The Arabic Verb

Form and meaning in the vowel-lengthening patterns

Warwick Danks | University of St Andrews
ISBN 9789027215734 | EUR 105.00 | USD 158.00
ISBN 9789027286956 | EUR 105.00 | USD 158.00
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The Arabic verbal system is, for most grammarians, the keystone of the language. Notable for the regularity of its patterns, it presents the linguist with an unparalleled opportunity to explore the Saussurean notion of the indivisible sign: form and meaning. Whilst Arabic forms are well-documented, the elucidation of the corresponding meanings has proved more challenging. Beginning with an examination of the verbal morphology of Modern Standard Arabic, including an evaluation of the significance of the consonantal root, this volume then concentrates on establishing the function of the vowel-lengthening verbal patterns (III and VI). It explores issues of mutuality and reciprocity, valency and transitivity, ultimately focusing on atelic lexical aspect as the unified meaning of these patterns. This study is rich in data and relies extensively upon contemporary examples (with transliteration and translation) to illustrate its arguments, adopting an empirical structuralist approach which is aimed both at general linguists and at specialist Arabists.
Publishing status: Available
Table of Contents
“This study takes a problem that has been considered previously, but never adequately addressed, examines more data on the subject than has ever previously been done, considers links between form and meaning in the III and VI verbs and exceptions to previous accounts, and adapts two separate theories to establish an aspectual model for Modern Standard Arabic that accounts for the data. The richness and careful analysis of this data will have implications not only for research on aspectual systems and of the Arabic verb system but also for Arabic language pedagogy.”
“The book must be read by everybody interested in problems of the semantics of verbal derivation in Modern Literary Arabic in spite of several controversies.”
Cited by

Cited by 5 other publications

González Martínez, Alicia, Susana López Hervás, Doaa Samy, Carlos G. Arques & Antonio Moreno Sandoval
2013. Jabalín: A Comprehensive Computational Model of Modern Standard Arabic Verbal Morphology Based on Traditional Arabic Prosody. In Systems and Frameworks for Computational Morphology [Communications in Computer and Information Science, 380],  pp. 35 ff. DOI logo
Laks, Lior, Ibrahim Hamad & Elinor Saiegh-Haddad
2022. The Distibution of Arabic Verbal Patterns in Text Production: Between Varieties and Modalities. In Developing Language and Literacy [Literacy Studies, 23],  pp. 387 ff. DOI logo
Laks, Lior & Elinor Saiegh-Haddad
2022. Between Varieties and Modalities in the Production of Narrative Texts in Arabic. In Handbook of Literacy in Diglossia and in Dialectal Contexts [Literacy Studies, 22],  pp. 247 ff. DOI logo
Karin Ryding & David Wilmsen
2021. The Cambridge Handbook of Arabic Linguistics, DOI logo
Ryding, Karin Christina
2021. Case in Arabic. In The Cambridge Handbook of Arabic Linguistics,  pp. 353 ff. DOI logo

This list is based on CrossRef data as of 16 april 2024. Please note that it may not be complete. Sources presented here have been supplied by the respective publishers. Any errors therein should be reported to them.


Main BIC Subject

CFK: Grammar, syntax

Main BISAC Subject

LAN009000: LANGUAGE ARTS & DISCIPLINES / Linguistics / General
ONIX Metadata
ONIX 2.1
ONIX 3.0
U.S. Library of Congress Control Number:  2011004873 | Marc record