root: ن-و-ع / active participle of form V / definition: various
In one of the examples in Arabic Observations: Words with Antonymic Meanings, we saw how changing the preposition following a verb could produce two completely opposite meanings.
While the meaning of the form V verb تَسَبَّبَ / يَتَسَبَّبُ doesn’t change that drastically, it still shifts depending on the accompanying preposition/s.
تسبّب / يتسبّب is derived from the root س-ب-ب, which also gives us the noun سَبَب (“reason, cause”).
Correspondingly, all of the meanings of this form V verb are related to cause or motive.
Take a look at some of the meanings the Hans Wehr gives us:
to be caused/produced by, to be the result of, to arise from
to be the cause of, to be at the bottom of, to be instrumental in
to seek reasons/motives for, to give a reason for, to justify
يتسبّب بـ… إلى
to use (something) as a means for
For me, يتسبّب عن and يتسبّب في are the ones I always stop on and consciously recall the meanings—I have to make sure I know what’s the cause and what’s the result!
Have you encountered any other verbs that can be followed by various prepositions giving rise to different meanings?
!في أمان الله
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