Algerian Arabic

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Etymology

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From Arabic مَاء (māʔ, water).

Noun

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ما ()

  1. water

Andalusian Arabic

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Etymology

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From Arabic مَاء (māʔ, water).

Noun

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ما ()

  1. water

Arabic

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Etymology

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Cognate with Hebrew מָה (ma) and Ugaritic 𐎎𐎅 (mh).

Pronunciation

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Pronoun

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مَا (m

  1. (interrogative) what?
    Synonyms: أَيّ شَيْءٍ (ʔayy šayʔin), أَيْشٍ (ʔayšin), مَاذَا (māḏā)
  2. (indefinite) some, a certain
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 2:26:
      إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي أَنْ يَضْرِبَ مَثَلًا مَا بَعُوضَةً فَمَا فَوْقَهَا
      ʔinna l-laha lā yastaḥyī ʔan yaḍriba maṯalan baʕūḍatan famā fawqahā
      Indeed, God is not timid to present an example: that of a mosquito or what is smaller than it.
  3. (relative) that which, what
    اِقْرَأْ مَا كَتَبْتُ.iqraʔ katabtu.Read what I wrote.
    مَا تَفْعَلُ تُجَازَى عَلَيْهِ tafʕalu tujāzā ʕalayhiWhatever you do, you are paid back for it.
    • سَتُبْدِي لَكَ الْأَيَّامُ مَا كُنْتَ جَاهِلًا
      satubdī laka l-ʔayyāmu mā kunta jāhilan
      (please add an English translation of this quotation)
    • وَلَعَلَّ مَا تَخْشَاهُ لَيْسَ بِكَائِن
      وَلَعَلَّ مَا تَرْجُوهُ سَوْفَ يَكُون
      وَلَعَلَّ مَا هَوَّنْتَ لَيْسَ بِهَيِّن
      وَلَعَلَّ مَا شَدَّدْتَ سَوْفَ يَهُون
      wa-laʕalla mā taḵšāhu laysa bikāʔin
      wa-laʕalla mā tarjūhu sawfa yakūn
      wa-laʕalla mā hawwanta laysa bihayyin
      wa-laʕalla mā šaddadta sawfa yahūn
      And maybe what you’re afraid of isn't existent
      And maybe what you desire is going to be
      And maybe what you deem easy isn’t convenient
      And maybe what you find difficult will be of ease
      (literally, “what you fear it / what you desire it / what you find easy / what you find difficult”)
  4. (+ past or jussive) whichever; whatever
    Synonyms: أَيَّمَا (ʔayyamā), مَهْمَا (mahmā)
    مَا تَفْعَلْ تُجَازَ عَلَيْهِ
    tafʕal tujāza ʕalayhi
    Whatever you do, you will be paid back for it.
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 2:106:
      مَا نَنْسَخْ مِنْ آيَةٍ أَوْ نُنْسِهَا نَأْتِ بِخَيْرٍ مِنْهَا أَوْ مِثْلِهَا
      nansaḵ min ʔāyatin ʔaw nunsihā naʔti biḵayrin minhā ʔaw miṯlihā
      Whatever we abrogate that is a passage or make people forget, we come up with others that are better than or just like it.
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 2:197:
      وَمَا تَفْعَلُوا مِنْ خَيْرٍ يَعْلَمْهُ اللَّٰهُ
      wa tafʕalū min ḵayrin yaʕlamhu llāhu
      Whatever you do that is good, God learns about it.

Derived terms

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Particle

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English Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia

مَا ()

  1. not; never
    Synonym: (archaic) إِنْ (ʔin)
    • a. 1374, Ibn al-Khatib, Zaman Al-Wasl:
      وَطَرٌ مَا فِيهِ مِنْ عَيْبٍ سِوَى – أَنَّهُ مَرَّ كَلَمْحِ ٱلْبَصَرِ
      waṭarun fīhi min ʕaybin siwā – ʔannahu marra kalamḥi l-baṣari
      The wish that is without a mistake except that it passed like a glance of the eye.
    مَا كَتَبَ. kataba.He never wrote.
    مَا هُوَ بِمَيِّتٍ. huwa bimayyitin.He is not dead.
    مَا شَيْءٌ أَحَبَّ إِلِيَّ مِنْهُ. šayʔun ʔaḥabba ʔiliyya minhu.There is no thing that is more lovely, to me, than that!
    مَا أَحَدٌ مِثْلُهُ. ʔaḥadun miṯluhu.There is none like him.
    مَا مِنْ إِنْسَانٍ فِي الْبَيْتِ. min ʔinsānin fī l-bayti.There is nobody in that house.
    مَا أَرَى شَيْئًا.mā ʔarā šayʔan.I cannot see a thing!
    مَا يَفْعَلُ ذٰلِكَ إِلَّا شُجَاعٌ. yafʕalu ḏālika ʔillā šujāʕun.No one would do that but the bold.

