expressions in Arabic

الأساليب البلاغية في اللغة العربية - موضوع

Descriptive Style

The descriptive style can be defined linguistically from the Arabic word “أنشأ” (to create), which means to bring something into existence. In the terminology of language, Ali Al-Jundi defines it in his book “Al-Balagha Al-Faniyya” (Artistic Eloquence) as speech that does not admit truth or falsehood in itself. In other words, it is the style whose content is not realized unless it is explicitly stated, as mentioned in the book “Al-Asalib Al-Balaghiya” (Rhetorical Styles). Seeking understanding in the style of “Istifham” (interrogation), seeking action in the word “Afa’al” (do), and seeking to refrain from action in the word “La Tafa’al” (don’t do) are an emphasis on the previous idea mentioned in this book.

Sections of the Descriptive Style

Descriptive styles are mainly divided into two sections: non-imperative and imperative. The details of each are as follows:

Non-imperative Construction

The non-imperative construction style is meant to be a construction that represents not calling for something to be requested and achieved, unlike the imperative construction. It is in the form of different styles, including:

  • Formulas of praise and blame: These formulas include ” نعم” (yes) and “بئسَ” (how bad is), such as: ” نعم الصديق المخلص” (Yes, the loyal friend) and “بئس الخُلُق الكذب” (How bad is lying). Also, from these formulas are the verbs that are turned into a verb, such as “كبُر مقتاً أن تقول على الله كذباً” (It is too great a sin to lie about God). Other formulas include “حبذا” (how good is) such as “حبذا القناعةُ مع الرِّضا” (How good is contentment with satisfaction), and “لا حبذا” (how bad is) such as “لا حبذا الكسلُ” (How bad is laziness). [1]

  • Wonder: Wonder occurs in two standard formulas, the first is “ما أفعله” (What I do) such as “ما أصبرهُ على قول النّاس!” (How patient he is with what people say!), and the second is “أفْعِل به” (Do it to him) such as “أجْمِل بتدريس المُعلّمين!” (How beautiful is the teaching of teachers!). There is also a non-standard formula – auditory – such as “لله درّك طالبَ عِلم مُجتهد” (May God bless the diligent student of knowledge).

  • Oath: The oath letters are represented by the “و” (and) used in the sentence “والله لأكوننّ من الصّالحين” (And by God, I will be one of the righteous), and the “ت” (and) such as “تالله لأصبرنّ على نوائب الدّهر” (By God, I will be patient with the vicissitudes of time), and the “ب” (by) such as “بالله سوف ينتصر العرب” (By God, the Arabs will be victorious). Also, “لَعمرُ” (by the life of Omar) is one of the formulas of the oath, and examples of it include: “لَعمرُك إنّ الحقّ مُنتصر” (By the life of Omar, truth is victorious).

  • Hope: Hope is a style based on requesting a beloved and imminent matter using “لعلّ” (perhaps), such as “لعلّ النّتيجة تظهر قريباً” (Perhaps the result will appear soon), and there are verbs used for the same purpose and are called hope verbs, including the verb “عسى” (perhaps) such as “عسى أن يأتي الله بالنّصر” (Perhaps God will bring victory), and the verb “حرى” (it is fitting) such as “حرى خالد أن يدرس” (It is fitting for Khalid to study), and the verb “اخلولق” (it is shameful) such as “اخلولق الكسلانُ أن يجتهدَ” (It is shameful for the lazy person to work hard). [1]

    Contract Formulas

    These formulas are considered types of news, but their lack of conveying the meaning of truth or falsehood has led them to fall outside the realm of news. Among these formulas are “I sold,” “I bought,” “I donated,” “I accepted,” and other contract words.

    Requesting Construction

    The requesting construction involves summoning a request. This request is characterized by being unrealized at the time of its request. It should be noted that rhetoricians pay more attention to the requesting construction than to the non-requesting construction; due to the ability of this style to go beyond real purposes to figurative purposes that are understood through the context of speech. This style falls into five types:

    1. The Command: It is the style in which the action is requested from the other in a way of superiority and compulsion. The command has four formulas:

      • Verb of command, such as (Take what is best from people).
      • The present tense accompanied by the command letter, such as (Let the owner of wealth spend from his wealth).
      • Noun of command, such as (upon you) meaning adhere to, such as: Upon you yourselves, the oppressors do not matter to you. And also like (Shh) meaning be quiet, and (Meh) meaning stop, and (Amen) meaning answer, and (Yes) also meaning leave, and (Slow down) meaning give him time, and (Descend) meaning descend, and (Grasp) meaning understand.
      • The source replacing the verb of command, such as (And to the family, kindness).
    2. Prohibition: It is a requesting style that is intended to stop doing something in a mandatory manner from the other. The prohibition agrees with the command in the superiority of one party over the other, but they differ in the formulas. In the command, the thing is requested, but in the prohibition, it is forbidden, and the prohibition occurs in one formula, which is the present tense accompanied by (No) the definitive ending, such as: Do not lie. [2]

    3. Interrogation: It is a style that is used to know something that is unknown to the questioner. This is what some have said that it is a request for news that the questioner does not know about it. Interrogation has tools that are divided into two sections:

