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Zeinab

Arabic Vowels

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Vowels

 

In Arabic there are short vowels and long vowels.

 

Short Vowels:

 

The short vowels marks which are called harakaat (ÍÑßÇÊ) in Arabic as used in a similar fashion to the a, i, e, o or u vowels in English but instead they are symbols put below or above letters.

 

There is the Damma ( ÖãÉ) (u/o), Kasra (ßÓÑÉ) (i/e), and fatha (ÝÊÍÉ) (a). These vowels are represented with the letter alif in the example below:

 

Çõ: A-u or A-o

 

As the 'u' in put.

 

The Damma is the small æ above the letter.

 

 

Çö : A-i or A-e

 

As the 'i' in sit.

 

The Kasra is the short diagonal stroke below the letter.

 

 

Çó : A-a

 

As the 'a' in sat.

 

The Fatha is the short diagonal stroke above the letter.

Edited by Zeinab

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PropellerAds

In Arabic there are also short double-vowels (Tanween).

 

Double-vowels:

 

These are similar to the short vowel above but with an addition “n” sound in the end. We have: damataan, kasrataan, and fathataan. These are represented with the letter daal in the example below:

 

 

Ïñ : D-un or D-on

 

As the 'un' in sun.

 

The dammataan is a double small waww written above the letter as such: ñ

 

 

Ïò : D-in

 

As the 'in' in sin.

 

The Kasrataan is the double short diagonal stroke below the letter.

 

 

ÏðÇ : D-an

 

As the 'an' in ran.

 

The Fathaan is the double short diagonal stroke above the alif following the letter (This is only for script purposes).

 

The difference between double vowels and single short vowels is to be able to distinguish different parts of speech. A noun can have double or single short vowels. But a verb can't have tanween.

 

If you are using al : "the" then a single vowel is used for example you say ÇáúÞóáóãõ : the pen.

 

You don't use al: "the" and a double vowel; you use tanween to represent an indefinite article, for example, Þáãñ : a pen

 

Double vowels are only used at the end of the word and not within the whole word like single vowels, for example: ßöÊóÇÈñ

Edited by Zeinab

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In Arabic three letters are used to stretch and lengthen the sound of the single vowels. They are called the long vowels: alif, waww, and yaa.

 

The Long vowel-marks

 

1- Alif al-madd is used to lengthen the fatha (a) sound to a double (aa)

Example with Jaa, Daa, Shaa, Saa, Laa, Waa, Yaa respectively:

 

ÌóÇ

 

ÏóÇ

 

ÔóÇ

 

ÕóÇ

 

áÇó

 

æóÇ

 

íóÇ

 

It is necessary that there is a fatha in the letter before used the alif for it to be a long vowel. So it is not possible to use it as a long vowel and there is a damma or kasra before it.

 

 

2- Waww al-Madd is used to lengthen the Damma (u/o) sound to double (uu/oo).

 

Example with Dhoo, Khoo, Woo, and Yoo respectively:

 

Ðõæ

 

Îõæ

 

æõæ

 

íõæ

 

 

3- Yaa Al-Madd is used to lengthen the Kasra (i/e) sound to double (ee).

 

Example with Thee, Tee, Zee, and Yee respectively:

 

Ëöí

 

Êöí

 

Òöí

 

íöí

 

The letters waww and yaa can be long vowels or not. If they have single vowels themselves then they are considered consonants. In the case they don't have single vowels: if they are their corresponding vowel before them (damma and kasra) then they are long vowels, if they have a fatha in front of them they are not long vowels rather called waww leen and yaa leen.

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Sukun

 

 

The sukun is a mark written above a letter meaning there is no vowel on this letter (stop consonant). It is symbolized by a circle above the letter: Èú

 

Example: as t is pronounced in bit : Êú

 

ãóÓúÌöÏñ : Mas-jidun (Mosque)

 

Sukun can be put on letters if they are in the middle or end of the word and not in the beginning.

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Shadda

 

The Shadda is a mark written above a letter indicating that that particular letter is doubled and should be emphasized. that the letter has been doubled and therefore increases its emphasis. It is symbolized as the following: ø

The shadda is also also accompanied by a haraka above it. The haraka can be either a single vowel or double vowel; and depending on the haraka the pronunciation is different.

 

Example a shadda with a fatha:

 

ÞöØøóÉñ : kittatun (cat) The way it is pronounced: first you say it as if the letter has a sukun on it: kit (sukun on the ta) and then since there is a fatha on the ta you pronounce a fatha so kit-ta-tun (here you have a damataan in the end).

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