Common Arabic Words and Phrases

Arabic is a very exciting and eloquent language to learn. It is spoken in 28 countries and by more than 350 million native speakers around the world.  Arabic shares one common “written” language and more than 30 “spoken” dialects.

Modern Standard Arabic (MSA) is the universal form of the language that all Arabic speakers understand. It is the modernized form of Classical Arabic, and it is the language used in books, newspapers, literature, official documents and formal situations, such as a news broadcast and parliamentary speech.

Colloquial Arabic, on the other hand, refers to the many regional varieties, which constitute the everyday spoken language. Colloquial Arabic is used in informal (usually unwritten) contexts, such as talking to one’s family and friends.

Colloquial Arabic shares some features with MSA, while each form has its own grammatical and linguistic features. The differences between the colloquial varieties are sometimes so pronounced that one can often tell where a speaker is from just by listening to them speak.

The most effective way to master an Arabic dialect is to spend a few years in the place where it is spoken.

Speakers of colloquial Arabic from different parts of the world usually use Modern Standard Arabic to communicate with each other.

If you speak a European language, the rules and concepts of the Arabic language may be unfamiliar to you at first, but learning Arabic becomes easier and more interesting once you become familiar with a few basic rules.

Below is a list of some common words and phrases in Modern Standard Arabic that you can use right away in everyday conversations with native Arabic speakers.

