I really enjoyed reading Maciej Cegłowski’s post Why Arabic is Terrific. It’s a brief run-down of a lot of the interesting grammatical constructions in the language, from an outsider’s perspective. Arabic isn’t on my short list of things to learn, but this caught my eye.
One thing that I hadn’t thought about:
Muslims believe that Arabic as written in the 7th century A.D. is the language of divine revalation. This has served as a tremendously conservative force on written Arabic, with two important consequences.
The first is that texts from over a thousand years ago remain accessible to modern readers. If you’re an English speaker, where even texts from 200 years ago can be rough going, this is quite a treat.