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Lexical Notes on the Dialect of Mayadin (Eastern Syria) in the Late 1970s, with Jean Cantineau’s Fieldnotes of 1935

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Chapter Summary

The city of Mayadin is located on the right bank of the Euphrates in eastern Syria, at a distance of about 40 km from Dēr ez-Zōr, on the way to l-Bu Kmāl, the last city before the Iraqi border, 70 km farther southeast. Mademoiselle Lucie Cantineau, the daughter of Jean Cantineau had some documents left behind by her father. Among these documents were fieldnotes consisting of a linguistic questionnaire he had designed to gather data on various Arabic dialects. This chapter, dedicated to a great connoisseur of Bedouin dialects, is a first step towards a description of the dialect of Mayadin, in the limits of the available material. It is restricted to some lexical data. The author has used the Questionnaire linguistique of Marcel Cohen. The so-called Šāwi dialects are distributed over an extremely large area in Syria. Only a few of them are documented, and often rather poorly.

Keywords: Šāwi dialects; Bedouin dialects; dialect of Mayadin; eastern Syria; Jean Cantineau

10.1163/9789004256194_009
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