; An English Guide to Classic Qur'anic Arabic: 3.4FGH- Definite by Alif Laam and others

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3.4FGH- Definite by Alif Laam and others



 

 

F. Definite Alif Laam by (اَلْ)

 

When alif (ا) and lam (ل) is added in front of an indefinite noun, it becomes a definite Noun. This is called بِاللّٰامِ مُعَرَّفُ (mu-ar-rafu bil-lami)

 

This is equivalent to adding the word “the” in the English language before a Noun. For example, “a man” versus “the man”. This translates in Arabic to (رَجُلٌ) raju-lun and (اَلرَّجُلُ) ar-raju-lu.  Notice the change in harakah on the last alphabet.

 

When اَلْ is added to a Noun, it does not accept a Tanween (double harakah) and tanween is reduced to a single harakah. Thus, (رَجُلٌ) raju-lun became (اَلرَّجُلُ) ar-raju-lu, (رَجُلً)raju-lan becomes (اَلرَّجُلَ) ar-raju-la and (رَجُلٍ) ra-ju-lin becomes (اَلرَّجُلِ) ar-ra-ju-li.

 

G. Definite by Association مُضَافٌ اِلَي الْمَعَارِفَةِ mu-daaf il-al-maarifa

 

Mu-daaf literally means added; annexed; appended; attached; joined; subjoined; supplemented. When an indefinite Noun is joined/associated with a definite Noun in a possessive compound, it becomes a definite Noun. This is called مُضَافٌ اِلَي الْمَعَارِفَةِ(mu-daaf il-al ma’arifa-ti).  Possessive compounds will be described later in detail. An example of this would be كِتَابُ زَيْدٍ ki-ta-bu Zaidin (Zaid’s book).  Here indefinite Noun “book” is being associated with a definite Noun “Zaid” and is therefore considered to be a definite Noun.

 

H. Definite by a Vocative Call مُنَادٰى (mu-na-da)

 

When an indefinite Noun is used in a vocative compound, then it is considered to be a definite Noun. The one who is called is مُنَادَىٰ(mu-na-da).  An example for this would be addressing a man as رَجُلٌ يَا(ya raju-lun) meaning O man. رَجُلٌ is the مُنَادٰى mu-na-da which is an indefinite noun. It is now a definite Noun and يَاYaa is called a حَرْفُ النِّدَاءِ (Harf-un nidaai).

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