier. Ask the other
passengers in the car what the regular fare should be, do not ask the driver first. If you want to take the
entire taxi for yourself, ask for a taxi coursa. Baggage does not cost extra in a taxi.
Pick-up truck (camio): In some areas where no public transportation is available, people use their
personal trucks to carry supplies to their douars, they also take passengers at a rate that they determine
Airport transportation: There are airport buses and trains which run from Rabat Ville to the
Casablanca airport. There are also airport buses which connect the airport to Casablanca but from
Rabat/Sale airport there are only taxis.
Travel Within Cities
Petit taxis: Every city has petit taxis which can carry up to three passengers. The fare is calculated by
meter. When you get in the taxi, ask that the meter be turned on. If there is no meter, or if it does not
work, ask the price before you begin. Since the taxi can take 3 passengers, if you are the only one
getting in, he can pick up other passengers. If you are the second or third person entering the taxi, ask
the price for your trip. At night (usually by 8 pm) until sunrise, the fare is 50% more than the daytime
Chariots: In very small villages, the chariots are used to get people to the weekly souk or to towns on
the main road, where larger transportation is available for farther distances.

Travel Expressions

taxi t-taxi

Where is the taxi stand? fin lmaHtta d t-taxiyat?

Please take me to the youth center wsslni afak l dar abab

bit n-mi l had
I want to go to this address.
Please wait a minute for me. tsnnani afak wiya.

How much, please? al afak?

Turn on the meter, please. xddm l-kuntur afak.

Stop here, please. wqf hna afak.

small taxi (petit taxi, inside city) taxi sir

large taxi (grand taxi, b/w cities) taxi kbir

we kayna i blasa l
Is there a seat for Fes?
Yes, there is. iyeh, kayna.
116 Moroccan Arabic

al mn blasa kayna
How many seats are taken so far?
Four and you are the fifth. rba u nti l-xamsa.

I want to pay for 2 seats. bit n-xlls juj blays.

taxi driver mul taxi

taxi driver -ifur d taxi

baggage l-bagaj

trunk l-kufr

city bus t-tobis

city bus depot / stop mattat t-tobisat

fin kay-wqf t-tobis raqm
Where does bus 20 stop? 20
we kay-wqf t-tobis raqm
Does bus 20 stop here? 20
00 hna?
we had t-tobis kay-duz
Does this bus go the train station?
la lagar ?
Which bus do I need to take if I amn tobis xssni n-axud
want to go to the train station? ila bit n-mi l lagar?

Can you stop here? we ymkn lik t-wqf hna?

last stop t-tirminus

driver -ifur

ticket taker r-rusuvur

bus (between cities) l-kar

bus station mattat l-kiran

Which bus is going to Oujda? amn kar adi l Oujda?

fuqa kay-xrj l-kar l
When does the bus leave to Rabat ? Rabat?
When does the bus arrive to fuqa kay-wsl l-kar l
Tangier? Tanja?
bit wad l-wrqa l
I want a ticket to Marrakesh
How much is the ticket to Meknes? bal l-wrqa l Meknes?
bit n-dir s-sak dyali
I want to keep my bag with me.
afak ila wslna l Agadir
Tell me when we arrive to in Agadir
gulha liya.
Peace Corps / Morocco 117

drivers assistant l-grisun

How long will you stop here? al adi t-bqa hna?

Is this seat empty? we had l-blasa xawya?

train t-tran

train station lagar

we kayn i tran l
Is there a train to Boulemane?
Where do they sell the tickets, fin kay-qtu l-wraq
please? afak?

Can I reserve a sleeper car to we ymkn liya n-rizirvi

Oujda? kuit l wjda?

nu adi t-diri?
Mustapha: nu adi t-diri s-simana
Jill: adi n-safr l Marrakech.

Mustapha: fa adi t-mi?

Jill: f t-tran wlla f s-satyam
Mustapha: fuqa adi t-xrji mn
Jill: adi n-xrj f t-tmnya u
ns d s-sba.
Mustapha: fin adi t-glsi f
Jill: f lotil.

Mustapha: nu adi t-diri tmma?

Jill: adi n-tsara: adi
n-mi l jam l-fna u qsr
Mustapha: iwa, triq s-slama.

Jill: lla y-slmk.

1. nu bat t-dir Jill? 1

2. we adi t-mi l Fes? 2

3. we adi t-mi f l-kar? 3

4. fin adi t-gls? 4

5. fin kayna jam l-fna? 5
118 Moroccan Arabic

Lesson 16: At the Hotel

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
look for and use hotel accommodation
use conditional sentences to express possible and impossible conditions

Hotel Accommodation
Hotels are classified into categories from 0 (non-classified) to 5-star hotels. There is a reduction of
25% on the second day for Moroccans and foreign residents in Morocco, but only in classified hotels.
Vocabulary and Expressions
the hotel lotil

the reception desk larisipsyun

room bit / ambr

Is there an inexpensive hotel
we kayn i otil rxis hna?
around here?
Where is a nice hotel? fin kayn i otil mzyan?
Please take me to Velleda hotel wsslni l otil Velleda
(to a taxi driver). afak.
A room for one person (a
bit dyal fra wad.
A room for two people. bit dyal juj d n-nas.

Do you have a room available? we ndkum i bit xawi?

Is there a shower with hot we kayn d-du b l-ma
water? s-sxun?
Whats the price for the room? al t-taman dyal l-bit?

Can I see the room? we ymkn liya n-uf l-bit?

Which floor? amn tbqa?

we l-ftur msub ma
Is breakfast included?
Ill stay for 2 nights. adi n-gls juj lilat.

Wake me up at 7:00 please. fiyqni f sba afak

Jack u Amanda f lotil
Jack u Amanda: s-salamu alaykum
mul lotil: wa alaykum s-salam
Jack: we kayna i ambr?
mul lotil: iyeh, kayna dyal fra
wad kbir u kayn dyal
juj fraat.
Peace Corps / Morocco 119

Jack: bina dyal fra wad u

fih l-mmam.
mul lotil: mrba.
Jack: bal lila wda?
mul lotil: 140 drhm. 140
Amanda: we l-ma sxun?
mul lotil: iyeh a lalla.
Amanda: waxxa. tina ambr.
mul lotil: mmru had l-wraq,
afakum. ktbu liha
s-smya, l-unwan, u raqm
Jack: tfdl a sidi.
mul lotil: ukran, ha s-sarut dyal 156
l-bit. 156 f t-tbqa
1. fin ma Jack u Amanda? 1
2. al mn bit bau? 2
3. al t-taman dyal l-bit? 3
4. we rxis had lotil? 4
5. nu xsshum y-diru ba y-glsu
f had lotil?

The Conditional
There are two basic types of conditional sentences in Moroccan Arabic depending on whether the if
clause represents a possible condition or a contrary-to-fact/impossible condition.
Type I Conditional: A Possible Condition in the Present/Future
The word ila ( ) is equivalent to the English if. It introduces a possible condition only. This type of
conditional sentence is composed of the simple past plus the future, or sometimes the simple past plus
the imperative. This is used in the same context as English to express a future probable condition.

If he comes tomorrow, tell him to ila ja dda, gul lih

call me. y-iyt liya.
If I dont come on time, go ila ma-jit- f l-wqt,
without me. sir.
ila ftu, adi n-gulha
If I see him, Ill tell (it to) him.
ila kmmlat l-xdma f
If she finishes the work on time,
l-wqt, adi n-tiuha
well give her some money.
If you ask her for it, shell give it ila tlbtiha mnha (adi)
to you. t-tiha lik.
If you go to the post office bring ila miti l l-bosta, jib
me two stamps. liya juj tnabr.
120 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

1. ila huma (tlb) mnk l-flus,
(ma) mahum l l-banka.
2. ila ana (safr), (jab) kadu. 2
3. ila nta ma (lqa) {huma} f d-dar,
(iyt) liya.
4. ila ana (xsr), ma-ymkn- liya
(sift) liha l-flus.
5. ila nta (ja) ndi,
ana (ta) {nta} t-tsawr.

Type II Conditional: An Impossible Condition in the Past/Present

The word kun ( ) is used in the second type of conditional. It also is equivalent to the English if.
This word introduces two different types of contrary-to-fact conditionals. The first kind refers to past
circumstances which did not occur. For example, if we had worked, which implies that we did not
work. The second refers to present but unreal circumstances. For example, if I were rich, which
implies that I am not rich. General context is the decisive factor in determining whether present or
past contrary-to-fact conditions are referred to.

If I had the money, Id go with kun kanu ndi l-flus,

you. kun mit makum.

If someone had told me, I would kun i wad galha liya,

have come to see you. kun jit n-ufk.

If he were working here, I would kun kan kay-xdm hna,

have told you. kun gltha lik.
If it hadnt been for me, he would kun ma-knt- ana,
have drowned. kun rq.
If it were not for her, we wouldnt kun ma-kant- hiya,
be eating. kun ma-knna- n-aklu.

Exercise: Substitute ila with kun and make the necessary changes.
1. ila safrt, adi n-gls f lotil. 1
2. ila miti l Marrakech,
zur jam l-fna.
3. ila nsiti, an-fkkrk. 3
4. ila kant ms nhar l-dd j-jay,
an-miu l l-br.
5. ila tlmti l-rbiya mzyan,
adi t-kun mutatawwi naj.
6. ila ma-tarmti- qanun s-sayr,
adi t-jibha f rask.
Peace Corps / Morocco 121

Lesson 17: At the Post Office

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to: buy stamps and send letters
and parcels use prepositions correctly with verbs

The Post Office

Stamps are available at tobacco stores in addition to the post office. It is best to mail your letters at the
mail slot outside the post office since pick-ups can be infrequent at other mail boxes. When sending
packages out of the country, you are required to fill out a customs declaration form. Be sure to leave
the package open because an official is required to see the contents before it is sealed.
post office l-bosta ladrisa
envelope jwa l-unwan

letter bra post card kart ppostal

stamp tanbr money order l-manda

stamps tnabr package kulya

registered bra rikomandi Regular adi
letter delivery
postman l-faktur express ixpres

post box bwat ppostal customs d-diwana

box (for a
kartona tape s-skot
glue lsaq
to send sift to close / seal sdd

to paste lssq to receive twssl b

to fill out a form mmr

I want a stamp for the US / bit wad t-tanbr dyal
Morocco please. mirikan / l-mrib afak.

I want to send this letter / this bit n-sift had l-bra /

package. had l-kulya.
How much will it cost to send this
bal adi n-sift had lbra?

How much time will it take for it al d l-wqt kay-xs ba t-

to arrive to US ? wsl l US?

la l-brawat ma-kay-wslu-
Why dont letters arrive quickly?
122 Moroccan Arabic

f l-bosta
Judy: bit t-tnabr, lla
l-muwddaf: fin adi t-sifti
Judy: bit n-sift wda adiya
l mirikan u wda
rikumandi hna f l-mrib.
l-muwddaf: waxxa a lalla, ndk 22.50
22.50 drhm.
Paul: ana bit n-sift kulya l
l-muwddaf: ara n-uf nu fiha.
Paul: hak a sidi.

l-muwddaf: mmr had l-mtbu afak.

l-muwddaf: we t-siftha adi wlla
Paul: ir adi afak.
l-muwddaf: waxxa a sidi, ndk 250 250
Paul & Judy: ukran, bslama.

l-muwddaf: lla y-awn.

1. nu kat-dir Judy f l-bosta? 1

2. we bat t-sift l-brawat ixpres? 2

3. nu ba y-sift Paul? 3

4. nu xssu y-dir? 4

Exercise: Make as many sentences as you can using the following words. You may need to add
some of your own words.
mit bau ra manda
ma bina af kulya

mat l l-bosta laqqa bit xda tnabr

mina bat sift mirikan

mau ba srf bwat

mitu bitu postal
Peace Corps / Morocco 123

Lesson 18: The Peace Corps Mission

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
talk about the three goals of Peace Corps
describe your job in Morocco

Peace Corps
nu hiya hay'at s-salam?
hay'at s-salam munddama mirikaniya
kat-sift l-mutatawwiin l bzzaf d
d-duwal u l-ahdaf dyalha huma:
1. t-tawn t-tiqni 1
2. l-mirikanin y-fhmu mzyan taqafa d
-uub l-li stadfathum u y-rrfu b 2
dik -uub f mirikan
3. -uub l-mustadifa tta hiya
trrf la l-mirikaniyin u tfhm 3

Vocabulary and Expressions

Organization(s) Munddama(t)

developing nations d-duwal n-namiya

Goal/ goals hadaf /Ahdaf

technical help t-tawn t-tiqni

peoples -uub

to host stadf

to inform rrf

Host peoples -uub lmustadifa

Host country Duwla lmustadifa

Host family Laila lmustadifa

The Three Goals Of The Peace Corps

1. To help people of interested countries and
areas in meeting their needs for trained men
and women;
2. To help promote a better understanding of
the peoples served on the part of the
American people;
3. To help promote a better understanding of
American people on the part of the other
124 Moroccan Arabic

Youth Development
Susan: s-salamu alaykum.
Hassan: wa alaykum s-salam.
al hadi u nti f
Susan: tlt hur u adi n-gls
hna amayn wlla tlt snin
Hassan: nu kat-diri?
Susan: ana mutatawwia ma
hay'at s-salam u adi-
nxdm f dar -abab.
Hassan: nu at-diri b d-dbt?
Susan: adi n-qrri n-ngliziya u
adi n-dir maari
ma j-jmiyat u ay aja
l-li ndha alaqa b
tnmiyat -bab.
Hassan: iwa tbark llah lik
a lalla.
Susan: llah y-bark fik.
Vocabulary and Expressions
youth development tnmiyat -bab
youth center dar -bab
Exactly b d-dbt relationship alaqa

project* mru Association Jmiya

projects maari associations jmiyat

activity* naat director mudir

activities anita anything ay aja

* In Morocco, the word for project suggests to some Moroccans an undertaking that requires money. The word
for activity does not have this connotation. You will often be safer, therefore, using the word for activity, since
most of what you do will not based upon major grants or fundraising.
Teaching terminology
verb (s) fil/ afal / adjective nat
noun(s) ism/ asma / adverb Hal
sentence(s) jumla / jumal / pronoun(s) Damir/ Damair /
word (s) klma/ klmat / topic(s) muwdu/mawadi /
paragraph(s) fqra/ fqrat / letter (s) Hrf/ Huruf /
Peace Corps / Morocco 125

Lesson 19: Renting a House

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
speak about renting and furnishing houses

Finding a House
building imara

floor tbqa

apartment brtma

house dar

stairs druj

elevator sansur

balcony balkun bath l-mmam

rental agent d-du

s-smsar shower
(in cities)
living room salun kitchen l-kuzina

bedroom bit n-nas Neighbor(masc./ fem.) jar(a)

bit l-ma /
bathroom neighbors jiran

kan-qllb la i dar l
Im looking for a house to rent.
we ymkn lik t-wrriha
Can you show it to me?