Conjunction

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مَا ()

  1. as long as
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 9:7:
      فَمَا ٱسْتَقَامُوا لَكُمْ فَٱسْتَقِيمُوا لَهُمْ
      fa- staqāmū lakum fa-staqīmū lahum
      So as long as they are straight with you, be straight with them.
  2. A subordinating conjunction following particles or genitival nouns in conditional statements, known as مَا الزَّائِدَة (mā z-zāʔida), 'superfluous mā'
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 2:282:
      [] وَلَا يَأْبَ ٱلشُّهَدَاءُ إِذَا مَا دُعُوا []
      [] walā yaʔba š-šuhadāʔu ʔiḏā mā duʕū []
      [] And let not the witnesses refuse when they are called upon. []
  3. loosely translates to that; introduces a verbal complement to a preposition, standing in place of the definite verbal noun
    Synonym: أَنْ (ʔan)
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 2:10:
      وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْذِبُونَ
      wa-lahum ʕaḏābun ʔalīmun bi- kānū yakḏibūna
      And they will suffer a painful punishment, as they used to lie.
    • 2017, 0:35 from the start, in أَتَظُنُّ أَنَّكَ عِنْدَمَا أَحْرَقْتَنِي [ʔataẓunnu ʔannaka ʕindamā ʔaḥraqtanī]‎[1], مُهَذِّل الصُّقُور (muhaḏḏil aṣ-ṣuqūr) (actor):
      أَتَظُنُّ أَنَّكَ بَعْدَ مَا أَحْرَقْتَنِي وَرَقَصْتَ كَٱلشَيْطَانِ فَوْقَ رُفَاتِي
      ʔataẓunnu ʔannaka baʕda ʔaḥraqtanī wa-raqaṣta ka-š-šayṭāni fawqa rufātī
      Do you think that, after you set me alight, and you danced like Satan over my ashes,
      (literally, “do you think that, you, after [that] you burned me and danced like Satan over my ashes, [...]”)

Derived terms

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Adverb

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مَا ()

  1. whenever
    (Can we add an example for this sense?)
  2. as far as, to the extent that, to the degree that
    (Can we add an example for this sense?)
  3. (with an elative in the accusative) (oh) how...!
    مَا أَجْمَلَ ٱلْحَيَاةَ!
    mā ʔajmala l-ḥayāta!
    How beautiful life is!
    مَا أَلَذَّ ٱلطَّعَامَ!
    mā ʔalaḏḏa ṭ-ṭaʕāma!
    How delicious the food is!
    مَا أَعْظَمَكَ!
    mā ʔaʕẓamaka!
    How great you are!

Usage notes

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  • (not): If the negated sentence has a subject complement, the subject complement may occur in the nominative (like the subject), the accusative (as it would in a sentence negated instead with لَيْسَ (laysa)), or (with بِ (bi)) the genitive (as it would in a sentence negated instead with لَيْسَ (laysa)).
  • (oh how): The above accusative construction is called تَعَجُّب (taʕajjub, wonderment; exclamation) in Arabic. This pattern originated from مَا () meaning “what, something” and the accusative comparative being homophonic to a transitive verb meaning “to make...”. So the example sentence “مَا أَجْمَلَ ٱلْحَيَاةَ” “How beautiful life is!” has the origins in the meaning “Something / What made the life so beautiful?”
    • There is another rarer pattern for exclamations, which uses the imperative form of the verb: أَجْمِلْ بِهَا مِنْ حَيَاةٍ!ʔajmil bihā min ḥayātin!

Egyptian Arabic

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Etymology

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From Arabic مَا ().

