If he didn't study, he would not have passed the exam

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by jmt356, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. jmt356 Senior Member

    [If he didn't study, he would not have passed the exam]
    لو أنه لم يدرس، لما كان نجح في الإمتحان
    لو لم يدرس، فلا كان نجح في الإمتحان

    Also, the somewhat related:
    If he had studied, he would have passed the exam
    لو أنه درس، لكان نجح في الإمتحان
    لو درس، لكان نجح في الإمتحان
  2. ayed

    ayed Senior Member

    لو ذاكر/راجع دروسه لنجح في الامتحان
  3. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    Hi jmt356,

    You don't need to use the pluperfect for 'would have'. I understand the instinct to make the verb 'more' past to match the grammar of the conditional clause, but in Arabic, the simple ماضي covers the bases of all kinds of conditions. The idea of 'had studied' and 'would have passed' are indicated completely by the particles لو...لـَ in contrary-to-fact conditions, so you could just say:

    لو لم يذاكر، لما نجح في الامتحان
  4. Abu Talha Senior Member

    Is لَما valid? I would have thought you just say لو لم يذاكر ما نجح.
  5. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
  6. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I think you meant to write "la" and not "li".

    I hope you do not mind my saying so but your title is a bit confusing. Perhaps it is a case of American English vs British English.

    If he does n't study, he won't pass his exams.

    if he did 't study, he would not pass his exams.

    If he had not studied, he would not have passed his exams.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 15, 2015
  7. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    Qureshpor, you're right in that the title of the thread is a mixed condition, but these are possible in real speech in the sense that one can switch from more vivid to more grammatically rigorous formulations for communication.
  8. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

    أرض الأنجل
    عربي (مصر)ـ | en (gb)
    If he hadn't studied, he wouldn't have passed.
    لو لم يكن قد ذاكر لما نجح
    لو لم يكن قد ذاكر ما نجح
    لو لم يكن قد ذاكر لم يكن قد نجح
    More idiomatically:
    لولا أنه ذاكر لما نجح / ما كان قد نجح
    If it wasn't for his studying he wouldn't have passed.

    Your answer for the related question is correct.
  9. Abu Talha Senior Member

    I was quite surprised to find لَمَا but it seems it does exist. Thanks for this useful information. However, I don't think the apodosis of لو must always begin with لَ. See Wright vol. 2 §190 p.348D.
  10. jmt356 Senior Member

    If I use ذاكر, would I need دروسه, or is دروسه only to be used if I use راجع?

    What does ذاكر mean? Is it Form III of ذكر (to remember)?

    Can you provide the حركات of ذاكر? I assume it is being conjugated in the perfect.

    Can you also provide the حركات for ل in لنجح? Is it لَ? Or لِ?

    Would these also be correct translations:
    If he had studied, he would have passed the exam:
    لو درس، لَنجح في الإمتحان

    If he had not studied, he would not have passed the exam:
    لو لم يدرسْ، لَما َنجح في الإمتحان
  11. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    Since the Arabic درس means study in the sense of 'try to learn', it doesn't always feel right in the sense of 'practice and review learned material' like we use in English. Instead, you can use the verb ذاكَرَ 'to review/go over/try to remember', yes, form III of 'remember'.

    if you can't read them above, it's dhaakara, in the perfect, yes.

    It isn't the preposition 'for' but the 'asseverative' particle, and is voweled with fatHA 'la-najaHa'

    Those look great to me. As I discussed with my friend above, however, it seems the la- in the result clause is not a must.
  12. jmt356 Senior Member

    I read in Teach Yourself Arabic that if you use لو in the conditional clause, you must use لَ in the main clause.
    However, if you use إنْ or إذا in the conditional clause, then لَ should not be used in the main clause.

    لو and لَ should be used when the condition is unlikely or impossible; إنْ or إذا should be used when the condition is likely or possible.
  13. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    As I said above, that is what's taught in textbooks for Modern Standard. In practice, and in Classical, the la is not treated as canonical.
  14. zBuilder New Member

    As far as I know,
    Studied = دَرَسَ (Even in the context above).
    Revised = راجَعَ

    I am not sure if the usage of ذاكَرَ=Studied is a proper MSA!
  15. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    These dictionaries indicate otherwise. I'm curious - do you use درس in Jordanian dialect?

