Nahw Meer English: 6.12 - Active Nouns أَسْمَاءُ الْعَامِلَةِ


Section 6.12 – Active Nouns

 فَصْلٌ ٦. ١٢ – أَسْمَاءُ الْعَامِلَةِ


Active Nouns are of eleven types:


Active Noun 1: Noun: Conditional Nouns with the meaning of condition “إِنْ”: and these are nine. They give Jussive status جَزَمٌ to the Imperfect Tense اَلْمُضَارِعُ. See the following Table:


Table 14 – Conditional Nouns

Conditional Noun



Example Meaning

مَنْ  condition only


مَنْ تَضْرِبْ أَضْرِبْ

If you hit, I will hit

مَا  condition only


مَا تَفْعَلْ أَفْعَلْ

Whatever you do, I will do

أَينَ adverb of place


أَيْنَ تَجْلِسْ أَجْلِسْ

Where you sit, I will sit

مَتَىٰ adverb of time


مَتَىٰ تَقُمْ أَقُمْ

When you stand up, I will stand up

أَيُّ condition only


أَيُّ شَيءٍ تَأَكُلْ آكُلْ

Whichever thing you will eat, I will eat

أَنَّىٰ adverb of place


أَنَّىٰ تَكْتُبْ أَكْتُبْ

Where you write, I will write

إِذَا مَا adverb of time


إِذَا مَا تُسَافِرْ أُسَافِرْ

Whenever you travel, I travel

حَيْثُمَا adverb of place

Where ever

حَيْثُمَا تَقْصِدْ أَقْصِدْ

Wherever place you intend to go I will

مَهْمَا adverb of time

As long as

مَهْمَا تَقْعُدْ أقْعُدْ

As long as you sit, I will sit


Active Noun 2: Actor Nouns اَسْمَاءُ الْأَفْعَالِ past tenseمَاضِيُّ: هَيْهَاتَ meaning gone, شَتَّانَ meaning “moved away”, سَرْعَانَ meaning “quickly/rapidly”. These give Nominative رَفْعٌ status to the Noun when it is the actor فَاعِلٌ as in هَيْهَاتَ يَوْمُ الْعِيْدِ meaning “gone, the day of Eid (that is no more)”.


Active Noun 3: Actor Nouns أَسْمَاءُ الْأَفْعَالِ with Imperative present اَلْأَمْرُالْحاضِرُ meaning. For example, رُوَيْدَ meaning “for a while”, بَلْهَ meaning “give respite”, حَيَّهَلْ meaning “come to hail”, عَلَيْكَ meaning “It is required of you”, دُوْنَكَmeaning “you move over” and هَاmeaning “hold (hold on)”. These give Accusative نَصْبٌ status to the Noun because it is the Object بِهٖ مَفْعُوْلٌ. For example, رُوَيْدَ زَيْدًاmeaning “give Zaid a while or respite”.


Active Noun 4: Actor Nouns أَسْمَاءُ الْأَفْعَالِ with the meaning of the state of اَلْحَالُ or future اَلْاِسْتِقْبَالُ. It acts as an Active Voice Verb الْمَعْرُوْفِ فِعْلُ with the condition that it is connected to and dependent on the word that comes before it. This word is:


-Either a Beginning word مُبْتَدَأٌ in Intransitive Verb فِعْلُ اللَّازِمِ as in أَبُوْهُ قَائمٌ زَيْدٌ meaning “Zaid, is standing, his father” or simply “Zaid’s father is standing”.


-A Beginning word مُبْتَدَأٌ in Transitive Verb

فِعْلُ الْمُتَعَدِّيُ, as in عَمْرًوا أَبُوْہُ ضَارِبٌ زَيْدٌ meaning “Zaid, his father is the one to hit Amr” or simply “Zaid’s father is going to hit Amr”.


-A Described word اَللَّفْظُ الْمَوْصُوْفُ, as in

 بَكْرًا أَبُوْہُ ضَارِبٍ بِرَجُلٍ مَرَرْتُ meaning “I passed by a man whose fatherwas going to hit Bakr”.


