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The Info List - Sun And Moon Letters


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(i)

In Arabic
Arabic
and Maltese , the consonants are divided into two groups, called the "SUN LETTERS or SOLAR LETTERS" ( Arabic
Arabic
: حُرُوفُ ٱلْشَّمْسِيَّة - ḥURūFU \'SH-SHAMSīYYAH) AND "MOON LETTERS or LUNAR LETTERS" ( Arabic
Arabic
: حُرُوفُ ٱلْقَمَرِيَّة - ḥurūfu 'l-qamarīyyah), based on whether they assimilate the letter lām (ل) of a preceding definite article al- (ال).

These names come from the fact that the word for 'the sun' - al-shams (الْشَّمسُ), is properly pronounced "ash-shams" which assimilates the lām (ل) following a shaddah (ّ–ّ ّ ) , while the word for 'the moon', al-qamar (الْقَمَرْ), does not assimilate the lām (ل) without the shaddah (-ّ ّ ).

CONTENTS

* 1 Rule

* 1.1 Jīm

* 2 Orthography * 3 See also * 4 References

RULE

When the Arabic
Arabic
definite article (ال) followed by a sun letter, the /l / of the Arabic
Arabic
definite article al- assimilates to the initial consonant of the following noun, resulting in a doubled consonant . Example, for "the Nile", one does not say al-Nīl, but an-Nīl (الْنِّيل).

When the Arabic
Arabic
definite article (الْـ) is followed by a moon letter, no assimilation takes place. The sun letters represent the coronal consonants according to the phonology of Classical Arabic, and the moon letters represent all others.

The sun and moon letters are as follows:

(for the sake of convenience and understanding, the "shaddah - rule of assimilation" mentioned above will be applied in the table below)

Sun/ Solar Letters

(حُرُوفُ ٱلْشَّمْسِيَّة - ḥurūfu 'sh-shamsīyyah)

Moon/ Lunar Letters

(حُرُوفُ ٱلْقَمَرِيَّة - ḥurūfu 'l-qamarīyyah)

LETTER IPA Assimilated of "lām" in definite article "al"

along with shaddah (الْـّ) EXAMPLES

LETTER IPA NOT Assimilated with "lām" in definite article "al"

(الْـ) EXAMPLES

ت

t /t / − الْتّـ

’at-t... الْتِّينُ

’at-tiyn(u)

= the fig ء

ʼ /ʔ / − الْإـ, الْأـ

’al-’a.../ ’al-’u...; ’al-’i... الْأَخُ

’al-’akh(u)

= the brother

الْأُذُنُ

’al-’udhun(u)

= the ear

الْإِبْرِيقُ

’al-’ibriyq(u)

= the jug

ث

th /θ / − الْثّـ

’ath-th... الْثَّعْلَبُ

’ath-tha‘lab(u)

= the fox ب

b /b / − الْبـ

’al-b... الْبَيتُ

’al-bayt(u)

= the house

د

d /d / −الْدّ

’ad-d... الْدُّبُّ

’ad-dubb(u)

= the bear ج

j /d͡ʒ / − الْجـ

’al-j... الْجَوزُ

’al-jawz(u)

= the walnut

ذ

dh /ð / −الْذّ

’adh-dh... الْذَّكَرُ

’adh-dhakar(u)

= the man, male ح

ḥ /ħ / − الْحـ

’al-ḥ... الْحَجُّ

’al-Ḥajj(u)

=the Hajj pilgrimage

ر

r /r / −الْرّ

’ar-r... الْرَّبُّ

’ar-Rabb(u)

= the Lord (Allah) خ

kh /x / − الْخـ

’al-kh... الْخَوْخُ

’al-khawkh(u)

=the peach

ز

z /z / −الْزّ

’az-z... الْزَّنْبَقُ

’az-zanbaq(u)

= the lily ع

ʻ /ʕ / − الْعـ

’al-‘a.../ ’al-‘u.../ ’al-‘i... الْعَقْلُ

’al-‘aql(u)

= the mind

الْعُشْبُ

’al-‘ush·b(u)

= the grass

الْعِيدُ

’al-‘id(u)

= the holiday/ festival

س

s /s / − الْسّـ

’as-s... الْسَّمَاوَاتُ

’as-samaāwaāt(u)

= the Heavens/ firmament, skies غ

gh /ɣ / − الْغـ

’al-gh...

