لا

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U+FEFB, ﻻ
ARABIC LIGATURE LAM WITH ALEF ISOLATED FORM

[U+FEFA]
Arabic Presentation Forms-B
[U+FEFC]
U+FEFC, ﻼ
ARABIC LIGATURE LAM WITH ALEF FINAL FORM
[unassigned: U+FEFD–U+FEFE]

[U+FEFB]
Arabic Presentation Forms-B
[U+FEFF]

Arabic[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From Proto-Semitic *lā. Compare Hebrew לֹא(lo), which, in older texts, is used in the negative imperative and the negative existential indicative.

Pronunciation[edit]

  • IPA(key): /laː/
  • (file)

Particle[edit]

لَا ()

  1. no
  2. not; negates an indicative present-tense verb
  3. do not; expresses prohibition with a jussive verb
    لَا نَنْسَ…‎‎ ― nansa…Let us not forget…
    لَا يَفُتْكُمْ‎ ― yafutkumYou shall not miss it.
    • 609–632 CE, Qur'an, 49:11:
      يَا أَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا لَا يَسْخَرْ قَوْمٌ مِنْ قَوْمٍ عَسَى أَنْ يَكُونُوا خَيْرًا مِنْهُمْ وَلَا نِسَاءٌ مِنْ نِسَاءٍ عَسَى أَن يَكُنَّ خَيْرًا مِنْهُنَّ وَلَا تَلْمِزُوا أَنْفُسَكُمْ وَلَا تَنَابَزُوا بِٱلْأَلْقَابِ
      yā ʾayyuhā llaḏīna ʾāmanū yasḵar qawmun min qawmin ʿasā ʾan yakūnū ḵayran minhum wa-lā nisāʾun min nisāʾin ʿasā ʾan yakunna ḵayran minhunna wa- talmizū ʾanfusakum wa- tanābazū bi-l-ʾalqābi
      O you who have believed, let not a people ridicule people; perhaps they may be better than them; nor let women ridicule women; perhaps they may be better than them. And do not insult one another and do not call each other by names.
    • Zuhayr ibn Abi Sulma
      يَا حَارِ لَا أُرْمَيَنْ مِنْكُمْ بِدَاهِيَةٍ / لَمْ يَلْقَهَا سُوقَةٌ قَبْلِي وَلَا مَلِكُ
      yā ḥāri ʾurmayan minkum bidāhiyatin / lam yalqahā sūqatun qablī walā maliku
      (please add an English translation of this quote)
    • Al-Farazdaq
      إِذَا مَا خَرَجْنَا مِنْ دِمَشْقَ فَلَا نَعُدْ / لَهَا أَبَدًا مَا دَامَ فِيهَا الْجُرَاضِمُ
      ʾiḏā mā ḵarajnā min dimašqa falā naʿud / lahā ʾabadan mā dāma fīhā l-jurāḍimu
      (please add an English translation of this quote)
  4. there is not, there is no, there is nothing, nothing is
    لَا طَالِبَ حَاضِرٌ.‎‎ ― ṭāliba ḥāḍirun.No student is present.
  5. not; negates any non-verbal sentence element
  6. neither, nor
Usage notes[edit]

As shown in the example, sense 4 generally governs a noun in the determinate state and the accusative case — that is, a noun without nunation. However, subsequent adjectives are in the indeterminate state, meaning they are nunated:

  • لَا طَالِبَ مُجْتَهِدًا حَاضِرٌ‎ ― ṭāliba mujtahidan ḥāḍirunNo hard-working student is present.

If, instead of an adjective, there is an attributive prepositional phrase, the initial noun can be in either state:

  • لَا طَالِبَ لَدَيْنَا مُجْتَهِدًا حَاضِرٌ‎ ― ṭāliba ladaynā mujtahidan ḥāḍirunNo hard-working student of ours is present.
  • لَا طَالِبًا لِلْعِلْمِ مُقَصِّرٌ‎ ― ṭāliban lilʿilmi muqaṣṣirunNo seeker of knowledge is delinquent.

Additionally, sense 4 can govern a preposition alone, with an implicit third-person singular masculine subject and no visible case or state. This is the origin of لَا عَلَيْكَ(lā ʿalayka, no worries, literally there is not [anything] on you) and similar collocations.

Isolated form Final form
لا ـلا
Antonyms[edit]
  • (no): نَعَم(naʿam)
  • (expresses prohibition with a jussive verb): لِـ(li-)
Descendants[edit]
  • Gulf Arabic: لَأْ(la’, no), لا(la, don't (used before imperatives))
  • Maltese: la, le
  • Swahili: la

Conjunction[edit]

لَا ()

  1. not, and not
    أَحْضِرْ وَثَائِقَكَ لَا كُتُبَكَ
    ʾaḥḍir waṯāʾiqaka kutubaka
    Bring your documents, not your books.
Antonyms[edit]
Derived terms[edit]

Prefix[edit]

لَا ()

  1. non-, un-, in-
    لَاسُلْطَوِيّ(lāsulṭawiyy)
    لَاسِلْكِيّ(lāsilkiyy)
    لَامُبَالَاة(lāmubālāh)
    لَافَقَارِيَّات(lāfaqāriyyāt)
    لَامَرْكَزِيَّة(lāmarkaziyya)
Derived terms[edit]

See also[edit]

Etymology 2[edit]

Particle[edit]

لَا (la)

  1. (Classical Arabic, before a hamza) Alternative spelling of لَ(la, truly, indeed)

References[edit]


Persian[edit]

Etymology 1[edit]

From French la.

Noun[edit]

لا ()

  1. (music) A, La (the sixth note of the fixed-Do solfège scale)
  2. (music) La (the sixth note of the movable-Do solfège scale, i.e. the submediant)

Etymology 2[edit]

From Arabic لَا().

Particle[edit]

Dari لا
Iranian Persian
Tajik ло (lo)

لا ()

  1. (rare) un-
Synonyms[edit]

Etymology 3[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Noun[edit]

Dari لا
Iranian Persian
Tajik ло (lo)

لا ()

  1. fold
  2. layer
  3. ply
  4. strand

South Levantine Arabic[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From Arabic لَا().

Particle[edit]

لا (la)

  1. don't (negative imperative)
    Synonyms: ما(), ـش()
    لا تنسى تعمل واجباتك!‎‎
    la tinsa tiʕmil wājbātak
    Don't forget to do your homework!
  2. may it not (with subjunctive verb)
    لا يكون صابه إشي.‎‎
    la ykūn ṣābo ʔiši
    May it not be that something hurt him.

Usage notes[edit]

  • The negative imperative with لا (la) is more formal, while ما() and the suffix ـش() are more common in informal speech.
  • لا يكون(la ykūn) is often used a fixed expression not conjugated by person and number and might be written as one word ليكون(laykūn).

See also[edit]

  • لأ(laʔ, no)