; An English Guide to Classic Qur'anic Arabic: 3.5C - Plurals

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3.5C - Plurals



 

 

C.     Plural اَلْجَمْعُ al-jam-ou

 

A plural specifies a number more than two and is usually a modified version of the Single مُفْردٌ muf-ra-dun. The plural is either Mentioned لَفْظًا laf-zanas in رِجَالٌ ri-jaa-lun (plural for رَجُلٌ ra-ju-lun meaning “several men”) or Assumed/Implicit تَقْدِيرًا taq-dee-ranbased on pattern/scale of فُلْكٌ full-kun meaning “boats”.

 

Mentioned Plurals are of two kinds: Broken plural جَمْعُ الْتَّكْسِيْرِ jam-ut taksee-ri also called اَلْجَمْعُ الْمُكَسَّرُ jam-ulmu-kas-sari and Sound plurals جَمْعُ التَّصْحِيْحِ jam-uttas-hee-hi also called السَّالِمِ جَمْعُ jam-us saa-limi.

 

Broken Plural جَمْعُ الْتَّكْسِيرِ jam-ut-taksee-ri

 

This is where the form of the singular is broken and does not remain intact. For example, for رَجُلٌ (ra-jul-un) meaning “a man”, the plural is رِجَالٌ (ri-jaal-un) meaning “several men” and for مَسْجِدٌ(masji-dun). the plural is مَسَاجِدٌ (ma-saa-ji-dun). The patterns أَوْزَانٌ au-zaan for a broken plural for three-alphabet root word ثُلَاثِيْ(thu-laa-thi) come from what is heard from an Arabic speaker and there is no room for guessing in it. The concept of root word will be defined later in chapter 8 on Verb.

 

In a four-alphabet root word رُبَاعِيْ(rubaa-yee) and five-alphabet root word (khu-maa-si) خُمَاسِيْ, the broken plural comes from the pattern of فَعَالِلُ(fu-aa-li-lu) as inجَعْفَرٌ (Jaa-fa-run) to جَعَافِرُ (ja’a-fi-ru). and جَحْمَرِشُ (jah-ma-ri-shu) to جَحَامِرُ (ja-haa-mi-ru) by removing the fifth alphabet from it. When جَحْمَرِشُ(jah-ma-ri-shu) was made a plural, alphabet (ش) was deleted that was the fifth alphabet in the single Noun and adding (ا) as in فُعَالِلُ (fu-aa-li-lu).

 

Sound Plural جَمْعُ التَّصْحِيْحِ (Jam-ut-tas-hee-hi) /or Unbroken Plural جَمْعُ السَّالِمِ (jam-us-saalimi)

 

This one is where the form of the singularمُفْرَدٌ (muf-ra-dun) remains untouched and these are of two kinds:

 

1.Sound Masculine Plural جَمْعُ الْمُذَكَّرِالسَّالمِ (jam-ul muzak-karis-saa-li-mi)

2.Sound Feminine Plural جَمْعُ الْمُؤَنَّثِ السَّالِمِ (jam-ul mun-nath-il-saa-limi).

 

Sound Masculine Plural جَمْعُ الْمُذَكَّرِ السَّالِمِ

(jam-ul muzak-karis-saa-limi)

 

This is where an alphabet (و) with dammah (ُ) or alphabet (ي) with kasrah (ِ) are added at the end, ahead of alphabet noon (ن) with fathah (َ). For example, from مُسْلِمٌ (mus-li-mun) we getمُسْلِمُوْنَ (mus-li-moo-na) and مُسْلِمِيْنَ. (mus-li-meena) Both meaning “Muslims”, the first one in the Nominative رَفْعٌ (raf-un) and the second one in both the Accusative نَصْبٌ (nas-bun) and Genitive جَرٌّ (jarr-un).

