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  • 1 University of Haifa Department of Arabic Language and Literature Mount Carmel Haifa Israel
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The subject of this article is language contact between Coptic and Arabic as reflected in the so-called “tautological infinitive”. The corpus is the bilingual (Coptic and Arabic) MS Paris BN copte 1, and the starting point is Ariel Shisha-Halevy’s observations on the matter based on this manuscript. Focus is on the Arabic text: The Arabic “inner object”, al-maf’ūl al-muṭlaq, generally parallels a prepositional phrase in Coptic in a ηєn-oγ- pattern. Sometimes, following the Coptic, the traditional word order in the Arabic is changed (such differences are generally documented earlier in Biblical texts). In other cases the translation choices were to create a stylistic change that does not reflect the tautological infinitive in the Coptic text. Contact language here (the tautological infinitive), as reflected by the Arabic translation, seems to be ‘quite convenient’ for the translator into Arabic, contrary to other cases where more variety of choices is offered.

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