In this lesson, you will learn how to both ask people where they are from and answer them when they ask you the same question. First, it must be said that, no matter how well you can speak Arabic, most natives will know that it’s not your first language. As a result, one of the first things you’ll be asked is where you’re from and what is your nationality? In other words, when you meet a new person in an Arab country, they might ask you, “Min ʾayna ʾanta?” (which is the same as the English “Where are you from?”).
Nevertheless, how you answer is up to you. For example, you can simply answer them by saying what country you’re from: “ana min engiltira” / “I’m from England”. “ana inglizi” / “I’m English”.
Today, you’ll be learning the second way of talking about where you’re from by using nationalities in Arabic. Nevertheless, there is no need to worry as many of these words are very close to their English versions.
However, before we begin there are a few things to keep in mind. First, by now you should be familiar with the feminine and masculine versions of words. Secondly, you should know how you ask, or are asked, as it’s not the same for both men and women. That is to say, if you are a man, you will be asked, “Min ʾayna ʾanta?” and if you’re a woman you will be asked “Min ʾayna ʾanti?”
Likewise, it’s the same when you answer about your nationality. For instance, females must add –yyah at the end of the nationality. For example, if you are an American woman, you will say “’anā ʾamrīkīyyah” and a German woman would say “ʾanā barāzīlīyyah”.
I/ I am
You/ You are (Masculine)
You/ You are (Feminine)
He/ He is
She/ She is
United Kingdom (Britain)
to the nation will turn the meaning into male citizen
to the nation will turn the meaning into female citizen
For masculine nouns and adjectives
For feminine nouns and adjectives
I am not
مِنْ أَيْنَ أَنْتَ؟
/min ʼayna ʼanta/
Where are you from?