 

Sound Feminine Plural جَمْعُ الْمُؤَنَّثِ السَّالِمِ

(jam-ul mun-nath-il-saa-li-mi)

This is where an alphabet (ا) and alphabet (ت) are added at the end as in مُسْلِمَاتُ(mu-li-maa-tu).  The singular here was مُسْلِمَةٌ (mus-li-ma-tun) and the alphabet (ة) was deleted and alphabets (ا) and (ت) were added.

Broken Plural اَلْجَمْعُ الْمُكَسَّرُ(al-jam-ul-mu-kas-sa-ru) is further divided into two types:

 

1. Lesser Plural جَمْعُ الْقِلَّةِ(jam-ul-qil-lati) for less than 10 and

2. Large Plural جَمْعُ الْكَثْرَةِ(jam-ul-kas-ra-ti) for 10 or more.

 

Lesser Plural جَمْعُ الْقِلَّةِ (jam-ul-qil-lati) for Broken Plural الْتَّكْسِيرِ جَمْعُ (jam-ut-tak-see-ri): This is the one where less than ten in number is implied and for this, there are four patterns/scales أَوْزَانٌ (au-zaa-nun):

 

1) أَفْعُلٌ (af-u-lun) as in أَكْلُبٌ (ak-lub-un) meaning “dogs”, plural for كَلْبٌ(kalb-un)

2) أَفْعَالٌ (af-aal-un) as in أَقْوَالٌ (aq-waal-un) meaning “sayings”, plural for قَوْلٌ (qawl-un)

3) أَفْعِلَةٌ (af-ee-la-tun) as in أَعْوِنَةٌ (a’-wee-na-tun) meaning “co-operative”, plural for عَوْنٌ (awn-un)

4) فِعْلةٌ (fei-la-tun) as in غِلْمَةٌ (ghil-ma-tun) meaning “servants”, plural for غُلَامٌ(ghu-lam-un)

And Sound Plurals without alphabets (ا) and (ل) are included in Small Plurals, as in:

 

5) مُسْلِمُوْنَ (mus-li-moona) meaning “muslims”

6) مُسْلِمَاتٌ (mus-li-maa-tun) meaning “muslim women”

 

Large Plural جَمْعُ الْكَثْرَةِ (jam-ul-kath-ra-ti): This plural implies 10 or more and its patterns/scales أَوْزَانٌ (au-zaan-un) are all others, other than the six that have been mentioned above. It is widely used in the Arabic language and has many scales. Some of the commonly used scales are given in the table below:

 

Table 8 - Large Plural Scales اَلْأَوْزَانُ الْجمْعُ الْكَثْرَةُ au-zaan-un jam-ul kath-ra-ti

 

Note that these scales can be مُعَرَّبٌmu-ra-bunflexible (diptote مُنصَرِفٌ mun-sa-ri-funand غَيْرُ مُنصَرِفِ ghai-rumun-sa-ri-fi triptote) or مَبْنِيْ non-flexible.

 

 

Examples

 

 

Scale

Plural

Single

Plural

Single

Plural

Single

 

رِجَالٌ

 (ri-jaal-un)

men

رَجُلٌ

 (ra-jul-un)

A man

عِبَادٌ

 (ibaad-un)

slaves

عَبَدٌ

 (abd-un)

slave

جِبَالٌ

 (ji-baal-un)

mountains

جَبَلٌ

 (Ja-bal-un)

mountain

فِعَالٌ

 (Fe-aal-un)

 

بُيُوْتٌ

 (bu-yoot-un)

houses

بَيْتٌ (Bayt-un)

house

نُجُوْمٌ

 (nu-joom-un)

stars

نَجْمٌ

 (najm-un)

star

قُلُوْبٌ

 (quloob-un)

hearts

قَلْبٌ

 (qalb-un)

heart

فُعُوْلٌ

 

Fa-oo-lun

 

سُرُرٌ

 (surur-un)

pleasures

 

