Published on 12/16/2013

The Scientific Council of the Doha Historical Dictionary of Arabic has held its second meeting on Monday 16 December 2013, in the hotel Saint Regis - Doha, with the attendance of the General Director of ACRPS Dr. Dr. Azmi Bishara. On top of this meeting's agenda – that includes many other issues – come two important issues; the second version of the bibliography – phase I covering till the end of the second Hijri century, and the criteria of handling inscriptions and papyri.

Dr. Azmi Bishara​​ confirmed that the work on the project is excellently proceeding at fast pace. "Now, we are more realistic, and the benefits of professional work got clear due to the continuous consultation and communication between the executive board and the  members of the scientific council that includes an elite of the most important Arabic linguists", he added. Dr. Beshara concluded his speech with emphasizing the commitment to the dates assigned to achieving the different phases of the project.

Then, a detailed report on the progress of the work on the Doha Historical Dictionary of Arabic has been presented by Dr. Azeddine Bouchikhi, covering both the ongoing as well as the accomplished achievements. The most significant such reported achievements are:

-                     Preparing the documents containing prose in a well documented and chronological ordering for the third version of the bibliography – phase I, in light of the scientific decisions made by the scientific council in this regard.

-                     Following up with building the second version of the text corpus – phase I.

-                     Pursuing the different scenarios of collaborating with a specialized company to build the e-portal and the web site of the dictionary.

-                     Following up with the conclusions of the workshop "Information Technologies for the Historical Dictionary of Arabic" held in Doha on 21 Sept. 2013.

-                     Experimenting with some software tools that may help on the project, and developing other ones as per the requirements of the dictionary.

Then, the duputy executive manager Dr. Muhammed Al-Obaidi presented a report on the second version of the bibliography – phase I, where he explained the criteria followed for preparing the bibliography documents containing poetry and prose, and how the remarks of the scientific council members are taken into consideration in this regard.

Then, the other deputy executive manager Dr. Rachid Belhabib presented an experimental example of the root "Thaa Qaf Faa", where he showed how to extract the linguistic material from the text corpus, to build lexical entries with the information embedded into them, and to chronologicaly list the entries with their senses linked to their citations and documented by their sources.

The council members praised the great effort made by the executive board carrying out the project, and studied the issues regarding the second version of the bibliography – phase I, the sources of text corpus along with their reliability criteria, the inscriptions and papyri and their inclusion criteria, and the auxiliary software tools. They concluded with a number of decisions and recommendations, and agreed to the date of the third meeting of the scientific council and its agenda.

It is worth mentioning that the Doha Historical Dictionary of Arabic project went through three mile stones so far:

-                     The arrangements for launching the project over eighteen months.

-                     The announcement of the project launching, after the completion of its requirements as stated in its institutional documents.

-                     The initiation of carrying out its first stage out of five according to the plan stated in the institutional documents.​


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