الْغَرَامُ

’al-gharaām(u)

= the love, warmth, romantic

ش

sh /ʃ / − الْشّـ

’ash-sh...

الْشَّرْقُ

’ash-shar·q(u)

= the east ف

f /f / − الْفـ

’al-f...

الْفِكْرُ

’al-fik·r(u)

= the thought

ص

ṣ /sˤ / − الْصّـ

’aṣ-ṣ...

الْصَّحْرَاءُ

’aṣ-ṣaḥ·raā‘(u)

= the Sahara

ق

q /q / − الْقـ

’al-q...

الْقِرْدُ

’al-qir·d(u)

= the monkey

ض

ḍ /dˤ / − الْضّـ

’aḍ-ḍ...

الْضَّبَابُ

’aḍ-ḍabaāb(u)

= the fog ك

k /k / − الْكـ

’al-k...

الْكَوْكَبُ

’al-kawkab(u)

= the planet

ط

ṭ /tˤ / − الطّـ

’aṭ-ṭ...

الْطَّاهِرُ

’aṭ-ṭaāhir(u)

= the pure

م

m /m / − الْمـ

’al-m...

الْمَتْحَفُ

’al-mat·ḥaf(u)

= the museum

ظ

ẓ /ðˤ/ − الْظّـ

’aẓ-ẓ... الْظُّهْرُ

’aẓ-ẓuh·r(u)

= the noon

و

w /w / −الْو

’al-w...

الْوَفِيَُ

’al-wafiyy(u)

= the faithful

ل

l /l / − الْلّـ

’al-l... الْلَّوْنُ

’al-lawn(u)

= the colour ي

y /j / − الْيـ

’al-y...

الْيَانْسُونُ

’al-yaānsuūn(u)

= the anise

ن

n /n / − الْنّـ

’an-n...

الْنِّسَاءُ

’an-nisaā‘(u)

= the women

ه

h /h / − الْهـ

’al-h...

الْهَوَاءُ

’al-hawaā‘(u)

= the air, kiss of life

SUN LETTERS ﺕ ﺙ ﺩ ﺫ ﺭ ﺯ ﺱ ﺵ ﺹ ﺽ ﻁ ﻅ ﻝ ﻥ

t th d dh r z s sh ṣ ḍ ṭ ẓ l n

t θ d ð r z s ʃ sˤ dˤ tˤ ðˤ l n

MOON LETTERS ء
ﺡ ﺥ ﻉ ﻍ ﻡ ﻭ ه

ʼ b j ḥ kh ʻ gh f q k m w y h

ʔ b d͡ʒ ħ x ʕ ɣ f q k m w j h

JīM

The letter ج jīm is pronounced differently depending on the region of the speaker, representing a coronal consonant such as or , but also or . However, in Classical Arabic , it represented a palatalized voiced velar plosive /ɡʲ/ or a voiced palatal plosive /ɟ /. As a result, it was classified as a moon letter and it never assimilates the article.

ORTHOGRAPHY

THIS SECTION NEEDS EXPANSION with: Maltese. You can help by adding to it . (August 2016)

In the written language, the ال al- is retained regardless of how it is pronounced. When full diacritics are used, assimilation may be expressed by putting a shaddah on the consonant after the lām. Non-assimilation may be expressed by placing a sukūn over the lām.

Unfortunately, most modern-written Arabic
Arabic
names (personal names, geographical Arabic
Arabic
names) latinized in English for the sake of convenience, does not follow this "rule of assimilation with the definite article" or with the shaddah, including the "sun and moon letter rule" completely omitted.

E.g. personal name: الْرَّحْمَان - Al-Rahman instead of ;

geographical name: الْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ الْتُّونِسِيَّة - Jumhuriyah Al-Tunisiyah instead of "

Examples SUN LETTERS MOON LETTERS

الشَّمْس ash-shams 'the sun' الْقَمَر al-qamar 'the moon'

الثِّقَة ath-thiqah 'the confidence' الْمُرْجَان al-murjān 'the coral'

SEE ALSO

* Arabic phonology
Arabic phonology
* Arabic grammar
Arabic grammar

REFERENCES

* ^ A B Abboud, Peter F.; et al. (1983). Elementary Modern Standard Arabic
Arabic
1. Cambridge UP. pp. 123–124. ISBN 0-521-27295-5 .

* v * t * e

Arabic language
Arabic language

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