سُرُوْرٌ

 (su-roor-un)

pleasure

رُسُلٌ

 (ru-su-lun)

messengers

رَسُوْلٌ

 (ra-sool-un)

messenger

كُتُوْبٌ

 (Ku-toob-un)

كِتَابٌ

 (kitaab-un)

A book

فُعُلٌ

 

Fa-u-lun

خُدَّامٌ

 (khud-daam-un)

servants

خَادِمٌ

 (khaa-dim-un)

A servant

حُكَّامٌ

 (huk-kaam-un)

governors

حَاكِمٌ

 (haa-kim-un)

governor

كُفَّارٌ

 (kuf-far-un)

Non-believers

كَافِرٌ

 (kaa-fir-un)

A non-believer

فُٰعَّالٌ

 

Fu-aa-lun

كَتَبَةٌ

 (kata-ba-tun)

writings

كَتَبٌ

 (ka-ta-bun)

writings

بَرَرَةٌ

 (bara-ra-tun)

Pious (plural)

بَرَرٌ

 (bara-run)

pious

طَلَبَةٌ

 (tala-ba-tun)

students

طَالِبُ

 (taa-lib-un)

A student

فَعَلَةٌ

 

Fa-a-la-tun

سُفْهَاءُ

 (Suf-haa-u)

Foolish (plural-un)

سَفَهٌ

 (saf-fa-hun)

foolish

شُرْكَاءُ

 (shur-kaau)

partners

شَرِيْكٌ

 (sha-reek-un)

partner

غُرْبَاءُ

 (ghur-baa-u)

strangers

غَريْبٌ

 (gha-ree-bun)

stranger

فُعْلَاءُ

 

Fu-laa-u

اَصْدِقَاءُ

 (as-di-qaa-u)

Truthful (plural)

صَادِقٌ

 (saa-di-qun)

truthful

اَولِيَاءٌ

 (au-li-ya-u)

friends

وَلِيٌ

 (wali-un)

A friend

اَنْبِيَاءُ

 (am-biya-u)

prophets

نَبِيٌ

 (nabee-un)

A prophet

اَفْعِلَاءُ

 

Af-alaa-u

فَوَاحِشٌ

 (fa-waa-hi-shun)

Vulgar (plural)

فُحْشٌ

 (fah-shun

vulgar

عَوَامِلٌ

 (awaa-mil-un)

Affective factors

 

عَامِلٌ

 (aa-mi-lun)

worker

 

قَوَاعِدٌ

 (qawai-dun)

methods

قَاعِدةٌ

 (qaa-i-dun)

method

 

فَوَاعِلُ

 

Fa-waa-i-lu

خَبِائِثُ

 (kha-baa-yi-thu)

Malignant (plural)

خَبِيْثٌ

 (kha-bee-thun)

malignant

كَبَائِرُ

 (kabaai-run)

Large (plural)

كَبِيْرٌ

 (ka-bee-run)

large

صَغَائِرُ (sa-ghaai-ru)

Small (plural)

صَغيْرٌ

 (saghee-run)

small

 

فَعَائِلُ

 

Fa-aa-ilu

مَنَاظِرُ

 (manaa-ziru)

scenes

مَنظَرٌ

 (man-zar-un)

scene

 

مَنَازِلُ

 (mana-zi-lun)

Houses/stages

مَنْزِلٌ

Man-zilun)

house

 

مَسَاجِدُ

 (masaa-ji-du)

mosques

مَسْجِدٌ

 (mas-jid-un)

mosque

 

مَفَاعِلُ

 

Ma-faa-i-lu

قَتْلٰى

 (qut-laa)

Killed (plural)

مَقْتُوْلٌ

 (maq-tool)

Killed (single)

 

مَوْتٰى

 (mau-taa)

Dead (plural)

 

مَيِّتٌ

 (mayyi-tun)

Dead (single)

مَرْضٰى

 (mar-daa)

patients

مَرِيْضٌ

 (maree-dun)

Patient/sick

فُعْلٰى

 

Fu-laa

 

۞۞۞

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