خلّني أفكّر

Anatoli

Senior Member
Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
Hi all,

I've got a few questions regarding this expression.

خلّني أفكّر khalli-nī ufakkir? Let me think?


1) Is this correct in MSA or is some dialect (please correct the vowels, if not)? The "Teach Yourself Arabic" text seems to mix فصحى and colloquial dialects
2) Which verb is
"khalli"? I couldn't find anything that could be close to "let", allow. Can I use in expression "let me come in"?
3) "ufakkir" has the initial (perfect) tense "fakkar". Which form is "ufakkir" and why is it used after
khalli-nī?

Romanised pronunciation or vowels to Arabic words would be appreciated.
شكراً جزيﻻً


 
  • Josh_

    Senior Member
    U.S., English
    Hi all,

    I've got a few questions regarding this expression.

    خلّني أفكّر khalli-nī ufakkir? Let me think?

    It should be spelled خليني

    1) Is this correct in MSA or is some dialect (please correct the vowels, if not)? The "Teach Yourself Arabic" text seems to mix فصحى and colloquial dialects
    2) Which verb is
    "khalli"? I couldn't find anything that could be close to "let", allow. Can I use in expression "let me come in"?
    3) "ufakkir" has the initial (perfect) tense "fakkar". Which form is "ufakkir" and why is it used after
    khalli-nī?



    1)It is correct MSA, but it is more common in the dialects. إسمع لي is the more common way to say "let me" or permit me" in MSA.
    2) By "which verb" I assume you mean what form is it? It is a form II verb. Look under the root خ-ل-و and you should find it.
    3)ufakkir is the present 1st person singular, the pronunciation is in MSA. Colloquial pronunciation (at least in Egyptian) is afakkar.
     

    Abu Bishr

    Senior Member
    Afrikaans, South Africa
    Hi Anatoli

    The MSA forms would دَعْنِيْ أُفَكِّر (Da'nii Ufakkir) & to a lesser extent لِأُفَكِّرْ (Li-Ufakkir) using the Lam of Imperative which also causes the verb to be in the jussive. The verb خَلَّى is quite classical and is often used with السبيل for example خَلِّ سَبَيْلَهُ which can roughly translated as (Clear the way for him, Let him go, Let him be, Leave him, etc.). Since خَلَّى comes from the root خُلُوّ or (خ ل و) which means "to be free from" or "to be empty" the verb "خلَّى" means "to free" or "to empty or clear out", "خَلِّنِيْ" could be used and has been used in the sense of "free me, give me time to ..., leave me to ..." or in short "let me". It, therefore, appears to me that دَعْنِيْ and خَلِّنِيْ seem to converge on the meaning of "Let me" even though they are etymologically distinct from each other, but the end result here seems to be the same. Thereafter, it s left up to the native Arabic speakers as regards which form they prefer to use in which context (colloquial or MSA) and it appears that they have decided for دعني in MSA and خَلِّنِيْ in colloquial.
     

    elroy

    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Josh gave you an excellent and comprehensive reply. I just have one clarification to make:
    It should be spelled خليني
    Not in MSA it shouldn't. The correct MSA spelling is indeed خلني (khallini). The spelling you suggest parallels the colloquial pronunciation of the word, at least in Palestinian Arabic (and I'm assuming in Egyptian Arabic as well).

    Also, there was a typo.
    اسمع لي should be اسمح لي (notice that there is no hamza).

    Final comments:

    In Palestinian Arabic the pronunciation of the second word would be "afakker."

    "Khaliini" is by far the most common word used to mean "let." We never say "da3ni" and only rarely do we use "isma7li," which sounds more formal than "khaliini." It's sort of like the difference between "let me" and "allow me to" or "permit me to" in English. For example, I would say "isma7li ha2ullak inno haada 'l-usluub mish mazbuuT" (Allow me to tell you that that attitude is not right). "Khaliini" would sound strange in that context. It would be less polite and more definitive.

    Anyway, I don't know how detailed an answer you wanted, so I'll stop right there. If you have any further questions, feel free to ask.
     