Where is it located? amn blasa?

Give me directions to it. nt liya fin jat.

Can I see it? we ymkn liya n-ufha?

How many rooms does it have? al fiha mn bit?

Is the roof for shared by others? we s-st mruk?

126 Moroccan Arabic

Mark: s-salamu alaykum

l-aj: wa alaykum s-salam

Mark: we kayna i dar l
l-aj: we biti maal kbir
wlla sir?
Mark: bit dar mtwssta, y-kun
fiha salun u bit n-nas
u d-du u kuzina u
kat-dxl liha -ms u
y-kun s-st dyali
l-aj: kayna wda welakin 20.000
t-taman dyalha 20.000
Mark: lla bzzaf liya,
laqqa ana ir b-wdi
u ma-adi- n-qdr n-xlls
had t-taman.
l-aj: al biti t-xlls?

Mark: 10.000 ryal. 10.000

l-aj: iwa f had s-saa

ma-mujuda- i aja b
dak t-taman. welakin
mrra mrra rj ndi, ila
lqit i aja adi
Mark: waxxa a sidi, barak lla
u fik.
l-aj: llah y-bark fik.

1. la ma Mark nd l-aj? 1

2. we ba dar kbira wlla dar sira? 2

3. nu ba y-kun f had d-dar? 3

4. we af Mark d-dar l-li hdr
liha l-aj?
5. la ma-kraha-? 5
6. we kayna i dar xora rxs
mn hadi?
7. fuqa adi y-rj Mark nd l-aj? 7
Peace Corps / Morocco 127

Furnishing a House
House Furniture
table tbla

chair kursi television tlfaza

bed namusiya electric outlet priz

pillow mxdda / usada light bulb bola

floor mat sira electric cord xit d d-dow

rug zrbiya candle ma

mslu /
carpet mukit iron
blanket manta / kaa key / switch sarut

curtain xamiya broom taba

sheet izar squeegee krrata

Moroccan sofa ponj water heater ufu

couch sdari heater ofaj

refrigerator tllaja spoon mlqa

oven frran knife mus

blender tana fork frita

saucepan gamila glass kas

cooking pot tawa teapot brrad

plate tbsil coffee pot briq

Moroccan grill
mjmr tray siniya
grill uwaya bowl zlafa

strainer sffaya kettle mqra

pressure kokot rraf
sifter rbal couscous pot brma

frying pan mqla ladle mrfa

faucet robini
128 Moroccan Arabic

Exercise: Put the household items in the correct room.



sabun mus


bit n-nas



bit l-ma


Exercise: Describe in Darija the house you want to rent.

Moroccan Wisdom:
ydd wda ma-kat-sffq-.

One hand cant clap.

Peace Corps / Morocco 129

Lesson 20: Safety and Security

Objective: By the end of the chapter, you will be able to:
list some safety and security problems you may face during your service
describe some strategies for dealing with these issues
use Moroccan Arabic to implement these strategies

Sexual Harassment
gazelle* l-zala to follow someone tb

z-zwina to get in someone's

the beautiful* trrd
the beauty* z-zin to harass ngg

a strawberry (girl)* t-tuta

*These words are used by men to harass women.

sexual harassment tarru jinsi

He followed me. tbni.

What do you want? nu biti?

Go away. sir f alk.

Get away (far) from me. bd mnni.

Let go of me. tlq mnni.

Dont touch me. ma-t-qisni-.

Dont follow me again. ma-t-awd- t-tbni.

Give me some space. (go away) tini t-tisa.

Go or you will regret it. sir wlla adi t-ndm.

I will tell the police. adi n-bll l-bulis.

adi n-iyt la
I will call the gendarmes.
Respect yourself. tarm rask.

He doesnt want to get away

ma-ba- y-bd mnni.
(far) from me.
I told you: get away (far) from glt lik: bd mnni.
I told you: go away. glt lik: sir f alk.
130 Moroccan Arabic

Text - Arabic

Text - Transcription
Cathy xarja mn dar -bab
mlli Cathy xarja mn dar -bab, kan wad mul t-tumubil waqf f j-jnb
dyal t-triq. mnin wslat Cathy dah, gal liha: "tli a l-zala n-wsslk."
Cathy galt lih: "sir f alk. we biti i wad y-tb xtk?" bqat Cathy
adya u bqa mul t-tumubil tbha. qtat Cathy t-triq l j-jiha l-xura. nat
rasha u kmmlat triqha. f nhar t-tani awd nfs -i ma mul t-tumubil. f
nhar t-talt galt Cathy l mul t-tumubil: "ila awdti tbni adi n-bll
l-bulis." b l-fil awd tbha u mat l l-bulis u bllat u tathum rqm
t-tumubil. l-bulis ddu mul t-tumubil u iytu la Cathy. tlb mul
t-tumubil s-smaa mn Cathy u ltazm ba ma-baqi- y-trrd liha mrra xora.

1. fin kant Cathy? 1

2. fin kan mul t-tumubil? 2

3. nu gal mul t-tumubil l Cathy? 3

4. we mat Cathy ma mul t-tumubil? 4

5. nu dart Cathy mlli awd tbha
mul t-tumubil?
6. nu dar mul t-tumubil mlli dduh

Text - English Translation

Cathy coming out of the youth center
When Cathy was coming out of the youth center, there was a man in his car by the side of the
road. As she passed by him, he told her: Get in gazelle, I will take you home. Cathy said: Go
away. Is it okay with you if someone harasses your sister? Cathy kept walking and the man was
following her with his car. She crossed the road, ignoring him, and continued on her way. The next
day, the same thing happened with that man. The following day Cathy told the man: If you follow
me again I will tell the police. In fact, he did follow her again and so she went to the police station.
She told them what happened and gave them the license plate number. The police arrested the
man and called Cathy. The man apologized to Cathy and promised not to get in her way again.
Peace Corps / Morocco 131

At the Taxi Stand

seat blasa windshield j-jaja

tire rwida cracked mquqa

smooth memsua to be afraid xaf

to happen wq

Drive slowly please. sug b -wiya afak.
llahumma slama wala
Better safe than sorry. ndama.

f matta d t-taxiyat

l-kurti: blasa Agdz, blasa Agdz.

Max: ana adi l Agdz .

l-kurti: tl.
Max: bllati, xllini n-uf
t-taksi bda. ma-bit-
n-mi f had t-taksi.
l-kurti: la?
Max: r-rwayd mmsuin u j-jaja
l-qddamiya mquqa.

l-kurti: ir zid ma-t-xaf-, ma

adi y-wq walu.
Max: uf liya i taxi mzyana
l-kurti: xssk t-tsnna wiya.
Max: l-wqt mai mukil.
llahumma slama wala
1. fin kayn Max? 1
2. fin adi Max? 2

3. la ma-ma- f t-taxi l-li af? 3

4. nu tlb mn l-kurti? 4
132 Moroccan Arabic

English Translation
At the taxi stand
l-kurti: A seat to Agdz, a seat to Agdz.
Max: I am going to Agdz.
l-kurti: Get in.
Max: Wait. Let me see the taxi first. . . . I dont want to go in this taxi.
l-kurti: Why?
Max: The tires are smooth and the windshield is cracked.
l-kurti: Come on, dont worry. Nothing is going to happen.
Max: Find me a good taxi.
l-kurti: You have to wait a little bit.
Max: Time is not a problem. Better safe than sorry.

At Work
to bring in dxxl
to lock to dd ma
xrrj (something)
to take out

to steal srq a lock qfl

to be stolen tsrq

f l-xdma
lomolog: s-salamu alaykum. jiti
bkri l-yum.
Patrick: wa alaykum s-salam. i
lomolog: a hada? la dxxlti
l-bisklit l l-biru.
Patrick: ah, adi y-tsrq ila
xllitu brra.
lomolog: welakin hadi mai blasa d
Patrick: iyeh, welakin a adi
lomolog: dir qfl l l-bisklit u
ddu ma l-bab dyal brra.
Patrick: fikra mzyana. ma-fkkrt-
lomolog: we ndk qfl?
Patrick: iyeh, ndi. n-xrrju daba
u n-ddu ma l-bab.
lomolog: sdd t-lqa ma-t-ll.
Peace Corps / Morocco 133

1. la dxxl Patrick l-bisklit l
2. nu gal lomolog l Patrick? 2
3. nu dar Patrick f t-tali? 3

English Translation
At work
counterpart: Peace be upon you. You came in early today.
Patrick: Peace be upon you too. A little bit.
counterpart: Whats this? Why did you bring your bicycle into the office?
Patrick: Oh. It will be stolen if I leave it outside.
counterpart: But this is not the place for bicycles.
Patrick: Yes, but what should I do?
counterpart: Use a lock with the bicycle, and lock it to the gate.
Patrick: Good idea. I didnt think about that.
counterpart: Do you have a lock?
Patrick: Yes, I have one. Ill take it outside now and lock it to the gate.
counterpart: Lock now what you will find later.

Forgetting a Wallet in a Taxi / Filing a Report

police bulis to lose Wddr/tllf /

police station kumisariya to forget nsa

to save tq
wallet bztam

Help me. awnni.

I lost my passport. wddrt l-ppasppor.

nsit l-bztam dyali
I forgot my wallet in the taxi
Wheres the police station? fin l-kumisariya?

Help me! (use only in extreme danger) tqu r-ru.

134 Moroccan Arabic

Brian: s-salamu alaykum.

bulis: wa alaykum s-salam.

Brian: sm li, nsit l-bztam
dyali f wad t-taksi.
bulis: waxxa, nu smitk?

Brian: smiti Brian ....

bulis: nu kayn f l-bztam?

Brian: fih l-paspor dyali u 500
wad lakart viza u 500
bulis: we qlti la n-nmra
dyal t-taksi?
Brian: 45. 45
bulis: waxxa, xlli liya r-rqm d
t-tilifun dyalk, adi
n-ttaslu bik mn bd.
Brian: ukran.

bulis: la ukra ala wajib.

1. fin ma Brian? la? 1

2. we tsrq lih l-bztam? 2

English Translation
Brian: Peace be upon you.
police: Peace be upon you too.
Brian: Excuse me, I forgot my wallet in a taxi.
police: Okay, whats your name?
Brian: My name is Brian ...
police: What was in the wallet?
Brian: My passport, a Visa card, and 500 dirham.
police: Do you remember the taxis number?
Brian: 45.
police: Okay, leave me your phone number, well call you later.
Brian: Thanks.
police: Its my duty.
Peace Corps / Morocco 135

metal regulator
butane gas l-magana
l-buta between gas
tank tank and hose

gas l-gaz to test jrrb

CO detector d-ditiktur to close (tank) sdd
battery l-jra to open (tank) ll
gasket j-jlda d to turn on / xddm
(rubber ring) l-buta to make work
torn mqtt(a) to change bddl
hose t-tiyu to tighten ziyr
odor / smell r-ria to smell mm
ring l-xatm

There is a gas smell. kayna r-ria d l-gaz.

Turn on the detector. xddm d-ditiktur.

Test the butagas tank with jrrb l-buta b l-ma u

water and soap. s-sabun.
Change the rubber ring if its bddl j-jlda d l-buta
torn. ila tqtat.

Driss nd Caroline
Driss: ahlan bixir.
Caroline: bixir l-amdullah, mrba
Driss: ukran. aji mmit r-ria d
Caroline: ma-mmit-, rah ndi
d-ditiktur d l-gaz welakin
ma-fih- l-jra.
Driss: xssk t-xddmih dima, had
-i mai lb. aji n-ufu
j-jlda d l-buta bda.
Caroline: waxxa.
Driss: j-jlda mqtta. had -i
xatar. xssna n-bddluha u
mn bd n-jrrbu b l-ma u
Caroline: fikra mzyana.
136 Moroccan Arabic

1. la ma-xddmat- Caroline
d-ditiktur d l-gaz?
2. nu l-mukil f l-buta dyal
3. nu xss Caroline u Driss y-diru? 3

English Translation
Driss: Hello, how are you?
Caroline: Fine, thanks be to God. Welcome.
Driss: Thanks. Come here . . . I smell gas.
Caroline: I dont smell it. I have a gas detector but it ran out of batteries.
Driss: You should always have it on. This is no game. Lets look at the
rubber gasket ring first.
Caroline: Okay.
Driss: You see, the rubber ring is torn. This is dangerous. We have to
change it, then test it with water and soap.
Caroline: Good idea.

Hashish l-i to use stml

Quality kaliti / nu sticking to /

bothering lasq
to smoke kma someone

Jalil: aji axay, we kat-qllb la
Scott: lla, sir f alk. ana
Jalil: aji, rah ndi kaliti zwina
mn ktama.
Scott: glt lik sir f alk. bd
mnni. ana ma-kan-kmi-.
Jalil: uf, n-dir mak taman
Scott: uf nta, ila bqiti lasqni
adi n-gulha l l-bulis.
ana ma-kan-kmi-.
Jalil: Safi smHli, lla y-awnk.
Peace Corps / Morocco 137

1. ma mn tlaqa Scott? 1
2. nu ba mnnu Jalil? 2
3. we ra Scott l-i? 3
4. la xaf Jalil u ma b alu? 4

English Translation
Jalil: Come here (brother), are you looking for hash?
Scott: No, go away. I dont use it.
Jalil: Come on, its good stuff from Ktama.
Scott: I said go away. I dont smoke.
Jalil: Look, Ill give you a good price.
Scott: You look, if you keep bothering me Ill call the police. I dont smoke.
Jalil: Okay, excuse me, may God help you.

ffar /
Theft s-srqa thief srraq
danger xatar to touch qas

dangerous xatir to forgive sm l...

make a statement /
file a report
sjjl dwa he attacked me tdda liya

summons stida he snatched my... xtf liya...

witness ahd he slapped me srfqni

testimony ahada he hit me drbni

police l-bulis he spit on me dfl liya

he grabbed me
police inspector l-inspiktur ddni mn...
police car fargunit he cursed me sbbni

report rappur he stole my... srq liya...

