Dictionary Finds: Collocations of شقّ

جَوّ root: ج-و-و / noun / plural: أَجْواء / definition: air, atmosphere I try to evoke, in my physical spaces, an air of refreshing minimalism. My bedroom walls, for example, are washed in white and bare, save the two (white) floating shelves and narrow (white) floating desk that quite subtly jut out along one side.Continue reading “Dictionary Finds: Collocations of شقّ”

Arabic Observations: “Seeking” in Arabic and Turkish

لُغَويّ root: ل-غ-و / nisba adjective / definition: linguistic I’ve been toying with the idea of writing this Arabic Observations post for a while, but I was unsure whether it’s too small of an observation to be added to this series. I’ve since concluded, however, that no linguistic observation is too small to be noted.Continue reading “Arabic Observations: “Seeking” in Arabic and Turkish”

The End, the Middle, and the Beginning

أُفُق root: ء-ف-ق / noun / plural: آفاق / definition: horizon Today, I was conducting the Arabic oral exams for my second-year students and it became apparent that I have some residual anxiety from my undergraduate days as I felt nervous for them. They seemed chilled in comparison, which I’m happy about. This sort ofContinue reading “The End, the Middle, and the Beginning”

Arabic Words for “Eternity”

جَزيرة root: ج-ز-ر / noun / plural: جُزُر / definition: island I’ve spent the past week reconnecting with my home from home: backpacking around Majorca and reacquainting myself with its beaches and towns, and visiting the school I once attended for a year in our village in the south of the island. Ah, those irresistibleContinue reading “Arabic Words for “Eternity””

The Plural of Few and the Plural of Many

قِلّة root: ق-ل-ل / noun / definition: few I’m writing this post in between kneading and leaving-to-rise the Cypriot hellimli zeytinli I’m making in the kitchen, and the smell of black olives is stirring up hunger pangs despite the fact fasting is over (!عيد مبارك). But this post isn’t about halloumi or olives, it’s aboutContinue reading “The Plural of Few and the Plural of Many”

Step-by-Step Arabic Literature Translation #12

طَبيعة root: ط-ب-ع / noun / definition: nature My appointment to reconnect with nature is approaching and it can’t come soon enough. I’ve been feeling sort of anxiously suspended between buildings and roads here in London and—whilst local parks have been somewhat of a refuge from all things grey—sandy beaches, turquoise waters, and sunshine areContinue reading “Step-by-Step Arabic Literature Translation #12”

Unearthed Vocabulary

مَهجور root: ه-ج-ر / passive participle of form I / definition: abandoned Anyone who’s visited the Vocabulary page on this blog recently may have found themselves feeling as though they’d stumbled upon a long-abandoned site, with the ominously-hopeful message “More vocabulary lists coming soon!” an echo of a curious past that makes you wonder whatContinue reading “Unearthed Vocabulary”

The Wind, and a Wandering Mind

ريح root: ر-و-ح / noun / plural: رِياح / definition: wind I was watching an episode of Karadayı last week, my favourite Turkish series, and two phrases related to the wind came up in quick succession: In these sayings, the wind—whether rüzgâr (a word derived from Persian) or yel (a Turkic word)—appears as an activeContinue reading “The Wind, and a Wandering Mind”

Plural of the Plural

فَتْح root: ف-ت-ح / verbal noun of form I / definition: opening We’re somehow nearing the end of the second semester and this academic year seems to have zoomed by faster than the time it takes for students to open Arabiyyat al-Naas and flick to the right page. Writing about semesters again reminds me thatContinue reading “Plural of the Plural”