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List of French words of Arabic origin


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Words of Arabic origin have entered the French language and many European languages. One of the primary routes that they have entered other languages is via the Spanish language, heavily influenced by the Arabic of al-Andalus.

A [ top ]

abricot (apricot): from Spanish albaricoque, derived from the Arabic أَلْبَرْقُوق (al barqūq) which is itself derived from the Latin præcoquum, meaning the fruit, in turn from the Greek βερύκοκο (verikoko).

adobe: from the Spanish adobe, derived from the Arabic al-ṭūb (الطوب) meaning a brick of dried earth.

alambic (still): from al-inbīq (الإنبيق) meaning a still for the distillation of alcohol. The invention of the still is traced to Ptolemaic Egypt. The original Greek word ἄμβιξ (amvix), meaning the top of a still had the definite article al- added onto it by the Arabs.

albacore (zoo.) from the Spanish albacora from the Arabic al barqūq (ألبرقوق) : young bonito;

alcade Spanish word alcalde : magistrate; Arab governor al-qāḍi (القاض) : judge; cadi.

alchimie (alchemy): from the Arabic al kîmiâ' (الكيمياء), possibly from either Greek or Coptic according to current hypotheses.

alcool (alcohol)الغولوجمعهاأغوال

alcôve (alcove)

alezan (horse: chestnut, sorrel)

algèbre (algebra): from the Arabic al-jabr الجبر through the Latin algebra

algorithme (algorithm): from the name of mathematician al-Khwarizmi

alidade

almanach (almanac)

amalgame (mixture, blend, amalgam)

ambre (amber)عنبر

amiral (admiral)أميرالبحر

aniline

arcane

arrobe (at sign)

arsenalدارالصناعة

artichaut (artichoke)الخرشوف

assassinحشاشين

aubergineالبادنحات

aval (downstream, downhill)

avarie (damage on a vehicle)

azimutالسمت

azur (azure)

B [ top ]

babouche (slippers)بلغة

baldaquin (baldachin)

barkhane (barchan)

baobab baroud (raid)

benjoin (benzoin resin)

benzineالبنزين

bergamote (bergamot orange)برتقال

bled (colloquial: Place, Town)بلد

blouse (overall, white coat)

boraxبوراق

bougie (candle) شمعة

C [ top ]

cabas (basket for shopping)قفص

cafard (cockroach)

café (coffee, café): from Arabic qahwah قهوة, via Turkish

caïd (chief of a mob; as a nickname, can be translated as "tiger")

calfeutrer (to draught-proof)

calibre (standard for calibration, calibre, see also Caliper)قالب

calife (calif)خليفة

camaïeu (camaieu)

camelot, camelote (rubbish)

camphre (camphor)

candie (Heraklion) قند (من سكر قندي)

carafe (water pot)

caravelle (caravel)

carat (gem mass or metal purity)قيراط

carmin (carmine)

caroussel (carousel)

carvi (caraway)

chèque (check)صك

chiffre (number, see Cipher)صفر

chimie (chemistry)

civette (chives, civet)

clebs (slang for dog)كلاب

coton: from Arabic qutun قطن, via the Spanish coton (Algodon)

couffin (Moses basket)

coupole (cupola)

cramoisi (crimson)قرمزي

cravache (crop)

cumin

cuscute (Greater Dodder)

D [ top ]

dame

divan

douane

drogue

drogmanترجمان

E [ top ]

écarlate

échec (jeu d'échecs)

édenعدن

élixirالإكسير

émirأمير

épinard

erg

estragon

F [ top ]

fakir

fanfare, fanfaron

fardeau

fenec

felouque

flouze

fondouk

G [ top ]

gabelle

gala

gaze

gazelle: from Arabic ghazâl (غزال)

gazette

genette

gerboise

gilet

girafe: from Arabic zarâfah (زرافة)

goudron

gouleغول

guitareقيثارة

guitoune

H [ top ]

hammam: from Arabic ʜammām حمّام bathroom

harem

hasard

haschisch: from Arabic ʜaʃīʃ حشسيش grass

henné: from Arabic: ʜanna حنّة

J [ top ]

jaquette

jarreجرة

jasminياسمين

jupe, jupon

K [ top ]

Kif-Kif

kermès

kohol

kidnappe

L [ top ]

laiton

laque

lascar

lilas

limon

limonade

loukoum

luth

M [ top ]

maboule

macramé

magasin

marabout

marcassite

maroquin

massepain

massicot

matelas

matraque

méchoui

mesquin

mohair

moire, moiré

momie

mosquée

mouchtefert

mousseline

mousson

mulâtre

muscade

N [ top ]

nabab

nacre

nadir

naphte

natron

nénuphar

noria

nouba

O [ top ]

orange

ouate

Q [ top ]

quetsche

R [ top ]

ramdam

raquette

razzia

récif

risque

riz

roque

S [ top ]

saccharine

safari

safran

salamalec

santal

saphir

sarbacane

satin

savate

sirop

smala

sofa

sorbet

soude

souk

sucre

sultan

T [ top ]

taboulé : تبولة (tabbūla)

tabouret : تبوﺮ (tabour)

taffetas : ' '

talc : طلق (ṭalq)

talisman : طلسم (ṭilasm)

tare : طرح (ṭarḥ)

tarif : تعريفة (taʿrīfa)

timbale : طبل (ṭabl)

toubib : طبيب (ṭabīb) (doctor)

truchement : ترجمان (tarjumān)

V [ top ]

varan

vizir

X [ top ]

x as unknown in mathematics: The letter « x » does not exist in Arabic; the word chaïi, which means « thing », designates an unknown in mathematics, and this word being reduced to ch.

Z [ top ]

zénith

zéro

zouave

 

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