- Publisher: French & European Pubns (June 1, 1992)
- Language: Arabic
- ISBN-10: 0828884366
- ISBN-13: 978-0828884365
- Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.2 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,831,413 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Concise Oxford English: Arabic Dictionary of Current Usage (Arabic Edition) (Arabic)
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So, this is the only serious English-Arabic dictionary on the market in the US, even though it is a problematic dictionary. The latest edition is from 1982 (The main Arabic-English dictionary, the Hans Wehr, was last published in the 1980's as well, and it's also difficult in its own ways). The most basic problem is that the dictionary often explains words rather than translating them. This is more useful for native Arabic speakers than native English speakers, and it's a common problem for many Arabic dictionaries.
Take the example of the word "modern" in this dictionary. The normal translation of "modern" is hadiith, but the dictionary gives 'asrii and then muhdath as translations. The former is closer in meaning to "contemporary" and while the latter does mean "modern", it's not nearly as common as hadiith. In a language with as many synonyms as Arabic, we need to be given useful, concise translations, so the word hadiith should be there. The word "modernization" is explained as meaning roughly "following the manner of the age" ("al-akhdh bi-nihj al-'asr"), but this is not a translation - it's an explanation. Google Translate gives modernization as tahdiith, which is much more useful.
That said, this is the most serious dictionary on the market, and it's full of good translations, despite the occasionally ponderous non-translations. I do think you need this book and the Hans Wehr dictionary if you are serious about learning Arabic. I find translations from English useful, so I'm still happy to have this dictionary.