Volume 32, Issue 1
  • ISSN 0176-4225
  • E-ISSN: 1569-9714
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Despite the general view that Berber was the only important substratum for Maghrebi Arabic, Moroccan Arabic (MA) took shape in the 7th–8th centuries AD in Roman cities in which Late Latin (LL) was spoken. The occupation of Morocco was far more tenuous than in other areas conquered during the Arab expansion. Rapid language shift from LL to a contact Arabic introduced by eastern Berber troops left telltale signs in phonology and in morphological simplification. Archaic MA D-possessives di, d- and dyal- reflect Latin dē and pronominal combinations thereof, and must be dated to the language-shift period. Recognition of this has been delayed by hesitation to recognize the LL/MA relationship and by Arabic-internal explanations of D-possessives that must be rejected in light of what we now know about Maghrebi Arabic dialects.


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  • Article Type: Research Article
Keyword(s): Berber; language shift; Late Latin; Moroccan Arabic; possessive
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