      • Interrogative letters: They are represented by two letters, which are (Is) whose answer is yes or no, such as: Has Ahmed come?, and the second letter is (Hemza) and the question that begins with it is answered yes or no sometimes, as in the question (Did Ahmed stay?), And in another form, it is answered specifically, such as (Did Ahmed stay or sit?). [2]

      • Interrogative names: 

        •  ما  ( What): It is used to request an explanation of something, such as: What is contentment?
        •  (من)Who: It is used to inquire about the gender, such as: Who is this?
        • (أي )Which: It is used to ask about what distinguishes one of the two participants in a matter that is common to them, such as: Which of the books do you have?
        • (كم) How much: It is used to inquire about the number, such as: How many meals did you eat today?
        • (كيف)How: It is used to inquire about the condition, such as: How are you? كيف حالك؟.
        • (أين)Where: It is used to inquire about the place, such as: Where was I supposed to be?
        •  (كيف )How: It is used in the meaning of “How”, such as: How does he live after his death?, And once in the meaning of (Where from), such as: How did you get all this food?, And it also comes in the meaning of “When”, such as: When do you graduate?
        • (متى)When: It is used to inquire about time, such as: When are you traveling?
        • (أينَ)When: It is used to inquire about time, such as: When is Judgment Day?
    4. Wishing: It is the requesting style that represents the expectation of a beloved matter in the future. The difference between it and hope is that wishing falls within the scope of requesting impossible things, unlike hope that accompanies possibilities. As for the tool of wishing, it is (Would that), and some of the letters that give its meaning may be used. They are three letters: If, Is, and It is worth noting that rhetoricians distinguish wishing into two types, which are:

      • Wishing in what is impossible: Wishing in this type is in what is not expected to happen, such as (Would that the sky would rain gold).
    5. The Vocative Style (النداء)

      The vocative style is a type of Arabic sentence that is used to address someone or something. It is characterized by the use of a vocative particle (حرف النداء), which is typically placed at the beginning of the sentence. There are several different vocative particles in Arabic, each with its own specific usage.

      • همزء (ء: This particle is used to address someone who is close to the speaker, such as a child or a friend. For example, أفاطم مهلاً بعض هذا التدلل (Oh Fatima, stop being so spoiled!).

      • (ʔa): This particle is used to address someone who is far away from the speaker. For example, (ʔa) يا ساع للعلم، قُم (Oh seeker of knowledge, get up!).

      • أيا (ʔayya): This particle can be used to address someone who is either close or far away from the speaker. For example, أيا أخي، لا تستسلم (Oh brother, don’t give up!).

      • أي (ʔay): This particle is typically used to address someone who is far away from the speaker. For example, أي أخي، لا تستسلم (Oh brother, don’t give up!).

      • هيا (hayaa): This particle is used to address someone who is far away from the speaker and is typically used to urge them to do something. For example, هيا غاضباً، اهدأ (Oh angry one, calm down!).

      • وا (waa): This particle is used to address someone who is far away from the speaker and is typically used to express grief or lament. For example, وامعتصماه (Oh, for help!).

      • يا (yaa): This particle is the most common vocative particle in Arabic and can be used to address someone who is either close or far away from the speaker. It can also be used to emphasize a statement. For example, يا عليّ أين أنت؟ (Oh Ali, where are you?).

      The Declarative Style (الأسلوب الخبري)

      The declarative style is a type of Arabic sentence that is used to make a statement about something. It is characterized by the use of a predicate (خبر), which is typically a verb or an adjective. The predicate is followed by a subject (مبتدأ), which is typically a noun or a pronoun.

      There are three main types of declarative sentences:

      • Affirmative sentences (جمل مثبتة): These sentences state that something is true. For example, سامرٌ شجاعٌ (Samir is brave).

      • Negative sentences (جمل منفية): These sentences state that something is not true. For example, مالكم لا تعقلون (Why don’t you understand?).

      • Assertive sentences (جمل مؤكدة): These sentences are used to emphasize a statement. For example, قد أفلح المُصلّون (The righteous have indeed succeeded).

      • Purposes of the News Style

        The news style encompasses two main purposes:

        1. Informative: This purpose involves providing information to the addressee, who is not aware of the ruling present in a certain sentence. For example, one might say “Tolerance is religion” to inform someone who is not familiar with this concept.

        2. Implicative: This purpose aims to convey additional information to the addressee, indicating that the speaker is also aware of the ruling contained in the sentence. For instance, one might say to someone who has hidden their graduation from university: “You have graduated from university,” implying that the speaker is aware of this fact.

        It is important to note that the news style can also be used for other figurative purposes that can be understood from the context. Here are some of the most important of these:

        • Seeking mercy and compassion: For example, saying “I am poor, my Lord” to express one’s need for divine assistance.
        • Motivating and encouraging: For example, saying “The believer and the disbeliever are not the same” to motivate someone to embrace faith.
        • Showing weakness and humility: For example, saying “My Lord, I have been afflicted with weakness” to express one’s submission to God.
        • Expressing regret: For example, saying “I was born poor” to lament one’s unfortunate circumstances.
        • Expressing joy or gloating: For example, saying “Truth has triumphed and the oppressor has failed” to express joy over a positive outcome or gloat over someone’s misfortune.