Law l-qanun he insulted me ayrni

human rights
to call (the police) iyt l

lawyer muami court mkama

medical certificate / ahada
report tibbiya
138 Moroccan Arabic

fin 'aqrab kumisariya /
Wheres the closest police / brigad d j-jundarm,
gendarme station, please. afak?
I want to make a statement bit n-bll la s-srqa
about a theft / an attack / sexual / itida' / tarru
harassment. jinsi.
What police station should I go lamn kumisariya xssni
to? n-mi?
Take me to the closest police ddini l 'aqrab
station, please. kumisariya, afak.

Be careful! di rask!

Pay attention. rdd balk.

Come with me to the police. zid maya l l-bulis.

John: s-salamu alaykum.
bulis: wa alaykum s-salam. nu xssk?
John: bit n-bll la i srqa.
bulis: we lik nta?
John: iyeh.
bulis: waxxa, tini l-paspor dyalk.
John: ndi ir la-kart d sejur, hak.
bulis: tta hiya mzyana. nu srq lik? u
John: sak, f 3:00. 3:00
bulis: kif dar srq lik s-sak?
John: xtfu liya mn ktfi.
bulis: kif dayr had -ffar? wsfu liya.
John: twil u labs djin u t-urt mr.
bulis: nu kayn f had s-sak b d-dbt?
John: 200
,tilifun u futa u ktab u Ipod u
200 drhm.

bulis: waxxa, a sidi. adi n-diru l-bt

dyalna u n-taslu bik mn bd.
John: safi, we n-mi?
bulis: lla, tsnna tta t-axud mak nsxa
mn r-rappur.
John: waxxa ukran.
bulis: hak, daba n-taslu bik. di rask
mrra xura.
Peace Corps / Morocco 139

English Translation
John: Peace be upon you.
police officer: Peace be upon you too. Can I help you?
John: I want to report a theft.
police officer: Are you the victim?
John: Yes.
police officer: Okay, your passport, please.
John: I have only my carte de sejour. Here you are.
police officer: Thats okay. What was stolen from you and
John: A bag at 3:00.
police officer: How was it stolen?
John: A man snatched it from my shoulder.
police officer: Can you describe the thief?
John: Hes tall, wearing jeans and a red T-shirt.
police officer: What exactly did you have in the bag?
John: A cell phone, a towel, a book, a walkman, and
200 dirham.
police officer: Okay, sir, well do our investigation and well get
in touch with you later.
John: Thats it? Can I leave?
police officer: Wait a minute, youve got to take a photocopy of
the report.
John: Okay, thanks.
police officer: Here you are. Well get in touch with you. Be
careful in the future.

House Security / Doors and Windows

sliding metal bolt
lock qfl for locking doors
sudur /
welder iron bars barrat
hardware d-drugri
latch / bolt s-saqta
To fix sawb Excellent idea mutabara
140 Moroccan Arabic

Amina: s-salamu alaykum.
Carlos: wa alaykum s-salam.
mrba bik.
Amina: a kat-dir f d-dar?
Carlos: walu, ir gals.
Amina: yallah n-xrju.
Carlos: waxxa.
Amina: nu hada? had l-qfl
iyan. xssk wad si. u
xssk saqta ba t-sdd mn
Carlos: fikra mzyana. mnin adi
Amina: mn d-drugri wlla mn
s-suq dda. u tta had
s-srjm xssu barrat dyal
l-did ba thnna. aji
n-miu l s-sudur n-sawbu
had s-srjm daba. xssk
ir t-dd l-bar dyalu.
Carlos: hadi fikra mutabara.
Amina: iyeh, llahumma slama
wala ndama.
1. nu kan Carlos kay-dir? 1
2. nu l-mukil dyal Carlos? 2
3. nu xss Carlos ydir? 3
4. mnin adi y-ri l-qfl u s-saqta? 4
5. nd mn adi y-sawb l-barrat? 5

English Translation
Amina: Peace be upon you.
Carlos: And peace be upon you too. Welcome.
Amina: What are you doing at home?
Carlos: Nothing, just sitting around.
Amina: Lets go out.
Carlos: Okay.
Amina: What is this? This lock is not strong. You need a strong one. You also need a
sliding metal bolt in order to lock the door from the inside.
Carlos: Good idea. Where can I get these from?
Amina: From the hardware store or from souk tomorrow. Also this window needs iron bars
for you to feel safe. Lets go to the welders to fix this window now. You need to
measure it.
Carlos: Excellent idea.
Amina: Its better to be safe than sorry.
Peace Corps / Morocco 141

Political Debate
to end wqf
population, -b
l-rb people

citizen muwatin for ma

normal adi against dedd

freedom l-uriya to convince qn

democracy d-dimuqratiya killing l-qtila

topic mudu to kill qtl

kan John gals f l-qhwa kay-qra
"Newsweek" u kanu n-nas kay-tfrrju f
"Al-Jazira." wad mn n-nas gal l John:
muwatin: hdr ma rais dyalkum y-
wqqf had l-rb.
John: ana ir muwatin adi mn
mirikan. xdmti hiya n-awn
n-nas f l-mrib. had -i
l-li kan-rf. safi.
muwatin: welakin kat-gulu ndkum
l-uriya u d-dimuqratiya.
John: had -i bss walakin ana
ir mirikani adi mn
muwatin: kulkum bal bal, kat-biu
l-rb. f mirikan ktr mn
50% d n-nas ma l-rb. 50
tta nta mnhum.
John: lla. ana ma 50% xora l-li
dedd l-rb.
muwatin: kifa adi n-rfu?
John: kifa adi n-qnk?
muwatin: ma-n-rf walakin mirikan
xssha t-wqqf l-qtila dyal
John: mttafq mak.
bqat wad l-mjmua d n-nas f l-qhwa
kay-tkllmu la had l-mudu u kay-ufu
f John. John xlls qhwtu u ma f
142 Moroccan Arabic

1. fin kan John? 1
2. nu kan kay-dir? 2
3. nu kanu n-nas kay-diru? 3
4. nu hiya l-xdma dyal John f
5. we mirikan kulha ma l-rb? 5

6. we John ma wlla ddd l-rb? 6

7. nu dar John f t-tali? 7

English Translation
John was sitting in a caf reading Newsweek. Some people there were watching Al-Jazeera. One
of the men at the caf said to John:
Moroccan citizen: Talk to your president about stopping this war.
John: Im just a normal citizen from America. My job is to help people in Morocco.
Thats all I know.
Moroccan citizen: But in America you say you have freedom and democracy.
John: Thats true, but I am just a normal American.
Moroccan citizen: You are all the same. You all like war. In America more than 50% of the people
are for the war. You are one of them.
John: No, I am with the other Americans against the war.
Moroccan citizen: How are we going to know?
John: How can I convince you?
Moroccan citizen: I dont know but America must stop killing people.
John: I agree.
A group of people in the caf kept talking about the subject of the war. They were looking at John.
John paid for his coffee and left.
Peace Corps / Morocco 143

Pronunciation of Moroccan Arabic ........................................................................................................ 146
Supplementary Grammar Lessons ......................................................................................................... 149
More Useful Expressions ........................................................................................................................ 160
Moroccan Holidays ................................................................................................................................. 162
Glossary of Verbs .................................................................................................................................... 166
144 Moroccan Arabic

Pronunciation of Moroccan Arabic

Despite what you may think at first, it is indeed possible for you to learn how to pronounce the sounds
of Moroccan Arabic. Learning to pronounce Arabic sounds correctly entails two things: first, becoming
aware of how to make the different sounds and, second, practicing with a native speaker. This chapter
will help you with the first task.

Understanding How Sounds Are Made

Before we move directly into how to pronounce Arabic sounds, lets first understand how sounds are
made in general. Then we can use this knowledge in order to work on Arabic sounds.
Fricatives and Stops
Make the /s/ sound. Notice how air is being forced through the space between your tongue and the
gum ridge in your mouth. When a sound is produced like this, by forcing air between some small
opening, that sound is called a fricative. Make the /f/ sound. This sound is also a fricative, because in
order to make it we must force air between our teeth and our bottom lip. Some sounds in English that
are fricatives are: /s/, /z/, /sh/, /th/, /f/, /v/, and others.
Now make the /t/ sound. Here, we are not forcing air through a small opening at a constant pressure,
but rather we completely block the air flow for a moment, and then release the air stream in one big
burst. A sound that is produced by blocking the air flow, and then releasing it, is called a stop. Make
the /k/ sound. This is another stop because again, you will notice how we build up a lot of pressure
with air, and then release it. Some stops in English are: /t/, /k/, /g/, /b/, /p/, and others.
Voiced and Voiceless Sounds
We can also categorize consonant sounds according to whether we use our voice box or not. Make the
/s/ sound. While making the sound, hold your hand over your throat. Now make the /z/ sound, still
holding your hand to your throat. Youll notice that with /s/, we dont use our voice box, but with /z/,
our voice box vibrates. Sounds like /s/ are called voiceless, since we dont use our voice box. Sounds
like /z/ are called voiced, since our voice box vibrates. Make the sound /t/. Is it voiceless or voiced?
Now make the sound /d/. Voiceless or voiced?
Lets look now at some of the difficult Arabic sounds, using what we know about sounds in general.

Pronunciation of Non-English Consonants

The Sound q ( )
The q sound is similar to the k sound. Both are voiceless stops that are made by releasing air
forcefully after completely blocking the air flow momentarily. The only difference is where in the
throat the speaker blocks the air flow. The q sound will be made further back in the throat than the k
sound. Try the following exercise.
First, take a minute to become more familiar with your throat muscles. Open your mouth and say aah,
as if you were at the doctors office. Your tongue should be flat in your mouth. Without raising your
tongue, pull it back so that the base of your tongue closes off air by pulling back against the throat. At
this point, you should not be able to breathe through your mouth, although it is wide open. Practice
doing this first without making a sound. After performing this exercise several times, make a sound by
releasing the air forcefully. The result will be the sound q.

The Sound x ( )
The sound x is a voiceless fricative formed around the same place as the sound q. It is found in many
European languages: the Russian x, the Scottish pronunciation of loch, and the German ch as

The /t/ sound is voiceless and the /d/ sound is voiced. Both are stops.
Peace Corps / Morocco 145

pronounced after a back vowel as in Bach. Some people use this sound to say yech! To pronounce x,
make the sound q and pay attention to where the back of your tongue hits the back of the roof of your
mouth and blocks your windpipe. Instead of closing off the windpipe with the back of your tongue
completely, block it part way, and you will produce this sound.
The Sound ( )
The sound is the same sound as the sound x, except it is voiced. In other words, if you can make
the sound x, all you need to do is vibrate your voice box at the same time, and you will produce .
Think of the correspondence between the sounds k (kite) and g (game): k is voiceless and g is voiced.
Pronounce k and g several times, paying attention to how your voice changes when you say g. Now say
x several times, and then voice it. The result is .
Alternatively, you may think of as similar to the sound you make when gargling. Gargle for a minute
and pay attention to the muscles you use. The sound is pronounced using these same muscles in
similar fashion.

The Emphatic Sounds s ( ), d ( ), and t ( )

The sound s is the emphatic counterpart of the sound s. Pronounce the sound s aloud, and note the
position of your tongue. It should be toward the front of the mouth and high, close to the roof. Now,
starting at the back of your teeth, move your tongue back along the roof of your mouth. You will find a
bony ridge just behind the teeth, before the upward curve of the roof. Put your tongue against this
ridge. The rest of your tongue will drop lower inside your mouth. The emphatic or velarized
consonants in Arabic are pronounced by placing the tip of your tongue in this spot and dropping the
rest of the tongue as low as you can. Thus, the sounds s, d, and t are all made with the tongue in this
All the emphatic sounds are lower in pitch than their non-emphatic counterparts. They are
pronounced with greater muscular tension in the mouth and throat and with a raising of the back and
root of the tongue toward the roof of the mouth. You can notice this contraction of the throat easily by
prolonging the l in full.
One important note about the emphatic sounds: they deepen the sound of surrounding vowels. Pay
attention to the sound of all vowels near these emphatic sounds, because the quality of the vowels gives
the best indication of the presence of emphatic consonants. One important example is tini, give
me in Moroccan Arabic. Most trainees will hear the word and think it is pronounced tayni, with the
middle vowel sound ay instead of i. This is because the emphatic sound t affects the way the i
sounds, making it sound (to the English speakers ear) like an ay. It is, in fact, an i however.

The Sound ( )
The sound is a voiceless fricative pronounced deep in the throat. It has no equivalent in English. In
order to practice this sound, first take a few minutes to become better acquainted with some of your
throat muscles that you use often, but not to speak English. The following exercises are designed to
make you aware of what these muscles can already do, so that you can use them to speak Arabic.
Practice them for a few minutes every day, as often as you can.
1. With your mouth closed, block off your windpipe at your throat. Put your hand on your throat
at the Adams apple and constrict the muscles on the inside. You should be able to feel the
muscles contracting. Alternately tighten and relax them for a few minutes.
2. Repeat this with your mouth open. Try to breathe out through your mouthif you can, you are
not closing off the windpipe entirely.
3. Constrict those same muscles so that air can just barely squeeze through your throat. Imitate
someone fogging a pair of glasses to clean them. The sound of the air coming through your
constricted throat muscles is . By now, you should be aware of what your throat muscles are
146 Moroccan Arabic

4. Bend your head down so that your chin rests on the top of your chest, and repeat exercise 3.
This position should make it easier for you to feel what you are doing.
Pronouncing takes practice, first to pronounce the letter alone, and then to pronounce it surrounded
by other letters in a word. You must learn to pronounce it properly to be understood, and at first, this
will take some concentration on your part. However, the more you practice now, the sooner you will be
able to say it easily.
The Sound ) (
We now come to one of the most distinctive sounds in Arabic: . When pronounced correctly, has its
own unique beauty and can be a very expressive sound. It is not as difficult to pronounce as one may
first think, but you need to exercise your throat muscles, the same ones that you use to pronounce .
You should continually be doing the exercises you learned above for , in which you constricted your
throat muscles as if you were blocking off the air passage from the inside. You can feel this by putting
your hand on your throat. Say , and feel the muscles contract. Now pronounce the same sound and
voice it. That is, say the say sound while vibrating your voice box, changing the breathy sound of
into the deep, throaty sound of . The sounds and are only different because is voiceless and is
Some trainees think that sounds like a vowel, but it is not a vowel. Because we constrict our throat
muscles and force air through the passageway, the sound is a fricative. Vowels do not force air
through a partially blocked passageway, and thus cannot be fricatives.

