Dual - والدان / والدَيْن

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by jmt356, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. jmt356 Senior Member

    (Two) parents: والدان or والدَيْن?
    (Two) managers: مديران or مديرَيْن?
  2. AndyRoo Senior Member

    The ان ending is nominative, while the ين ending is genitive or accusative.
  3. jmt356 Senior Member

    Is this correct:
    والداني عربيان.
    (My parents are Arabic).

    العربيان كريمان.
    (The two Arabs are generous).
  4. cherine

    cherine Moderator

    Alexandria, Egypt
    Arabic (Egypt).
    When it's in an iDaafa structure, you drop the nuun: والدايَ عربيان.
    In the case of being مجرور، منصوب it's والِدَيَّ.

    Your second sentence is correct.
  5. jmt356 Senior Member

    What is an iDaafa structure? It seems to me that it is the same as genitive, no? I have heard والديني frequently. Is this incorrect in MSA? Is it correct in the Syrian dialect?

    As I understand, there are three cases for Arabic nouns:

    • Nominative (مرفوع): subject form with dam‘a;
    • Genitive (iDaafa) (مجرور): direct object form with fatha;
    • Accusative (منصوب): indirect object form with kasra.

    For the dual form and sound plurals, the nominative, genitive and accusative forms are not expressed with the dam‘a, fatha and kasra, but rather through endings of ون, ان or ين. Is this correct for the dual:

    • Nominative (مرفوع): رجلان
    • Genitive (iDaafa) (مجرور): رجلين
    • Accusative (منصوب): رجلين

    Is this correct for the plural:

    • Nominative (مرفوع): رجلون
    • Genitive (iDaafa) (مجرور): رجلين
    • Accusative (منصوب): رجلين
  6. clevermizo Senior Member

    St. Louis, MO
    English (USA), Spanish
    والديني could be colloquial Arabic. In colloquial dialects that use the dual, the form is usually ـــَيـْن in a frozen form (it doesn't drop the nūn) and there is no distinction between grammatical cases. However, in standard Arabic the form is والديّ as Cherine mentioned. Normally in Syrian Arabic I might just expect أمي وأبوي but والديني could be slightly higher register.

    You've switched Genitive - uses kasra, and Accusative - uses fatħa in the singular cases.

    Other than that you seem to have it correctly.
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
  7. jmt356 Senior Member

    I am quite certain Genitive takes fatha and Accusative takes kasra. Clevermizo can you confirm?

    How do we get والديّ from والدان? The grammatical rules states that you put ان after the noun in the dual Nominative form and ين after the noun in the dual (and plural) Genitive and Accusative forms. So how do we get والديّ? Is it an irregular noun?
  8. clevermizo Senior Member

    St. Louis, MO
    English (USA), Spanish
    Of course I can confirm. The مجرور takes kasra, and the منصوب takes fatħa. But I suppose we'll have to wait till a native speaker can corroborate that. There are cases when the مجرور also takes fatħa, but these are diptotes where مجرور and منصوب are the same form. I guess I haven't listed a source but any grammar of the Arabic language will do.

    The initial confusion comes from your incorrect definitions of the English terms, which I've only noticed now. "Genitive" is used in iDaafa, but it is not a direct object. It is for possession and objects of prepositions. "Accusative" is used for direct object. It's better to use Arabic terms, in which case منصوب is used for a direct object, with fatħa, and مجرور is used for objects of prepositions and iDaafa, and uses kasra.
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2012
  9. AndyRoo Senior Member

    Genitive is not the same as iDaafa. This page explains iDaafa.

    As said above, in an iDaafa the first noun loses the ن . This also applies when adding pronouns, so والدين + ي becomes والديّ my parents. It is regular.

    A genitive noun takes kasra (ِ) (for a definite noun) or two kasras (ٍ) (for an indefinite noun) while an accusative noun takes a fatha (َ) (definite) or two fathas(ً) (indefinite).

    There is a difference between ين ending for dual and plural: dual is pronounced "--ayn", while plural is pronounced "--iin".

    I think there are rather too many topics going on in this thread.
  10. jmt356 Senior Member

    I have moved the discussion with respect to the nominative, accusative and genitive forms to: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=2546044&p=12828182#post12828182.

    Regarding the dual and plurals, can anybody confirm that the following translations are accurate for nouns in the nominative case:

    Parent: والد
    Parents (dual): والدان
    Parents (plural): والدِين

    My parents (dual): والديّ
    My parents (plural): والديّ
    The parents (dual) of the boy: والديّ الصبي

    Hand: يد
    Hands (dual): يدان
    Hands (plural): يديّ

    My hands (dual): يديّ
    My hands (plural): يديّ
    The hands (dual) of the boy: يديّ الصبي
  11. Grim-fandango Member

    jmt356, I don't know man where you are learning Arabic from but at least they should have told you that plural forming in Arabic is not straight forward like in English.

    Even in English there are nouns that have their own plural form but in Arabic it's more like German than English. To get some idea visit
  12. jmt356 Senior Member

    I believe there is a plural for parents: والدون for the nominative and والدين for the accusative and genitive.

    As for my parents (plural), I am not so much concerned whether it is possible for someone to have more than two parents as with the grammatical construction of the phrase (and it is possible for someone to have two biological parents and one or more step-parents). To make it more plausible, we can say “their parents” (plural) rather than “my parents” (plural). I believe it would be والدون + هم, with the ن dropped, for والدوهم. If anyone wants to entertain “may parents” (plural), I believe it would be والدوي.

    As for my parents, dual, والديّ is not incorrect, but it is for the accusative and genitive forms. The nominative form is والدَاي.

    For the parents (dual) of the boy in the nominative, is it:
    والدان الصبي
    والدا السبي (dropping the ن)?

