How to Tell the Time in Moroccan Arabic

What time is it? — Sh7âl (hâdî) f ssâ3a? شحال (هادي) ف السّاعة؟

We answer this question by the demonstrative pronoun hâdî, which means this is, referring to the current time. Using hâdî is optional.

It’s… : Hâdî

**English****Darija Transcription****Darija in Arabic letters**
It’s two **o’clock**Hâdî jjôj **nîshan**هادي الجُّوج نيشان
It’s **five past** twoHâdî jjôj **o qsm**هادي الجُّوج أُ قْسْم
two**Hâdî jjôj **o qsmâyn**هادي الجُّوج أُ قْسْماين
It’s two **and a quarter** Hâdî jjôj **o rb3**هادي الجُّوج أُ رْبعْ
It’s **twenty past** twoHâdî jjôj **o tolôt**هادي الجُّوج أُ تُلُت
It’s two **and a half**Hâdî jjôj **o nSS**هادي الجُّوج أُ نْصّ
It’s **twenty to** threeHâdî ttlâta **qll 3shrîn / tolot**هادي التّلاتة قْلّْ عشرين / تُلُت
three**Hâdî ttlâta **lla rôb/ qll rb3.**هادي التّلاتة لّا رُوب / قّل ربع
It’s **ten to** threeHâdî ttlâta **qll qsmâyn**هادي التّلاتة قل قْسماين
It’s **five to** threeHâdî ttlâta **qll qsm**هادي التّلاتة قل قْسم

Illustrations:

**Darija Transcription****Darija in Arabic letters****English**
NishânنيشانExactly
Qsmقْسم5 minutes
Qsmâynقْسماين10 minutes
Rb”رْبْعQuarter
TolotتُلتThird
N**SS**نصHalf
OأُAnd
Qll / llaقلّ / لّاMinus

To express an hour, you add the definite article to the appropriate number.

Examples:

It’s 5:00 = Hâdî lkhmsa nîshan. هادي لخمسة نيشان

It’s 6:45 = Hâdî ssb3a lla rôb. هادي السبعة لّا رُوب

It’s 6:30 = Hâdî sstta w nSS. هادي السّتة و نص

Exercise:

Read these:

– 5:50

– 2:30

– 4:00

– 6:10

– 12:15

– 10:05

– 7:20

– 8:40

– 9:45

– 11:55


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