Team Nisreen:Other, else etc

تاني taani

taani is one of the first words you’re introduced to in a colloquial course, and I think is pretty much omnipresent in dialects in the meaning ‘other’ alongside its original meaning ‘second’. It often appears with indefinites in the meaning ‘else’:

مو محتاج كون واحد تاني وانا معها ولا محتاج حدا تاني وهي معها
muu mé7taaj kuun waa7ed taani w-2ana ma3a wala mé7taaj 7ada taani w-hiyye ma3i
I don’t have to be someone else when I’m with her and I don’t need anyone else when she’s with me

اني زعلان منك شي وانا ما بحبك شي تاني تماما
2énni za3laan ménnek shi w2énni maa b7ébbek shi taani tamaaman
Me being upset with you is one thing, me not loving you is something else entirely

ليش عندك حل تاني يعني؟
leesh 3éndak 7all taani ya3ni?
Why, do you have another solution

ما ضروري إذا الطرف التاني ساكت يكون هو مبسوط بكلامك
maa Daruuri iza TTaraf éttaani saaket ykuun huwwe mabsuuT bkalaamak
Just because [= it’s not necessary that…] the other person [= side] is quiet doesn’t mean he’s happy with what you said [= your speech]

It is very common as a definite stand-alone adjective:

مين فينا رح يركد ويهرب قبل التاني؟
miin fiina ra7 yérgod wyéhrob 2abl éttaani?
Which of us will run away [= run and run away] first [before the other one]?

بدي التاني
béddi ttaani
I want the other one

غير gheer

You will probably be familiar with gheer from fuSHa. Perhaps its most common fuSHa usage, as an equivalent to the English prefixes ‘non-‘, ‘un-‘ etc, also crops up in 3aamiyye:

انو يعيشو طول عمرون غير مؤمنين
énno y3iishu Tool 3émron gheer mu2miniin
That they live their whole lives as unbelievers

In colloquial, however, it is far more common. It replaces الا as the most common way of saying ‘except, other than’ etc. In this function it’s pretty free to appear in front of almost anything, including prepositions (unlike in fuSHa):

ما بخاف غير من ربي
maa bkhaaf gheer mén rabbi
I’m not afraid of anyone but God!

ما بيتقاوى غير ع المعترين
maa byét2aawa gheer 3a lém3attariin
He can only overpower pitiable sorts [= he doesn’t overpower… except]

 As in fuSHa with 2illa the nicest English translation of combinations of a negative plus gheer is ‘only’ or some similar expression:

ما بتشوفون غير لما تحتاجون
maa bétshuufon gheer lamma té7taajon
You only see them when you need them [= you don’t… except when…]

مالي غيرك
maali gheerak
You’re all I’ve got [= I haven’t got except you]

It also frequently appears with pronoun endings or a following noun. The exact translation of this varies based on context, of course. غيري or sometimes حدا غيري is usually the most idiomatic way of translating ‘someone else’ (i.e. ‘someone other than me’:

يا سيدي لو واحد غيرو لرجعو بلا فكاكو
yaa siidi law waa7ed gheero la-rajj3o bala fkaako
Mate, if it was anyone else [someone other than him] I’d give it back without a ransom

حبيبي ما بحب غيري
7abiibi maa bi7ébb gheeri
My love doesn’t love anyone else/loves no-one but me

Appearing with an indefinite noun in iDaafe, it produces the meaning ‘another X’. This usage is not found in fuSHa (where ghayr marra actually means ‘several times’, not ‘a different time’):

لغير مرة ان شاء الله
lagheer marra @nshaLLa
[We’ll come round] another time, hopefully

حشيشنا غير شكل
7ashiishna gheer shek@l
Our weed is something else [= another shape/form]!

بتمنى لو في غير حل
bétmanna law fii gheer 7all
I wish there was another solution

It can also appear on its own meaning ‘different’/’something else’:

صباحنا غير
Sabaa7na gheer
Our morning is different/something else

كمان kamaan

kamaan is typically introduced to learners as meaning ‘as well’ or ‘also’, which is certainly one of its most common meanings. In certain contexts, however, it is most nicely translated as ‘else’:

في شي كمان؟
fii shi kamaan?
is there anything else?

كمان مرة
kamaan marra
again, once more

حط كمان
7étt kamaan
give me some more

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