1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Arabic
  4. >
  5. The little circle over letter…

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fyriionfire

The little circle over letters...

Hi all,

I'm very curious about the little circle over a consonant in Arabic.

I understand that this means there is no vowel after that consonant. Okay, I don't understand why you just wouldn't just write the two consonants together without the circle.

I don't know how to write arabic on my keyboard, so I'll have to write this out.

Is "kibr" with the circle over the "b", at all different from just spelling "kibr" with a "b" followed by an "r"?

Also, when I look through books or dictionaries, I very very rarely see that little circle present. Why are we learning it?

And, also, in most books or dictionaries, you don't see the little slash marks, or other symbols that let us know if the sound is an "ah", "uu", "ih", doubled letters, etc. How do you tell how to pronounce words without these markers?

I know that's a lot of questions in one, but thanks so much!

November 10, 2019

6 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Zia177448

Most arabic text don't use the little slashes and circles (diacritics) for vowels (or the lack thereof) since native speakers know how the word should be spoken even without them. The vowel diacritics are usually only used for learners, both foreigners and school children, so writing things without them should be fine. I think we'll eventually start recognising the words without the diacritics as well, it might just take a while... ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YOUSSEF237298

hi you want to learn arabic but you fand it very difficult , i can help you free please help me to advenced my english


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hassibah

"And, also, in most books or dictionaries, you don't see the little slash marks, or other symbols that let us know if the sound is an "ah", "uu", "ih", doubled letters, etc. How do you tell how to pronounce words without these markers?"

Sort of like how english speakers know to pronouce the "gh" in the words tough, dough, and ghost. Or how you know how to pronounce "bow" as in bow and arrow vs "bow" the verb. Or how you say "paid" vs "plaid." Through experience.

Except arabic pronunciation actually has a million times more consistency with pronunciation than the english alphabet does. The language uses a limited set of pronunciation patterns especially for verbs and adjectives so after a while it becomes relatively easy to predict which vowels are to be used. If you were taking an arabic course they would go over this when explaining the roots system. Vowels and other markings are generally only used when it's absolutely necessary to distinguish it from a similarly spelled word.

All the arabic-english dictionaries that I've seen have the vowels though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NuhaAhmed0

these marks above the letters in Arabic are supposed to show how the words are pronounced, they are there because in native arabic there are words that have the exact same letters but have different pronunciation & therefore have different meanings, they are not necessary to use if you know how to pronounce the word without it and understand it's meaning within the sentence, that's why they're not widely used by native speakers & you can totally discard them in writing if u want, but they're necessary when learning how to speak Arabic.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/XENIAPATTI

the small circle above any letter is telling you that this letter when you read it you pronounce it with out any other change for example ب with circle on top you will read it b, not bi, not ba, not bou if it will be bi, ba or bou depend of the harakat that is coming with the letter but you will never find harakat and circle on the same letter .


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jelff2

It is called a sukūn if you want to learn more about it...I would suggest a search for sukūn + Arabic voweling...it will probably turn up more than you care to know right now.

Learn Arabic in just 5 minutes a day. For free.