upper egyptian arabic pronunication
Connie Tindale


Before using this dictionary you should be aware of the significant differences that arise in the way words are pronounced in Upper and Lower Egypt. Many words sound similar but have very different meanings and this can lead to confusion. The main thing to remember when pronouncing Arabic words is that all “h”s are pronounced and that “r”s are rolled. There are several sounds that occur in Arabic that do not arise in the English language so ideally it is best to try out your vocabulary on someone who knows the local dialect before you try it in general conversation.

It Lower Egypt (Cairo) there is what is commonly known as a glottal stop. This is shown in the text as an ‘ sign. In Upper Egypt (Luxor) this stop is often filled with a “g” sound. It is a bit like saying the word cat as ca’at and making it have two syllables instead of one and then filling the gap with a ‘g’ so that it would sound like cagat.

In addition to the dictionary, we have completed a section on groups of Arabic words and some Arabic Phrases that might be of help to you.