Ever wondered why learning Arabic is hard? That’s because sometimes you learn the WRONG Arabic!
In this article you will know the difference of Arabic varieties and which one that fits you best!
Egyptian vs. Levantine
There are two main Arabic varieties, one is known as Egyptian and the other is known as Levantine.
They’re not the same as each other, yet they have certain similarities.
The differences are in the vocabulary and grammar structure of the words.
Egyptian is the language of the Arabic speaking Egyptians. It’s a mixture of Arabic and several other ancient languages like Greek, Hebrew, Aramaic and Akkadian.
It has many similarities with Turkish (Turkish is the language of the Turks).
The Levantine variety of Arabic is an Arab-speaking region in the Levant.
It comes from the dialects of the Arabic language used in northern Yemen and the Levant.
Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic Standard Arabic is the one you should learn if you plan to study in the Arab world, in North Africa or in countries that have a majority of Arabic speakers.
You will find a large variety of books, notes and software for Arabic teaching on the web.
MSA Varieties vs. Spoken Arabic
Arabic has been the most widely spoken language in the world for thousands of years. But what does that really mean?
Some dialects of Arabic have existed since the time of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) some were created during the Middle Ages and still exist to this day.
Modern spoken Arabic, or msa, is defined by five main varieties (MSA5) and eight sub-varieties (MSA8). These are the main styles of Arabic that are spoken across the Arab World, while the minor and intermediate varieties are used in some specific countries or regions.
However, there are thousands of other varieties that have made it into the spoken language over the years, though they are generally considered either semi-fluent or not easily understandable.
To become fluent in Arabic you need to speak the same Arabic you will encounter when speaking it with people in real life.
To learn Arabic your native language also has to be improved, you will need to listen and understand the different dialects.
One thing that many people don’t realize is that Arabic is not one single language. It has many dialects and accents that may be hard to understand for someone who is not familiar with them.
Reading and writing in Arabic is also very difficult and requires more reading skills than in other languages, so it’s advisable to learn as many Arabic dialects as you can.
To start your Lebanese Arabic learning journey, feel free to join the FREE Lebanese Arabic mini crash course