The Arabic r ( )
The sound r in Arabic is not the same as the English r. It is not difficult, like some of the other sounds
above may seem at first. But because it is new, we include here a short description of it. The sound is a
flap, like the Spanish or Italian r. You already know how to make this sound: it is the sound
American English speakers make saying gotta as in gotta go. Say gotta several times in a row very
quickly and pay attention to what your tongue is doing. You should feel it flapping against the roof of
your mouth behind your teeth. Now pronounce the sound alone. Another good exercise is to practice
making a whirring sound: rrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Do these exercises daily until you have mastered this sound.

Pronunciation of Shedda
In Arabic, a shedda is a pronounced stress upon a letter in a word. In transcription, this stress is
indicated by a doubling of a consonant (see page 3). When there is shedda, it indicates that the
consonant is to be held twice as long as a normal consonant. That is, it should be pronounced for twice
the length of time. This is easy with fluid sounds like z or r. With sounds like b or d, however, you
must begin to say them and pause in the middle of pronouncing them for a second. This may take
some practice at first.
In English, this doubling of a consonant sound never occurs in the middle of words, but is very
common from the end of one word to the beginning of another. Compare the difference between the
single d in lay down and the double dd in laid down. Noticing the difference between the single
d and double dd in this example will give you some idea of how a shedda affects pronunciation.
It cannot be stressed enough that shedda affects not only the pronunciation of a word, but
also its meaning, especially for verbs. Recognizing when shedda is used and learning to
pronounce it correctly yourself is an important task in your study of Moroccan Arabic.
Peace Corps / Morocco 147

Supplementary Grammar Lessons

These are lessons you can work on by yourself or with your tutor once you arrive at your site. It is
unlikely you will be able to complete them during stage, unless you already have some experience with

Making Intransitive Verbs into Transitive Verbs

Intransitive verbs are verbs that do not require a direct object such as:

to come in dxl to be afraid xaf

to go out xrj to drink rb

to laugh dk to understand fhm

to fall ta to go up tl

to go down hbt

All these verbs are trilateral (i.e. they are made up of three letters) and they can be made transitive by
doubling their middle consonant (i.e. putting a shedda on it). The new transitive verb normally has the
meaning to make someone do something. Look at how the meaning changes when the intransitive
verb dk to laugh is changed into a transitive verb:

You are laughing / you laugh. kat-dk.

You make me laugh. kat-dkni.

Here is a list of verbs commonly used in their transitive form:

to make (someone or
something) enter / to bring in
to make (someone or Xrrj
something) exit / to take out
to make (so/sth) laugh Dk
to drop / to throw down (i.e. to
make something fall)
to frighten (i.e. to make Xuwf
someone afraid)
to water (i.e. to make something rrb
to make (someone) understand Fhhm
/ to explain
to make go up / to promote / to
take up
to bring down / to demote Hbbt
148 Moroccan Arabic

Some examples:
I brought in a dog to the house dxxlt wad l-klb l d-dar
but my father took it out. welakin bba xrrju.
The clown makes small kids l-klun kay-dk d-drari
laugh. s-sar.
Take this table out of here, xrrj afak had t-tbla mn
please. hna.
Passive Verbs
Transitive verbs can be made passive by adding t ( ) to them, as shown below:

to write Ktb

to be written (masc.) Tktb

to be written (fem.) Tktbat

to be written (plur.) Tktbu

to understand Fhm

to be understood (masc.) Tfhm

to be understood (fem.) Tfhmat

to be understood (plur.) Tfhmu

to buy ra

to be bought (masc.) Tra

to be bought (fem.) Trat

to be bought (plur.) Trau

to steal Srq

to be stolen (masc.) Tsrq

to be stolen (fem.) Tsrqat

to be stolen (plur.) Tsrqu

Some examples:

Ali ate pizza. li kla l-pitza.

The pizza was eaten. tklat l-pitza.

The teacher wrote the lesson. l-ustad ktb d-drs.

The lesson was written. d-drs tktb.

The students understood the t-tlamd fhmu l-luz.
The riddle was understood. l-luz tfhm.
Peace Corps / Morocco 149

Laila bought some clothes. layla rat l-wayj.

Some clothes were bought. l-wayj trau.

Exercise: Put the sentences below in the passive form.

1. lssq t-tswira f l-it. 1

2. bau l-fllaa l-msul dyalhum. 2

3. sbnat Jamila l-wayj. 3

4. hrrs Peter l-kisan. 4
5. smma Aziz bntu Ibtisam. 5

6. smt s-sda l-bar. 6

7. jlat Lupe l-purtabl. 7

8. jrat Jill sbha b l-mus. 8

9. tat Aicha l-kadu l Malika. 9

10. kra i wad had d-dar. 10

The Past Progressive

The Moroccan Arabic equivalent for the English past progressive (was doing, were doing) is the past of
kan ( ) to be followed by the present tense. For example:

He was talking. kan kay-tkllm.

He wasnt talking. ma-kan- kay-tkllm.

You were talking. knti kat-tkllm.

I wasnt working ma-knt- kan-xdm.

She was writing. kant kat-ktb.

This construction can also be translated as used to. For example:

I used to sell cars. knt kan-bi t-tumubilat.

Whether a given occurrence of this construction is to be translated as past progressive or used to

depends upon the context.

I used to travel a lot. knt kan-safr bzzaf.

mlli knt f s-swira, knt
When I was in Essaouira, I used
kan-akul l-ut kul
to eat fish every day.
knt kan-tfrrj f
I was watching TV when
t-tlfaza mlli dqq i
someone knocked at the door. wad f l-bab.
knt kan-xdm f had
I used to work in this school. l-mdrasa.
I used to run every morning. knt kan-jri kul sba.
150 Moroccan Arabic

knt kan-kmi bzzaf,

I used to smoke a lot but I quit
welakin ma-bqit-
smoking (dont smoke anymore). kan-kmi.

Exercise: Put the verbs in parentheses in the correct form.

mlli ana (kan / qra) f j-jamia f
mirikan, (kan / skn) ma wad
l-a'ila mirikaniya. l-a'ila ma
mn (kan / skn), ndha juj d l-bnat
(kan / qra) maya f j-jamia. wda
mnhum (kan / tllm) l-rbiya
l-fusa, u ana (kan / raj )maha
d-durus dyalha. l-ustad l-li (kan /
qrra) l-rbiya l-fusa f dik
j-jamia smitu d-duktur Jawad. huwa
msri welakin dar jinsiya mirikaniya.

The Verb to remain

The verb bqa ( ) to remain is followed by the present tense or by the active participle (see section
below) when it corresponds to the English kept doing something. Some examples:

She kept waiting for them. bqat kat-tsnnahum.

He kept on searching in the well bqa kay-qllb f l-bir
until he got tired. tta ya.
He kept going (habitually). bqa kay-mi.
He kept going (continued on his bqa mai.
way, on one occasion).

When negated, bqa ( ) in verb phrases is equivalent to no longer, not anymore, with either past or
present meaning. For example:
He didnt (doesnt) laugh at them
ma-bqa- kay-dk lihum.
The active participle baqi preceding the present tense is equivalent to the English still.

Hes still working with us. huwa baqi kay-xdm mana.

Verb Participles
Verb participles are adjectives derived from verbs. They agree in gender and number, like all
adjectives, but not in person (I, you, he) or tense (past, present). Transitive verbs have two participles,
an active and a passive participle. Intransitive verbs have only an active participle.
The Active Participle
Verb Stem Active Participle
to write ktb having written katb(a)

to open ll having opened all(a)

to sell ba having sold bay(a)

to buy ra having bought ari(a)

Peace Corps / Morocco 151

Some examples:

He had written he lessons. kan katb d-durus dyalu.

She had sold her house. kant baya d-dar dyalha.

I found him standing at the door. lqitu waqf f l-bab.

He is wearing a new shirt today. huwa labs qamija jdida.

I saw her wearing a green coat. ftha labsa kbbut xdr.

Everyday I see him walking on kul nhar kan-ufu mai f
this street. had z-znqa.
The active participle must be used in order to express a current (i.e. progressive) activity. For these
verbs, the present tense expresses only a habitual activity.

First category:
three-verb letter (all consonants), insert an a (long vowel) after the first letter of the verb.
Some verbs that go under this category:
Verb Stem Active Participle (Singular masculine)
to sit / stay gls sitting gals

to wear lbs wearing labs

to sleep ns sleeping nas

to leave / exit xrj leaving xarj

to enter dxl entering daxl

to return rj returning raj

to stand wqf standing waqf

to regret ndm regretting nadm

to be quiet skt being quiet sakt

Note: For singular feminine we add an a at the end of the verb example: gals[a]
(sitting) and add an in for plural example: gals[in]. Same rule applies for the other
Some examples:
He wears a green shirt every kay-lbs qamija xdra kul
day. (habitual present tense) nhar.
He is wearing a green shirt.
huwa labs qamija xdra.
(now participle)
She goes to sleep at 10:00. kat-ns f 10:00. 10:00
(habitual present tense)
She is sleeping.
hiya nasa.
(now participle)
152 Moroccan Arabic

Second category:
Three letter verbs with the long vowel a in the middle, add the letter y after the middle long vowel
Some verbs that go under this category:
Verb stem Active Participle
To do/ make dar making dayr
to swim am swimming aym
to sell ba selling bay
To bring Jab bringing Jayb
To say gal saying gayl
To fast sam fasting saym
To drive sag driving sayg
To get up nad getting up nayd
To throw laH throwing layH
To pass/ pass by daz passing/ passing by dayz
To pass fat passing fayt
To love/be dying for mat la loving/ dying for mayt la
To add zad adding zayd
To be scared xaf being scared xayf
To live a living ay
To betray xan betraying xayn
To collapse rab collapsing rayb
To be confused Har being confused Hayr
To fall taH falling tayH
To fly tar flying tayr
To kiss bas kissing bays
To last (time) dam lasting daym
To leak sal leaking sayl
To see af seeing ayf
To melt dab melting dayb
To spend the night bat spending the night bayt
To taste daq tasting dayq
To visit zar visiting zayr
To be absent ab being absent ayb
To wake up faq waking up fayq
To touch qas touching qays
To trust taq trusting tayq
Hassan is fasting today Hassan saym lyum
Peace Corps / Morocco 153

Third category:
With the three letter verbs including a long vowel a at the end, we insert an a after the first letter
of the verb and then change the final a to an i.

Verb stem Active Participle

To build bna Building bani
To buy ra Buying ari
To cry bka Crying baki
To fold twa Folding tawi
To fry qla Frying qali
To go ma Going mai
To want ba Wanting bai
To turn off tfa Turning off tafi
To forget nsa Forgetting nasi
To find lqa Finding laqi
To give ta Giving ati
To rent kra Renting kari
To run jra Running Jari
To cram into Ha Craming into Hai
To be cured bra Being cured bari
To erase /wipe off mHa Erasing/ wiping off maHi
To evacuate xwa Evacuating xawi
(house, country)
To happen tra Happening tari
To loosen rxa Loosening raxi
To sue da Suing dai
Some verbs that go under this category:
What is happening in the market? nu tari f s-suq?
Some exceptions:
Verb stem Active Participle
To take xda taking waxd
To eat kla Eating wakl
To come ja Coming jay
Be patient ! I am coming Sbr , Ana jay

Passive Participle
Verb Stem Passive Participle
to write ktb (being) written mktub(a)

to open ll (being) opened mlul(a)

154 Moroccan Arabic

to sell ba (being) sold mbiu(a)

to buy ra (being) bought mri(a)

to make (being) made /

sn msnu(a)
(manufacture) manufactured

Some examples:
had s-siniya msnua mn
This tray is made of silver.
These boxes have something had snadq mktub lihum i
written on them. aja.

This letter is written; I need only had l-bra mktuba, xssni

a stamp to send it. ir t-tanbr ba n-siftha.

Intransitive Verbs with Only One Participle

Verb Stem Participle
having garnished
to garnish xddr mxddr(a)
being garnished
having covered
to cover tta mtti(a)
being covered

safr having traveled msafr(a)

to travel
being traveled
having rested
to rest rta mrta(a)
being rested
having gone flat
to go flat tf mfu(a)
being gone flat

xbba having hidden mxbbi(a)

to hide
being hidden

Some examples:
She is traveling now hiya msafra daba it
because she is on
ndha utla.
Im relaxed since I finished ana mrta mlli kmmlt
my work. l-xdma dyali.
The tagine is garnished t-tajin mxddr b l-brquq
with prunes and almonds. u l-luz.
He is covered with a
huwa mtti b l-kaa it
blanket because he is
jah l-brd.
She was hidden behind kant mxbbya mur l-bab.
the door.
Peace Corps / Morocco 155

Exercise: In the sentences below, supply the proper form of the participle of the verb
written in parentheses.
1. Aicha (safr) l fransa. 1
2. kant Sara (ll) l-bab. 2

3. d-dar dyal sn (ba) 3

4. kant Layla (ma) s-suq. 4
5. la xlliti s-srjm (ll). 5
6. l-bar mlli jit kant xti (ns). 6
7. l-qamija dyali (wssx). 7
8. we (sdd) l-bab dyal l-kuzina? 8
9. kant Suad (ab) l-bar. 9

10. tiybt d-djaj (mmr) b l-luz. 10

11. had l-kas (sn )f fransa. 11

12. we kant Erika (gls) f d-dar? 12

13. had l-ktab (trjm) mn l-rbiya l
14. ana (rf) blli djun (rj)
l-mrib. 14

either ... or imma ... wlla
imma sift liya bra wlla
Either send a letter or call me.
iyt liya f t-tilifun.
in order to Ba

I am learning Arabic in order to kan-tllm l-rbiya ba

talk to people. n-tkllm ma n-nas.

if We

I want to know if you read this bit n-rf we qriti had

book. l-ktab.

when / since mlli / mnin

When I came to Rabat I took the mlli / mnin jit l r-rbat

train. ddit t-tran.
I have been sick since I came to mlli jit l r-rbat u ana
Rabat. mrida.
who / whom / which / that l-li
156 Moroccan Arabic

The man who is sitting at that r-rajl l-li gals f dik

table is my friend. t-tbla sabi.
The book that I read is l-ktab l-li qrit muhimm.
until tta

I wont sleep until I finish this ma-adi- n-ns tta

book. n-kmml had l-ktab.

as soon as ir

As soon as I finished my work I ir kmmlt l-xdma dyali u

went out. xrjt.

whenever wqt mma

Whenever I am upset I cry. wqt mma tqllqt kan-bki.

although / even though Waxxa

Although John is not a Muslim waxxa John mai mslm

he fasts. kay-sum.
But welakin
bit n-awnk welakin
I want to help you but I cant.
before qbl ma

This conjunction requires the present tense without the prefix ka ( ), even if the past is referred to.
dima kan-qra qbl ma
I always read before I sleep. n-ns.
after bd ma

In sentences having this conjunction, the verb of the subsequent phrase has to be in the same tense as
the first one.
bd ma mit l d-dar,
After I went home, I showered.
that Blli

I knew that you werent there. rft blli ma-knti-.

since / when / because it

Since you had a lot of work, why it ndk l-xdma bzzaf

did you go to the cinema? la miti l s-sinima?

