Monday, December 4, 2023

What Is The Language In Morocco

Must read

What About Their Writing

Moroccan DARIJA (An Arabic Dialect??)

To be clear, they write in Modern Standard Arabic in official paperwork and not in their dialect! All Arabic countries have their own Arabic dialect and Arab culture which can differ slightly from each other. One way for us to understand this better is how there are different dialects of Spanish depending on what Spanish speaking country it is.

The same applies to Arab speaking countries. This is very normal to happen when it comes to language that spreads on a vast area of land. Moroccan Arabic is very similar to classical Arabic however it has a lot of consonant clusters. So sometimes other Arabic speakers find it hard to understand since it doesnt have that many vowels! But thats how their Arabic evolved over the time.

Arabic Language In Morocco

Classical Arabic, also known as the Quranic or Standard Arabic, is the official language of Morocco it is used in education, literature, media, mosques, etc. However, it is not generally spoken by the people of Morocco. The vast majority of the population speaks Darija, a unique Arabic dialect only used and understood in Morocco.

Darija is a form of Arabic influenced mainly by Tamazight and to a smaller extent by French, Persian, and Spanish. It also varies significantly from region to another. Darija is used in streets and homes, but its not written like Standard Arabic. Still, the younger generation came up with non-official written forms in texting they either write it using the Arabic alphabets or use the French alphabets and numbers.

To learn more in details about the Arabic language in Morocco, you can watch the youtube video of Paul, who shares some in-depth information about Moroccan Arabic:

Is It Considered Arabic

Many people think Darija Arabic is not technically Arabic when in fact, it is very close to classical Arabic or Modern Standard Arabic. This is also known as formal Arabic that is found in the Quran, the Muslim Holy Book. So next time someone tells you Darija Arabic isnt true Arabic , teach them about how truly close it actually is!

Recommended Reading: Tips For Teaching English Language Learners

Business Culture And Etiquette In Morocco

If you’re looking for expert help and advice on doing business in Morocco, then this is what we do!

Business Relationships

  • Moroccans prefer to do business with those they know and respect, therefore expect to spend time cultivating a personal relationship before business is conducted.
  • Who you know is more important than what you know, so it is important to network and cultivate a number of contacts who may then assist you in working your way through the serpentine bureaucracy.
  • Expect to be served mint tea whenever you meet someone, as this demonstrates hospitality.
  • Moroccan business practices have been greatly influenced by the French and emphasize courtesy and a degree of formality.
  • Since Moroccans judge people on appearances, dress and present yourself well.

Business Meeting Etiquette

The local negotiation style can trace it’s features back to the souq culture. Photo by Wei Pan on Unsplash

Business Negotiations

The Different Amazigh Languages In Morocco

Percentage of Amazigh Languages speakers in Morocco by region ...

There are three main dialects or linguistic varieties of Amazigh in Morocco: Rif or Tarifit, Tachelhit, and Tamazight. Tarifit is spoken in the North, around the region of the Rif Mountains. Tamazight is spoken in the central Atlas region. Tachelhit is spoken in the Sous region.

The Amazigh languages were originally written using the Tifinagh alphabet, but have become commonly written using Arabic and more recently the Latin scripts.

Also Check: Quotes On Freedom Of Speech

What Languages Are Spoken In Agadir Morocco

Morocco is an Arabic country, in the northwest of the African continent. Therefore, Arabic is the primarily spoken language in Morocco. Due to the French influence, French is, too, spoken or at least widely understood. Now its getting interesting for us tourists not speaking any of the languages. Yet, there is still some hope Due to the proximity to Spain, Spanish is also often a language that is at least understood. You cant expect everyone to speak Spanish, but understanding basic words have worked surprisingly well for me. However, I have had the same experience with English. At the airport and hotel, English has been my major language to communicate, with no problems. And even at the market, haggling for the lowest price has worked well in English.It definitely depends where in Marocco you are, but in Agadir, even the most sparse basics of the following languages should work for you well: Arabic, French, Spanish & English. In this course you might be interested in my experience with language learning podcasts, for example French.

