Hassaniya Arabic is a variety of Maghrebi Arabic spoken by the Mauritanian Arab-Berbers and the Sahrawi people mainly in Algeria and in Mauritania, and also in Western Sahara, southern Morocco, Senegal, northwestern Mali, Libya and northern Niger. In 2017 there were about 9.5 million speakers of Hassaniya Arabic, including 4.8 million in Algeria, mainly in Tindouf province in the west of the country, 3.5 million in Mauritania, 424,000 in Western Sahara, 282,000 in Morocco, 196,000 in Senegal and 123,000 in Mali.
Hassaniya Arabic is also known as Hasanya, Hasanya Arabic, Hassani, Hassania, Hassaniya, Hassaniyya Arabic, Klem El Bithan, Maure or Moor. It is not intelligible with other varieties of Arabic. In Mauritania it is a statutory language of national identity, and is used along with French, Standard Arabic and English.
There are ways to write Hassaniya Arabic with the Arabic script, and also with the Latin alphabet. The Latin alphabet has been used in Senegal since 2005, while the Arabic alphabet is used elsewhere. Hassaniya Arabicis used in literature and in the media, to some extent.
Download an alphabet chart for Hassaniya Arabic (Excel)
اﻭﻝ من سعادت لنساﻥ: قرايت. ﻭة ﻝ قرة يحرار ﻭة ينحل عينه. ﻭة يشڤ طريق تضمنل اﻝ حيات ﻭة تعرڤ بل ڤايت ﻭﻝ مستقبل. ﻭﻝ ﻝ بين اﻝ قار ﻭﻝ ماﻩ ﻕار ﻩﻭة ﻝ بين، اعمة ﻭة اشايڤ. ﻩية خيار ﻝ يصبح شﻭر هة ﻭلادم .ﻭلة يسد بة، هية اﻝ ﻕرايت. نوص راس كم عليهة ﻭة ندﻩ عليهة تركت كم ﻭة مش نتمة ﻕدان هم
Ëwwël mën saʼaadët linsaan: graaytu. Wë li gra yëḥraar wë yënḥallu ʼayniih. Wë yëŝuuv ṭriig tëḍmënlu ël ḥayaat wë tëʼarvu bil vaayit wël mustaqbël. Wël li bëyn ël gaari wël maahu gaari huwwë li bëyn, ëʼmë wë ëŝŝaayiv. Hiyyë xiyaar li yëṣbaḥ ŝoor hë wullaadëm walla yëssed bë, hiyyë ël graayat. Nwaṣṣi raasi kum ʼiliihë wë ndihu ʼiliihë tërkët kum wë mŝu ntuumë gëddaan hum.
The first happiness of man is to learn. The one who learns awakens and opens his eyes. And he sees the path that life traces for him. He knows what is apparent and what is hidden. The difference between the educated and the uneducated is the difference between the blind and the seer. The best thing a man should be looking for is to learn. We urge you to learn for yourselves and to inspire your children to learn, serving as role models for them.
Details provided by Michael Peter Füstumum
Information about Hassaniya Arabic
- Learn Arabic online with ArabicPod101
- TalkInArabic.com - learn colloquial Arabic of Algeria, Egypt, Iraq, the Levant, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, or Tunisia
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- Arabic Genie - a quick and easy way to learn the Arabic alphabet
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Page last modified: 27.07.22
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