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Author Topic: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo  (Read 4598 times)

29 August , 2014, 02:49:06 am
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Offline ophadece

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Dear all,
This is my first attempt looking through Muawad Dawood's dictionary thoroughly and finding these words. Indeed there are numerous other words completing this list, but they are not so commonly used (at least in my opinion) - at the very least they prove the common usage of old Bohairic so widely in the Egyptian language in contrast to what we have unfortunately been taught wrongly.


Pi[wij   /beshweish/ meaning "the brave". Note the Arab persecutory influence and their mocking of the Coptic words and changing their connotations to the opposite or expletives in most cases. In this case that was changed into meaning quietly or calmly.   
Aha   
/aha/ and sometimes the "h" is accentuated into the sound of the Arabic ح. No note necessary on how this is considered an expletive in colloquial language.   
Teoi   
/daheya/ meaning "she is", or "that is her" as in teoi nhikanoc.   
Aiw   
/aiwa/ meaning "yes".   
Hatre   
/3atra/ meaning "the twin". 3 stands for the Arabic letter ع, and this is the Sa'idic of a;re - Bohairic.     
halak   
/7alak/ earring, or ring. 7 stands for the Arabic letter ح   
Diabolou   
/deyawolo/ meaning evil. A very common word used in slang idioms (not even Coptic); as common as trapeza perhaps. Both are Greek loan words.     
[alauj
(also) [aloj   /shalodɮ/ and may have evolved to /shalod - shalot/ meaning leg, as in the phrase " ضربني بالشلوت" (= "hit me with his leg"); this is wrongly pronounced /etʃalavg/ in the so-called Greco-Bohairic.   
An;ouc (
Saidic = han;ouc)   /hantos/ meaning lizard. Please note the phenomenon of the "h breathing", " التنفس الهائي" especially prevalent in Bohairic, but not exclusively. In Sa'idic the same phenomenon is present and even more pronounced.    
Hanh;wr   
/7a:ntor/ meaning horses, used to refer to the horse-cart used till now as a touristic means of transport. Please note the absence of any breathings, accents, denoting the mistaken use of jinkims these days. Also note the loss of the second hori sound altogether (probably an evolution mechanism).     
Rwmi   
/rewma/ meaning man. It seems this word has evolved to /rema/ which has been converted into an expletive by them.     
Ehoou   
/a7oʊ/ meaning day. Please note this word is also used as an expletive relating to aha in today's slang Egyptian Arabic.     
Baaba - babw   
/wa:wa: - wa:woʊ/ meaning to get impure or dirty. As in the phrase " الجرح عمل واوا" (= the wound got infected, etc).     
barsin   
/barʃen/ meaning to caulk something. Please note the interesting phenomenon of converting "n" into "m" in some words. According to Mr. Muawad Dawood this is a Bohairic word originally.   
(B)
Bert> ouert - (S) ou=rt   /ward/ meaning rose.   
Moubert   
/maward/ meaning a kind of syrup used in baking cakes, etc.   
Besbws   
/bashbewsh - bashbesh/ meaning to destroy.   
Byt   
/ba:t/ meaning rib, used to mean armpit.     
Berber   
/barbar/ meaning to drip, to drop, to drown, to throw. Known commonly when one's nose is running (i.e. dripping).   
Blaby   
/balawa/ meaning harm or damage. This is another Greek loan word.     
Vori -
(S) bwre   /bəʊri/ meaning a kind of fish (= tilapia).   
Eleoc   
/halawəs/ meaning mercy. Please note the "h breathing", " التنفس الهائي" and note also the negative connotation this word has been converted into to mean hallucinations.     
Pieng   
/beng/ meaning the anaesthesia.     
Raouw   
/ra:wah - ra:wa7/ meaning to be present, used colloquially to mean to go home.     
