İlk Evrelerinden Cahiliye Dönemine Kadar Arap DiliOmar Adeeb Shaker Jnaidi
Arap dilinin ortaya çıkışı ve ilk evresi muamma ve karanlıktır. Zira kaynaklarda bu hususta bilgi kırıntılarına rastlanmamaktadır. Hal böyle olunca Arap dilinin ortaya çıkışı ve ilk evresi hakkında doyurucu bilgilere sahibi değiliz. Câhiliye Devri literatüründe Arap dili kemale ermiş ve her yönüyle olgunlaşmış halde karşımıza çıkmaktadır. Kuşkusuz bu durum Arap dilinin zaman içerisinde bazı aşamadan geçtikten sonra mevcut olgunluğa ulaştığına işaret eden göstergelerdendir. Acaba Arap dilinin ne zaman ortaya çıktığını ve hangi aşamalardan geçtiğini öğrenebilmek amacıyla eski tarihindeki derinliklere inebilme imkânı söz konusu mudur? Acaba Arap dili ile Eski Sâmî dilleri arasında bağlantı kurmaktan söz edilebilir mi? Çoğu araştırmacılar zihinlere düşen bu türden sorulara cevap bulmanın ve konuyla ilgili sağlıklı kanaate varmanın zor olduğunu öne sürmektedirler. Zira Arap dilinin ilk evrelerini kuşatan belirsizliklere ek olarak arkeologlar tarafından söz konusu evrelere ışık tutacak yazılı materyallere veya yazıtlara henüz rastlanmış değildir. Çalışmanın esas amacı Arap dilinin ilk evrelerine ışık tutmak olacaktır. Bunu yaparken Arap dilinin ilk ortaya çıkışı, ilk konuşanları, kadim olması, gelişim aşamaları ve Sâmî dilleriyle arasındaki tarihsel bağın erken dönem Arap dilbilimcileri tarafından fark edilmesi gibi hususlarda öne sürdükleri farklı görüşlere de yer verilecektir. Çalışmanın sonunda erken dönem Arap dilbilimcileri tarafından Arap dilinin ilk evreleri ve erken dönem içerisinde geçirdiği aşamalarla ilgi ortaya atılan tasavvurlar ele alınacaktır.
The Arabic Language from Its Earliest Times to the Age of IgnoranceOmar Adeeb Shaker Jnaidi
The study of the history of the beginnings of the Arabic language is shrouded in complete darkness, as nothing is known about its infancy or when it began. It is only known to have been mature and complete in the literature of the Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic era known as the Age of Ignorance). Arabic indubitably went through various stages before reaching that level of maturity. In this respect, does any possibility exist for examining its ancient history or knowing when it arose, what stages it went through, and whether a relationship exists between it and the Semitic languages. Many consider answering these questions and providing accurate judgments about them to be difficult, due to the ambiguousness of Arabic’s infancy, the few available sources about that era that thus provide no clear picture, and the lack of scholars finding any engraved or written traces that might shed light on its initial condition. The main aim of this research will attempt to identify the early historical stages of the Arabic language. Along the way, the study will first touch upon the disagreements among ancient Arab linguists regarding Arabic’s first inception and who were the first to speak it, their belief in its antiquity, their assumptions about its development, and their realization of its linguistic historical kinship with the Semitic languages. The study will then move on to the modernists among the Orientalists and Arab linguists regarding their attempt to reveal the beginnings of Arabic by relying on comparative studies and readings of ancient inscriptions. The study will also take a look at their views on the relationship between Arabic and Semitic, with the research finally ending by listing their perceptions about Arabic’s infancy and the stages it went through early on in its inception.
اللغة العربية منذ أقدم عصورها إلى العصر الجاهليOmar Adeeb Shaker Jnaidi
يستوقفنا في دراستنا لتاريخ بدايات اللغة العربية ظالم دامس، إذ ال نعلم شيئا عن طفولتها، وال نعرف متى بدأت، ولم نتعرف عليها إال ناضجة مكتملة في األدب الجاهلي. ومن المقطوع به أن تكون قد قطعت مراحل من تاريخها إلى أن وصلت إلى هذا المستوى من النضوج. فهل ثمة إمكانية لسبر غور التاريخ القديم لها، ومعرفة متى نشأت؟ وما هي المراحل التي قطعتها؟ وهل ثمة عالقة بينها وبين اللغات السامية؟ يرى كثيرون أنه من الصعب اإلجابة عن هذه التساؤالت وإعطاء حكم دقيق حولها، فطفولة اللغة العربية غامضة، والمصادر المتوفرة عن تلك الحقبة قليلة وال تقدم لنا صورة واضحة، ولم يعثر العلماء على آثار منقوشة أو مكتوبة تلقي ضوءا على حالتها األولى. ستكون المهمة األساس لهذا العمل هي محاولة التعرف على المراحل التاريخية األولى للغة العربية، وفي الطريق إلى ذلك سنمر باختالف اللغويين العرب القدماء حول نشأتها األولى وأول من تحدث بها، واعتقادهم بقدمها، وافتراضاتهم حول تطورها، وتفطنهم إلى القرابة التاريخية اللغوية بين اللغات السامية. وسنمر بالمحدثين من المستشرقين واللغويين العرب في محاولتهم الكشف عن بدايات اللغة العربية واعتمادهم على الدراسات المقارنة وقراءتهم النقوش القديمة، وآرائهم في العالقة بين العربية والسامية. ونختم البحث بإيراد تصوراتهم حول العربية في طفولتها والمراحل التي مرت بها في نشأتها األولى.
