353 Words And Phrases In Algerian Arabic (Or Dardja)

Of all the languages spoken in Algeria, Derja is the most common. It’s sometimes referred to as Algerian Arabic, and even among Algerians, many consider the language a dialect of Arabic. Yet, it is, in many ways, different from Arabic, and I, personally, think that Algerian should be considered a language apart.

If you’re interested in learning the Algerian language, you might find that it’s an uphill battle. Not because it’s an extremely difficult language (though it is quite complex for the average English-speaker) but because it’s extremely difficult to find any useful learning resources for it. While some courses exist for people aiming to learn Moroccan, it isn’t exactly the same.

That’s why I’ve decided to do my part in making the Algerian language more available. It’s a small part, and the below words and phrases are far from being a complete course, but it might be helpful for someone who’s just starting out learning Algerian.

The below recordings were made by Redouane Aouameur (link to fiverr). They’re mainly in the accent spoken in Algiers, the capital, but with a few scattered exampled from other Algerian regions too.

Enjoy!

Greetings, Goodbyes, Pleasantries, And Asking Questions

EnglishAlgerian
Hello.Sa7a.
Good morning.Sba7 elkhir.
Good evening.Mess elkhir.
Good night.Tasba7 bkhir.
Goodbye.B9a 3la khir.
See you later.Netla9aw omba3d.

or
Hia .
(familiar in Algiers)
How are you?Wesh rak? (M)

Wesh raki? (F)


Kifesh rak (M)

Kifesh raki? (F)
(Mostly in Aliers)


Ki dayer (M)

Ki dayra (F)
(Oran)


Ma3liksh?
(Constantine)


ça va?
(Everywhere)
I’m fine.Rani mli7. (M)

Rani mli7a. (F)

or
Labess

or
Ghaya
(In Oran)
I’m not feeling well.Ma ranish mli7. (M)

Ma ranish mli7a. (F)
God be praised.7amdoullah.
Anything new?Kesh jdid?
What have you been doing lately?Wesh dert fiha?

or
Wesh rak dayer fiha?
How is your health?Kifesh rahi ssa7a?
How is the family?kifesh rahi la famille?

or
Wesh 7wel la famille?
Say hi to your father.Sallem 3la bebek.
Tell your mother to take care.9oll lyemmak tethalla.
It was nice talking to you.Gasserna mli7

or
3adjbetni lgassra
What’s your name?Wassmek?
My name is Tom.Wassemni Tom.
Did you come here for work?Djit llahna besh takhdem?
I’m a tourist.Ana touriste.

or
Djit n7awess.
I work in a bank.Nakhdem fel banka.
Don’t stress about it.Matet9alle9sh.
Don’t think too much.Matkhemmemsh.
It doesn’t matter.Ma3liche.

or
Ma fiha walou.
That’s great.7ala.

Intik.

Bien.

Fort bezzaf.
I’m happy for you.Fra7tlek.
If God wills.Nchallah.
In the name of God.Besmellah.
May God make you succeed. Llah y3awnek.
God bless you.Barakallahoufik.
God rest his soul.Rabbi yarra7mou.
God rest her soul.Rabbi yar7amha.
To God we belong, and to him we shall return.Inna lillah wa inna ilayhi radji3oun.
May God accept it.Rabbi ya9bel.

(When you see someone who just finished a prayer).
The food is delicious.Lmekla bnina.
Would you like some more?Nzidlek?
(Do you want me to add for you)
A little more.Chwiya.
No thank you.Lala sa7a
Yes please.Ih sa7a.
I’m full.Rani chab3an. (M)

Rani chab3ana. (F)
I’m hungry.Rani dji3an. (M)

Rani dji3ana. (F)
I love fish.N7abb el 7ot.
I don’t like grapes.Man7ebsh la3neb.

Time

EnglishAlgerian
TimeSsa3a
or
lwa9t

What time is it?Sh7al rahi ssa3a?
When should I come?Wa9tesh lazem ndji?
When does the bus arrive? Wa9tesh ydji lbus?
I’ll be there in ten minutes. 3ashr d9aye9 wenkoun 3andek

or
Nkoun 3andek 3la 3ashr d9aye9.
I’ll wait here an hour.Nessenna hna sa3a.
I’ll stay in Algiers for a week.Ne93oud fe Dzayer smana.
I’ll travel in the country for a month.N7awess fleblad shhar.
I haven’t eaten Algerian pastries for a whole year.3andi 3am maklitch lgâtto nta3 Dzayer.
When is your flight?3a9eddash ttiyara nta3ek t9alle3?
or
3a9eddash lvol nta3ek.
How old are you?Sh7al fi 3omrek.
I’m 20 years old.Fi 3omri 3ashrin sna.

