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Makhaarij Al-Huroof: Al-Khayshoom February 2, 2012

Taking in big fresh breaths of air isn’t the only thing your nose can do… Don’t hold your breath for too long, I’ll confess: it’s capable of adding a beautiful humming-like tone to your recitation, by producing a ghunnah. Read all about it below…

Al-Khayshoom [1]: means the nasal passage. The nasal passage is the 17th and last makhraj to be studied. It contains only one point of articulation. The nasal passage is similar to the jawf in that is an “open area”, but within the nose. From this area, a ghunnah is produced, noting that the tongue has no part in producing the ghunnah.. It’s important to understand that a ghunnah is not a letter, rather, it is a fundamental characteristic, or quality, for the letters noon and meem as it is part of their original makeup.

It is sounded whether these letters have a fat-ha, dammah, kasrah, shaddah, or sukoon. Likewise, it is also sounded when doing idghaam, ikhfaa’ or ith-haar.

To understand how ghunnah works (and its significance), block your nose completely by pinching it with two fingers, then try to say a word with the letter noon or meem, or simply sound the letter ( أنْ ) or ( أمْ ). You’ll notice that you are unable to sound these letters properly without the nasal passage being open (and producing ghunnah)!

So, this wraps up the 17 makhaarij al-huroof, with just a couple of very important points to make.

First, to figure out the makhraj of a letter, pronounce it with a sukoon, preceded by a fat-ha. Examples,

أدْ         أعْ          أتْ          أشْ          أضْ

Second, note there are 28 letters in the Arabic alphabet, however, there are 31 huroof al-tajweed (tajweed letters). The extra letters are hamzah, consonant yaa’, and consonant waaw.

Keep an eye out for the upcoming topic, sifaatul-huroof: the characteristics/qualities of the letters.

Resources Link:

Makhaarij Al-Huroof document

Note, this document is found on the resources page.

Related Posts: Makhaarij Al-Huroof: Al-Jawf – Makhraj Al-Halq – Makhraj Al-Lisaan Pt 1 – Makhraj Al-Lisaan Pt 2 – Makhraj: Al-Shafataan


[1] الخيشوم

 

Makhaarij Al-Huroof December 27, 2011

Just as X marks the spot for any treasure, X also marks the makhraj (point of articulation) for the Arabic letters!

Makhaarij Al-Huroof [1] translates to “the points of articulation for [the Arabic] letters”. It is imperative that one learns and correctly pronounces the Arabic letters in order to read tajweed with precision. Colloquial dialects differ greatly, so as an Arabic speaking person, I can only stress the importance of learning the makhaarij. They are the very nectar of tajweed, and I can only hope that in my humble attempt to put forward the rules, you can achieve a great understanding.

The area of speech has been divided into five parts, and subdivided into 17. The first five divisions are as follows:

Al-Jawf The Interior/Chest Area
Al-Halq The Throat
Al-Lisaan The Tongue
Al-Shafataan The Lips
Al-Khayshoom The Nasal Passage

This post will look into the first of these categories: Al-Jawf.

   Al-Jawf [2] (The Interior/Chest Area)

The interior comprises of the inner, open area of the mouth, behind the meeting point of the lower jaw and top teeth. This area is an “estimated” makhraj (point of articulation), all other makhaarij are “actual” as they apply to constant sounds and have been pinpointed with accuracy. From the jawf three letters emerge. These are the:

alif ( ا ) preceded by a fat-ha, pronounced “aaa”

yaa ( ي ) preceded by a kasra, pronounced “eee”

waaw ( و ) preceded by a dammah,  pronounced “ooo”

These three letters are usually called Huroof Al-Maddeeyah[3] (or as I call them, madd letters). They may also be called Huroof Al-Jawfeeyah[4], as they emerge from the jawf.

To better understand the makhraj of these letters, it is essential that we see the shape of the tongue and lips. This is illustrated in the following diagram:

Here we can compare the difference of the three positions of the tongue. The alif corresponds to the pale pink tongue, waaw to the hot pink tongue, and yaa to the red tongue:

As with any language, it’s is best to listen and repeat after a teacher or sheikh to ensure you are sounding the letters in the correct manner; after all, no written or drawn aid can give the required accuracy for tajweed.

 

As a final note, there are two important things to mention in regards to makhaarij al-huroof.

First, to figure out the makhraj of a letter, pronounce it with a sukoon, preceded by a fat-ha. Examples,

أدْ         أعْ          أتْ          أشْ          أضْ

Second, note there are 28 letters in the Arabic alphabet, however, there are 31 huroof al-tajweed (tajweed letters). The extra letters are hamzah, consonant yaa’, and consonant waaw. These will be looked at in greater detail throughout the upcoming posts.

Resources Link:

- Makhaarij Al-Huroof document

Note, this document is found on the resources page.

Related Posts: Makhraj Al-HalqMakhraj Al-Lisaan – Makhraj Al-Lisaan Pt 2 – Makhraj: Al-Shafataan – Makhraj: Al-Khayshoom


[1]مخارج الحروف
[2]الجوف
[3]حروف المدية
[4]حروف الجوفية