alef

ا

The Arabic letter alef has two different forms.

finalisolated
ـاا

In the isolated form, the letter alef is not joined with any other letter.

ا

When you show the letter alef on its own, you use the isolated form.

When alef is the first letter of a word, the isolated form is also used.

In the final form, the letter alef is joined to the right.

ـا

When alef is the last letter of a word, you use the final form in most cases.


When alef is not the first and not the last but somewhere in the middle of a word, the final form is also used in most cases.

Let's talk about the concept of joining. Arabic letters are not generally written one by one. Instead, the letters in a word are joined together like handwriting. This makes the writing quite beautiful.

Most letters in the Arabic alphabet are dual joining. This means that they want to join both with the letter before and the letter after. But the letter alef and some other letters, are right joining.

Right joining means that the letter only wants to join with the letter to the right (which is the letter before, since Arabic is writen from right to left).

When the letter alef comes after a letter that is also right joining, you always use the isolated form.

ا

Therefore: when alef is the last letter of a word, and follows a right joining letter, you use the isolated form.


Therefore: when alef is in the middle of a word, and follows a right joining letter, you use the isolated form.

Now you know that:

The rules you just learned can be applied to all Arabic letters with right joining.

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