Finding Your Way And Specific Places

EnglishAlgerian
How do I get to the Casbah?Kifesh nro7 lel9asba?
How do I find a taxi? Kifesh nel9a taxi?
Where’s the Agha station?Win djaya la gare nta3 agha
Where can I buy train tickets?Win yashrou tikiyatte nta3 lmachina?
Is there a tram that goes to Babezzouar?Kayen tramway yro7 lbabezzouar?
How much is a bus-ticket?Sh7al yasswa ettiki nta3 lbus?
Turn left by the post office.Ki tal7a9 lelposta, dor à gauche.
Go right after the white building.Dor à droite mor el batima el bidha.
Go straight by those trees.Ro7 9bala m3a shdjer hadouk.
or
Ro7 nichan m3a shdjer hadouk.
(in Western regions)
Go back where you came from.3awed welli mnin djit.
Continue along the palm-trees.Kammel 9bala m3a nnkhel.
I’ll go buy eggs at the shop.Nro7 lel7anout besh neshri lbidh.
Later I’ll go to the supermarket.Omba3d nro7 le supermarché.
You can get copies at the cyber-café.Ta9der dir fotocopi fe cyber-café.
You can get phone-credit at the kiosk.ta9der dir flexy 3and lekiosk.
I’m looking for the butcher’s.Rani n7awess 3la boucher.
Where can I find the bakery?Win nel9a boulanger?

or
Win nel9a khabbez?
Can you recommend a family-friendly restaurant?ta9der twarrili restaurant familiale?

or
ta9der tconseillili restaurant familiale?
Where can I buy cheap fast-food?Win na9der neshri fast food mashi ghali?
I walk my son to school.Naddi wlidi llemsid.
or
Naddi wlidi llikoul.
He’s in primary school. Rahou fel ibtida’i.
My daughter takes the bus to her high-school.Benti ta7kem lbus besh tro7 lelyci.
My younger brother takes the bus to the university.Khoya sghir ya7kem lbus besh yro7 leldjami3a
I drive my car to work.nro7 lelkhedma fe tomobil.
I have to go to the Dutch embassyLazem nro7 llambassade nta3 la Hollande.
Where can I find an ATM machine that accepts VISA cards?Win na9der nel9a distributeur ya9bel les cartes VISA.
Where can I change euros to dinars?Win na9der nbeddel l’euro be ddinar.
Can you recommend a certified translator?Ta9der twirili win nal9a traducteur certifié. (M)


Ta99adri twirili win nal9a traducteur certifié. (F)
What’s the direction to the police station?Win djay lcommissariat?
Dim your lights at the checkpoint.Na9ess les phares 3and lbarage.
or
Naqess edhou a3n lbarage
The big mosque of Algiers is next to the freeway.Ldjame3 lekbir nta3 Dzayer djay 9addem l’autoroute.
How do I get to the Notre Dame D’Afrique church?Kifesh nro7 lléglise nta3 Notre Dame D’Afrique.
This mosque used to be a synagogue.Had el djame3 kan synagogue
or
Had el djame3 kan ma3bed nta3 lihoud.
I need to find a taxi to bring me to the graveyard.Lazem nal9a taxi ywessalni leldjebbana.
There’s the statue of Amir Abdel Kader.Haylik la statue nta3 lamir 3abdel Kader.
The monument of the martyrs is in the heights of Algiers.Ma9am echahid djay f les hauteurs nta3 Alger.
I recommend visiting the Roman ruins in Tipaza.Nannas7ak tvisiti les ruines romaines nta3 Tipaza.

The Market

EnglishAlgerian
The marketLmarché
How much does this cost?Sh7al yaswa hada (M)

Sh7altaswa hadi (F)
Can I buy it for 1000 dinars?Na9der neshrih be miyatalef?
(Literaly: one hundred thousand – prices are often in cents)
It’s too expensiveGhali bezzaf
It’s not cheapMashi rkhiss
It’s a good pricePrix mli7
or
Prix shbab
It’s a bad pricePrix 3eyan
Do you have this in size “L”?Kayen hada fe la taille ‘’L’’?
Do you have coffee? Kayen 9ahwa?
or
3andek 9ahwa?