    Abu Bishr

    Senior Member
    Afrikaans, South Africa
    Yes, Josh is right in colloquial Arabic they add a Yaa at the end of خَلِّ for both male & female & I would assume for all numbers so that it is almost like an اسم فعل of some sort. However, technically speaking, according to MSA خَلِّ should be conjugated according gender and number, but as I've said before it seems to be that دَعْ is the one they tend to use in MSA in this particular context and they do conjugate it according to gender and number: دَعْنِيْ، دَعِيْنِيْ، دَعَانِيْ، دَعُوْنِيْ، دَعْنَنِيْ . However, I've only ever heard دَعْنِيْ , دَعِيْنِيْ and دَعُوْنِيْ in MSA.

    Remark: دَعْ is the imperative of وَدَعَ - يَدَعُ but the perfect form وَدَعَ is never used, instead, they use تَرَكَ which means the same "to leave".
     

    Josh_

    Senior Member
    U.S., English
    Josh gave you an excellent and comprehensive reply. I just have one clarification to make:
    Not in MSA it shouldn't. The correct MSA spelling is indeed خلني (khallini). The spelling you suggest parallels the colloquial pronunciation of the word, at least in Palestinian Arabic (and I'm assuming in Egyptian Arabic as well). [/font][/size]
    Yes, I realized that after I posted. I was mixing up MSA and colloquial pronunciation -- spelling it out how it would be pronounced in the dialects.

    Also, there was a typo.
    اسمع لي should be اسمح لي (notice that there is no hamza).
    Those crazy typos get me again.
     

    Anatoli

    Senior Member
    Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
    Thanks, guys.

    It should be spelled خليني
    I double-checked the book, there's no ي at the end. Is it required only to address females? E.g. undhur - undhuri (look!)? I found an example in in Hans Wehr without final "ii" - Desist from such desires! - khalli `anka hadhihi l-muyūla - !خل عنك هذه الميوا

    Thanks Abu Bishr, I was able to find it in the dictionary with the root letters you suggested.

    خلى is adjective meaning "free" (khaliy?)? (Why no dots but pronounced ii?)


    Are jussive and present the same thing? I looked up again, it only has one "k" in the root (Hans Wehr only gives pronunciation "fakara") but textbooks give 2 k's. Maybe the dictionary entry is incomplete.

    I look up the grammar forms you mentioned guys. It seems still a bit confusing at this stage. Thanks for your patience. :)
     

    Abu Bishr

    Senior Member
    Afrikaans, South Africa
    We never say "da3ni" and only rarely do we use "isma7li,"

    Well, it's also a matter of how it's used in MSA, isn't? At the same time it's clear from the original question that the questioner wishes to know, exactly how خَلِّيْنِيْ can mean "Let me", and also whether it's MSA or not, etc. and that we have attempted to answer.

    So if you never say: "da3ni" then when is "da3ni" used, because the fact of the matter is that it is used. The answer is in MSA and often the Imperative Lam is used e.g. فَلْنُفَكِّرْ فِي الْقَضِيَّةِ .

    I was just thinking that "Yalla" can also be used to mean "let" but in a different context, more like "Hurry up, let us" or "Come on Guys, let us" for example: "Yalla Nath-hab" (Come on Guys, Let's go). Even though, technically speaking, it does not mean "let us" exactly but it's used in context that justfies it's translation as such. It's more when you want to get something started or done quickly.

    As for, اسمح لي I would say it is part of a polite or gentle request aimed at people that you respect since all of the other forms are direct commands or requests which might come across as impolite. So it definitely has a place in this context but more when the situation requires a show of respect, etc.
     

    Anatoli

    Senior Member
    Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
    While I was typing I got more answers, thanks. Elroy, thanks for confirming the spelling. I think I am only confused about the ufakkir. Which is the exact root to look up - is it fakara f/k/r? And what is the exact verb form - jussive, imperative (if it's not the same as jussive) or form 2. Sorry for the stupid questions. I am addressing Arabic verbs at the moment, seems like I will stay for some time on them :)
     

    elroy

    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Well, it's also a matter of how it's used in MSA, isn't? At the same time it's clear from the original question that the questioner wishes to know, exactly how خَلِّيْنِيْ can mean "Let me", and also whether it's MSA or not, etc. and that we have attempted to answer.

