All dialects: استفاعل - استناول

wriight

Senior Member
English (US) / Arabic (Lebanon)
I'm finishing up writing a document on Lebanese Arabic verbs. Thought I'd gotten just about everything, but then I read a paper that makes mention of this استفاعل verb form which is totally new to me. (The paper is "Grammar of the Beirutian Language" by Alexander Hourani; rather flawed organization-/analysis-wise, but his personally derived examples are of course reliable.)

The author provides examples استناول "to handle, to receive, to seize, to catch" and استمادى "to persist, to go far, to keep on, to cross the limits", and my mom corroborated the former's existence. Now, they're evidently synonyms for the 'usual' forms تناول and تمادى, which -- not to mention that the author provides the verbal nouns مناولة and تمادي -- leads me to the (obvious) conclusion that استفاعل is an alteration of تفاعل and that the initial /s-/ was added by analogy with استفعل. But I'm curious as to its origin and motivation:
  • What dialects does this pseudo-wazn exist in? Is it strictly Lebanese?
  • It seems to be quite rare. In dialects that do exhibit it, is there any consistent pattern to the verbs it appears on?
    That is, in Levantine, fus7a's productive تفاعل has been either preserved/fossilized as is (as in aforementioned تمادى) or turned into the regular passive of فاعل (as in راقب_تراقب "to observe" - "to be observed").
    The few examples I have of استفاعل only replace the fossilized kind of تفاعل verb, but it doesn't even seem to apply across the board there. Is there any variety in which it replaces all such verbs, or alternatively in which it can form a passive like استراقب?
(The word-initial triple-consonant cluster is also pretty awkward, so I'm a bit perplexed that this form has gained traction!)
 
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  • wriight

    Senior Member
    English (US) / Arabic (Lebanon)
    Yeah, I don't think I properly stressed how bizarre I found this (although it got a little bit better when I realized it was just تفاعل -- the author of the paper doesn't mention this, so it seemed at first like a whole new innovated form I'd never heard of). Perhaps "does it even occur anywhere else" would be a better first question to ask, lol.
     

    djara

    Senior Member
    Tunisia Arabic
    In Tunisian, I can only think of يستخايل equivalent of MSA يظن، يُخيّل له
    ُExample: وين تستخايل روحك؟ Where do you think you are?
     

    momai

    Senior Member
    Arabic - Syria
    I only know استناول in Syrian. It mostly comes out as سناول snawal actually when you speak fast.
     

    wriight

    Senior Member
    English (US) / Arabic (Lebanon)
    Reading the "All dialects: wait" thread prompted the facepalm realization on my part that استنّى "to wait" is an example of this phenomenon, albeit applied to تفعّل rather than to تفاعل. As with the other examples, it's likely from applying this pseudo-wazn transformation to تأنى by analogy with استٓفعل rather than being from استَأْنى directly, as that should've instead yielded dialectal *استانى.

    This استفعّل explanation also accounts for the imperative being تأنَّ->تأنّى->استأَنّى->استنّى stanna rather than *استأنِ->استأني->استاني->؟؟؟->استنّي *stanni. (There are still ways to explain this under the assumption that the word originally developed from استَأْنى, such as that it's a simple-yet-anomalous example of leveling or that the modern word arose from the original passive, but those and others don't seem too likely to me for a lot of reasons.)

    For استأَنّى->استنّى, compare the recent Lebanese development of dī2a for "minute": an originally unelided glottal stop can still end up deleted if it's in a particularly awkward position in a particularly frequent word.

    Another تفعّل example I've picked up from my family in the meantime is استلقّى "to receive", from تلقّى.
     
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