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Mirror, mirrored and mirroring in Arabic?
November 18, 2010 1:39 AM   Subscribe

In Arabic, what are the words for mirroring, mirrored, mirror (the verb "to mirror" rather than the noun, if they differ), and if possible mirrorer ("one who mirrors")? I'm most looking for the transliteration but I'd also love to see the Arabic script.
posted by kalapierson to Writing & Language (7 answers total)
 
Google is your friend for at least a couple of those.
posted by bardophile at 1:45 AM on November 18, 2010


No, I'm asking in order to hear from people who know Arabic (because, for example, just translating "mirror" doesn't indicate whether the word is the verb or noun form -- and I assume the default is noun, the one I don't want).
posted by kalapierson at 1:53 AM on November 18, 2010


And because there is already disagreement, possibly just in transliteration, between Google Translate and other googling; mirror is said to be "mraya" by many sources on the web and "mrʼāh" by Google Translate.
posted by kalapierson at 1:55 AM on November 18, 2010


Sorry, I wasn't clearer. I tested the search first. The first definition Google gives is the noun. It gives a second set of definitions for the verb. It indicates that they are noun and verb, respectively.

I don't speak Arabic, but have some familiarity with it in writing. Verb definition 2 appears to include the root 'aks' (which means reflection in Urdu, presumably the same in Arabic?)

The context in which you need to use the words might change which word would work best in translation. This is a general tip, not specific to the choices Google is offering.

On preview: Are we seeing different versions of Google Translate? Mira'h is definitely the noun, and when I look at the link, it shows that. And the difference in pronunciation is because Arabic is actually pronounced in a variety of ways. The 'hamza' (ء) can be pronounced as ya or simply as a stop.
posted by bardophile at 2:01 AM on November 18, 2010


ok, I understand the problem, sorry. The transliteration is just for the first one. stupid of me. Hang on, let me check the pronunciation from my dictionary, and transliterate for you. :)
posted by bardophile at 2:05 AM on November 18, 2010


Wiktionary page for ˤakasa (عكس). The citation forms for Arabic verbs are actually third person masculine singular perfective (that is the "he" form of the verb, referring to something that's already been done), so ˤakasa means "he (or it) reflected," "he mirrored." This form is used because it's shorter in Arabic. ("She reflected" would be ˤakasat, "they are mirroring" yaˤkasūna, etc.) Arabic verbs can also be inflected to indicate objects, "she reflected them," etc.

I only ever studied a little bit of Arabic, and that was a long time ago. I will do something like screw up a simple present tense verb form. I just thought the link and a bit of explanation might be helpful. If you need inflected forms - and from your question it seems like you do - I'll leave that to others. And there might be better translations.

"Mirroring" / "reflection" would be ˤaks (also spelled عكس). "Mirrorer" - if I'm not getting really mixed up - would be ˤākis (عاكس), and ˤākisa (عاكسة) if the mirrorer is a woman. There is also a form ˤakīs which might mean something like "reflective," "inverting," or could mean something more like "oppositional."

Don't trust anything I said. Might point was just to explain something about the variety of forms available. You need to get advice from a native or fairly fluent speaker to get the forms and nuances right.
posted by nangar at 5:11 AM on November 18, 2010


mirror is said to be "mraya" by many sources on the web and "mrʼāh" by Google Translate.

They're both correct, colloquially [and this probably changes with the dialect] "mraya" is fine [depending on pronunciation/region its also common to hear "mreyeh" for example] for singular and "maraya" for plural. "mr'ah"/"mr'at" is perfectly understandable as well, and would be the proper/formal way to write it.

But this refers to mirror as an object, and has absolutely nothing to do with the verbs for mirroring or mirrored.

Verb definition 2 appears to include the root 'aks' (which means reflection in Urdu, presumably the same in Arabic?)

Yup. " 'aks " would be opposite. Or reflection, or mirror, etc. And the verbing happens from this root, so while the noun mirror would be "mr'at", to mirror becomes " 'akkis " [ or even " e'kos "]

Mirroring: ye'kos [masculine: he reflects] or te'kos [feminine: she reflects]

Mirrored: in'akasa [past tense verb female: in'akasat] or ma'kous [adjective female: ma'kousa]

"Mirrorer" - if I'm not getting really mixed up - would be ˤākis (عاكس), and ˤākisa (عاكسة) if the mirrorer is a woman.

Right, although these would be adjectives and not nouns surely? So " zujaja 'akisa " would be "reflective glass".
posted by xqwzts at 7:50 AM on November 18, 2010


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