سُكْكَر = سُكَّر sugar
تُفْفَاحَة = تُفَّاحَة an apple
خَرْرَج = خَرَّج to cause to go out
كَلْلَم = كَلَّم to speak to
سَيْيِد = سَيِّد lord, mister / Mr
نَزْزِل = نَزِّل to bring down
تَبَخْخُر = تَبَخُّر evaporation
تَفَكْكُر = تَفَكُّر contemplation
سَكَتْتُ = سَكَتُّ I kept quite
فَنْنًا = فَنًّا an art
سِرْرٌ = سِرٌّ a secret
عَدُوْوٌ = عَدُوٌّ an enemy
(a) In these words, each consonant that has a shadda ( ـّ ) over is comprised of two identical consonants. You can see these consonants in the (decomposed) words before the equal sign.
(b) The two consonants are basically assimilated (i.e. blended) into one. For this assimilation to happen, the first consonant must have a sukuun ( ـْ ) over it, while the second consonant must have a short vowel or a tanween, that is ( ـً ), ( ـٍ ) , ( ـٌ ), above it.
(c) The shadda ( ـّ ) retains the short vowel, i.e. ( ـَ ), ( ـِ ), ( ـُ), or the tanween, i.e. ( ـً ), ( ـٍ ), ( ـٌ) of the second consonant.
(d) The shadda ( ـّ ) must be preceded by a consonant that has a short vowel over it, as you can see in the list.
(e) This is a word-level shadda ( ـّ ). That is, it occurs at the level of words.
لَمْ يَخُرُجْ جَـمَال = لَم يَخْرُج جَّمَال Jamal didn’t go out
اُكْتُـبْ بِـالقَلَم = اُكْتُب بِّالقَلَم write with the pen
اِسْمَــعْ عَـلِي = اِسْمَع عَّلِي listen to Ali
كُــلْ لَـوْز = كُل لَّوْز eat almonds
لَــنْ نَـذْهَب = لَن نَّذْهَب we will not go
قُــلْ لَـهُم = قُل لَّهُم tell them
(a) In these phrases, the last letter of the first word (in orange) is identical to the first letter of the second word (in blue). The first one is saakin (i.e. has a sukuun ( ـْ ) over it), while the second is mutaharik (has a short vowel over it).
(b) When spoken, they become one doubled sound. So, the second letter gets a shadda ( ـّ ), while the first letter is not pronounced. It is still written, however.
(c) This is a phrase-level shadda ( ـّ ); it occurs a the level of phrases.
التْتَمر = التَّمْر the dates – fruit
الثْثُوم = الثُّوم the garlic
الدْدَار = الدَّار the house
الذْذُعْر = الذُّعْر panic
الرْرَب = الرَّب the Lord / God
الزْزَهْرَة = الزَّهْرَة the flower
السْسَاعَة = السَّاعَة the watch / clock
الشْسَمْس = الشَّمْس the sun
الصْصِدْق = الصِّدْق the truth
الضْضَحِك = الضَّحِك the laughter
الطْطَبْخ = الطَّبْخ the cooking
الظْظُلْم = الظُّلْم the injustice
اللْلَيْل = اللَّيْل the nighttime
النْنَهَار = النَّهَار the daytime
(a) The letters ت, ث, د, ذ, ر, ز, س, ش, ص, ض, ط, ظ, ل, and ن are the sun letters (also called solar letters). They are named after the word شَمْس which begin with one of them, that is the ش. The remaining letters of the Arabic alphabet are the moon letters.
(b) These letters are grouped together because of a pronunciation phenomenon in Arabic, that is assimilation with the definite article ال. In particular, the assimilation of the ل to these letters.
(c) This assimilation happens because these letters (more accurately, consonant sounds) are near to the ل when we produced them in our mouth. That is, there is a slight pause in moving from the ل to these letters when consecutive.
(d) The ل, as a result, is assimilated to the following letter forming an identical letter, hence two consecutive identical letters.
(e) The first (new formed) letter has a sukuun ( ـْ ) over it, and the second letter has a short vowel over it (fatha ( ـَ ) , kasra ( ـِ ) , Dhamma ( ـُ )). So, they become one, and a shadda ( ـّ ) is added to indicate the doubling.
