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Cypriot Maronite Arabic (also known as Cypriot Arabic, Maronite, or Sanna) is one of the most divergent of Arabic varieties, spoken in Cyprusmarker, especially by the Maronite community. Most speakers are situated in the capital, Nicosiamarker, but others are located in Kormakitimarker and Limassolmarker. The majority of speakers are over 30 years of age, as many in the younger generations only speak Cypriot Greek, partially because of inter-marriage with Greek-speaking Cypriots. The language was first introduced to the island by Arab Maronites fleeing Lebanonmarker or Syriamarker in the 8th century. The dialect of Arabic has been very heavily influenced by Greek in both phonology and vocabulary, while retaining certain unusually archaic features in other respects.



  • Ethnologue entry for Cypriot Arabic
  • Alexander Borg. A Comparative Glossary of Cypriot Maronite Arabic (Arabic-English). Brill 2004. ISBN 90 04 13198 1
  • Alexander Borg. Cypriot Arabic Phonology. In Kaye, Alan S., editor, Phonologies of Asia and Africa (including the Caucasus), volume 1, chapter 15, pp. 219--244. Winona Lake, Indiana: Eisenbrauns, 1997. ISBN 1-57506-017-5
  • Alexander Borg. Cypriot Arabic: A Historical and Comparative Investigation into the Phonology and Morphology of the Arabic Vernacular Spoken by the Maronites of Kormakiti Village in the Kyrenia District of North-Western Cyprus, Stuttgart: Deutsche Morgenl√§ndische Gesellschaft, 1985. ISBN 3515039996
  • Tsiapera, M. A Descriptive Analysis of Cypriot Maronite Arabic, The Hague: Mouton & Co., N.V., 1969.

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