Tag Archives: Arabic folk speech


“Your mother-in-law loves you” – Arabic Saying

Context: He “heard it from almost everyone [he] knew when [he] was a kid” in Jordan. You would say this “to someone who is lucky enough to show up just in time to share the food of the people he’s visiting.” Text: Original Script: حماتك بتحبّك Transliteration: Hamatak but-hibbak Translation: Your mother-in-law loves you Thoughts:… Continue Reading »

“The monkey in his mom’s eye is a gazelle” – Arabic Proverb

Context: She learned it from her mom and grandma in Jordan. She said that the proverb means that a mom never finds a fault in her child. Text: Original Script: القرد بعين امه غزال Transliteration: El ‘ird bi aine immo ghazal Literal Translation: The monkey in his mom’s eye is gazelle Smooth Translation: The monkey… Continue Reading »

“Do not put me in front of the cannon” – Arabic Saying

Context: He heard this in Jordan when he was a teenager. He said that “this comes [up] when there is a crucial discussion, and someone wants to know who is responsible for something. The person volunteered by the group would say ‘Ma t-hotni bi bouz el madfah’ because they are going to see the person’s… Continue Reading »

“The hit of the blind is on target” – Arabic Saying

Context: He was in Jordan when he learned it as a kid from his Syrian neighbor, who has a proverb or saying for every single occasion. She would say this when she did not expect someone to do something right, but they do it right. Text: Original Script: ضربة الاعمى صيب Transliteration: Darbet el ama… Continue Reading »

“Your onion is burnt” – Arabic Saying

Context: He heard it at his grandma’s house in Jordan when he was around 6 years old. He says that the saying means “You are impatient.” Text: Original Script: بصلتك محروقة Transliteration: Basiltak mahrou’a Translation: Your onion is burnt Thoughts: This saying made little sense to me until I was told by someone else that… Continue Reading »