said verbatim


Senior Member
In translating a text that says:" the teacher exactly said so and so"
the translator made it as قال المدرس نصًا. the reviewer objects and said the teacher was not reading a script and the Arbaic sentence here does not make any sense.Then he wrote it as قال المدرس حرفيًا.
Could you please justify which sentence is more accurate?
Thanks in advance.
  • elroy

    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    قال المدرس حرفيًا definitely works.
    I don’t know about قال المدرس نصًا.


    Arabic (Egypt).
    I don't know which is more correct but I don't see what's wrong with نصًا , the sentence says قال نصًا not قرأ نصًا. But, Haroon, could you double check if it should be نصيًا?


    Arabic (Egypt).
    I'm worried I may be mixing fuS7a and colloquial here, so I asked you to double-check. This نصيًا came to my mind as an equivalent to "textually", like we say in EA بالنَصّ. I don't know if بالنص can be used in fuS7a, and I don't know if my mind formed نصيًا like we have حَرْفِيًّا. :(


    Senior Member
    Arabic, PA and IA.
    I checked a few dictionaries. النصّ originally does not refer to written text, it seems to refer to speech. Keep in mind though that in Classical dictionaries it didn't really mean what we understand today: it simply meant something that is referenced or cited properly - i.e. X said and y said as opposed to just saying everything without saying where you got all this from. In modern dictionaries you have several meanings, one of which is صيغةُ الكلام الأصلية.

    I think your reviewer was confused because in religious studies نصّ الحديث ونصّ القرآن refers to the exact wording. Today, they are all written words but he forgets that originally they are verbal. I have to say that I personally understand the word to refer to the content regardless of it being written or spoken.

    As for reading from a paper, I believe that it's irrelevant because the person who is speaking is the one that is repeating word for word, not the teacher. I mean, we often heard Islamic scholars saying something like: حديث الرسول كذا وكذا نصّا here the prophet is not reading from a paper or repeating anyone's words, it's the scholar that is repeating what the prophet said word for word - unless of course there is more context and I didn't get what is meant exactly.

    With regards to حرفيا, it definitely works but I just think that it might be confused with 'literal' as opposed to 'figurative'.

    I believe that there is a good argument for both.

    But, Haroon, could you double check if it should be نصيًا?
    I haven't heard نصيًا nor did I find it in dictionaries. It might be the effect of dialect as you said.
    I don't know if بالنص can be used in fuS7a
    This one I have heard.
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