The Similarities and Differences Between English and Arabic
English is a West Germanic language that was first spoken in early medieval England and rose to become the Lingua Franca of the 21st century. It is named after the Angles, one of the ancient Germanic peoples, who migrated to an area of Great Britain, that later took their name, England. Both names are derived from Anglia, a peninsula on the Baltic Sea. While English is most closely related to Frisian and Low Saxon(courtesy the Anglo-Saxon settlers of the 5th and 7th centuries), its vocabulary has been significantly influenced by other Germanic languages, particularly Old Norse (a North Germanic language predominantly spoken by the Vikings), as well as Latin and French.
On the contrary,
Arabic, اَلْعَرَبِيَّةُ, al-ʿarabiyyah, is a Semitic language that first emerged in the 1st to 4th centuries CE. It is now the lingua franca of the Arab world. It is named after the Arabs, a term initially used to describe peoples living in the area bounded by Mesopotamia in the east and the Anti-Lebanon mountains in the west, in northwestern Arabia and in the Sinai Peninsula.
When it comes to classifying the similarities and differences between English and Arabic, the differences far outweigh the similarities.
Let’s now see the similarities between Arabic and English.
1. Both have loan words taken from other languages and each other.
Arabic has borrowed many words from English and other languages and other languages have done the same thing as well
English words borrowed by Arabic
Electronic إلكتروني iiliktruniin
Telephone تلفن tilfun
Cinema سينما sinama
Caviar كافيار kafyar
Computer كمبيوتر kamibyutir
Arabic words borrowed by English
Admiral أمير amīr, military commander, also Emir.
Algebra الجبر al-jabr, completing, or restoring broken parts
Camphor كافور kāfūr
Caravan قيروان qaīrawān, convoy of travelers journeying together, which could be a merchant convoy or military or other convoy
Hummus (food recipe) حمّص himmas, chickpea(s)
Arabic and English share a surprisingly large number of cognates, atleast over 230!
Balloon بالون balun
Dynamite ديناميت dinamit
Email ايميل aymil
Fahrenheit فهرنهايت fahrnihayt
Jeans جينز Jinz
3. Different dialects
In every Arabic speaking country, every group has its own dialect.
Similarly, every English-speaking has its own jargon or dialect.
4. Similar use of old scripts
Old English scripts are less common but still exist for religious purposes. Old/Classical Arabic is no longer spoken. It is mainly used for religious purposes as it is the language of the Quran and Hadith.
5. Both are based on alphabets
One major similarity that both of these languages share is that they both have an alphabet. One can phonetically convert the sound of each letter between the languages to translate. Some languages like mandarin don’t employ an alphabet.
6. Both use consonants and vowels!
Both the languages are based on consonant + vowel format. Of the 28 letters, Arabic has 25 consonants and 3 vowels. English on the other hand, has 21 consonants and 5 vowels forming all its 26 letters.
7. Way of writing
Another similarity between the two languages is that they are written horizontally unlike Japanese Korean or Chinese that are written vertically
8. Grammar similaritiess
Arabic and English both use genders in Grammar, though their applications are different from each other.
Even though both Arabic and English, languages have originated in different parts of the world, both languages have made significant contributions to each other. In addition, both languages are a form of communication utilized by millions of people around the world.