    So if you never say: "da3ni" then when is "da3ni" used, because the fact of the matter is that it is used. The answer is in MSA and often the Imperative Lam is used e.g. فَلْنُفَكِّرْ فِي الْقَضِيَّةِ .
    I meant that we never say دعني in my dialect. It is used in MSA, and quite frequently at that. خلني is also used in MSA, but less frequently in conjunction with a verb. The translation of the first line of the hymn "Near the Cross" ("Jesus, keep me near the cross") is خلني قرب الصليب.

    I was just thinking that "Yalla" can also be used to mean "let" but in a different context, more like "Hurry up, let us" or "Come on Guys, let us" for example: "Yalla Nath-hab" (Come on Guys, Let's go). Even though, technically speaking, it does not mean "let us" exactly but it's used in context that justfies it's translation as such. It's more when you want to get something started or done quickly.
    Yes, colloquially "yalla" is used very frequently to mean "let's." But we wouldn't say "yalla nath-hab," which is a combination of colloquial and standard. ;) In Palestinian Arabic we would say "Yalla nruu7." The MSA equivalent would be هيا نذهب.
    As for, اسمح لي I would say it is part of a polite or gentle request aimed at people that you respect since all of the other forms are direct commands or requests which might come across as impolite. So it definitely has a place in this context but more when the situation requires a show of respect, etc.
    Right. That's what I tried to communicate in my earlier post.
     

    Anatoli

    Senior Member
    Native: русский (Russian), home country: English
    I apreciate alternative forms you provided, guys.

    Yes, Abu Bishr, for the time being I am more interested in MSA to avoid confusion before I can address a dialect or two but it seems to be a very fine line between dialects and fus-Ha. Also, I think Elroy was referring to MSA, not dialects.



    Please translate into MSA - "let me come in".
     

    elroy

    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    While I was typing I got more answers, thanks. Elroy, thanks for confirming the spelling. I think I am only confused about the ufakkir. Which is the exact root to look up - is it fakara f/k/r? And what is the exact verb form - jussive, imperative (if it's not the same as jussive) or form 2. Sorry for the stupid questions. I am addressing Arabic verbs at the moment, seems like I will stay for some time on them :)
    Yes, the root is ف-ك-ر.

    "Ufakkir" (أفكرْ) is jussive.
    The (masculine singular) imperative would be "Fakkir" (فكرْ).

    What Abu Bishr was saying was that the particle لـ gives the verb an imperative meaning, but the form is still jussive, not imperative.
    Also, I think Elroy was referring to MSA, not dialects.
    Just to clarify:

    Under "final comments" in my first post I was referring only to Palestinian Arabic.
    Please translate into MSA - "let me come in".
    I would use دعني أدخل (if addressing one male).
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Abu Bishr

    Senior Member
    Afrikaans, South Africa
    Hi Anatoli

    I've just checked the Hans Wehr to see exactly what's your query. I think you seem to have a point for Hans Wehr does give the verb "fakara" to mean "to think, ponder, etc." but this is not that common to the best of my knowledge. You will observe, however, that he does indicate that form I is like form II when he writes: II=I. So it would appear that form I is used in the same sense acc. to Hans Wehr but that it is more common to us to use form II.

    As for 'jussive' & 'imperative' , "jussive" is used as an equivalent for "jazm" in Arabic which is to case-mark a word with a Sukun (rather than one of the three vowels). Imperative is the equivalent of Amr in Arabic which means "command, order, request, etc." and often it has a Sukun at the end.

    Amr occurs in two ways:

    (1) by virtue of the verb's form or pattern (which is you normal imperative) like: اُكْتُبْ (Write!)
    (2) by virtue of the Lam meaning (Let's) e.g. لِنَذْهَبْ (Let's go).

    Technically speaking only the first verb is imperative as for the second it conveys the meaning of an imperative because of the Lam, but it is still in the imperfect form-wise i.e. المضارع . The Lam, furthermore, effects Jazm at the end of the imperfect as seen in لِيَذْهَبْ .

    As for Ufakkir in "Da3ni Ufakkir" it is also case-marked with a Sukun because it forms the complement to a request, and the complement to a request is always in a state of jazm (or jussive). As for when it is used in colloquial Arabic then native speakers don't bother with case-markings.

    I hope this clarifies your question.
     
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