;af -
(S) taf   /taf/ meaning spit.     
;af;ef   
/taftaf/ meaning to spit.   
Twou   
/doʊ/ meaning mountain.   
;of;ef   
/təftaf/ meaning to drizzle or to spit.     
;wbs   
/ta:bəʃ/ meaning get astonished, or mesmerized - in the slang verb "يطبش" that is to do untoward things out of confusion.   
jai   
/gai/ meaning coming.     
`viom   
/fayom/ meaning the sea. That is a name for a city south of Cairo. Please note the pronunciation of the jinkim, that is it succeeds rather than precedes the first letter, as Remenkimi (aka George, a member of tasbeha.org website) cited in his study of authentic Bohairic in another thread on the use of the jinkim. Please also note that the person related to this city is called "fayumy", or in other dialects "bayumy".   
Ic   
/yes/ meaning here. This word is still used as a command to animals.     
Ha   
/ha - 7a/ meaning until. This word is still used as a command to animals.   
Se   
/sheə/ meaning go. This word is still used as a command to animals.   
Ite ... ie ...    
/yada ... ya .../ meaning either ... or ...     
Piiq   
/bekh/ meaning the ghost.   
,w   
/ko3/ meaning put, set, place, etc. Please note the 3 designating the pronunciation of the equivalent to the Arabic letter ع especially in Sa'idic. .    
,aki -
(S) kake   /ka:ka/ meaning darkness, or dark-coloured.   
`kramby   
/kəra:mba/ meaning cabbage. Please note the conversion into /kəromba/ indicating the common interchange of vowels in the Coptic language.   
Polak `nte `,rour   
/bolæk ənda krəʊr/ meaning lake of frogs. Please note that polak is an originally French word according to the analyses I read about such a compound word. Perhaps with Arabic shifting of the colloquial lingo the original nte became "al" as in Arabic.     
Lali   
/la3la3/ meaning sing with joy.   
Lahleh   
/la7la7/ meaning to rise or to ascend. As in the phrase "قوم إتلحلح" urging somebody to get up and do something.     
Leklwk   
/laklek/ meaning soft.   
Lajlej   
/laglag/ meaning to weaken or to wane.     
]nyi   
/di:ney/ meaning give me.     
Oualou   
/wala/ meaning a boy.   
Outah   
/owta:h/ meaning fruit. Used in colloquial lingo to refer to a tomato.   
]minhwr   
/damanhor/ meaning the countryside town of the god Horus.   
Melh   
/mal7/ meaning salt. This is probably a similar word to the Arabic meaning the same, rather than an originally Coptic word that found its way into the Egyptian Arabic colloquial.     
My;emc -
(S) mytemc   /ma:daməs/ meaning poached (said about the Egyptian brown (fava) beans).   
Emhit   
/amhat/ meaning north. This refers to a type of dates grown in the northern region of Egypt.     
Vyetai---
- (or another variant) petai   /beta3/ meaning that which I ---.     
Nwik
- (S) noeik   /noweik/ may have later developed into the current /neik/ meaning to commit adultery. It is not an expletive per se but used in the colloquial language as an equivalent to the slang f word in the English language.     
Vnou]   
/əbnowdi/ meaning the god. Commonly used name even between non-Christians. There is also a town called Abnoud derived from the same term.     
Jebro   
/ʃebra - ʃobra/ meaning fields. One of the most famous districts in Cairo.     
Ouah -
(S) ouahe   /wa7a/ meaning oasis. More probably this is a common word between two languages, rather than an originally Coptic word that found its way into the Egyptian Arabic colloquial lingo.     
Ouei
- (S) oue/owə'a - owə3a/ meaning to go further or to get far away. Please note as observed before the Coptic letter iowda is treated as the تاء مربوطة in the Arabic language, congruent to studies done by Coptologists in the twentieth century.     
Ouelouele   
/walwala/ meaning to yelp or to bark.     
ari`hmot `slyl e;byten anon pi`cnau

