The verb ‘be’ (present, singular)

If you look carefully at these sentences, you will see there are English equivalents for each word, except for am, are and is (forms of the verb be).

ana min fransa.
I’m from France.

min ayna anta?
Where are you (= male) from?

min aynaanti?
Where are you (= female) from?

huwa min lubnaan.
He is from Lebanon.

hiya mudarrisatna.
She is our teacher.

This shows that in Arabic you don’t use forms of be in positive sentences and in questions when you talk about the present or things that are valid all the time. However, as you can see from the example sentences below, am not, aren’t, isn’t have Arabic equivalents.

ana lastu al-mudarrisa.
Im not the teacher (= female).

hal anta lasta min fransa?
Aren’t you (= male) from France?

hal anti lasti min fransa?
Aren’t you (= female) from France?

hiya laysat Sadeeqatee.
She isn’t my friend. (female)

huwa laysa min lubnaan.
He isn’t from the Lebanon.

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