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p. 251

Guide to Pronunciation of Terms

The system of transliteration used in this volume for rendering Arabic and Persian words in Latin letters closely follows standard modern international practise.

The sounds thus represented may be approximated as follows in standard English:


Short "a": between the vowel sounds of "hat" and "fur."

Long "a": (ā): like the a in "hard."

Short "i": as in English "pit."

Long "i" (ī): like the vowel sound in "feet."

Short "u": as in "hook," or "put."

Long "u": (û): as in "clue," or the vowel sound in "food."


Glottal stop, or hamza, represented by (): can be found in between two English words ending and beginning with vowels, as: "Iowa apples," or where the "t’s" should be in "bottle," as it is pronounced by many New Yorkers.

‘ayn, represented by (): a sort of twang of the vocal cords preceding or following another letter.

(q), the Arabic qāf: made by a "k" far back in the throat, at the uvula.

(), Arabic ḥā’: a strongly aspirant "h", made in the throat area above the windpipe.

() () () (): each is made by darkening the sound of the corresponding undotted letter. When these dotted consonants are made, the tongue should lie flat and broad in the mouth, behind the lower front teeth. The consonant

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sound will also slightly alter the quality of any vowel which immediately precedes or follows it.

(gh), Arabic ghayn: it is made by a sort of dry gargling like the Parisian (r).

(kh), Arabic khā’: much like German "ch" in "nicht" or "Nacht," or the Greek chi.

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