When I was in Marrakech I went it knt f Marrakech mit

to the Menara. l l-Menara.
I went to the doctor because I mit l t-tbib it knt
was sick. mrid.
Peace Corps / Morocco 157

because laqqa

He didnt go to school because ma-ma- l l-mdrasa

he didnt wake up early. laqqa ma-faq- bkri.

without bla ma

They talked without thinking. hdru bla ma y-fkru.

wherever fin mma

Wherever there is water there is fin mma kayn l-ma, kayna

life. l-ayat.

then ad

I ate then slept. klit ad nst.

Exercise: Fill in the blanks with the appropriate conjunction from the list (you can use
conjunctions more than one time).
ba it mlli laqqa ad tta blli we bla ma l-li welakin

1. ma-adi- n-safr ____ t-ji. 1

2. xssk t-rfi ____ tta i aja masiba. 2
3. bit n-duw ____ n-rta. 3
4. bau y-rfu ____ kayna i mdrasa hna. 4
5. d-dwa ____ stmlt mzyan. 5
6. ____ kant mrida mat l nd t-tbib. 6
7. bat t-ufu ____ ma-ndha- l-wqt. 7
8. ____ knt sir mit l l-muxyyam. 8
9. l-mdina ____ knt sakn fiha kbira. 9
10. ktbt bra ____ nst. 10
11. kay-akul ____ y-sl yddih ____ 11
kay-akul b l-frita.

12. ma-safrat- ____ ma-ndha- l-flus. 12

158 Moroccan Arabic

More Useful Expressions

You were given some useful expressions on pages 22 to 24. Here are more expressions, including many
God phrases.
God Phrases
May God bless your parents.
(used often when asking for a service / lla y-rm l-walidin.
information or to express gratitude to

Our parents and yours. (a walidina u walidik.

response to the above)

May God cure you. (used to show lla y-afi.

sympathy toward a sick person)

May God not show you any lhla y-wrrik bas.

harm. (a response to the above)
May God magnify the good
deeds. (used to offer condolences for ajarakum llah.
someones death)

May God make your child a

good person. (used to complement a lla y-sl.
parent on his/her child)

May God grant you grace. (used

when saying goodbye to a friend or tbark llah lik.
congratulating him/her on a job well

May God grant you grace. lla y-bark fik.

(response to the above)

I swear to God. (expresses that ullah.

what you said was true)

Used on the arrival of somebody la slamtk.

after a trip.
Response to the above. lla y-sllmk.

May God make your life easier. lla y-shl.

(said to beggars)

God forgives. lla y-sam.

Other Expressions
Would you please help me? we ymkn lik t-awnni?

If you dont mind. ila jat la xatrk.

It is my pleasure. la r-ras u l-in.

Youre welcome. la ukran la wajib.

It is all right. (no harm done) i bas ma kayn.

Peace Corps / Morocco 159

There is no harm. (response to

ma fiha bas.
Thats fine. d-dnya hanya.

Im going on ... adi n-mi nhar...

and Ill be back on ... u adi n-rj nhar...

Really ?/! bss ?/!

Its shameful. uma

Shame on you. uma lik.

Its none of your business. mai lk.

Hurry up. srbi / dya / tlq rask.

You are right. ndk l-qq.

I agree with you. ana mttafq mak.

Watch out! ndak!

Move aside. balak.

kifa kan-gulu ... b
How do we say ... in Arabic? l-rbiya.
Is there another word? we kayna i klma xura?
we kayna i klma
Is there an easy word? sahla?
Used to express excuse me when
someone does something for you, such
as: hands you socks or shoes, pours
water over your hands to wash them,
etc. It is also used when the speaker
mentions words like donkey or trash.

May God grant you pride and

honor. (used as a response to the zzk llah.
160 Moroccan Arabic

Moroccan Holidays
Holidays in Morocco are extremely important and festive occasions. Women and girls have henna
parties and come out of their houses to celebrate. Visitors are entertained and gifts are exchanged
among friends. Particular religious rites are performed. Special sweets and foods are washed down by
glass after glass of mint tea as everyone gets caught up in the socializing and celebrating.

Religious Holidays
There are both religious and civil holidays in Morocco. The Gregorian calendar, based on solar
computation, is used for civil purposes. This is the calendar Westerners generally use.
The Islamic calendar, based on lunar computation, divides the year into twelve months which
reoccur in varying relationship to the Gregorian year and complete their cycle every thirty years of 355
days. These thirty-year cycles consist of nineteen years of 354 days and eleven years of 355 days. Thus,
the Islamic calendar gains 10 to 11 days a year on the Gregorian year.
This calendar is called the Hegiran calendar because its starting point was the hegira, when
Mohamed fled from Mecca in 622 of the Gregorian calendar. This calendar is used for religious
purposes in Morocco.
Month Arabic Festivals
1st muarram 10th of the month: aura

2nd safar

3rd rabi l-luwl 12th of the month: id l-mulud

4th rabi t-tani

5th jumada l-luwla

6th jumada t-tanya

7th rajab

8th aban 15th of the month: bana

9th ramadan

10th uwal 1st of the month: l-id s-sir

11th du l-qida

12th du l-ijja 10th of the month: l-id l-kbir

Here are descriptions of the major festivals:

muarram, the first month of the Islamic year, is in Morocco called hr aura, the month of the
aura. It has derived this name from the feast on the tenth day of the month. This day, called nhar
aura is the Islamic New Years Day. It is said that Allah created Adam and Eve, heaven and hell, and
life and death on the 10th.
The month of aura is rich in magical qualities. The ninth and particularly the tenth day are
blessed days, and on the latter, many sacred or wonderful events are said to have taken place in the
Peace Corps / Morocco 161

past. In Morocco, baraka is also generally ascribed to those days. Magic, good, or evil is extensively
practiced on the aura day and on the preceding night which is said to favor witches. People gather
and many wear masks and costumes and speak in disguised voices on the night before the aura. It is
believed that magic practiced at this time of year will produce an effect which lasts for the whole year.
Good food has a place in the rejoicing of aura, in accordance with the traditional saying of the
Prophet, Who give the plenty to his household on the aura day, God will bestow plenty upon him
throughout the remainder of the year. Cow, bullock, goat, sheep, dried dates, and eggs are fixed
according to local custom. Visits to the graves of relatives and alms-giving are common at this time.
Of great interest are the fire and water rites, practiced at aura, to which purificatory and other
beneficial effects are ascribed. On aura eve, the bonfire night fires are built throughout the town
and the people sing and dance around them. The chief object of the rite is to purify men and animals or
to protect them from evil influences, since there is baraka (blessings) from those fires.
Similar effects are attributed to the water rites which even more frequently are practiced on the
following morning. It is a general belief that there is baraka in all water on this morning. To take a bath
on the morning of the aura day is a very wide-spread custom, and in many cases it was expressly
said that it must be done before sunrise. Children are traditionally involved in this festival. They
dress-up, play small drums, and are given gifts during this holiday.

id l-mulud
In Morocco, the third month of the Islamic year is called hr l-mulud, the month of the mulud.
These names are given because of the feast celebrating the birth of the Prophet which commences on
the twelfth day of the month and lasts for several days. The mulud is a particularly blessed month and
all children born during it are considered fortunate.
The Prophets Birthday has more significance in Morocco because Morocco is a Kingdom rather
than a republic, and King Mohamed VI is a descendant of the Prophet. The anniversary is brilliantly
celebrated at the Imperial Palace in Rabat, and in the evening in Sale a great procession of candles
takes place.
In Meknes the Aissaoua brotherhood has its own unique celebration worth seeing. Followers of the
holy man, l-hadi Ben Aissa throng to Meknes and play music, dance, celebrate and make what is called
the small pilgrimage to nearby saints tombs.

The eighth month of the Moroccan year is called ban. On the fifteenth day a festival known as
bana takes place. According to legend, this is the day that Allah registers all the actions of mankind
which they are to perform during the year and all the children of men who are to be born and die in the
Traditionally, barren women gather in homes in the neighborhood and cook a couscous meal with
special spices. This meal is eaten by the women and children at home or in the mosque. The barren
women in the group hope this will help them to give birth during the upcoming year.
bana is also the month before the month of fasting, Ramadan. People think of the difficult
month ahead and have a feast. Craftsmen guilds often have parties on this night involving music and

laylatu l-qadr
Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic year. The most important feature of Ramadan is the
complete abstinence from food, drink, and sexual activity from daybreak to sunset. Every Muslim who
has reached the age of puberty must fast. Pregnant women, menstruating women, travelers, and those
who are ill are exempt from fasting, but should make it up at a later date.
162 Moroccan Arabic

According to Islam, there is one night in Ramadan which is more important than any other,
namely, laylatu l-qadr, the night of power. The Koran is said to have been sent down to the
Prophet on that night. This night is one of the last ten nights of Ramadan, but its exact date has not
been discovered by anyone but the Prophet himself. Tradition fixes it to be one of the odd nightsthe
21st, 23rd, 25th, 27th, or 29thand in Morocco it is celebrated on the 27th day.
On the night of the 27th, the men go to the mosque to pray. From sundown to daybreak, the imam
(the prayer leader) reads the Koran. The complete Koran is read before the sun rises. It is believed by
some that the sky will open up during this night and wishes will ascend directly to Allah and be
granted. During the night, special meals of couscous are prepared and brought to the mosques. Those
unable to go to the mosque eat specially prepared meals at home. Each family gives part of the meal to
the poor.

l-id s-sir
Immediately following Ramadan is l-id s-sir, or the little feast. Everyone stays up very late
hoping to hear the announcement that the new moon has been sighted and Ramadan and fasting are
over. When it has officially been sighted, a three-day festival ensues in which alms-giving plays a major
role. The alms usually consist of food items like wheat or barley, and each family does the best it can.
The chief religious rite of the feast is a prayer service at the mosque.

l-id l-kbir
On the tenth day of the month du l-ijja, the last month of the year, the Islamic world
celebrates its yearly sacrificial feast. In Morocco it is known as l-id l-kbir or the great feast.
This is the central feast in Islam, comparable to and derived from the feast of the atonement,
Abrahams substitute sacrifice, for the remission of sins. Hence, the animal sacrificed must be mature
and without blemish.
Every family must have its own sheep just as Americans need turkeys for the proper celebration of
Thanksgiving. Those who cannot afford a sheep buy a lamb or another less expensive animal. In
Morocco, the animal cannot be slain until the King has killed his sheep. Then in each household, the
head of the family kills the sheep (sometimes a butcher is asked to come to the house and perform the
ritual). The sheep is eaten in an orderly fashion determined by local custom. For example, on the first
day, the liver, heart, stomach, and lungs are eaten. On the second day, normally the head and feet are
eaten. However, the head and feet can be eaten on the first day if that is the local custom. There are
purification and sanctification customs and rites that prepare the people for the holy feast and its
principal feature, the sacrifice. People must purify and sanctify themselves in order to benefit from the
holy feast and its sacrifice. Personal cleanliness should be observed. Men and boys visit the barber and
often make a trip to the hammam as well.
Henna is used not merely as a cosmetic, but as a means of protection against evil influences.
Women paint their hands with it and, in many cases, also their feet. Among some ethnic groups, henna
is also applied to domestic animals.
Alms-giving and prayer are two other purification rites practiced during the great feast. Gifts are
exchanged between family members and a portion of the meal is given to the poor. The day begins with
prayer. The chief praying ceremony takes place in the morning at the mosque.
Many Moroccan communities commemorate local saints, or marabous, in a yearly festival or
moussem. Most moussems are held near the tomb of the marabou and involve music, dancing, and
fantasia. For a very famous marabous moussem, people will come from very far away. Some very
famous moussems celebrate Moulay Bouchaib (near El Jadida), Moulay Brahim (near Marrakech),
Moulay Yaqub (Fes), and Moulay Idriss (Moulay Idriss). Many towns have their own moussems
known only to those in the region.
Peace Corps / Morocco 163

