Explaining Verbs

Overall, there were more verbs without a ‘b’ prefix than with. However, there are interesting variations in each of the categories.

For plain verbs, the breakdown isn’t surprising although perhaps lower than the original hypothesis would have suggested.

It’s interesting to note the two tenses, verbs following a future tense marker and verbs following a past tense verbs received very few ‘b’ prefixes as to be expected. In both cases, the tense markers would most likely warrant the emphasis in a sentence and the ‘b’ prefix becomes less necessary.

The category with the highest percentage of verbs with ‘b’ prefixes is the 3m category, which represents verb followed by the word ‘3m’ which effectively makes them -ing verbs in dialect. I find this to be pretty unexpected but considering the small sample size of these verbs (only 34 total) may account for the numbers being a bit off. However, it’s also necessary to consider that it’s almost just common to continue to use the prefix after a 3m marker as to not.

The rest of the categories, negation, knt (‘was’ verb), participles, auxiliary, and verbs that came after another present tense verb all had very low rates of verbs with ‘b’ prefixes as well. This makes sense as each of these factors would draw the emphasis away from the verb and towards themselves in the sentence to enhance meaning.

Verb Totals Bar Graph

Blue = no prefix | Yellow = prefix

0% 50% 100% plain 3m future past knt negation 2nd verb participle auxiliary

Verb Totals by Number

Verb Type Yes (plain) No (plain) Yes (3m) No (3m) Yes (future) No (future) Yes (past) No (past) Yes (knt) No (knt) Yes (negation) No (negation) Yes (2nd) No (2nd) Yes (part) No (part) Yes (aux) No (aux)
Total 137 358 16 18 0 34 2 34 7 29 12 12 7 48 0 3 1 34

Creative Commons License
Jordanian Arabic by Amber Montgomery is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.