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El Said Badawi

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Occupation  Linguist, scholar
Died  2014
Born  1929El-Nakhas, Sharqiyya Governorate, EGYPT
Books  Arabic-English Dictionary of Qur'anic Usage
Alma maters  Cairo University, University of London

El-Said Badawi (El-Saʿīd Muḥammad Badawī) (السعيد محمد بدوي) was a scholar and linguist and author of many works, both in English and in Arabic, dealing with various aspects of the Arabic language.


Having learned the Qur'an by the age of ten in his village, El-Nakhas, Sharqiyya Governorate, he attended Al-Azhar University for his secondary schooling. He received a B.A. in Arabic Language & Literature and Islamic Studies from Cairo University, an M.A. in General Linguistics and Phonetics from the University of London, and his Ph.D. in Experimental Phonetics from the University of London.

After obtaining his Ph.D. Badawi briefly taught linguistics at the University of Cairo, then began teaching Arabic literature and linguistics at Omdurman University in Sudan, and moved to the American University in Cairo in 1969, where he became the Curriculum Advisor for the Center for Arabic Study Abroad (CASA) in 1970.

Badawi's wide-ranging interests included colloquial Egyptian Arabic, classical Arabic as found in the Qur'an, and the teaching of Arabic as a foreign language. In the field of sociolinguistics, perhaps Badawi's best known work is Mustawayāt al-ʻArabīyah al-muʻāṣirah fī Miṣr (Levels of Contemporary Arabic in Egypt) wherein he challenges the traditional simplistic dichotomy of Classical and Colloquial Arabic, proposing instead a more subtle analysis involving several levels of usage.


  • An intonational study of colloquial Riyadhi Arabic. 1965 (Ph.D. thesis)
  • A comprehensive study of Egyptian Arabic. 1978 (coauthored with E.T. Abdel-Massih et al.)
  • A reference grammar of Egyptian Arabic. 1979 (coauthored with E.T. Abdel-Massih et al.)
  • A comprehensive study of Egyptian Arabic 2. Proverbs and metaphoric expressions 1981 (coauthored with E.T. Abdel-Massih et al.)
  • A dictionary of Egyptian Arabic : Arabic-English. 1986 (coauthored with M. Hinds)
  • Sultan Qaboos encyclopedia of Arab names 2, Treasury of Arab Names, in four volumes. 1991 (coauthored with M. Al-Zubair)
  • Modern written Arabic : a comprehensive grammar. 2002
  • Arabic-English dictionary of Qur'anic usage. 2007
  • Arabic

  • Mustawayāt al-ʻArabīyah al-muʻāṣirah fī Miṣr : baḥth fī ʻalāqat al-lughah bi-al-ḥaḍārah. 1973
  • Muʻjam asmāʼ al-ʻArab. 1991
  • Dalīl aʻlām ʻUmān. 1991
  • al-Kitāb al-asāsī fī taʻlīm al-lughah al-ʻArabīyah li-ghayr al-nāṭiqīn bi-hā. 2006
  • Buḥūth lughawīyah wa-tarbawīyah fī qaḍāyā al-ʻArabīyah al-muʻāṣirah wa-mushkilātihā. 2015
  • References

    El-Said Badawi Wikipedia

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