-A Relative Pronoun اَلْمَوْصُوْلُ. For example,

 أَبُوْہُ الْقَآئِمُ جَاءَنِيْ meaning “his father who was standing came to me”. اَلْ means اَلَّذِيْ here. Or

عَمْرًوا أَبُوْہُ الضَّارِبُ جَاءَنِيْ meaning “the one who came to me, his father is hitting Amr”.


-An Object مَفْعُوْلٌ of a State ذَالْحَالِ as in

 فَرَسًا غُلَامُهُ رَاكِبًا زَيْدٌ جَاءَنِيْ meaning “Zaid came to me with his servant riding a horse”.


-Or that it is an interrogative Particle هَمْزَةُالْاِسْتِفْهَامِas in أَضَارِبٌ زَيْدٌ عَمْرًواmeaning “Is Zaid hitting Amr?”


-Or Particle of denial حَرَفُ النَّفْيُ as in مَا قَائمٌ زَيْدٌ meaning “Zaid is not standing or will not stand”.


Here قَائِمٌand ضَارِبٌ are acting as قَامَ and ضَرَبَ, that is they give Nominative status رَفْعٌ to the actor فَاعِلٌ  for Intransitive Verb فِعْلُ اللَّازِمِ and Accusative status نَصْبٌ to Object مَفْعُوْلٌ in Transitive verb فِعْلُ الْمُتَعَدِّيْ.


Active Noun 5: Object Noun اِسْمُ الْمَفْعُوْلِ with the meaning of state condition اَلْحَالُor future اَلْاِسْتِقْبَالُ. It acts like a Passive Verb اَلْفِعلُ الْمَجْهُوْلُ with the condition that it is connected to and dependent on the word which comes before it as in


 زَيْدٌ مَضْرُوْبٌ أَبُوْہُ meaning “Zaid, hisfather was beaten”.


عَمْرٌو مُعْطَيً غُلَامُهُ دِرْهَمًا meaning “Amr, his servant was the recipient of a dirham”.


بَكْرٌ مَعْلُوْمٌ اِبْنُهُ فَاضِلًا meaning “Bakr, his son was known to be learned”.


خَالِدٌ مُخْبَرٌ ابْنُهُ عَمْرًوا فَاضِلًا meaning “Khalid, was given information that his son Amr, is learned”.


مَضْرُوْبٌ, مُعْطيً, مَعْلُوْمٌ and مُخْبَرٌ all are acting as ضُرِبَ, أُعْطِيَ, أُعْلِمَ, and أُخْبِرَ, respectively.


Active Noun 6: ResemblingAdjective اَلصِّفَةُ الْمُشَبَّهَةُ: This will act as the actor فَاعِلٌwith the condition that it is connected to or dependent on the word that comes before it. For example, زَيْدٌ حَسَنٌ غُلَامُهُ meaning “Zaid, his servant is good looking”. حَسَنٌ here is acting as حَسُنَ.


Active Noun 7: Comparative and Superlative التَّفْضِيْلِ اِسْمُ. It is used in three ways:


a). With مِنْ. For example, عَمْرٍو مِنْ أَفْضَلُ زَيْدٌ meaning “Zaid is better than Amr”.


b). With letters (ا) and letter (ل). For example, الْأَفْضَلُ زَيْدٌ جَاءَنِيْ meaning “Zaid who is the best came to me”.

c). With Possessive Compound الْإِضَافِيْ مُرَكَّبُ  as in زَيْدٌ أَفْضَلُ الْقَوْمِmeaning “Zaid, he is the best in his people”. It is acting as Pronoun ضَمِيْرٌ for actor فَاعِلٌ and its actor فَاعِلٌ is the word “هُوَ” which is Unseen/Invisible مُسْتَتِرٌin أَفْضَلٌ.


Active Noun 8: Verbal Source اَلْمَصْدَرُ with the condition that it is not a cognate Accusative الْمُطْلَقُاَلْمَفْعُوْلُ and it is acting as its Verb فِعْلٌ. For example,عَمْرًا  زَيْدٍ ضَرْبُ أَعْجَبَنِيْ meaning “I was surprised by beating of Amr by Zaid”.