Have you ever been to Morocco? What has been your experience with language, or language barriers? Let me know in the comments below!

What Is The Best Method For Learning Arabic

Learning Arabic is possible, and people need to find an approach that works for them. For most people who are used to traditional language learning methods that focus on reading and writing in addition to speaking and listening, a communicative approach that focuses on combining the core learning styles will yield results for everyone.

Because Arabic dialects are not literary languages, they are not often written down, leading many to believe that language learners only need to practice speaking and listening. However, we believe in a communicative approach that combines speaking, listening, reading, writing, and cultural understanding, where students begin speaking from the very first day. This works for people to effectively learn Arabic, regardless of whether their learning style is visual, auditory, or reading and writing.

Our experienced teachers take you through not only the rules of the language but also communicative habits . We combine our structured in-class learning with written materials, audio recordings, and printed and electronic flashcards so that you can learn in the way that works for you. With flexible scheduling available, we will help you develop your Darija communication abilities as well as Moroccan cultural awareness.

Related Articles

You May Like: Free Realistic Text To Speech

What Channel Is Portugal Vs Morocco On Today

  • English Language: Fox
  • Spanish Language: Telemundo

Fans in the USA can watch the Portugal vs Morocco match on TV in English or Spanish. Fox has the English-language rights, while Telemundo has the Spanish-language broadcasts.

All fans need to do is look up ‘Fox’ or ‘Telemundo’ on their cable, satellite, or telco operator.

If you cant do it on your remote control, further below is a website link to each of the major TV operators in the USA where fans can find the channel assignment.

French Is Moroccos Unofficial Second Language

Morocco’s teachers debate: Classical Arabic or local dialect l Al Jazeera English

France and Spain controlled Morocco in the early 1900s, and though Morocco gained independence in 1956, French remains widely spoken by Moroccans of all ages throughout much of the country.

It functions as the language of government, diplomacy and business. Primary schools introduce French to students in their third year, increasing its use every year into secondary school and employing it as the language for teaching scientific subjects. Universities embrace French as their primary language of instruction.

Though not as common in villages and remote areas, cities of varying sizes have French-speaking taxi drivers, restaurants with menus in French, and sometimes even French street signs.

Even if you only took a year or two of French in school, you may find it well worth your time to brush up on the basics just enough to master a few words and refer to a French phrasebook with ease. And speakers of other romance languages may find it easier to familiarize themselves with a little French, compared to picking up some Arabic.

Read Also: How To End Best Man Speech

Classical And Modern Standard Arabic Differ Greatly From Moroccan Arabic

Moroccos other official language, unsurprisingly, is Modern Standard Arabic. This is the standard Arabic spoken by much of the Middle East. However, this type of Arabic is not generally spoken around the country. Moroccos unique dialect of Arabic known as darija is what the vast majority of the population speaks. This is an Arabic unique to Morocco and generally not understand by native Arabic speakers from other countries. In fact, even in Morocco, darija varies greatly from region-to-region with a very large difference noted between the north and the rest of the country.

If you opt to learn basic Arabic in preparation for your trip, make sure you learn Moroccan Arabic, specifically. While Moroccans generally understand standard Arabic, it may not help you understand Moroccans when they speak back to you in their local tongue!

Although learning some Darija can help you communicate more easily throughout the country, it is not absolutely critical for enjoying your visit. If you can speak some French, are skilled with animated gestures, plan to stay in large cities or tourist mainstays, or have other arrangements to help you get around , then youll do well with a few simple words that simply show that youre willing to try.

Written by Shelley A. Gable, instructional designer and freelance writer.

Will Our Driver Speak Our Language

Our drivers/guides speak English, Spanish and French and are native speaker of Berber/Tamazight, they speak also Arabic, and they will be happy to facilitate your contact with local people and help you learn a few words in the Moroccan native languages, so feel free to ask them for translations anytime!