3andkoum 9ahwa?
(if it’s a café)

Groceries

EnglishAlgerian
GroceriesGedhyan
BreadKhobz
Sweets7alwa
CakesLgâtto
Milkla7lib
EggsLbidh

Wled el djedj (Algiers)

La3dham (Eastern regions)
FlourFarina
SugarSokker
Honey3ssel
Chickpeas7missa
CouscousT3am
(Central regions)

Seksou
(Central and Eastern regions)

Na3ma
(Constantine)

Berboucha
(Sétif, Aures, etc)
Spices39a9er

or
Twabel
SaltLmel7
Black pepperFelfel k7el
Cinnamon9arfa
CuminKemmoun
Chili pepperFelfel 7arr
PaprikaFelfel 3akri

or
Felfel 7mer
MeatL7am
BeefBagri
LambGhanmi
ChickenDjedj
Fish7out
DishesLes plats
or
Lemwakel
SoupChorba
or
Souppa
StewDjwaz
Baked vegetables
Baked fish
Baked meat
Khedra koucha

7out koucha

L7am koucha
Fried vegetables
Fried fish
Fried meat
khedra ma9lia

7out ma9li

l7am ma9li

Numbers

EnglishAlgerian
One, firstwa7ed

Louwel (M)

Louwla (F)
Two, secondZoudj

Tani (M)

Tània (F)
Three, thirdTlata

Talet (M)

Tàlta (F)
Four, fourthRab3a

Rrabe3 (M)

Rràb3a (F)
Five, fifthKhamsa

Lkhamess (M)

Lkhàmssa (F)
Six, sixthSetta

Sadess (M)

Sàdssa (F)
Seven, seventhSab3a

Ssabe3 (M)

Ssàb3a (F)
Eight, eighthTmenia

Tamen (M)

Ttémna (F)
Nine, ninthTess3a

Tàsse3 (M)

Tàss3a (F)
Ten, tenth3ashra

l3àsher (M)

l3àshra (F)
Eleven7desh
TwelveTtnash
ThirteenTlettash
FourteenRba3tash
FifteenKhmastash
SixteenSettash
SeventeenSba3tash
EighteenTmentash
NineteenTssa3tash
Twenty3ashrine
Twenty-oneWa7ed ou3ashrine
Twenty-twoTnin ou3ashrine
Twenty-threeTlata ou3ashrine
Twenty-fourRab3a ou3ashrine
Twenty-fiveKhamsa ou3ashrine
Twenty-sixSetta ou3ashrine
Twenty-sevenSeb3a ou3ashrine
Twenty-eightTmenia ou3ashrine
Twenty-nineTess3a ou3ashrine
ThirtyTlatine
FourtyRab3ine
FiftyKhamssine
SixtySettine
SeventySeb3ine
EightyTmanine
NinetyTess3ine
100 Mia
101Mia ouwa7ed
200Mitine
300Telt mia
1000Alef
1001Alf ouwa7ed
1100Alf oumia
2000Alfine
3000Teltalaf
1.000.000Mellioune
1.000.000.000Melliarr

Colors, Adjectives And Adverbs 

EnglishAlgerian
GoodMli7 (M)

Mli7a (F)
BadMashi mli7 (M)

Mashi mli7a (F)

or
3iyen (M)

3iyana (F)
BeautifulShbab (M)

Shabba (F)

or
Zina (F)
UglyMez3o9 (M)

Mez3o9a (F)
CuteMesrar (M)

Mesrara (F)
QuicklyBezzerba
Slow t9il (M)

t9ila (F)
(Same word as “heavy”)
LightKhfif (M)

Khfifa (F)
Heavyt9il (M)

t9ila (F)
(Same word as “slow”)
CheapRkhiss (M)

Rkhisa (F)
ExpensiveGhali (M)

Ghalia (F)
NewJdid (M)

Jdida (F)
Old9dim (M)

9dima (F)

Adjectives For Speaking About Food

EnglishAlgerian
FreshFrishka
RottenMdewed (M)

Mdeweda (F)

or
Ma3foun (M)

Ma3founa (F)
Sweet7louw (M)

7louwa (F)
SaltyMale7 (M)

Mal7a (F)
SpicyMtabbel (M)

Mtabbela (F)

Colors

Whitebyedh (M)

bidha (F)

or bitta (Algiers) (F)
Blackk7el (M)

ka7la (F)
Yellow
Sfarr (M)

Saffra (F)
GreenKhder (M)

Khedra (F)
Bluezre9 (M)

or
zreg (M)


zer9a (F)

or
zerga (F)
Brown9ahwi (M)

9ahwiya (F)
(related to coffee “9ahwa”)
Red7marr (M)

7amra (F)
PinkKhokhi (M)

Khokhiya (F)
(related to peach ‘’khokh’’)

Orange
Tchini (M)

Tichinia (F)
(related to orange (fruit) “tchina”)

Shapes

EnglishAlgerian
LongTwil (M)

Twila (F)
Short9ssir (M)

9ssira (F)
RoundMdower (M)

