Arabic Borrowings in Ṣūrayt/Ṭūrōyo within the Framework of Phonological Correspondences  : In Comparison with other Semitic Languages

Abstract: A group of Semitic cognate roots within the framework of phonological correspondences contain one (or more) of the following Proto-Semitic consonants 'g, 'ṯ, 'ḏ, 'ṯ̣, 'ḏ̣/ṣ́, 'ḫ, 'ġ, 'ś, 'š, which differ significantly in the various principal Semitic languages. Their Arabic reflexes are ǧ, ṯ, ḏ, ẓ, ḍ, ḫ, ġ, š, s. In Syriac and Ṭūrōyo they are reduced to g, t, d, ṭ, ʿ, ḥ, s, š. In almost every Semitic language one can encounter doublets of these roots, of which one is native, the other borrowed. The present study mainly deals with such roots and their derivatives, with Arabic borrowings of this category in Ṭūrōyo as the chief topic. The principal aim is to methodically and consistently identify and distinguish between native Ṭūrōyo roots and Arabic roots of this category, borrowed into Ṭūrōyo. For the first time the bulk of the Arabic borrowings of this category in Ṭūrōyo and other words of immediate interest to the topic have been investigated as a connected subject, and a large part of the Arabic lexical influence on Ṭūrōyo has been demonstrated. The semantic connections between the examined roots is highlighted. Great importance is attached to roots indicated only for Aramaic/Syriac and Arabic. Different meanings with certain native Ṭūrōyo roots, as compared to the meanings of their Aramaic/Syriac correspondences, are noted. Neologisms, new words, forms, and meanings are documented. Regularities and irregularities regarding bəġaḏkəfaṯ are discussed and explanations provided. Divergences from the pattern of phonological correspondences and different interpretations of the Semitic comparative elements in the comparative dictionaries are observed. The study shows that the Ṭūrōyo consonants g, t, d, ṭ, ʿ, ḥ, s, š have remained intact in relation to the above-mentioned Syriac consonants, and that Arabic root consonants in Arabic borrowings in Ṭūrōyo are not changed to conform to the native consonants. On the other hand, the majority of the above-mentioned Arabic sounds phonetically coincide with certain etymologically different native Ṭūrōyo consonants. Two of them, ḏ and ṯ, etymologically overlap. Even if limited in scope, the investigation shows that Ṭūrōyo has undergone extensive lexical influence from Arabic, to which should probably be attributed the absence of many native Aramaic/Syriac roots in Ṭūrōyo.

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