100 most used nouns

adult – raashid

aeroplane – ta’irah

arm – thira

back – thahir

bathroom – hammam

bed – sahrir

beef – lahm baqari

boat – qarib

body – al gassad

book – kitab

boy – walad

boyfriend – habib

bread – hubz

bus – hafilah

calendar – taqwim

car – sayyara

chest – sadr

chicken – dajaj

child – tifl

clothing – malabis

cloud – sah’abah

coffee – qahwah

computer – hasub

cup – finjan

daughter – ibnah

doctor – tabib

dress – fusten

father – abu

finger – isba

fish – samak

food – ta’am

foot – qadam

friend – sadiq

fruit – fakihah

girl – bint

girlfriend – habibah

hand – yed

head – ra’as

hotel – founduq

hour – sa’a

husband – zauj

ice – thalj

jacket – sutrah

kitchen – matbah

lamb – hairuf

leg – saq

man – rajul

manager – mudir

minute – daqiqa

morning – sabah

mother – um

pants – sirwel

plate – tabaq

rain – matar

salt – milh

second – thaniyah

shirt – qamis

shoe – hitha

snow – thalj

sock – jowrab

sofa – arikah

son – ibin

stomach – ma’aidah

store – mahzan

sugar – sukkar

sun – shams

tea – shai

teacher – ustatha

today – al yawm

tomorrow – gadan

train – qitar

vegetable – hudar

water – miya

week – usbua

wife – zawjah

women – mara’a

year – su’ana

yesterday – ams

Arabic alphabet

Arabic Dialects Vary

Remember that Arabic has different dialects across the Arabic speaking world. In Wadi Rum we speak a classical dialect that is closer to old Arabic. However this is not well understood throughout the Arabic world. Although modern standard Arabic is widely taught, Egyptian Arabic is most widely understood.

Because Egypt is both the biggest population of Arabic speakers and has the most widely dispersed popular culture it is the most useful to be understood throughout the Arabic speaking world. This is a good place for people to start. If you pick up some basics then when you visit us in Wadi Rum we can give you some Bedouin Arabic to supplement your vocabulary.

Differences in Latin character spelling

Because the alphabets do not overlap phonetically you will see many spelling differences as you travel. This is because for place names there is often not agreed Latin spellings. Likewise you will see some variation in other words as people attempt to represent the sounds differently.

Inscriptions on Bedouin tour in Wadi Rum desert