- Rōmaji transcription of
From Arabic أَنَا (ʾanā) with expressive lengthening of the first syllable (*ʾānā) as generally in Maghrebi dialects; compare Tunisian Arabic آنا (ʾāna), Moroccan Arabic آنا (ʾāna). Eventually from Proto-Semitic *ʔanāku. Prefixed j- occurs more often in Maltese (compare jew); in this case perhaps generalised from a position after the personal suffixes -i, -ni, as in dari jien(a) (“my own house”). This construction is not very common anymore in Maltese, but it is throughout Arabic.
- I (first-person singular subject pronoun)
- In a standalone context absent of a conjugated verb, this takes on the present tense first person singular meaning of "to be".
|Inflected forms of jien|
|negative||ma jiniex, miniex|
|basic suffix||-i, -ja|
|direct object suffix||-ni|
|indirect object suffix||-li|