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The Present Day Arabic Proverb As A Testimony To The Social History Of The Middle East

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Chapter Summary

Societies bound by a rigid tradition of fixed moral and religious notions and comprising a large percentage of illiterate persons usually possess a great treasure of proverbs and popular sayings, particularly if they are endowed with a rich and expressive language. Many thousands of modern Arabic proverbs have been collected by both European and Arab scholars in the countries of the Middle East and North Africa. The Palestinian Arab proverb has attracted much attention because of its importance for Biblical studies. Lebanon, the cradle of modern native research into the Arabic language, has produced important collections of proverbs by local scholars, one made as far back as 1871. The modern Arabic proverb possesses certain characteristics, which render investigation into its origins a promising enterprise, and even a desideratum for both philological and historical research.

Keywords: Middle East; modern Arabic proverb



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