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Click to Expand/Collapse OptionEtymArab
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ǧallābiyyaẗ جلّابيّة , var. gallābiyyaẗ (eg.), pl. ‑āt , galālībᵘ
ID 150 • Sw – • BP – • APD ... • Aut SG
ǦLB
n.f.
galabia, a loose, shirtlike garment, the common dress of the male population in Egypt – WehrCowan1979.
1)Unless a secondary formation (by dissimilative dropping of final ‑b ) from →ǧilbāb , which with all probability is a pre-Islamic loan from Ethiopian (Gz gəlbāb ‘covering, veil, wrapper’), gallābiyyaẗ / ǧallābiyyaẗ seems to be a nisba formation from ‎→ǧallāb ‘trader, importer’ (esp. of slaves), a word formed after the faʕʕāl pattern for professions from the vb. →ǧalab‑ (< Sem *glb ‘to attract, bring, fetch, import’), cf. Huehnergard2011. As such, its original meaning, like that of →ǧallābaẗ , is likely to have been ‘dress of the (slave) traders (or of the slaves themselves?)’.
Given the phonological proximity of ǧallābaẗ , gallābiyyaẗ / ǧallābiyyaẗ , and ǧilbāb , as well as the semantic overlapping, if not identity, it seems difficult to decide whether ǧallābaẗ and gallābiyyaẗ / ǧallābiyyaẗ are ‘contaminated’ from ǧilbāb or whether they derive from ǧallāb , or from distinct sources. In the first case, the semantics would be ‘garment, veil, “second skin”’ (→ǧilbāb , connected to a Sem *glb ‘skin, etc.’, cf. Ar →ǧulbaẗ ), in the latter it would be ‘dress of a (slave) trader (or, of a slave)’. Even if we assume distinct origins we will still have to reckon with a high possibility of collapsing meanings.
2) The form gallābiyyaẗ is limited to EgAr (today?), while similar forms of loose garments are called ǧallābaẗ (or ǧillābaẗ ) in the Maghreb.
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▪ DRS (1994), s.v. glb, lists “dial. ǧillābaẗ : vêtement (djellaba)” as a separate item, distinct from other values of Sem *glb , and, in the commentary section, states that it is “< glbb”, without however specifying which of the two values of *glbb‑ the authors think the word goes back to: *glbb-1 ‘esclave’ (Ar ǧilbāb ), or *glbb-2‑ ‘robe très ample, suaire’ (Ar →ǧilbāb ), etc.? Both *glbb values then are explained to derive from a Sem *glb value: *glbb-1 from *glb ‘traîner, emmener, etc.’, and *glbb-2 from *glb ‘peau, etc.’ – DRS#GLB-6; GLBB-1 and -2.
Dozy1881 maintained that the form →ǧallābaẗ and an even shorter one, ǧallāb , are modifications of the more original ǧallābiyyaẗ which he claims is the garment worn either by slave traders (→ǧallāb ) or by slaves. More or less the same position is also taken by Huehnergard2011 (s.v. glb ) for whom ǧallābaẗ‑ and g/ǧallābiyyaẗ as well as ǧilbāb both go back, ultimately, to the vb. →ǧalab‑ , which in turn can be traced to a WSem *glb ‘to catch, fetch’.
▪ In contrast, Marçais1956 thinks that Dozy’s assumption of ǧallāb‑ and ǧallābaẗ as corruptions of ǧallābiyyaẗ “seems philologically untenable”;in his opinion, it is rather “the Old Arabic djilbāb ‘outer garment’” that is the origin of ǧallābaẗ , or ǧallābiyyaẗ . It is not surprising, he says, that these should have developed from ǧilbāb‑ secondarily, the “dissimilative dropping” of a doubled last consonant being a common phenomenon, especially with loanwords like ǧilbāb .
▪ Youssef2003 suggests (for EgAr) a derivation from Eg grb , Copt čolbe , a man’s overgarment.
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