    For “his parents” (dual), is it:
    والداه in the nominative; and
    والديه in the accusative and genitive?
  13. barkoosh Senior Member

    It’s very simple with first person singular possessive ي, if you remember the following: this ي can stand ا, can’t stand و so it makes it another ي, and merges with any existing ي.

    Since this use of ي is an iDaafa in Arabic (which roughly corresponds to --- of--- in English, as if you’re saying “father of me” in “my father”), the ن is removed in case of the dual and sound plural. So,

    والدانِ loses the ن in iDaafa. The ي can stand the ا, then it’s والدَايَ

    والدَيْنِ loses the ن in iDaafa. The ي merges with the existing ي, then you have والدَيَّ (note that د keeps its fatHa).

    والدُونَ loses the ن in iDaafa. The ي can’t stand the و so it makes it another ي, then merges with it since you have now two ي. Also, it can’t stand the dammah on د before it, so it makes it a kasrah. The result is والدِيَّ.

    والدِينَ loses the ن in iDaafa. The ي merges with the existing ي, then you have والدِيَّ.

    Nouns with dual انِ/يْنِ plural ونَ/ينَ mas. and ات fem. Nominative Accusative Genitive
    Non-iDaafa Singular وَالِدٌ/الوَالِدُ – وَالِدَةٌ/الوَالِدَةُ وَالِدًا/الوَالِدَ – وَالِدَةً/الوَالِدَةَ وَالِدٍ/الوَالِدِ – وَالِدَةٍ/الوَالِدَةِ
    Dual وَالِدَانِ/الوَالِدَانِ – وَالِدَتَانِ/الوَالِدَتَانِ وَالِدَيْنِ/الوَالِدَيْنِ – وَالِدَتَيْنِ/الوَالِدَتَيْنِ وَالِدَيْنِ/الوَالِدَيْنِ – وَالِدَتَيْنِ/الوَالِدَتَيْنِ
    Plural (3+) وَالِدُونَ/الوَالِدُونَ – وَالِدَاتٌ/الوَالِدَاتُ وَالِدِينَ/الوَالِدِينَ – وَالِدَاتٍ/الوَالِدَاتِ وَالِدِينَ/الوَالِدِينَ – وَالِدَاتٍ/الوَالِدَاتِ
    iDaafa with pronoun “my” Singular وَالِدِي - وَالِدَتِي وَالِدِي - وَالِدَتِي وَالِدِي – وَالِدَتِي
    Dual وَالِدَايَ - وَالِدَتَايَ وَالِدَيَّ - وَالِدَتَيَّ وَالِدَيَّ – وَالِدَتَيَّ
    Plural (3+) وَالِدِيَّ - وَالِدَاتِي وَالِدِيَّ - وَالِدَاتِي وَالِدِيَّ – وَالِدَاتِي
    iDaafa with pronouns other than "my" and with other words Singular وَالِدُ[هم]/‏ وَالِدُ [...]‏‏ - وَالِدَتُـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَةُ [...]‏ وَالِدَ[هم]/‏‏ وَالِدَ [...]‏‏ - وَالِدَتَـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَةَ [...]‏ /وَالِدِ[هم]‏ وَالِدِ [...]‏ ‏ - وَالِدَتِـ[ـهم]/وَالِدَةِ [...]‏
    Dual وَالِدَا[هم]/‏ وَالِدَا [...]‏ – وَالِدَتَا[هم]/‏ وَالِدَتَا [...]‏ وَالِدَيْـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَيْ [...]‏ – وَالِدَتَيْـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَتَيْ [...]‏ وَالِدَيْـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَيْ [...]‏ – وَالِدَتَيْـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدَتَيْ [...]‏
    Plural (3+) وَالِدُو[هم]/‏ وَالِدُو [...]‏ – ‏وَالِدَاتُـ[ـهم]/وَالِدَاتُ [...]‏ وَالِدِيـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدِي [...]‏ – ‏وَالِدَاتِـ[ـهم]/وَالِدَاتِ [...]‏ وَالِدِيـ[ـهم]/‏ وَالِدِي [...]‏ – ‏وَالِدَاتِـ[ـهم]/وَالِدَاتِ [...]‏
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
  14. jmt356 Senior Member

    If you drop the ن in the iDaafa, would "the parents (dual) of the boy" in the nominative be:
    والدا السبي (dropping the ن)?

    For “his parents” (dual), is it:
    والداه in the nominative; and
    والديه in the accusative and genitive?
  15. barkoosh Senior Member

    Based on the chart, the answer is yes.
  16. jmt356 Senior Member

    Thank you, but I don’t see the third person singular masculine nominative dual in the chart. For the nominative dual of pronouns other than “my,” only والداهم and والدتاهم are given.

    Also, the plural accusative of والدة should be وَالِدَاتً/الوَالِدَاتَ, not وَالِدَاتٍ/الوَالِدَاتِ, shouldn’t it?
    Last edited: Jan 5, 2013
  17. barkoosh Senior Member

    [هم] was only given as an example. The left column says: iDaafa with pronouns other than "my". My bad :)
    This is sound feminine plural جمع مؤنث سالم. It takes kasra/kasratein instead of fatHa/fatHatein in the accusative.
  18. jmt356 Senior Member

    It seems that the rules for the حركات of almost all of the nouns vary when in the dual or plural.

    For example:
    - The accusative والدًا in the plural becomes والدينَ rather than والدينًا.
    - The accusative والدًا in the dual becomes والدينِ rather than والدانًا.

    Some of them, thankfully, retain the same form as in the singular.

    For example:
    - The nominative وَالِدَةٌ becomes والداتٌ in the plural.
    - The genitive وَالِدَةٍ becomes والداتٍ in the plural.

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