Particle

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ما (ma)

  1. that
    بعد ما السباق ابتدى / بعد السباق ما ابتدى
    baʕdi ma s-sibāʔ ibtadā / baʕdi s-sibāʔ ma ibtadā
    After the race began.
    لحد ماli-ḥadd mauntil

Particle

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ما or م (ma- or ma-)

  1. particle expressing emphasis
    ماتقعدma-tuʔʕudCome on, sit down!
    ماه هو قال كدهma-hu huwwa ʔāl kidaBut that's really what he said.
  2. used with suffix ـش to express negation
    ماتقعدشma-tuʔʕud-šDon't sit down!
    مفيشma-fīšThere's no

Pronoun

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ما (ma)

  1. what?
    Synonym: إيه
  2. certain
    في مكان ماfī makān masomewhere

See also

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Hassaniya Arabic

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Etymology

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From Arabic مَاء (māʔ, water).

Noun

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ما ()

  1. water

Moroccan Arabic

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Etymology 1

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From Arabic مَاء (māʔ).

Pronunciation

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  • IPA(key): /maː/
  • Audio:(file)

Noun

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ما (m (plural ميايه (myāyih) or مياه (myāh)) (usually uncountable)

  1. water

Etymology 2

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From Arabic مَا (, not).

Pronunciation

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  • IPA(key): /maː/
  • Usually unstressed and shortened to /ma/.
  • Audio:(file)

Particle

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ما (ma)

  1. not

Etymology 3

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From Arabic مَا (, what).

Pronunciation

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Pronoun

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ما ()

  1. (relative) that which, what

Mozarabic

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Etymology

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From Latin mea (my). Compare French ma.

Determiner

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ما () (feminine, masculine مو)

  1. my
    • c. 1100, Kharja A16 :[1]
      كتال مي ما المَهْ / ككري ما المهْ
      ki-tālə mī alma / ki-karəyyu alma
      Who grabs my soul? / Who [] my soul?

References

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  1. ^ Jones, Alan (1988) Romance Kharjas in Andalusian Arabic Muwaššaḥ Poetry (Oxford Oriental Institute Monographs; 9), Ithaca Press London, →ISBN, pages 123-124

Persian

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Persian Wikipedia has an article on:
Wikipedia fa

Etymology

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From Middle Persian 𐭫𐭭𐭤 (LNE /⁠amāh⁠/, we, us), from Old Persian 𐎠𐎶𐎠𐎧𐎶 (amāxam), genitive plural form of the first person plural pronoun.

Pronunciation

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Readings
Classical reading?
Dari reading?
Iranian reading?
Tajik reading? mo

Pronoun

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Dari ما
Iranian Persian
Tajik мо

ما ()

  1. we
  2. (generally with following را) us
  3. (at end of an ezafe) our

See also

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Interjection

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ما ()

  1. sound of a cow, moo

South Levantine Arabic

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Pronunciation

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Etymology 1

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From Arabic مَا (, not).

Particle

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ما ( or ma)

  1. don't, didn't (used to negate a verbal phrase)
    ما بدّه ييجي عالحفلة.
    biddo yīji ʕal-ḥafle
    He doesn't want to come to the party.
    Audio (Ramallah):(file)
    ما قلتلّوش؟
    ma ʔult-illūš?
    You didn't tell him?
    Synonyms: ـش (), (imperative) لا (la)
Usage notes
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See also
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Etymology 2

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From Arabic مَا (, what).

Particle

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ما (ma)

  1. used to link a preposition to a verbal phrase
    بعد ما راحbaʕd-ma rāḥafter he went
  2. used to turn a question word into a relative determiner; -ever
    إيمتى ما بدكʔēmta-ma biddakwhenever you want
    شو ما قالšū-ma ʔālwhatever he said
  3. used before an elative adjective to indicate surprise or other strong feelings in an exclamation
    ما أحلاها!ma ʔaḥlā-ha!how beautiful she is!
    Synonym: أمّا
  4. used before a verbal phrase to contradict a statement or subvert an expectation; does, did
    ليش ما راح؟ ما (هو) راح!lēš rāḥ? ma (huwwe) rāḥ!Why didn't he go? He did go!
    Invariable form: ماهو (mahū)
Usage notes
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  • In all these senses the ما (ma) is unstressed. In the fourth sense, the contradicting phrase should be uttered with rising intonation to distinguish this sense of ما (ma) from the sense of negation. When a subject pronoun is used in the fourth sense, ما (ma) precedes it; this yields the invariable form ماهو (mahū) used before nominal phrases with the same meaning.

Ushojo

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Etymology

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From Shina مہ (meh).

Pronoun

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ما ()

  1. I, me