(f) This is a word-level shadda ( ـّ ).
قَدْ تَنَام = قَد تَّنَام you may sleep
قَدْ تُقْتَل = قَد تُّقْتَل you may be killed
قَدْ تَكَلَّمَ = قَد تَّكَلَّم he has spoken
هَلْ رَأَيْت = هَل رَّأَيْت did you see
هَلْ رَجِعَ = هَل رَّجِعَ did he come back
بَلْ رَبِيْع = بَل رَّبِيْع rather it is Rabe’e
(a) In these two-word phrases, if we examine the last letter of first word and first letter of the second word, we can see that they are phonetically near each other when produced in the mouth.
(b) The first one has a sukuun ( ـْ ) over it, and the second has a short vowel. In pronouncing them, they become one. This is indicated by the shadda ( ـّ ) on the second letter.
(c) In writing, however, they are still written separately, in two separate words.
أَنْ يَسْمَعَ = أَن يَّسْمَع to listen
أَنْ يَنْظُر = أَن يَّنْظُر to look
مِنْ رُوْسِيا = مِن رُّوسِيا from Russia
عَنْ رَحْمَة = عَن رَّحْمَة about Rahma
مَنْ لَا = مَن لَّا who doesn’t
مَنْ لَكِ = مَن لَّكِ who will take care of you
مَنْ مَعِي = مَن مَّعِي who is with me
عَنْ مَاذَا = عَن مَّاذا about what
مَنْ وَاحِد = مِن وَّاحِد from one
عَنْ وَلَدٍ = عَن وَّلَدٍ about a boy
(a) In these phrases, the first word is a preposition (i.e. عَنْ and مِنْ) / particle (i.e. أَنْ) that ends in ن which has a sukuun ( ـْ ) over it (this is called the ن saakina). The second words in these phrases begin with ي, ر, ل, م, or و.
(b) The ن saakina assimilates to the following letter changing it into a doubled sound. This is indicated by shadda ( ـّ ) on the first letter of the second word (i.e. ي, ر, ل, م, and و). Hence, the ن is written but not pronounced.
(c) Note that the particle أَنْ is followed by a (present) verb, while the prepositions مِنْ and عَنْ are followed a noun or a prepositional phrase (e.g. لَكِ and مَعِي).
رَجُلٌ رَحِيْم = رَجُل رَّحِيْم a merciful man
خَيْرٌ وَفِيْرٌ = خَيْرُ وَّفِيْرٌ abundant of good
شَرَابٍ لّذِيْذ = شَراب لَّذِيْذ delicious drink
تَمْرٍ يَابِس = تَمْر يَّابِس dried dates – fruit
وَلَدًا وَسِيْمًا = وَلَد وَّسِيْمًا a handsome boy
صَوْتٍ مُرْعِب = صَوْت مُّرْعِب a frightening voice
(a) The first word in these phrases ends in a tanween—that is ( ـً ), ( ـٍ ), and ( ـٌ )—pronounced as an, in, un, respectively. The tanween, therefore, ends in a ن that is saakina.
(b) The ن saakina of the tanween assimilates to the first letter of the following words resulting in a doubled consonant. The doubling of the sound is indicated by a shadda and the short vowel of letter to which the ن saakina assimilates.
عَنْ مَا = عَمَّا about what
مِنْ مَا = مِمَّا from what
أَنْ لا = أَلَّا in order not to
مِنْ مَنْ = مِمَّن from whom
عَنْ مَنْ = عَمَّن about whom
إِنْ لَا = إِلَّا if not
إِنْ مَا = إِمَّا if not / or else
(a) These words are two-word particles. The first particle ends in ن saakina; the second particle begins in م or ل.
(b) The ن saakina assimilates to the ل or م resulting in doubled ل or م. This doubling is indicated by the shadda and the short vowel of the ل / م.
(c) Since this kind of assimilation takes place at the level of particles (i.e. very short words), the ن of the first particle is completed left out, and the two particles become one, that is عَمَّا, مِمَّا, أَلَّا … etc.