As many of you know, family is one of the most important aspects of Arab culture, and in many Arabic-speaking countries, families maintain their loyalty to their tribal and clan connections. Perhaps this is best exemplified by the ages-old Arab adage: “I and my brothers against my cousins; I and my cousins against the stranger”. Arabs know and speak proudly of both their genealogy and heritage.

With Eid al-Adha just a couple of weeks away,  you can be sure that extended families will be gathering to celebrate the holidays together, and we thought this would be a great time for you to learn the words for the family in Arabic and a few of its members. So, without further ado, let’s get started, shall we?

Below are both the most common relatives and some of the more uncommon ones as well:

Father in Arabicabأب
Mother in Arabicumأم
Parent in Arabicwālid (father)
wālidah (mother)
Parents in Arabicabā’أباء
Child in Arabictifl (male)
tiflah (female)
Children in Arabicatfālأطفال
Son in Arabicibnابن
Daughter in Arabicibnahابنة
Brother in Arabicakh أخ
Sister in Arabicukhtأخت
Grandfather in Arabicjadجد
Grandmother in Arabicjaddahجدة
Grandson in ArabicḤafīdحفيد
Granddaughter in ArabicḤafīdahحفيدة
Grandchildren in Arabicaḥfādأحفاد
Uncle in Arabic‘am (paternal)
khāl (maternal)
Aunt in Arabic‘ammah (paternal)
khālah (maternal)
Cousin in Arabicibnu al-‘am (male – paternal side)
ibnu al-khāl (male – maternal side)
bintu al-‘am (female – paternal side)
bintu al-khāl (female – maternal side)
إبن العم
إبن الخال
بنت العم
بنت الخال
Nephew in Arabicibnu al-akh (brother’s side)
ibnu al-ukht (sister’s side)
 إبن الأخ
 إبن الأخت
Niece in Arabicibnatu al-akh (brother’s side)
ibnatu al-ukht (sister’s side)
إبنة الأخ
إبنة الأخت

Here are some family relations outside of the extended family:

Fiance in Arabickhatībخطيب
Fiancee in Arabickhatībahخطيبة
Bride in Arabic‘arūssعروس
Groom in Arabic‘arīssعريس
Wife in Arabiczawjahزوجة
Husband in Arabiczawjزوج
Spouse in Arabicqarīn (masc.)
qarīnah (fem.)

And here are the names of relatives gained through marriage:

Father-in-law in ArabicḤamw (husband’s side)
nassīb (wife’s side)
Mother-in-law in ArabicḤamāh (husband’s side)
nassībah (wife’s side)
Parents-in-law in Arabicasshār / nasāyebأصهار /  نسايب
Son-in-law in Arabiczawj ilibnahزوج الابنة
Daughter-in-law in Arabiczawjat ilibnahزوجة الابن
Brother-in-law in Arabicokhu az-zawj (husband’s side)
okhu az-zawjah (wife’s side)
أخو الزوج
أخو الزوجة
Sister-in-law in Arabicokhtu az-zawj (husband’s side)
okhtu az-zawjah (wife’s side)
أخت الزوج
أخت الزوجة

The husband of your daughter or sister is called صهر / sihr in Arabic meaning  “son-in-law”. If you’re a wife, you call your husband’s father حَمْو  / Ḥamw and his mother is called حماة / Ḥamāh. If you’re the husband, then you call your wife’s father نسيب  / nassīb while your mother-in-law is called نسيبة / nassībah.  There are other names that are used for the in-laws and they vary quite a bit between countries and dialects. The easiest thing to do is simply call the male in-laws نسيب  / nassīb, and the female in-laws نسيبة / nassībah.

If you’d like to learn more about family members in Arabic or want to learn to speak Arabic, why not visit our website, download the Kaleela Arabic learning app, and start learning Arabic today! Along with Modern Standard Arabic, you can learn other Arabic dialects like Egyptian Arabic, Levantine Arabic, and now, even Syrian Arabic! And Kaleela is so convenient – you can learn Arabic anytime, anywhere and at a pace that’s comfortable for you! Kaleela really is the best way to learn Arabic.

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