Team Nisreen: ‘anymore’

This one is quite straightforward. ‘Anymore’ (in one of its senses anyway) expresses that there has been a change from something happening to it no longer happening: I don’t go there anymore.

ما عاد maa3aad مابقى maaba2a

There are two direct equivalents to ‘anymore’/’no longer’, both of them derived from verbs: ما بقى maa ba2a and ما عاد maa 3aad (this one is used in a fuSHa-y form in MSA too). Although they look pretty straightforwardly like negated past tense verbs, they don’t behave much like verbs – for a start, they’re usually invariable, not conjugating for person or number or gender:

ما عاد فيني اتحمل
maa 3aad fiini ét7ammal
I can’t cope anymore/any longer

ما عاد اعرف مثل دور المجامله
maa3aad a3ref massel door lémjaamle
I can’t flatter people anymore [= I no longer know how to act the role of flatterer]

مابقى اعرف شو بدي احكي
maaba2a a3ref shu béddi é7ki
I don’t know what to say anymore/I no longer know what to say

There are exceptions to this, though. Sometimes they do take normal verbal suffixes. Cowell suggests it’s particularly common for this to happen in the third person feminine singular, as in this example:

بحس انو اوجاعي ما عادت تنحمل
b7éss énno 2awjaa3i maa 3aadet tén7amel
I feel that my pain [= pains] is no longer bearable

Despite looking like pasts, they can also appear with negative imperatives:

ما بقى تحكي معي
maaba2a té7ki ma3i
never talk to me again/don’t talk to me anymore

It can also be used in sentences like the following where the reference is to the future. Although English ‘anymore’ can no longer be used here, if my Sunday School acquaintance with Biblical English is anything to go by it used to be possible to, and the meaning is fundamentally very similar even if we have to use a different English phrasing:

معقول ما عاد نرجع؟
ma32uul maa 3aad nérja3?
Can it be true that we’ll never go back [= we’ll not return anymore?]

بطل baTTal

This one literally means ‘stop’ or ‘stop being’. It can be used with either a subjunctive verb or with a noun/adjective, and sometimes can be translated nicely with ‘anymore’:

بطلنا نكيف
baTTalna nkayyef
We’re not having fun anymore [= we’ve stopped having fun]

طيب… رح يصنعو أدوية ويوزعوها ع الجوعانين يسفوها وتسد نفسهن ويبطلو جوعانين؟Tayyib… ra7 yiS@n3u ad@wye w ywazz3uwwa 3a ljoo3aaniin ysiffuwwa w tsidd nafson w ybaTTlu joo3aaniin?
OK… they’re going to produce medicines and hand them out to the starving that they can down and they’ll lose their appetites and won’t be hungry anymore?

Thanks to Aaron for reminding me of this one!

صار Saar

Another less explicit option that you often have is to use صار Saar which we’ve previously written about here and which often expresses a change of state in much the same way that ‘anymore’ does. See that post for more examples, but here’s one:

الواحد صار ما الو خاطر يبتسم من كتر ما قلبو عم يحترق
élwaa7ed Saar maa 2élo khaaTer yébtésem mén két@r ma 2albo 3am yé7tére2
You don’t [= one doesn’t] feel like smiling anymore because of how bad you feel inside [= from how much his heart is burning]

2 comments

  1. Great…. but please see:

    “The most valuable piece of advice I can pass on after thirty-one years in the trade is this: No matter how many times you see it in print, stop writing “anymore” as one word. Listen to the pattern of word stress, and think of the difference between “anybody” and “any body”—the former has one main stress, the latter two, and “any more” is like the latter. I told you I was persnickety.”

    https://arablit.org/2017/10/19/5-books-neil-hewison-picks-5-memorable-books-from-his-31-years-at-auc-press/

    1. stay persnickety andy

      for me, the adverb ‘anymore’ and the determiner ‘any more’ have distinct stress patterns, so I spell them differently

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