1.0a - Introduction to Quranic Arabic Grammar For Beginners



بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحمٰنِ الرَّحِيْمِ

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem



 In the name of Allah, the most beneficent and merciful and peace and blessings be upon His noble messenger Mohammed Sallallahu alaihi wa Sallam. Ilm-us-sarf, or word morphology, is the first step in learning Arabic. It is the science of word origins. For example, the word Sarf has many meanings, but as applied to Arabic grammar, it is defined as changing a root word into different forms to create an intended meaning. As you will learn in this book, 99% of Arabic words start from a three-alphabet root word, then are changed into different forms to create different meanings. These rotations of the root word are called ( تَصْريْفٌ ) tas-reef or inflections.

 It is considered in the Arab culture that city-dwellers do not speak as good Arabic as the nomads (who are known as Bedouins (اَلْبَدْوُ) al-bad’u. It is said that “the best speakers of Arabic are those who live deepest in the wilderness/desert.” 

According to traditions, the Prophet Mohammed (peace be upon him) was sent as an infant into the wilderness, where he grew up with bedouins from the tribe of (بَنُوْ سَعْدٍ) ba-nu sa’d, who lived around Taif. From those Bedouins, he acquired “clarity of tongue and purity of language” ( صَفَاْءُ اَلْلِّسَاْنِ وَنَقَاْءُ اَلْلُّغَةِ ) sa-faa’ulli-saa-ni wa na-qaa’ul lu-gha-ti. From a general perspective, Arabic lends itself to presenting spiritual thoughts very well, and the traditions of Prophet Sallallahu alaihi wa Sallam are succinct and precise. It is hoped that this book will help in understanding these traditions also.

When I translated Nahw Meer, the authoritative book on ilm-un-nahw by Meer Syed Sharif Abul Hasan Ali Bin Mohammed Al-Jurjaani, the feedback was that a more basic Arabic grammar book in English is needed on the topic of ilm-us-sarf or Arabic word morphology. This book is an attempt to fill that need. There are many books written on this subject, and this is an attempt to simplify further and bring together some basic concepts.


As Dr. Asrar Ahmed said in one of his lectures, every Muslim should learn enough Arabic so that he understands the Qur’an, not necessarily to become an Aa’lim, but enough to understand the message and what Allah Subhaa-na-hu wa Ta’ala is telling us. Unfortunately, this has been a tragedy, especially in the sub-continent and other non-Arabic-speaking countries, where people would memorize Qur’an many times without understanding the meaning. I pray to the Almighty for His Help and Guidance in learning the language of His revelation and understanding His message.

If a reader gets through this book, I would recommend following up with these other books:

  1. Nahw Meer: An English Guide to Arabic Sentences
  2. A Simple Summary of Sarf and Nahw
  3. Darsi Tafseer English Condensed in that order

The first book is an authoritative book on Nahw by Meer Syed Jurjani, the second book summarizes some basic concepts, and the third book is the grammatical analysis of the third Juzz of the Quran.

Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam asked his Ummah to learn Arabic because it is the language of the Qur’an, it is his language, and it is the language of the people of Jannah. So also, from Imam Shaa-fai, knowledge is what is useful, not what is memorized.

I want to acknowledge all my teachers and those from whom I have benefited in whatever I have learned. May Allah SWT reward them here and in the hereafter. Also, thanks to my wife, Kishwar Khan, who gave up our time together so I could concentrate on doing this work.

I ask the Almighty to accept this very humble effort and make it of some use to those who end up using it for learning Arabic.

I also ask Allah SWT to give us guidance, piety, chastity, and contentment and accept our efforts in His path.

Mohammed Sajid Khan





Dedicated to my late mother

Mahmooda Fatima

اَللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ لَهَا وَارْحَمْهَا وَعَافِهَا وَاعْفُ عَنْهَا 

May Allah forgive her, have mercy on her, providing salvation and forgive her mistakes.