    1. ذاكر - مذاكرة :
      1 - ذاكره في الأمر : دخل معه في حديثه . 2 - ذاكر : درسه : درسه . ج
      المعجم: الرائد -

      مُذَاكرة :
      مصدر ذاكرَ : معاودة فهم الدروس وحفظها " مذاكرة جهريَّة ، - حريص على المذاكرة ".
      المعجم: اللغة العربية المعاصر -
  16. Abu Talha Senior Member

    I think it existed in post-classical Arabic at least. I believe students would meet to memorize texts in an interactive way. If you search for "المذاكرة بين المحدثين" I think you'll find some more information.
  17. zBuilder New Member

    True, in Jordan we use "درس" :).
    True, although the usage is mostly related to religious texts as in "memorize" and not exactly "study" and I don't think it is accurate to be used in this context. Especially that "درس" on the other hand is the one used.

    And as for this:
    It is inaccurate as well, "تعلَّمَ" is the term for "learned".

    It term (ذاكر) is not even defined in Google Translate :p.
  18. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    Ok - so what do you think about this definition from al-Ra'id

    ذاكر درسَه: درسه

    And how would you translate

    مذاكرة: معاودة فهم الدروس وحفظها

    And also, the maSdar in google translate is translated:


    So my question is, 1) do you think that the مصدر may mean 'study' even if the verb isn't used that way in the ماضي/مضارع in your opinion?

    Also, 2) how does it sound to you if you add 'lessons': يذاكر دروسه. Does your ear reject that as well? This is a discussion I've had more than once and I find it very interesting.

    I didn't say درس means 'learn' I said it means "try to learn" - which is how I would define the English word 'study' also. محاولة التعلم
  19. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

    أرض الأنجل
    عربي (مصر)ـ | en (gb)
    What a mess.
    Can I point out that قرأ is a good word to use here? Even in English you can use the verb 'to read' to mean 'he is studying' and 'he studies'.
  20. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    I don't think it has to be as messy as it seems. Either مذاكرة means "study/prepare learned material" in MSA or it doesn't. I always thought it did but a consensus of native speakers would be much better than my opinion.

    Also, in the US, we don't really use "read" in this sense... :)
  21. jmt356 Senior Member

    Notwithstanding the questions as to whether ذاكر is the most appropriate verb (راجع دروسه appears to be the only phrase that has not been criticized), if I were to use ذاكر, would it take دروسه as its object? In other words, is ذاكر a transitive verb that takes a direct object?
    I believe the following would be correct:
    لو ذاكر دروسه، لَنجح في الامتحان
    لو ذاكر، لَنجح في الامتحان

    However, dkarjala’s post #3 gives this text:
    Here, ذاكر is being used as an intransitive verb with no direct object. I am therefore not sure if ذاكر has both a transitive and intransitive use.
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2013
  22. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    I'm wondering if there isn't a dialectal difference lurking behind all this controversy. Having searched the internet, I have found many examples of the maSdar and the conjugated verb being used intransitively to mean "study" for a test. So there are at least some people besides myself using the verb that way. At the end of the day, there just isn't a proper infrastructure in place to answer these questions objectively - but I encourage you to keep looking at dictionaries, searching online and asking native speakers until you find a usage you are comfortable with.
  23. jmt356 Senior Member

    According to the Hans Wehr, Form III of ذَكَرَ, which is ذَاكَرَ, means to memorize or to “learn, study (ه one’s assignment, one’s lessons).” By (ه one’s assignment, one’s lessons), I understand the verb to be transitive.
    Moreover, the Hans Wehr gives ذاكر دروسه as an example meaning “to study one’s lessons, do one’s homework.”
    I see no examples in the Hans Wehr in which ذاكر is being used intransitively.
  24. dkarjala Senior Member

    English - America
    The same verb can have different levels of transitivity, and Hans Wehr is not complete enough to make conclusions based on it. To help you, I added the prepositional phrase "for the test" to "I was studying" in Google to remove examples with direct objects - you can find others if you take some time to search.

    The addition of 'lessons' to the definition reduces ambiguity but using it to describe the process-type verb of going over lessons doesn't preclude its use as a state-type verb any more than the English variety.

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