29 August , 2014, 02:49:25 am
Reply #1

Offline ophadece

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Re: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo
« Reply #1 on: 29 August , 2014, 02:49:25 am »

Ouen aouwn   
/wen hawen - wen yawen/ meaning open up open or open wide. A common kids' play phrase in hide and seek and in common stories like Ali baba and the forty thieves.     
]eu,y   
/dowʃa:/ meaning the prayer. Note how non-Christians changed the connotation of this in colloquial lingo into meaning noise.     
Hwc   
/hoʊs/ meaning to praise. Note how non-Christians changed the connotation of this in colloquial lingo into meaning madness.     
Ouw]
- (S) ouwwte   /wadda/ meaning to transfer or to move.     
Pa;anon   
/batanon/ a name of a town in the city of Menouf. Where cantor Mikhail belongs to.     
`qre   
/khəra/ meaning food. Note how non-Christians changed the connotation of this in colloquial lingo into meaning shit.   
Pertnouhe   
/bardənoha/ a name of a town in Southern Egypt.     
Pecourw   
/bəsaʊra/ may have evolved into /bəsa:ra/ which is a type of food that is basically cooked fava beans.     
Nipyue/=mpyue
- (B) nivyoui   /nəbawi/ meaning the heavens. A common name used even by non-Christians.     
Poubac]   
/boʊba:sta/ name of a town in Northern Egypt.   
'a]   
/bəsada/ a common Christian name.     
Rakrek   
/rakrak/ meaning to soften.   
Raq - rwqi   
/rakh/ - /rwkhi/ meaning to wash or cleanse. Commonly used of the rain to pour down and wash people clean.     
Caie - cai`y   
/sa:ye'(3) - sa:y'(3)a/ meaning beautiful (m and f respectively). Note how non-Christians changed the connotation of this in colloquial lingo into meaning naughty.     
=cbelte
(S)   /zəfalta/ meaning to slip.   
C;oi
/əstawə/ meaning to smell. Usually said of food when it has cooked and given off such a smell.     
Cir   
/zi:r/ meaning a large water container.     
Pisyri   
/bəʃa:ra/ meaning the son. This is used as a common name especially between Christian men.     
Tamia]   
/dəmia:tə/ meaning Damietta, a town in the Egyptian Delta.     
Tumiany   
/demiana/ a name of a lady saint. Commonly used by Christians. It is worth noting that in some of the newer versions of psalmodies it is quite clear that the letter t has been replaced with d, unfortunately due to lack of knowledge of correct Coptic pronunciation rules.     
Vaiat   
/ba:ia:d/ a name of a town in the west of Egypt where Mar Mina belongs to.     
Vetvwt   
/fatfəʊt - fatfət/ meaning cut into pieces.   
Vorsi   
/borʃa/ meaning table, and used to refer to the solid bed found in prison cells.     
Mavrys   
/mafraʃ/ meaning table cloth.     
Twbi   
/to:ba/ meaning brick.   
Seuni   
/shona/ meaning barn.   
Etsyl   
/ətʃæl/ meaning paralysed, but used in colloquial as to mean to get paralysed (i.e. as a verb rather than an adjective).   
Soue   
/showa/ meaning little. May have later evolved into /showaya/ or probably pronounced as a compound phrase.     
Fwci   
/fəʊsa - fəsa/ meaning to pass wind.     
Qa`y - qaiy   
/khaya/ meaning the end. As in the phrase "وقع في الخية" that is to say has been finished.     
H=llo
(S)   /7allo/ meaning old person.     
H=mme
(S)   /7amma/ meaning to heat up. As in the phrase "حمى النار"
Hash=s
(S)   /haʃhaʃ/ meaning break up into pieces or to soften something away.     
Jenjen   
/ʤanʤan/ later evolving into /dandan/ meaning to hum music.   
Pijwri   
/bəhgora/ meaning the power. A name for a city in Northern Egypt.     
Kemen   
/kama:n/ meaning also. A Greek compound of two articles.     
Kede   
/kəda/ meaning like so. A Greek compound of two articles.   
Deke   
/dəkha/ meaning that other. A Greek compound of two articles.

Oujai qen `P[C
« Last Edit: 29 August , 2014, 02:54:57 am by ophadece »
ari`hmot `slyl e;byten anon pi`cnau

04 September , 2014, 04:09:46 pm
Reply #2

Offline DarkSideMymind

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Re: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo
« Reply #2 on: 04 September , 2014, 04:09:46 pm »
I Have read the above, and i am sorry for the authors pain. However, I would like to think that it is not only the single person involved who has freedom of choice

04 September , 2014, 06:27:52 pm
Reply #3

Offline ophadece

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Re: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo
« Reply #3 on: 04 September , 2014, 06:27:52 pm »
Dear darksidemymind,
I'm sorry I don't get your point. This is something I have done over about a week or so going through Muawad Dawood's dictionary and eliciting those words. I had no one else to help me unfortunately..
Oujai
ari`hmot `slyl e;byten anon pi`cnau

31 January , 2015, 02:20:53 am
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Offline Anaksunamun

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Re: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo
« Reply #4 on: 31 January , 2015, 02:20:53 am »
For anyone interested, here is a copy of the book 'From The Pharaoh's Lips' Egyptian words in Arabic. It's extremely interesting and has many words used in Egyptian Arabic that originated in Coptic.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/nvvprhm4p5ik1b6/17%20From%20Pharaoh%27s%20Lips%20Ancient%20Egyptian%20Language%20in%20the%20Arabic%20of%20Today.pdf?dl=0

Enjoy (:
« Last Edit: 31 January , 2015, 02:25:18 am by Anaksunamun »

31 January , 2015, 02:24:11 pm
Reply #5

Offline ophadece

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Re: Coptic words that found their way into the Egyptian colloquial lingo
« Reply #5 on: 31 January , 2015, 02:24:11 pm »
Oops, a very dodgy book.. just a compilation of different internet articles put together with a deceptive foreword, and some stark contradictions few pages apart.. not worth reading..
oujai khan ebshois
ari`hmot `slyl e;byten anon pi`cnau