Vestiges islamiques dans le parler judéo-arabe du Maroc

Translated title of the contribution: Islamic traces in the Judeo-Arabic dialect of Morocco

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The Judeo-Arabic dialects of Morocco have been exposed to the influence of languages spoken by the country's Muslim majority, chief among them Arabic. As a result, many Muslim phrases and idioms have found their way into these dialects. Thus, for example, there are expressions drawing on a terminology that is in fact Muslim, or alluding to Muslim concepts and events. However, as a this article demonstrates, a close study of the material reveals the essentially limited nature of Jewish-Muslim cultural interaction in Morocco. Two factors may account for the relative paucity of Muslim elements in Moroccan Judeo-Arabic: (a) a protective seclusion, born of the constant concern of the Jews to preserve their specific way of life, which led them to avoid all but the most essential contacts with Muslims; (b) the linguistic barrier, namely the fact that the Jews of Morocco have been cut off from classical Arabic over the past centuries and have thus had no direct access to Islamic texts. Indeed, the Jews of Morocco acquired their scant knowledge of Muslim culture and traditions not from direct acquaintance with the sources but from daily transactions with their Muslim neighbours.

Translated title of the contributionIslamic traces in the Judeo-Arabic dialect of Morocco
Original languageFrench
Pages (from-to)361-380
Number of pages20
JournalJournal Asiatique
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 2004


  • Dialectology
  • Jews
  • Moroccan Judeo-Arabic
  • Muslims


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