National Holidays
In addition to the religious holidays, some important civil holidays commemorating significant
events in Moroccos recent history are celebrated. The most important of these are Independence Day,
the Throne feast, Green March Day, and King Mohameds birthday.
The Festival of the Throne, or id l-r, is the biggest of the civil holidays. This festival
commemorates the coming to power of the King on July 30, 1999. Celebrations, which include parades
with nationalistic anthems, usually occur in the cities with local government officials, like the governor,
making appearances. Traditionally during this holiday, country people come to visit their city relatives,
who are expected to feed and house them for the duration of the festival. There is often a special
emphasis on improving the appearance of the town prior to this holiday. City employees clean streets
and paint walls, and townspeople are sometimes required by government officials to paint their doors,
whitewash their houses, and display flags.
Green March Day is also celebrated by large parades in most of Morocco. This day commemorates
one of the greatest achievements of King Hassan II: the mobilization of 350,000 Moroccans for the
march into the Sahara territory. On November 6, 1975, the first Moroccan marchers, under the
leadership of the then Prime Minister Ahmed Osman, set out from Tarfaya and entered the Spanish
territory. During the celebration, those who went on the actual march once again dress up in green and
re-enact the march.
Independence Day, or id l-istiqlal, commemorates the November 18, 1956 return of
Mohamed V from his French-imposed exile in Madagascar. This day gives rise to receptions at the
Imperial Palace and parades and celebrations all over Morocco.
The last of these major national holidays celebrates the Kings Birthday, August 21, 1962. There are
many organized celebrations in Rabat and broadcasts on the radio praising the King.
Regional Festivals
There are also many regional festivals which are centered around a particular product in which a
region specializes. The product is displayed and sold; music and other activities take place in an
atmosphere similar to a country fair.
Some famous regional festivals are the Cherry Festival in Sefrou, the Date Festival in Erfoud, the
Rose Festival in El-Kelaa MGouna (near Ouarzazate), the Marrakech Folklore and Music Festival, and
the Immouzer Honey Festival (near Agadir).
One of the most interesting festivals in Morocco is the re-enactment of an ancient market in the
High Atlas mountains. At one time, these very isolated High Atlas tribes would gather yearly at a
specific point near Imilchil where many mountain paths met for the yearly market. Provisions for
many months were bought and sold and at one time one of the reasons for coming was to acquire a
bride. Men would meet a girl for the first time and pay her dowry then take her home. Some say this
practice still exists and others say it is just a re-enactment for tourists, but in any case, it is a large
market where many Berbers still buy many of the coming years provisions.
Religious, civil, and regional festivals are an excellent chance to get out and see interesting things,
meet people on an informal basis, and have fun. Dates of these celebrations can be obtained from the
national tourist office branches in many cities, but people in your community will usually provide you
with the information about your region.
It should be noted that the same festival may be celebrated somewhat differently in various sections
of the country. For example, in Errachidia Province, a far greater emphasis is put on Green March Day
than in other sections of Morocco because that province provided the first contingent for the march.
Be sure to check out the expectations of your community for a particular holiday, particularly in
terms of visitation, entertaining, gift-giving, and participation, so you can get as involved as possible
and enjoy the holidays.
164 Moroccan Arabic

Glossary of Verbs
This glossary provides both the present tense and past tense conjugations for the subject I, making it
possible for you to determine how to conjugate irregular verbs.
First Person First Person
English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
absent, to be ab kan-ib bt
able, to be qdr kan-qdr qdrt
absorb rb kan-rb rbt
abort (a fetus) sqqt kan-sqqt sqqtt
accept qbl kan-qbl qblt
accomplish qqeq kan-qqeq qqeqt
accuse ttahm kan-ttahm Ttahmt
accustom tuwd kan-tuwd Tuwdt
wllf kan-wllf Wllft
ache wj kan-wj Wjt
drr kan-drr Drrit
acknowledge tarf b kan-tarf tarft
acquaint with, become
tarf ma kan-tarf Tarft
acquainted with, sth/sb
trrf ma kan-trrf Trrft
add zad kan-zid Zdt
adopt (a child, an idea) tbnna kan-tbnna Tbnnit
advance tqddm kan-tqddm Tqddmt
advise ns kan-ns Nst
affect attr la kan-attr Attrt
afraid (of), to be xaf (mn) kan-xaf Xft
age (get old) rf kan-rf rft
agree (with) ttafq (ma) kan-ttafq Ttafqt
amuse nt kan-nt Ntt
dk kan-dk Dkt
analyze llel kan-llel llelt
angry, to be tqllq kan-tqllq Tqllqt
annoy sdd kan-sdd Sddt
answer jawb kan-jawb Jawbt
appear ban kan-ban Bnt
applaud sffq kan-sffq Sffqt
Peace Corps / Morocco 165

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
apply (a rule, an idea) tbbq kan-tbbq tbbqt
apply for (a job) qddm talab kan-qddm qddmt
appoint iyn kan-iyn iynt
approach qrrb mn kan-qrrb qrrbt
argue (with) txasm (ma) kan-txasm txasmt
arrange rttb kan-rttb rttbt
arrest sb dd kan-dd ddit
bs kan-bs bst
qbt la kan-qbt qbtt
arrive wsl kan-wsl wslt
arrive, to make wssl kan-wssl wsslt
ascend tl kan-tl tlt
ask suwl kan-suwl suwlt
ask (in marriage) xtb kan-xtb xtbt
assemble (parts) rkkb kan-rkkb rkkbt
attack hjm la kan-hjm hjmt
attempt awl kan-awl awlt
attend dr f kan-dr drt
attention, pay rdd l-bal kan-rdd l-bal rddit l-bal
da rasu kan-di rasi dit rasi
avoid tjnnb kan-tjnnb tjnnbt
banter tflla kan-tflla tfllit
bargain tttr kan-tttr tttrt
bark nb kan-nb nbt
bathe sl kan-sl slt
tmmem kan-tmmem tmmemt
be kan kan-kun knt
beat (drum) tbbl kan-tbbl tbblt
beat sb (in a game) lb kan-lb lbt
become wlla kan-wlli wllit
become accustomed wllf kan-wllf wllft
befriend tsab ma kan-tsab tsabt
beg rb kan-rb rbt
tlb kan-tlb tlbt
166 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
begin bda kan-bda Bdit
belch/burp tgrr kan-tgrr Tgrrt
believe sb tiyq kan-tiyq Tiyqt
believe (in) amn (b) kan-amn Amnt
benefit (from) stafd (mn) kan-stafd Stafdt
betray xan kan-xun Xnt
bigger, to make kbbr kan-kbbr Kbbrt
birth, to give wld kan-wld Wldt
bite dd kan-dd ddit
blow up (with air) nfx kan-nfx Nfxt
blow up (explode) frg kan-frg Frgt
boil lla kan-lli llit
born, to be tzad kan-tzad Tzadt
borrow tsllf kan-tsllf Tsllft
bow dr kan-dr drt
break hrrs kan-hrrs Hrrst
broken, to be thrrs kan-thrrs Thrrst
break down (machine) txssr kan-txssr Txssrt
breathe tnffs kan-tnffs tnffst
bring jab kan-jib jbt
brush (hair) mt kan-mt mtt
build bna kan-bni bnit
burn rq kan-rq rqt
burnt, to be trq kan-trq trqt
burst (pipe) tfrg kan-tfrg tfrgt
bury dfn kan-dfn dfnt
buy ra kan-ri rit
call iyt l/la kan-iyt iytt
drb t
call on the phone kan-drb drbt
iyt l kan-iyt iytt
calm, to be (to not thnna kan-thnna thnnit
Can/ to be able to qdr kan-qdr qdrt
camp xiym kan-xiym xiymt
Peace Corps / Morocco 167

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
capture qbt kan-qbt qbtt
care of, to take thla f kan-thla thlat
carry hzz kan-hzz hzzit
carve (wood) nq kan-nq nqt
cash srrf kan-srrf srrft
catch dd kan-dd ddit
qbt kan-qbt qbtt
catch up (with) xlt la kan-xlt xltt
lq la kan-lq lqt
cause sbbeb kan-sbbeb sbbebt
tsbbeb f kan-tsbbeb tsbbebt
celebrate tafl b kan-tafl taflt
censor (prices, film) raqb kan-raqb raqbt
change bddl kan-bddl bddlt
change (money) srrf kan-srrf srrft
change (weather) tbddl kan-tbddl tbddlt
charge of, to be in tkllf b kan-tkllf tkllft
cheat kan- it
cheat (exam) nql kan-nql nqlt
cheat out of mt kan-mt mtt
chew md kan-md mdt
choose xtar kan-xtar xtarit
churn mxd kan-mxd mxdt
clap sffq kan-sffq sffqt
clarify r kan-r rt
wdd kan-wdd wddt
clean nqqa kan-nqqi nqqit
clean (pipes) srr kan-srr srrt
climb tl kan-tl tlt
clog xnq kan-xnq xnqt
close sdd kan-sdd sddit
close eyes mmd kan-mmd mmdt
cold, to make brrd kan-brrd brrdt
collapse rab kan-rib rbt
168 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
collect jm kan-jm jmt
come ja kan-ji jit
comment llq kan-llq llqt
compare qarn bin kan-qarn qarnt
complain about tkka mn kan-tkka tkkit
complain to tkka la kan-tkka tkkit
complete kmml kan-kmml kmmlt
concentrate rkkz kan-rkkz rkkzt
concern hmm kay-hmm hmm
concerned with, to be httm b kan-httm httmt
confess tarf kan-tarf tarft
confuse iyr kan-iyr iyrt
confused, to be ar kan-ir rt
congratulate hnna kan-hnni hnnit
conjugate srrf kan-srrf srrft
connect rbt kan-rbt rbtt
consult (with) tawr (ma) kan-tawr tawrt
contact tasl b kan-tasl taslt
content with, to be (give
rda la kan-rdi rdit
your blessing to)
continue in sth stamr f kan-stamr stamrt
continue studies tab kan-tab tabt
contribute sahm kan-sahm sahmt
control tkkm f kan-tkkm tkkmt
raqb kan-raqb raqbt
cook tiyb kan-tiyb tiybt
cooperate (with) tawn (ma) kan-tawn tawnt
cope sllk kan-sllk sllkt
copy (by hand) nql kan-nql nqlt
copy (photocopy) nsx kan-nsx nsxt
correct se kan-se set
cost swa kan-swa swit
cough k kan-k kit
kb kan-kb kbt
count sb kan-sb sbt
Peace Corps / Morocco 169

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
cram into xa kan-xi xit
crazy, to be mq kan-mq mqt
crazy, to make mmq kan-mmq mmqt
create xlq kan-xlq xlqt
cross (road) qt kan-qt qtt
cross-breed lqqm kan-lqqm lqqmt
cry bka kan-bki bkit
cry, to make bkka kan-bkki bkkit
cure dawa kan-dawi dawit
cured, to be bra kan-bra brit
cut qt kan-qt qtt
cut (hair) ssn kan-ssn ssnt
cut/injure (skin) jr kan-jr jrt
cut/injured, to be tjr kan-tjr tjrt
cut( a pattern from cloth) fssl kan-fssl fsslt
damage xssr kan-xssr xssrt
dampen fzzg kan-fzzg fzzgt
damp, to get fzg kan-fzg fzgt
dance t kan-t tt
deafen smmk kan-smmk smmkt
deal with sb taml ma kan-taml tamlt
decide qrrer kan-qrrer qrrert
declare ln kan-ln lnt
decrease nqs kan-nqs nqst
dedicate hda kan-hdi hdit
defeat lb kan-lb lbt
defend daf la kan-daf daft
define dded kan-dded ddedt
defy tdda kan-tdda tddit
delay ttl kan-ttl ttlt
deprive rm kan-rm rmt
descend hbt kan-hbt hbtt
nzl kan-nzl nzlt
describe wsf kan-wsf wsft
170 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
deserve staq kan-staq staqt
design xttet kan-xttet xttett
desire strongly mat la kan-mut mtt
destroy hddm kan-hddm hddmt
develop tuwr kan-tuwr tuwrt
develop (film) xrrj kan-xrrj xrrjt
die mat kan-mut mtt
differ (from) xtalf (ma) kan-xtalf xtalft
dig fr kan-fr frt
digest hdm kan-hdm hdmt
dinner, to have ta kan-ta tit
direct wjjh kan-wjjh wjjht
direct (as an order) amr kan-amr amrt
dirty, to make wssx kan-wssx wssxt
dirty, to get tussx kan-tussx tussxt
disappear br kan-br brt
discipline addb kan-addb addbt
rbba kan-rbbi rbbit
discover ktaf kan-ktaf ktaft
discuss (a topic) naq kan-naq naqt
dislike ma-ml- ma-kan-ml- ma-mlt-
krh kan-krh krht
dissolve sth duwb kan-duwb duwbt
distribute frrq kan-frrq frrqt
distance oneself (from) bd (mn) kan-bd bdt
divide qsm kan-qsm qsmt
divorce tllq kan-tllq tllqt
dizzy, to get dax kan-dux dxt
dizzy, to make duwx kan-duwx duwxt
do dar kan-dir drt
drag jrr kan-jrr jrrit
draw rsm kan-rsm rsmt
draw up (water from a jbd kan-jbd jbdt
dream (about) lm (b) kan-lm lmt
Peace Corps / Morocco 171

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
dress lbs kan-lbs lbst
dress up (slang) tfrks kan-tfrks tfrkst
drink rb kan-rb rbt
drink, to make rrb kan-rrb rrbt
drip qtr kan-qtr qtrt
drive sag kan-sug sgt
drive crazy mmq kan-mmq mmqt
drop sth tiy kan-tiy tiyt
drown rq kan-rq rqt
drunk, to get skr kan-skr skrt
dry, to get nf kan-nf nft
ybs kan-ybs ybst
dry sth nf kan-nf nft
ybbs kan-ybbs ybbst
dry (a wet floor) jffef kan-jffef jffeft
dye sb kan-sb sbt
earn (money) suwr kan-suwr suwrt
easy, to make shhl kan-shhl shhlt
eat kla kan-akul klit
eat breakfast ftr kan-ftr ftrt
eat lunch tdda kan-tdda tddit
eat dinner ta kan-ta tit
economize qtasd kan-qtasd qtasdt
elect ntaxb kan-ntaxb ntaxbt
embarrass sb m kan-m mt
embarrassed, to be m kan-m mt
embrace anq kan-anq anqt
embrace Islam slm kan-slm slmt
emigrate hajr kan-hajr hajrt
empty xwa kan-xwi xwit
encourage jj kan-jj jjt
enjoy sth tbr kan-tbr tbrt
enroll tsjjl kan-tsjjl tsjjlt
enter dxl kan-dxl dxlt
172 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
envy sd kan-sd sdt
erase ms kan-ms mst
ma kan-mi mit
escape hrb kan-hrb hrbt
estimate qddr kan-qddr qddrt
xwa kan-xwi xwit
evict xrrj kan-xrrj xrrjt
evolve ttuwr kan-ttuwr ttuwrt
exaggerate (slang) bal kan-bal balt
exchange tbadl ma kan-tbadl tbadlt
exhibit rd kan-rd rdt
exit xrj kan-xrj xrjt
expensive, to get la kay-la la
experience jrrb kan-jrrb jrrbt
expire tqada kay-tqada tqada
explain r kan-r rt
fssr kan-fssr fssrt
explode tfrg kan-tfrg tfrgt
exploit stal kan-stal stalt
export sddr kan-sddr sddrt
express bbr kan-bbr bbrt
exterminate txlls mn kan-txlls txllst
face tqabl ma kan-tqabl tqablt
facilitate shhl kan-shhl shhlt
fail sqt kan-sqt sqtt
faint sxf kan-sxf sxft
fall ta kan-ti tt
fall, to make tiy kan-tiy tiyt
fake zuwr kan-zuwr zuwrt
fart zq kan-zq zqt
falsify zuwr kan-zuwr zuwrt
fast sam kan-sum smt
fear xaf kan-xaf xft
feed wkkl kan-wkkl wkklt
Peace Corps / Morocco 173