Active Noun 9: Noun of Possessive Compound اَلْاِسْمُ الْمُضَافُ that gives Genitive status جَرٌّ to Possessor إِلَيْهِ اَلْمُضَافُ. For example, زَيْدٍ غُلَامُ جَاءَنِيْ meaning “Zaid’s servant came to me”. Here the letter (ل) is hidden and real اَلْحَقَيْقيُّ. Its hidden form is غُلَامٌ لِزَيْدٍ.


Active Noun 10: Complete Noun التَّآمُّ اَلْاِسْمُ and it gives Accusative نَصْبٌ to اَلتَّمْيِيْزُ which is the Accusative of Clarification. It completes the Noun with nunation تَنْوِينٌ. For example,

 مَا فِي السَّمَآءِ قَدْرُ رَاحَةٍ سَحَابًا meaning “in the sky, there is not even a palm-sized cloud”.


-Or with hidden nunation تَنْوِينٌ. For example, the sentence رَجُلًا عَشَرَ أَحَدَ عِنْدِي meaning “there are eleven men with me”. عَشَرَ أَحَدَ was originally عَشَرٌ وَ أَحَدٌ and nunation تَنْوِينٌis removed. And

مَالًا مِنْكَ أكْثَرُ زَيْدٌ [1] meaning “Zaid is better than you in terms of having money”.


-Or with the letter (ن) of duality بِنُوْنِ التَّثْنِيَةِ, as in

 عِنْدي قَفِيزَانِ بُرًّا meaning “I have with me two bags of wheat”. قَفِيزَانِis now complete Noun and was changed from قَفِيْزٌ which gave Accusative نَصْبٌ to بُرَّا.


-Or with the letter (ن) of plurality بِنُوْنِ الْجَمْعِ as in Allah SWT Says in Surah Al-Kahf, Ayah 103:

أَعْمَالاً بِالْأَخْسَرِينَ نُنَبِّئُكُمْ هَلْ ﴿ meaning “shall We inform you of those who are in loss because of their actions?”.


-Or with the letter (ن) similar to (ن) of plurality

 نُوْنُ الْجَمْعِ: as in دِرْهَمًا تِسْعُوْنَ اِلٰى عِشْرُوْنَ عِنْدِي “meaning I have with me twenty to ninety dirhams”. Or with Relative Compound بِالْإِضَافَةِ, as in عَسْلًا مِلْؤُہُ عِنْدِي meaning “I have with me his filled-up (full) honey”.


Active Noun 11: Nouns of hidden demonstrative Pronoun الْكِنَايَةِ أَسمَاءُ regarding the count, and it has two words or كَلِمَاتٌ. These are كَمْ meaning “how many” and كَذَا meaning “so much, such and such or like this, etc.”. Then, كَمْ is of two kinds:


1) Interrogative اِسْتِفْهَامِيَّةٌ: Here كَمْ gives Accusative نَصْبٌ to the clarification اَلتَّمْيِيْزُ and كَذَا does the same. For example, كَمْ رَجُلًا عِنْدَكَmeaning “how many men are with you” and عِنْدِي كَذَا دِرْهَمًا meaning “I have many dirhams”.


 2) Predicate خَبَرِيَّةٌ: Here كَمْ gives Genitive status جَرٌّ to the clarification اَلتَّمْيِيْزُ. For example, كَمْ مَالٍ أنْفَقْتُ meaning “I spent so much money”, and كَمْ دَارٍ بَنِيْتُ meaning “I built so many houses”.


Sometimes, a Genitive مِنْ enters on the clarification اَلتَّمْيِيْزُ of الْخَبَرِيَّةُكَمِ as in Allah SWT Says in Surah Al-Najm, Ayah 26:

﴿وَكَمْ مِنْ مَلَكٍ فِي السَّمٰوٰاتِ

meaning “there are so many angels in the sky”.




[1] From second example where Nunation (تَنْوِينٌ) is hidden