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

أنا

I ʾAna

أنتَ

You (male) ʾAnta

أنتِ

You (female) ʾAnti

أنتُم

You (plural) ʾAntum

نَحْنُ

We Naḥnu

هُم

They Hom

هُوَ

He Huwa

هِيَ

She Hiya

ذا

This (masculine) Hadha

هذه

This (feminine) Hadhahi

السَّلامُ عَلَيْكُمْ – مَرْحَبًا

Hello – Peace ʾAssalāmu ʿalaykum – marḥaban

وعَلَيْكُمُ السَّلام – مَرْحَبًا

(To which the reply is): Hello – Peace Wā ʿalaykumu s-salām – marḥaban

أَهْلاً

Welcome ʾAhlan

مَعَ السّلامَة

Goodbye Maʿa s-salāma

!صَبَاحُ الخَيْر

Good morning! Sabaḥu l-ḫair

!مَساءُ الخَيْر

Good evening! Masāʾu l-ḫair

!تُصبِح على خَيْر

Good night! (to a male) Tusbiḥ ʿala ḫair

!تُصبِحينَ على خَيْر

Good night! (to a female) Tusbiḥi ʿala ḫair

کَيْفَ ٱلْحَال؟

How are you? Kayfa l-ḥāl

;كيف حالُكَ؟

How are you? (to a male) Kayfa hāluka

كيف حالـُكِ؟

How are you? (to a female) Kayfa hāluki

وَأنـْتَ؟

And you? (to a male) Wa ʾanta

وَأنـْتِ؟

And you? (to a female) Wa ʾanti

!أراكَ في مَا بَعد

See you later! (to a male) ʾArāka fima baʿd

!أراكِ فِيمَا بَعد

See you later! (to a female) ʾArāki fima baʿd

مَا ٱسْمُك؟

What’s your name? Mā smuk

…اسْمِي

My name is … Ismi

.لا أتَحَدَّثُ الْعَرَبيّة

I don’t speak Arabic. Lā ʾataḥaddaṯu l-ʿarabiyyah

.أتحدث الإنجليزية

I speak English. Ataḥaddaṯu al-ingilīziyyah

.أتَحَدَّثُ قليلاً من الْعَرَبيّة

I speak a little Arabic. Ataḥaddaṯu qalilan min l-ʿarabiyyah

.لا أعْرِف

I don’t know. Lā ʾaʿrif

.لا أفْهَم

I don’t understand. Lā ʾafham

نَعَمْ

Yes Naʿam

لا

No

مِنْ فَضْلِك

Please Min faḍlik

شُكْرًا

Thanks Šukran

!شـُكـْراً جَزيلاً

Thank you very much! Šukran jazīlan

!عفواً

You’re welcome! ʿAfwan

.عَفْوًا – عُذْراً

Excuse me. ʿAfwan – ʿuḏran

.آسِف

I’m sorry. ʾĀsif

مبروك

Congratulations Mabruk

كَمْ؟

How much? Kam

.أنا جائِع

I’m hungry. ʾAna jāʾiʿ

أُمِّي

My mother ʾUmi

أَخِي

My brother ʾAḫi

أُختِي

My sister ʾUḫti

عَمِّي

My uncle (paternal) ʿAmi

خَالِي

My uncle (maternal) Khali

عَمَّتي

My aunt (paternal) ʿAmati

خَالَتِي

My aunt (maternal) Ḫalati

زَوجِي

My husband Aawji

زَوجَتي

My wife Zawjati

جَدِّي

My grandfather Jaddi

جَدَّتي

My grandmother Jaddati

Colors

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

أَبْيَض

White Abyaḍ

أَحْمَر

Red Aḥmar

أسْوَد

Black ʾAswad

أَزْرَق

Blue Azraq

أَصْفَر

Yellow Asfar

أَخْضَر

Green Aḫḍar

رَمَادِي

Gray Ramādi

بُرْتُقَالِي

Orange Burtuqālī

Numbers

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

صِفْرٌ

Zero Ṣīfr

واحِد

One Wāḥid

اِثْنَان

Two Iṯnān

ثَلاثَة

Three Ṯalāṯah

أرْبَعَة

Four ʽArbaʿah

خَمْسَة

Five Ḫamsah

سِتّة

Six Sittah

سَبْعَة

Seven Sabʿah

ثَمَانِيَة

Eight Ṯamāniyah

تِسْعَة

Nine Tisʿah

عَشَرَة

Ten ʿAšarah

أَحَدَ عَشَر

Eleven ʾAḥada ʿašar

اثنَي عَشَر

Twelve Iṯnay ʿašar

عِشْرُوْن

Twenty ʿIšrun

ثَلاثون

Thirty Ṯalāṯun

أَرْبَعون

Forty ʾArbaʿun

خَمْسون

Fifty Ḫamsun

سِتون

Sixty Sittun

سَبْعون

Seventy Sabʿun

ثَمَانون

Eighty Ṯamānun

تِسْعون

Ninety Tisʿun

مِئَة

One hundred Miʾah

مِئَتَاْن

Two hundred Miʾatān

ثَلاثُمِئَةٍ

Three hundred Ṯalāṯumiʾah

أَرْبَعُمِئَةٍ

Four hundred ʾArbaʿumiʾah

خَمْسُمِئَةٍ

Five hundred Ḫamsumiʾah

سِتُّمِئَةٍ

Six hundred Sittumiʾah

سَبْعُمِئَةٍ

Seven hundred Sabʿumiʾah

ثَمَاْنُمِئَةٍ

Eight hundred Ṯamānumiʾah

تِسْعُمِئَةٍ

Nine hundred Tisʿumiʾah

مِئَةٌ وَوَاْحِدٌ

One hundred and one Miʾah wa wāḥid

مِلْيونُ

One million Milyun

بِلْيونُ

One billion Bilyun

مِلْيَاْرُ

One milliard (billion) Milyār

تْرِلْيونُ

One trillion Trilyun

Days of the Week and Months

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

يَوْم

Day Yawm

أَيَّام

Days ʾAyyām

أُسْبُوع

A week ʾUsbuʿ

أَسَابِيْع

Weeks ʾAsābīʿ

شَهْر

A month Šahr

أَشْهُر

Months ʾAšhur

سَنَة

A year Sanah

سَنَوات

Years Sanawāt

السَّبْت

Saturday ʾAs-sabt

الأَحَد

Sunday ʾAl-ʾaḥad

الاِثْنَيْنِ

Monday ʾAl-ʾiṯnayn

الثُّلاثَاء

Tuesday ʾAl-ṯulāṯāʾ

الأَرْبِعاء

Wednesday ʾAl-ʾarbiʿāʾ

الخَمِيس

Thursday ʾAl-ḫamīs

الجُمُعَة

Friday ʾAl-jumuʿah

Gregorian Calendar

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

يَنايِـِر

January Yanāyir

فِبْرايِر

February Fibrāyir

مَارِس

March Māris

أَبْريل

April ʾAbrīl

مَايو

May Māyu

يُونـْيو

June Yunyu

يُولِـْيو

July Yulyu

أُغُسْطُس

August ʾUġustus

سِبْتَمْبَر

September Sibtamber

أُكْتوبَر

October ʾUktubar

نُوفَمْبَر

November Nuvamber

دِيسَمْبَر

December Disamber

Hijri Calendar

Phrase in Arabic Phrase in English Pronunciation

الْمُحَرَّم

Muharram ʾAl-muḥarram

صَفَر

Safar Safar

رَبِيْعُ الأَوَّل

Rabi I Rabīʿu l-ʾawwal

رَبِيْعُ الآخِر

Rabi II Rabīʿu l-ʾāḫir

جُمَاْدَىْ الأُوْلَىْ

Jumada I Jumāda l-ʾulā

جُمَاْدَىْ الآخِرَة

Jumada II Jumāda l-ʾāḫirah

رَجَب

Rajab Rajab

شَعْبَاْن

Shaban Šaʿbān

رَمَضَاْن

Ramadan Ramadān

شَوَّاْل

Shawwal Šawwāl

ذُوْ القِعْدَة

Dhu al-Qadah Ḏu l-qiʿdah

ذُوْ الحِجَّة

Dhu al-Hijjah Ḏu l-ḥijjah