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
feed fodder llf kan-llf llft
feel ss kan-ss ssit
ferment xmr kan-xmr xmrt
fight (physically) tdabz kan-tdabz tdabzt
fill (intransitive) mr kan-mr mrt
fill out mmr kan-mmr mmrt
fill up mmr kan-mmr mmrt
filter sffa kan-sffi sffit
finance muwl kan-muwl muwlt
find lqa kan-lqa lqit
finish kmml kan-kmml kmmlt
sala kan-sali salit
finished, to be tsala kan-tsala tsalit
fish siyd kan-siyd siydt
fix sawb kan-sawb sawbt
sl kan-sl slt
flatten (bread) grrs kan-grrs grrst
flatter (a female) tzzl b kan-tzzl tzzlt
flee hrb kan-hrb hrbt
flip qlb kan-qlb qlbt
fly tar kan-tir trt
fold twa kan-twi twit
follow tb kan-tb tbt
forbid rrm kan-rrm rrmt
force open fr kan-fr frt
forge (signature) zuwr kan-zuwr zuwrt
forget nsa kan-nsa nsit
forgive sm l kan-sm smt
foretell tnbba kan-tnbba' tnbba't
free rrer kan-rrer rrert
tlq kan-tlq tlqt
freeze jmd kan-jmd jmdt
freeze sth jmmd kan-jmmd jmmdt
fry qla kan-qli qlit
174 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
fulfill sth qqeq kan-qqeq qqeqt
full (of food), to be b kan-b bt
fun, to make dk kan-dk dkt
nt kan-nt ntt
fun of, to make dk la kan-dk dkt
tflla la kan-tflla tfllit
gain ksb kan-ksb ksbt
rb kan-rb rbt
gamble qmmr kan-qmmr qmmrt
gather jm kan-jm jmt
gather (with people) jtam kan-jtam jtamt
gaze nzez kan-nzez nzezt
generalize mmem kan-mmem mmemt
generate wlld kan-wlld wlldt
get xda kan-axud xdit
dd kan-dd ddit
get down hbt kan-hbt hbtt
get off nzl kan-nzl nzlt
get on rkb kan-rkb rkbt
tl kan-tl tlt
get rid of thnna mn kan-thnna thnnit
txlls mn kan-txlls txllst
get sick mrd kan-mrd mrdt
get through daz mn kan-duz dzt
get up nad kan-nud ndt
get used to wllf kan-wllf wllft
give ta kan-ti tit
give a ride dda kan-ddi ddit
wssl kan-wssl wsslt
give a speech xtb kan-xtb xtbt
give back rjj kan-rjj rjjt
rdd kan-rdd rddit
give off tllq kan-tllq tllqt
give pain drr kan-drr drrit
Peace Corps / Morocco 175

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
glare at xnzr f kan-xnzr xnzrt
gleam lm kan-lm lmt
dwa kan-dwi dwit
glue lssq kan-lssq lssqt
go ma kan-mi mit
go ahead of/in front of sbq kan-sbq sbqt
go by daz la kan-duz dzt
go out xrj kan-xrj xrjt
go through daz mn kan-duz dzt
go up tl kan-tl tlt
gossip about hdr f kan-hdr hdrt
govern km la kan-km kmt
grab qbt kan-qbt qbtt
dd kan-dd ddit
graze ra kay-ra ra
greet sllm la kan-sllm sllmt
greet one another tsalm kan-tsalm tsalmt
grill wa kan-wi wit
grind tn kan-tn tnt
grow (get older/bigger) kbr kan-kbr kbrt
guarantee dmn kan-dmn dmnt
guard ss kan-ss ssit
hand mdd kan-mdd mddit
hang llq kan-llq llqt
hang to dry nr kan-nr nrt
happen wq kay-wq wq
jra kay-jra jra
tra kay-tra tra
happy, to be fr kan-fr frt
happy, to make frr kan-frr frrt
harvest sd kan-sd sdt
hatch tfqqs kay-tfqqs tfqqs
hate krh kan-krh krht
have nd ndi kan ndi
176 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
hear sm kan-sm smt
heat sxxn kan-sxxn sxxnt
help awn kan-awn awnt
herd sr kan-sr srt
hesitate trdded kan-trdded trddedt
hide sth xbba kan-xbba xbbit
hide (oneself) txbba kan-txbba txbbit
hire (a car) kra kan-kri krit
hit drb kan-drb drbt
hit, to be tdrb kan-tdrb tdrbt
hold dd kan-dd ddit
honor rrf kan-rrf rrft
hope tmnna kan-tmnna tmnnit
house skkn kan-skkn skknt
hug nnq kan-nnq nnqt
hug one another tanq kan-tanq tanqt
hungry, to be ja kan-ju jt
hunt siyd kan-siyd siydt
hurry zrb kan-zrb zrbt
hurt drr kan-drr drrit
ignore (slang) miyk la kan-miyk miykt
ill, to be mrd kan-mrd mrdt
ill, to make mrrd kan-mrrd mrrdt
imagine tsuwr kan-tsuwr tsuwrt
txayl kan-txayl txaylt
imitate qlld kan-qlld qlldt
import stawrd kan-stawrd stawrdt
impose frd kan-frd frdt
imprison sjn kan-sjn sjnt
dd f l bs kan-dd ddit
improve ssn kan-ssn ssnt
tssn kan-tssn tssnt
improvise rtajl kan-rtajl rtajlt
increase zad kan-zid zdt
Peace Corps / Morocco 177

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
indicate biyn kan-biyn biynt
infect ada kan-adi adit
inform lm kan-lm lmt
xbr kan-xbr xbrt
inherit wrt kan-wrt wrtt
injure jr kan-jr jrt
Inspect/ search ftt kan-ftt

install blasa kan-blasi blasit

rkkb kan-rkkb rkkbt
insult ayr kan-ayr ayrt
sbb kan-sbb sbbit
integrate dmj kan-dmj dmjt
interest httm kay-httm httm
interfere tdxxl kan-tdxxl tdxxlt
interrupt qat kan-qat qatt
introduce qddm kan-qddm qddmt
invent xtar kan-xtar xtart
invite rd la kan-rd rdt
iron dded kan-dded ddedt
irrigate sga kan-sgi sgit
sqa kan-sqi sqit
irritate qllq kan-qllq qllqt
irritated, to be tqllq kan-tqllq tqllqt
isolate hmm kan-hmm hmmt
zl kan-zl zlt
jealous, to be ar la kan-ir rt
joke dk kan-dk dkt
tflla kan-tflla tfllit
judge km la kan-km kmt
asb kan-asb asbt
jump nqqz kan-nqqz nqqzt
justify brrer kan-brrer brrert
keep tafd b kan-tafd tafdt
afd la kan-afd afdt
178 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
keep house qabl d-dar kan-qabl qablt
gabl d-dar kan-gabl gablt
kick (a ball) at kan-ut tt
qdf kan-qdf qdft
kidnap xtf kan-xtf xtft
kiss bas kan-bus bst
knead jn kan-jn jnt
know rf kan-rf rft
last (time) bqa kan-bqa bqit
dam kan-dum dmt
late, to be tttl kan-tttl tttlt
late, to make ttl kan-ttl ttlt
laugh dk kan-dk dkt
laugh, to make dk kan-dk dkt
lay down tt kan-tt ttit
lay eggs biyd kan-biyd biydt
lead tzm kan-tzm tzmt
leak sal kan-sil slt
qtr kan-qtr qtrt
lean tkka la kan-tkka tkkit
learn tllm kan-tllm tllmt
leave xrj kan-xrj xrjt
Move Rl kan-rl rlt
leave alone xlla kan-xlli xllit
leave behind xlla kan-xlli xllit
lend sllf kan-sllf sllft
lengthen tuwl kan-tuwl tuwlt
lessen qllel kan-qllel qllelt
let xlla kan-xlli xllit
let go of tlq mn kan-tlq tlqt
liberate rrer kan-rrer rrert
lie kdb kan-kdb kdbt
lift hzz kan-hzz hzzit
light l kan-l lt
Peace Corps / Morocco 179

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
like ba kan-bi knt bai
jb kay jbni jbni
lighten (weight) xffef kan-xffef xffeft
limit dded kan-dded ddedt
bs kan-bs bst
limp rj kan-rj rjt
line, to draw a sttr kan-sttr sttrt
live (reside) skn kan-skn sknt
loan sllf kan-sllf sllft
lock sdd kan-sdd sddit
surt kan-surt surtt
look af kan-uf ft
look after thlla f kan-thlla thllat
da kan-di dit
look alike tabh kan-tabh tabht
look behind tlfft kan-tlfft tlfftt
look down (on sb) gr kan-gr grt
look for qllb la kan-qllb qllbt
look like bh kan-bh bht
ban bal kan-ban bnt
look out (window) tll kan-tll tllit
loosen tlq kan-tlq tlqt
rxa kan-rxi rxit
rxf kan-rxf rxft
Lose (sth) wddr kan-wddr wddrt
tllf kan-tllf tllft
lost, to be twddr kan-twddr twddrt
love ba kan-bi knt bai
mat la kan-mut mtt
lower nzzl kan-nzzl nzzlt
hbbt kan-hbbt hbbtt
nqs kan-nqs nqst
magnify kbbr kan-kbbr kbbrt
maintain afd la kan-afd afdt
180 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
make sawb kan-sawb sawbt
dar kan-dir drt
sn kan-sn snt
make difficult for sb tkrfs la kan-tkrfs tkrfst
maltreat (destroy) krfs kan-krfs krfst
manipulate tkkm kan-tkkm tkkmt
manufacture sn kan-sn snt
mark nqqt kan-nqqt nqqtt
rm kan-rm rmt
marry (with) tzuwj (b) kan-tzuwj tzuwjt
marry off (daughter, etc.) zuwj kan-zuwj zuwjt
massage (hammam) kssl kan-kssl ksslt
mean na kan-ni nit
measure br kan-br brt
mediate twsst kan-twsst twsstt
meet tlaqa kan-tlaqa tlaqit
meeting, to have jtam kan-jtam jtamt
melt dab kan-dub dbt
memorize fd kan-fd fdt
menace hdded kan-hdded hddedt
mess up krfs kan-krfs krfst
migrate hjr kan-hjr hjrt
milk lb kan-lb lbt
mistake, to make a lt kan-lt ltt
miss (a bus) 3rd person ma la kay-mi liya ma liya
mix xllt kan-xllt xlltt
monitor (exam) da kan-di dit
rs kan-rs rst
monopolize takr kan-takr takrt
motivate ffz kan-ffz ffzt
move sth rrk kan-rrk rrkt
kz kan-kz kzt
move trrk kan-trrk trrkt
tkz kan-tkz tkzt
Peace Corps / Morocco 181

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
move away from bd mn kan-bd bdt
move residence tuwl kan-tuwl tuwlt
rl kan-rl rlt
murder qtl kan-qtl qtlt
name smma kan-smmi smmit
need taj kan-taj tajt
neglect sm f kan-sm smt
frrt kan-frrt frrtt
noise, to make sd kan-sd sdt
nominate r kan-r rt
notice lad kan-lad ladt
obey ta kan-ti tt
object ard kan-ard ardt
oblige frd la kan-frd frdt
bzzez la kan-bzzez bzzezt
observe lad kan-lad ladt
occupy tll kan-tll tllt
occur wq kay wq wq
jra kay jra jra
offer hda kan-hdi hdit
oil ziyt kan-ziyt ziytt
old, to get rf kan-rf rft
open ll kan-ll llit
ft kan-ft ftt
operate (surgical) ft kan-ft ftt
oppress ddb kan-ddb ddbt
order sth tlb kan-tlb tlbt
order sb amr kan-amr amrt
organize nddm kan-nddm nddmt
overcome tllb la kan-tllb tllbt
owe tsal kan-tsal tsalt
owed, to be sal kan-sal slt
own mlk kan-mlk mlkt
pacify hddn kan-hddn hddnt
182 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
pack jm kan-jm jmt
paint sb kan-sb sbt
park (a car) blasa kan-blasa blasit
participate ark kan-ark arkt
party tafl kan-tafl taflt
pass daz kan-duz dzt
fat kan-fut ftt
pass (exam) nj f kan-nj njt
pass by daz la kan-duz dzt
paste lssq kan-lssq lssqt
patient, to be sbr kan-sbr sbrt
pay xlls kan-xlls xllst
paid, to be txlls kan-txlls txllst
pay back rdd l kan-rdd rddit
peel qr kan-qr qrt
peel (skin) tqr kan-tqr tqrt
permit xlla kan-xlli xllit
sm l kan-sm smt
persuade qn kan-qn qnt
photograph suwr kan-suwr suwrt
photographed, to be tsuwr kan-tsuwr tsuwrt
pick (light fruit) jna kan-jni jnit
pierce tqb kan-tqb tqbt
pile up rrm kan-rrm rrmt
plan xttet kan-xttet xttett
plant zr kan-zr zrt
play lb kan-lb lbt
please jb kan-jb jbt
plow rt kan-rt rtt
pluck riy kan-riy riyt
poison smmem kan-smmem smmemt
poisoned, to be tsmmem kan-tsmmem tsmmemt
pollute luwt kan-luwt luwtt
possess mlk kan-mlk mlkt
Peace Corps / Morocco 183

