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  • Yaniv Berman

Ever seen a camel shuddering?

Read to the end... you'll understand.


English is a “horizontally rich” language. Its objects and verbs often have many synonyms. Take the word “many” for example: Numerous, multiple, various, multitudinous. Arabic, on the other hand, is rich both horizontally and vertically. That means that while a word can have many synonyms, it can also have several meanings pertaining to different eras and contexts.

For example, the word Haythu (حَيْثُ) can mean where, when, which, in which, at which, whom, wherever, whereas, since and because. The word Intifada (انتِفاضة), which nowadays means uprising or rebellion, originally referred to an animal’s act of shuddering or shaking off. It's true!


Translating between these two languages can prove to be very challenging at times. But it’s never boring!


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