The Pausal Form Revisited

In Chapter One we briefly discussed what is known as the “pausal form“. We noted that the case endings of words at the end of a sentence, or any other natural pause, are usually not pronounced. There is one exception to this. If the word in question is in the accusative case with the alif and the two fathas, then the first fatha is usually pronounced. This makes the word sound as if it were feminine singular. For example:

I studied a book. درستُ كتاباً

would be pronounced “darastu kitaba”. Whereas:

I studied a new book. درستُ كتاباً جديدًا .

would be pronounced “darastu kitaban jadiida”. The first accusative has its nunation pronounced, but for the second accusative, the one being read in pausal form, we only hear the first fatha.

That is it, for now, for the three cases. You now know much of what you need to know about case. There is more, but you are now ready to handle the rest.

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