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
postpone ajjl kan-ajjl ajjlt
pour kbb kan-kbb kbbit
xwa kan-xwi xwit
practice tbbq kan-tbbq tbbqt
praise md kan-md mdt
pray slla kan-slli sllit
precede sbq kan-sbq sbqt
prefer fddl kan-fddl fddlt
prepare wjjd kan-wjjd wjjdt
sawb kan-sawb sawbt
pressure dt kan-dt dtt
pretend dar bal kan-dir drt
biyn blli kan-biyn biynt
prevent mn kan-mn mnt
print tb kan-tb tbt
produce ntj kan-ntj ntjt
profit rb kan-rb rbt
stafd kan-stafd stafdt
progress tqddm kan-tqddm tqddmt
prohibit mn kan-mn mnt
promise wad kan-wad wadt
pronounce ntq kan-ntq ntqt
propose qtar kan-qtar qtart
proud, to be ftaxr kan-ftaxr ftaxrt
prune zbr kan-zbr zbrt
publish nr kan-nr nrt
pull jrr kan-jrr jrrit
jbd kan-jbd jbdt
punish aqb kan-aqb aqbt
push df kan-df dft
push (a button) wrrk la kan-wrrk wrrkt
brk la kan-brk brkt
put tt kan-tt ttit
put down tt kan-tt ttit
184 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
put out (light) tfa kan-tfi tfit
put together (parts) rkkb kan-rkkb rkkbt
quarrel txasm kan-txasm txasmt
quiet, to be skt kan-skt sktt
quiet, to make skkt kan-skkt skktt
quit ma balu kan-mi bali mit bali
rain ta (l-ta) kat-ti tat
raise hzz kan-hzz hzzit
raise (children) rbba kan-rbbi rbbit
raised, to be trbba kan-trbba trbbit
rape tasb kan-tasb tasbt
read qra kan-qra qrit
receive (a letter) dd kan-dd ddit
recognize trrf kan-trrf trrft
record sjjl kan-sjjl sjjlt
reduce nqs kan-nqs nqst
reform sl kan-sl slt
refuse rfd kan-rfd rfdt
refute nfa kan-nfi nfit
regret ndm kan-ndm ndmt
reimburse uwd kan-uwd uwdt
rejoice fr kan-fr frt
relax rta kan-rta rtat
release tlq kan-tlq tlqt
rely on uwl la kan-uwl uwlt
remain bqa kan-bqa bqit
remember ql la kan-ql qlt
tfkkr kan-tfkkr tfkkrt
remind fkkr kan-fkkr fkkrt
remove iyd kan-iyd iydt
zuwl kan-zuwl zuwlt
renew jdded kan-jdded jddedt
rent kra kan-kri krit
Peace Corps / Morocco 185

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
repair sawb kan-sawb sawbt
sl kan-sl slt
repeat awd kan-awd awdt
repent tab kan-tub tbt
reply rdd kan-rdd rddit
request tlb mn kan-tlb tlbt
require ttlb kan-ttlb ttlbt
resemble bh kan-bh bht
resign staql kan-staql staqlt
resist qawm kan-qawm qawmt
respect tarm kan-tarm tarmt
respond jawb kan-jawb jawbt
rest rta kan-rta rtat
retire tqad kan-tqad tqadt
return (to a place) rj kan-rj rjt
return sth rdd kan-rdd rddit
rjj kan-rjj rjjt
review raj kan-raj rajt
ride rkb kan-rkb rkbt
ride, to give a dda kan-ddi ddit
rkkb kan-rkkb rkkbt
wssl kan-wssl wsslt
rinse llel kan-llel llelt
rise (like the sun) tl kan-tl tlt
rise (to wake up) faq kan-fiq fqt
rot fsd kan-fsd fsdt
round, to go duwr kan-duwr duwrt
rub kk kan-kk kkit
run jra kan-jri jrit
run away hrb kan-hrb hrbt
run out of tqada kan-tqada tqadit
rush zrb kan-zrb zrbt
sacrifice da kan-di dit
satisfy qn kan-qn qnt
186 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
save xbba kan-xbbi xbbit
xzn kan-xzn xznt
xbb kan-xbb xbbt
save (money) jm l flus kan-jm jmt
wffr kan-wffr wffrt
say gal kan-gul glt
scratch kk kan-kk kkit
scream uwt kan-uwt uwtt
screw ziyr kan-ziyr ziyrt
see af kan-uf ft
see one another tawf kan-tawf tawft
sell ba kan-bi bt
send sift kan-sift siftt
separate frrq kan-frrq frrqt
serve srba kan-srbi srbit
set a bone jbbr kan-jbbr jbbrt
set (the sun) rb kan-rb rbt
set up rkkb kan-rkkb rkkbt
settle staqr kan-staqr staqrt
sew xiyt kan-xiyt xiytt
shake (palsy) trd kan-trd trdt
rjf kan-rjf rjft
shake hands with sllm la kan-sllm sllmt
shake out rrk kan-rrk rrkt
share qsm kan-qsm qsmt
sharpen njr kan-njr njrt
mdda kan-mddi mddit
shave ssn kan-ssn ssnt
shepherd sr kan-sr srt
shine lm kan-lm lmt
shiver trd kan-trd trdt
rjf kan-rjf rjft
shop (weekly market) tsuwq kan-tsuwq tsuwqt
shop (food) tqdda kan-tqdda tqddit
Peace Corps / Morocco 187

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
shorten qssr kan-qssr qssrt
shout uwt kan-uwt uwtt
shovel hzz b l bala kan-hzz hzzit
show wrra kan-wrri wrrit
shower duw kan-duw duwt
shut sdd kan-sdd sddit
shut eyes mmd kan-mmd mmdt
shut up skt kan-skt sktt
sift rbl kan-rbl rblt
sightsee tsara kan-tsara tsarit
sign sna kan-sni snit
wqq kan-wqq wqqt
silence sb skkt kan-skkt skktt
silent, to be skt kan-skt sktt
simplify shhl kan-shhl shhlt
sing nna kan-nni nnit
sink ts kan-ts tst
rq kan-rq rqt
sit gls kan-gls glst
skin slx kan-slx slxt
skip nqqz kan-nqqz nqqzt
slap (in the face) srfq kan-srfq srfqt
trr kan-trr trrt
slaughter db kan-db dbt
sleep ns kan-ns nst
sleep, to make ns kan-ns nst
slide zlq kan-zlq zlqt
slip zlq kan-zlq zlqt
smear lttx kan-lttx lttxt
smell mm kan-mm mmit
smile btasm kan-btasm btasmt
smoke kma kan-kmi kmit
smuggle hrrb kan-hrrb hrrbt
sneeze ts kan-ts tst
188 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
solder lm kan-lm lmt
solve ll kan-ll llit
speak tkllm kan-tkllm tkllmt
hdr kan-hdr hdrt
dwa kan-dwi dwit
specialize txsses kan-txsses txssest
spend money srf kan-srf srft
spend the night bat kan-bat btt
spend time duwz kan-duwz duwzt
spin zl kan-zl zlt
spit dfl kan-dfl dflt
splash r kan-r rit
spoil (a child) fe kan-fe fet
sprain df kan-df dft
spray r kan-r rit
squeeze sr kan-sr srt
ziyr kan-ziyr ziyrt
stamp tb kan-tb tbt
stand wqf kan-wqf wqft
stare angrily xnzr f kan-xnzr xnzrt
start bda kan-bda bdit
startle xl kan-xl xlt
startled, to be txl kan-txl txlt
stay bqa kan-bqa bqit
gls kan-gls glst
stay up late shr kan-shr shrt
steal srq kan-srq srqt
ffr kan-ffr ffrt
step on ft kan-ft ftt
fs kan-fs fst
sting qrs kan-qrs qrst
stink xnz kan-xnz xnzt
stir rrk kan-rrk rrkt
Peace Corps / Morocco 189

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
stop wqf kan-wqf wqft
bs kan-bs bst
stop speaking with txasm ma kan-txasm txasmt
store xzn kan-xzn xznt
strangle qjj kan-qjj qjjit
xnq kan-xnq xnqt
strike (from work) dar l idrab kan-dir drt
stroll tma kan-tma tmit
stretch jbbd kan-jbbd jbbdt
kssl kan-kssl ksslt
study qra kan-qra qrit
drs kan-drs drst
succeed at nj f kan-nj njt
suck mss kan-mss mssit
sue da kan-di dit
suffer tddb kan-tddb tddbt
suggest qtar kan-qtar qtart
sunbathe tmm kan-tmm tmmt
surprise faj'a kan-faj'a faj'at
surrender staslm kan-staslm staslmt
survive nja kan-nja njit
a kan-i t
swallow srt kan-srt srtt
swarm (bees) rt kan-rt rtt
swear lf b llah kan-lf lft
ahd kan-ahd ahdt
swear (oath) qsm kan-qsm qsmt
sweat rg kan-rg rgt
rq kan-rq rqt
sweep ttb kan-ttb ttbt
swell tnffx kan-tnffx tnffxt
swim am kan-um tm
switch (off) tfa kan-tfi tfit
switch (on) l kan-l lt
190 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
sympathize with tatf ma kan-tatf tatft
take xda kan-axud xdit
take away/off iyd kan-iyd iydt
zuwl kan-zuwl zuwlt
take care of thlla f kan-thlla thllat
take charge of tkllf b kan-tkllf tkllft
talk tkllm kan-tkllm tkllmt
hdr kan-hdr hdrt
talk nonsense xrbq kan-xrbq xrbqt
tame ruwd kan-ruwd ruwdt
tape (record) sjjl kan-sjjl sjjlt
tape (scotch) lssq kan-lssq lssqt
taste daq kan-duq dqt
teach qrra kan-qrri qrrit
llm kan-llm llmt
tear something qtt kan-qtt qttt
tear (to be torn) tqtt kan-tqtt tqttt
tease qb kan-qb qbt
tflla kan-tflla tfllit
telephone iyt f kan-iyt iytt
drb t
kan-drb drbt
tell gal kan-gul glt
awd kan-awd awdt
thaw dab kan-dub dbt
think fkkr kan-fkkr fkkrt
xmmem kan-xmmem xmmemt
think that dnn blli kan-dnn dnnit
threaten hdded kan-hdded hddedt
thresh drs kan-drs drst
throw la kan-lu lt
rma kan-rmi rmit
tickle hrr kan-hrr hrrit
tie rbt kan-rbt rbtt
tie (belt) zm kan-zm zmt
Peace Corps / Morocco 191

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
tighten ziyr kan-ziyr ziyrt
tired, to be ya kan-ya yit
tired, to make iya kan-iya iyit
torture ddb kan-ddb ddbt
touch qas kan-qis qst
mss kan-mss mssit
trade tajr kan-tajr tajrt
train drrb kan-drrb drrbt
translate trjm kan-trjm trjmt
travel safr kan-safr safrt
treat (people) taml ma kan-taml tamlt
trick mt kan-mt mtt
trip tr kan-tr trt
trust taq f kan-tiq tqt
try (to attempt to do sth) awl kan-awl awlt
try (to experience sth) jrrb kan-jrrb jrrbt
try on qiys kan-qiys qiyst
turn dar kan-dur drt
turn around duwr kan-duwr duwrt
turn down (volume) nqs mn kan-nqs nqst
turn off tfa kan-tfi tfit
turn on l kan-l lt
turn over sth qlb kan-qlb qlbt
glb kan-glb glbt
twist lwa kan-lwi lwit
understand fhm kan-fhm fhmt
understand, to make fhhm kan-fhhm fhhmt
unite wd kan-wd wdt
upset qllq kan-qllq qllqt
upset, to be tqllq kan-tqllq tqllqt
use staml kan-staml stamlt
use (land) stal kan-stal stalt
use to, to be of sl l kan-sl slt
used to, to become wllf kan-wllf wllft
192 Moroccan Arabic

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
useful, to be nf kan-nf nft
vaccinate lqq kan-lqq lqqt
visit zar kan-zur zrt
vomit tqiya kan-tqiya tqiyit
rdd kan-rdd rddit
wait tsnna kan-tsnna tsnnit
ayn kan-ayn aynt
wake someone fiyq kan-fiyq fiyqt
wake up faq kan-fiq fqt
walk tma kan-tma tmit
walk around tsara kan-tsara tsarit
tma kan-tma tmit
want ba kan-bi bit
warm / heat sxxn kan-sxxn sxxnt
warm, to be sxn kan-sxn sxnt
warn ddr kan-ddr ddrt
water sqa kan-sqi sqit
sga kan-sgi sgit
wash sl kan-sl slt
wash (clothes) sbbn kan-sbbn sbbnt
wash (floor) siyq kan-siyq siyqt
waste diy kan-diy diyt
watch (TV) tfrrj kan-tfrrj tfrrjt
wave iyr l kan-iyr iyrt
wear lbs kan-lbs lbst
weave nsj kan-nsj nsjt
weep bka kan-bki bkit
weigh br kan-br brt
kan-wzn wznt

welcome rb kan-rb rbt

staqbl kan-staqbl staqblt
weld suda kan-sudi sudit
well, to be bra kan-bra brit
wet, to make fzzg kan-fzzg fzzgt
Peace Corps / Morocco 193

First Person First Person

English Transcription Arabic
Present Tense Past Tense
wet, to be fzg kan-fzg fzgt
whistle sffr kan-sffr sffrt
widen wss kan-wss wsst
win rb kan-rb rbt
wipe dry (floor) jffef kan-jffef jffeft
wipe off ms kan-ms mst
ma kan-mi mit
wiped out, to be sxf kan-sxf sxft
wish tmnna kan-tmnna tmnnit
wither ybs kan-ybs ybst
lwa kan-lwa lwit
witness hd kan-hd hdt
wonder at tjjb kan-tjjb tjjbt
xmmem f kan-xmmem xmmemt
work xdm kan-xdm xdmt
worry ttn kan-ttn ttnt
wormy, to get duwd kan-duwd duwdt
worth, to be swa kan-swa swit
wound jr kan-jr jrt
write ktb kan-ktb ktbt
yawn tfuwh kan-tfuwh tfuwht