You May Like: Famous People Text To Speech

Moroccan Darija Arabic: The Everyday Language In Morocco

Moroccan Arabic is different from other language varieties of Arabic for several reasons. Firstly, most Arabic-speaking countries are almost exclusively monolingual countries, meaning that everyone speaks Arabic and it has been like this for centuries.

Morocco, on the other hand, is characterized as a multicultural, multilingual environment, probably the most diverse environment to be found in the greater Arabic-speaking region.

The land of Morocco has been ruled and occupied by different African, Arab, and European powers. Therefore, Moroccan Arabic or Derija also bears traces of the Amazigh languages, Latin, French, and Spanish.

The Other Languages In Morocco

Moroccan Arabic Translation

However, Moroccans speak multiple languages due to the different people that have colonized them over the years. This includes French and Spanish due to both the French and Spanish colonies there. Its very common for Moroccans to be either bilingual or more because of this.

Spain colonized some specific areas so you can find Spanish speakers there, whereas France colonized other areas. So you will find many French speakers there. This is similar to how some third world countries speak English as a second language because that colonization happened by the British Empire.

Don’t Miss: Ketanji Brown Jackson Acceptance Speech

French Spanish And English

Though Morocco is located in North Africa, most Moroccans also speak French. Moroccos primary language is a dialect of Arabic and French serves as its second language. Its common for business people to use English with each other when they dont know how to communicate in French. English and Spanish are also every days because they are taught as foreign languages throughout schools in Morocco.

However, it should be noted that while 80% of Moroccans can read and write, just 10% speak fluent English. So if youre looking to do business in Morocco, consider hiring an interpreter or bringing someone who speaks French along with you. Even better, take some time to learn basic Arabic phrases before you go. If your goal is to enjoy Morocco on vacation, knowing at least some keywords and phrases will help make your trip more enjoyable.

Modern Standard And Classical Arabic

Moroccans learn Standard Arabic as a language. It is generally not spoken at home or on the streets. Standard Arabic is frequently used in administrative offices, mosques, and schools. According to Rouchdy, within Morocco Classical Arabic is still only used in literary and cultural aspects, formal traditional speeches, and discussions about religion.

Moroccan Arabic, along with Berber, is one of two languages spoken in homes and on the street. The language is not used in writing. Abdelâli Bentahila, the author of the 1983 book Language Attitudes among ArabicFrench Bilinguals in Morocco, said that Moroccans who were bilingual in both French and Arabic preferred to speak Arabic while discussing religion while discussing matters in a grocery store or restaurant and while discussing matters with family members, beggars, and maids. Moha Ennaji, author of Multilingualism, Cultural Identity, and Education in Morocco, said that Moroccan Arabic has connotations of informality, and that Moroccan Arabic tends to be used in casual conversations and spoken discourse. Ennaji added that Bilingual Moroccans tend to use Moroccan Arabic while in the house. Berbers generally learn Moroccan Arabic as a second language and use it as a lingua franca, since not all versions of Berber are mutually intelligible with one another.


Don’t Miss: Creepy Text To Speech Voice

Which Arabic Should I Learn Should I Learn A Dialect Or Modern Standard Arabic

The local dialect of Arabic in Morocco is called Darija , which means everyday, colloquial language. Each country where Arabic is the primary language has developed its own local language. Arabs often refer to this local language as a dialect of Arabic, but Moroccan Arabic is a mixture of numerous different languages and was especially influenced by Amazigh/Berber. Modern Standard Arabic , which is the international Arabic language, is used in writing and in official communication, but often feels somewhat artificial, or stuffy, because people dont actually speak MSA. Because the Arabic language is so closely connected to religion, the language has not been able to freely develop the way other languages do however, the Darija of each country is the language of the people that changes and adapts over time.