A pitch-black darkness prevents the study of the history of Arabic because the general history of the Arabian Peninsula before Islam is ambiguous, the information about Arabic in that period is very brief, and the knowledge of the Arabic dialects is not in the best condition. When did Arabic arise? What are the dialects that existed in the language before Islam? Is today’s Arabic a unison of dialects or a language that branched into dialects? Providing an accurate judgment about that is difficult, as no texts exist dating back to those eras, and no inscriptions have been found that shed light on Arabic’s initial condition.
The Arab linguists of old had their own perceptions about the origin of Arabic. Ibn Faris believed that the language of the Arabs had been sent from God. Meanwhile, Abu Mansur al-Azhari on the other hand identified the Arab prophets as Ishmael, Muhammad, Shuaib, Salih, and Hod. As for al-Suyuti, he divided Arabs into three categories: Arabah, al-Muta’riba, and al-Musta’ribah. These linguists also disagreed about which person was the first to speak Arabic. For example, al-Jahiz believed Ismail bin Ibrahim was the first, while others attributed Yarub bin-Qahtan as being the first. Most of the ancients consider Arabic as having two forms: the Arabic of Yemen (i.e., old Arabic) and the Arabic of Ishmael (i.e., new Arabic). Many of them also believed the Arabic language to be old, with Abu Amr bin Al-Ala believing part of this ancient language to have reached the present and part to have not.
Arab linguists also had assumptions about how Arabic had developed. Al-Akhfash pointed out that the different languages of the Arabs had resulted from their beginnings being different, although this was all based on correctness and analogy. Afterward, people added many things to these different languages as needed. In addition, Arabic linguists realized that languages transform and change with the passage of time and that the frequent use of a language is a major reason for its transformation and change. Therefore, they relied on the factor of abundance for explaining the many omissions.
Semitic languages was used as a term to refer to the group of languages that have been common since ancient times in the countries of Asia and Africa, and the first to use this term was the scholar Schulze in 1781 AD. The Orientalists then began to research the Semitic languages extensively until they came to believe that all these languages are branches of one language. Israel Levinson divided the Semitic languages geographically into three regions: Eastern, Western, and Southern. Studies also attributed these languages to one linguistic group due to the similarity between them regarding their essence and some of their joint origins. Modernists have also concluded Arabic to be a branch of the Semitic languages and its closest relative.
Scholars have divided Arabic dialects into two parts: Northern and Southern. As for the Old Southern Arabic dialect, archaeologists found that Southern Arabs possess ancient languages whose dialects differ greatly from Standard Arabic and that Northern Arabic is divided into defunct Arabic dialects and remaining Arabic dialects, which are found in Standard Arabic and its various dialects. The ancient linguists emphasized the great difference between Northern and Southern Arabic, and what confirms this great difference is how Ibn al-Haik described the dialects of Yemen in his time. The Southern Arabian Peninsula had been subjected to successive crises that led to its weakness, and large migrations emerged from it. As a result, the northern Arabic language dominated the Arabian Peninsula after the decline of the civilization and languages in the south.
As part of the attempts to solve the mystery of the Arabic language in its infancy and reveal its early stages, Modern Arab linguists and Orientalists have made great efforts in this field. Al-Rafei concluded that Arabic is either a branch of the original language from which all Semitic languages had been separated or had been derived from some of these branches until later becoming independent. As for Dr. Ali Wafi, he believes that the Arabic language was divided into dialects, then these dialects intertwined, clashed, and united into one language. On the other hand, Mahmoud Taymour concluded that the Arabic dialects had been a previous stage of literary Arabic and that the dialects in the Age of Ignorance had gathered together until they took a form that would be called Standard. Meanwhile, one group of researchers believes that Standard Arabic was formed from a broad coalition of Arabic dialects that does not represent the dialect of any particular tribe. In contrast, the Orientalist Israel Wolfensohn went on to say that the remaining Arabic language is a mixture of different dialects, some from the Northern Arabia and some from Southern Arabia that mixed together until it became one language. As for Saeed al-Ghamdi (????), he concluded in his study that the Arabs had lived in southern Iraq since before the 7th century BC, that they had established al-Manadhirah (Lakhmids) as a state in al-Hirah at the beginning of the 5th century AD, that al-Hira was the place from where Standard Arabic had spread, and that the Quraysh were not prepared enough to spread their dialect among the tribes before Islam. Accordingly, the Arabic language had formed in Iraq in ancient times and has since retained its ancient characteristics. In addition, the dialect that spread as a literary language in the era of al-Hira was the dialect that carried elements of the other most widespread dialects.