Mdowera (A)
SquareCarré (M)

Carria (F)
BigKbir (M)

Kbira (F)
SmallSghir (M)

Sghira (F)
ThickKhshine (M)

Khshina (F)
Thinr9i9 (M)

r9i9a (F)

Temperature

EnglishAlgerian
HotSkhoun (M)

Skhouna (F)
ColdBared (M)

Barda (F)
LukewarmDafi (M)

Dafia (F)

The Weather And The Seasons

EnglishAlgerian
The sun is shiningShems rahi tssatta3
It’s rainingRahi tssabb eshta

or
rahou yssabb ennou
(in other regions)
It was windy yesterdayKan erri7 el bare7
It’s snowing in the mountainsRahou yssabb etheldj fledjbal
It’s hot in the south (the dessert)Skhana fe sa7ra
It’s cold in JanuaryEl berd f janvier
There was an earthquake in 2003Darbett ezzelzla f 2003
There is a forest fire in Kabylialghabat rahoum yat7argo fi blad 9bayel
There was a flood in AlgiersDjat el 7amla f Dzayer

Months Of The Year

EnglishAlgerian
JanuaryJanvier
FebruaryFivri
MarchMares

or
Mayo
AprilAvril
MayMay
JuneJwan
JulyJwiyi
AugustAoût
SeptemberSeptember
OctoberOctober
NovemberNovember
DecemberDicember

Seasons

EnglishAlgerian
SpringRbi3
SummerSsiff
FallLekhrif
WinterShta

Holidays And Festivities

EnglishAlgerian
CongratulationsMabrouk 3lik
Happy ramadanSa7a ramdanek
(one person)

Sa7a ramdankoum
(a group of people)
Children are encouraged to fast, but they don’t have toDrari ya99adrou yssomo bessa7 mashi bessif 3lihoum
Have a nice breakfast
(Used, literally for the breaking of the fast)
Sa7a ftourek
(one person)

Sa7a ftourkoum
(a group of people)
Happy eidSa7a 3idek
(one person)

Sa7a 3idkoum
(a group of people)
Did your family slaughter a sheep for eid?Dba7tou kebsh el 3id?
Happy Yennayer
(The traditional Berber new-year)
Yennayer amarvou7
Happy mawlid
(The birthday of the prophet of Islam)
Sa7a mouloudek
(one person)

Sa7a mouloudkoum
(a group of people)
You’re invited to the circumcision party of my sonrak ma3rodh lelkhtana nta3 wlidi
I went to my friend’s marriageRo7t lel3arss nta3 sa7bi
The bride wore many traditional dressesLa3rossa labsset 7wayedj ta9lidia
The groom spoke to his father in-lawLa3riyess hdar m3a chikho
They received many presentsDjaboulhoum bezzaf les cadeaux
All guests got a box of traditional sweetsMaddou bwayett nta3 el gâtto lkamel dhyaf
Happy birthdayJoyeux anniversaire

or
3id milad sa3id
May you reach a hundred yearsla39oba lemyat sna
Happy new yearBonne année

or
3am sa3id
Best wishes for you and your familyNetmennalek ghir el khir lik wel familtek

Jobs, Occupations, And People

EnglishAlgerian
I brought a mason to renovate my kitchenDjebt el masson besh n3awed lkouzina nta3i
Do you know a good electrician?Ta3ref kesh électricien mli7?
You shouldn’t look down on the garbage manMalazemsh tahgar bel3in nnadhaff
I’m proud that my daughter is an engineerRani far7an b benti l’ingénieur
My son is studying to become a doctorWlidi raho ya9ra besh ywelli tbib
My uncle is a taxi driver3ammi taxieur
or
3ammi chauffeur nta3 taxi
I’m a bankerNakhdem fel banka
I work as a clerk in a supermarketNbi3 fe supermarché
I’m a car-salesmanNbi3 ttomobilettes
My dad used to be a farmerBeba kan fella7
or
Beba kanet 3andou firma
Now my father is retiredDokka beba rahou retraité
My grandfather was a shepherdDjeddi kan ra3i
I’m looking for a jobRani n7awess 3la khedma
My mother is a homemakerYemma 9a3da fe ddar
But she also makes sweets for partiesBessa7 takhdem el 7alwa lla3rass
My wife is a business womanMerti femme d’affaires
She buys and sells different goodsTbi3 ou teshri fe ssal3a
I’m a cook at a hotelNakhdem cuisinier fi hôtel
or
Nakhdem teyyab fi hôtel
An elderly manChikh kbir
An elderly woman3djouza
or
mra kbira
A young girlJeunne fille
or
tafla
A young boyJeune homme
or
tfel

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