Levantine Arabic – لسا

In Levantine Arabic, you will often hear Arabs use either “لسا” or “بعد” when indicating “not yet” or “still”. “لسا” is what I’m used to hearing and it is the term that is predominantly used, however Arabs in Lebanon and Galilee might use the term “بعد”.

In terms of the “not yet” context, you will find examples such as:

“أنت أكلت ولا لسا؟” (anta akalit wala lissa?), translating to “Have you eaten yet?” If one was to respond “not yet”, then they would simply say “لسا”. Another example might be something like “قال لي إنه أبوك رجع” (gaaly inno abuuk rija3), meaning “he told me that your father had come back.” A response of  “لسا” would indicate that the father has not returned yet.

“لسا ما شفتهاش” (lissa ma shuft-haa-sh), translates to “I haven’t seen her yet” while “لسا ما كملتش” (lissa ma kammalt-esh) means “I haven’t finished yet”.

In addition to meaning “not yet”, “لسا” can also express that someone is “still” doing something. “سمعت من الشركة ولا لا؟” (sami3t min ash-sharika wala la?) — “Did you hear from the company yet?” “لا، لساني  مستنى” (la, lissaani mustana) — “No, I’m still waiting”.

You can also alter “لسا” to reflect the corresponding pronouns:

لساني or لساتني for أنا

لساك or  لساتك for إنت

لساكي or لساتك for إنتي

لساه or لساته for هو

لساها or لساتها for هي

لسانا or لساتنا for إحنا

لساكم or لساتكم for إنتو

لساهم or لساتهم for هم

Some examples of the terms from above might be something like: “لساكم هون!؟” (lissaakom hoon?) — “You guys are still here?!” or “لساها مريضة” (lissaaha mareeDa) — “She’s still sick”.

I hope this post helps those who might be confused about “لسا”. Questions are always welcome.

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