Moroccan Darija is not 100% Arabic because it contains a mixture of words taken from Modern Standard Arabic, Amazigh/Berber language, French, and to a lesser extent words from Spanish and English. Moroccan Darija speakers frequently borrow words from French and Spanish and conjugate them according to the rules of the dialect, which makes for some interesting-sounding words. Additionally, it continues to evolve by integrating new French or English words, especially in technical fields.

Standard Arabic: The Primary Language Of Education In Morocco

Moroccan Body Language Explained by a local!

For all intents and purposes, Standard Arabic is the official language of Morocco. It is the language of basic and higher education, the courts, religious ceremonies, and business. Standard Arabic has the highest official status in Morocco, according to the constitution. Therefore, it is the default language used in all formal domains.

Read Also: Exploring English: Language And Culture

What Languages Are Used In Morocco

12 provinces and regions cover a reasonably wide territory of the Moroccan kingdom. The people can speak a variety of languages and dialects in each of them. And, although the majority of residents are able to communicate in Arabic, visiting Berber settlements can result in misunderstandings among the locals. However, if you know at least a couple of their expressions, you can gain their favor.

French And Spanish Protectorates: 1912 To 1956

Treaty of Wad RasHispano-Moroccan War Makhzen

As Europe industrialised, Northwest Africa was increasingly prized for its potential for colonisation. France showed a strong interest in Morocco as early as 1830, not only to protect the border of its Algerian territory, but also because of the strategic position of Morocco with coasts on the Mediterranean and the open Atlantic. In 1860, a dispute over Spain’s Ceuta enclave led Spain to declare war. Victorious Spain won a further enclave and an enlarged Ceuta in the settlement. In 1884, Spain created a protectorate in the coastal areas of Morocco.

In 1904, France and Spain carved out zones of influence in Morocco. Recognition by the United Kingdom of France’s sphere of influence provoked a strong reaction from the German Empire and a crisis loomed in 1905. The matter was resolved at the Algeciras Conference in 1906. The Agadir Crisis of 1911 increased tensions between European powers. The 1912 Treaty of Fez made Morocco a protectorate of France, and triggered the 1912 Fez riots. Spain continued to operate its coastal protectorate. By the same treaty, Spain assumed the role of protecting power over the northern coastal and southern Saharan zones.

In 1943, the Istiqlal Party was founded to press for independence, with discreet US support. That party subsequently provided most of the leadership for the nationalist movement.

Read Also: Speech Therapy For Stroke Patients

Will English Take You Far In Morocco


What is the language spoken in Agadir, Morocco? Agadir is a beach resort town south of Marrakech, Casablanca, and Fes in Morocco. Due to its international popularity, mostly everything in Agadir is geared to tourists. Just a quick look at the departure signs at the airport give you a glimpse of where the majority of tourists in Agadir originate from England, Switzerland, Germany and Scandinavian countries. But, how do you communicate in Agadir, Morocco? Whats the official language and will everyone understand English? I have concluded my own experience with language, and language barriers in Morocco below for you.

More Helpful Learning Tools About The Languages Of Morocco


One of the best and most effective ways to learn a new language is by listening to how people speak. Paying close attention to how words are pronounced and phrases are emphasized makes a huge difference when trying to communicate, especially as a beginner.

Here are a few tips and suggestions to increase your language learning skills.

Also Check: Causes Of Speech And Language Impairment

Differences In Grammar And Pronunciation

Darija principally gives other Arabic speakers such problems because of pronunciation differences.

Short vowels are deleted between consonants, giving the Arabic spoken in Morocco a quicker, clicky rhythm.

Most words also receive a spoken prefix that sounds like a hummed “m,” causing further confusion.

The Moroccan dialect also has some grammatical differences, including changes to possessive and demonstrative pronouns.

There are also differences in how to express “there is” and “there are” in comparison with standard Arabic. Question words also change, in addition to the numbers 2 and 9.

Even some of the present tense verbs change. All of these differences make darija challenging for speakers of standard Arabic.

More articles

Popular Articles