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Lesson three: Nouns

Posted by muhammedm on July 12, 2009

أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

How does one recognize a noun?

Signs for Noun (Ism)

He (the author) said, “Ism is identified through: الْخَفْضِ (having a kasra in the last letter), التَّنْوِينِ, addition of لاَمٍ و َأَلِفْ (Alif and Lam), and the حروف (particles) that give khafdh (kasra to the word), and they (the particles) are: من (from), إلى (to), عن (about), على (upon), في (in), Rubba (رب), باء (with), كاف (like), لام (for), and the particles of oath (al-qasm): واو, باء, and تاء.

As for Al-Khafd, it’s an expression of Kasra which occurs due to an ‘Amil (agent such as Min) or that which takes it’s place, such as the Kasra on the Ra in the word Bakr and ‘Amr: مررت ببكر (I passed by Bakr), and هذا كتاب عمرو (This is ‘Amr’s Book). Both ‘Amr and Bakr are Ism because of the Khafd (Kasra) at the end of the two words.

As for Tanwin, it’s double Fatha, Kasra or Damma, and it makes the sound of nun. Examples include, Muhammedin, or kitabun, etc. For visual of tanwin with different letters, refer to

As for Alif and Lam, it indicates that the word is a noun. If alif and lam can be attached to it then it’s an ism, so the word Rajulun (رجل) can accept alif and Lam, and so the word becomes ar-Rajul (الرجل).

As for Huruf al-Khafd (Particles that give Khafd), from the many meanings of Min is that which gives the meaning of beginning, ex. سافرت من القاهرة ‘I traveled from Cairo’. For the meanings of the Huruf, they’re given above.

As for the particles of Khafdh which are particles of Oath, they are Waw, Ba’ and Ta’:

As for واو It only comes before a proper noun, such as والطور, so there is a kasrah on the Ra’, and the meaning is, By the Oath of Tur.
As for باء, it’s not restricted to any word, but it enters on a proper noun including pronouns, such as بك لأضربن الكسول, ‘I swear by you, I will hit the lazy person’. But Bika will be read with a Fatha on the Kaf, not with a Kasra, though it’s implied.
As for تاء, it only enters upon Lafdh al-Jalal (Allah ta’ala). Hafidh ibn Qayyim says, “تالله لقد وجب علينا حبّ أبي بكر”, By Allah ta’ala, it’s wajib on us to love Abu Bakr. The Lafhdul Jalalah (Allah ta’ala) get’s a kasrah.

To recap, all of the four signs tell us that the word after them is a noun, and not a verb or a particle.

Analysis of first ayah regarding Ism: بِسمِ ٱلله الرَّحْمٰنِ الرَّحِيـمِ

There are four nouns (Ism) in the first ayah, why are there four, and which ones are they?
بِسمِ – The first letter is a Harful Khafdh (a particle that gives kasra) and it’s one of the particles that’s listed above, and so there’s a kasrah on Bismi.
ٱلله – Lafdh ul Jalalah, This is an Ism because it has a Kasra (in the context of the Ayah) and it has Alif and Lam in the beginning.
الرَّحْمٰنِ – This is an Ism because it has Alif and Lam in the beginning.
الرَّحِيـمِ – This is an Ism because it has Alif and Lam in the beginning.



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