the dual in Arabic

Introduction

 

  In English, there is only singular and plural. However, there are three numbers in Arabic, Singular, plural, and dual.  

 

المُفْرَدُ

Singular

 

 

 

الْمُثَتَّى

Dual

 

 

الْجَمْعُ

Plural

 

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Its formation

 

It is formed by adding the suffix fatha, alif, and noon with kasrah:

 

انِ -َ

 

in the nominative case (حَالةُ الرَّفَعِ) and fatha, sukoon and noon with kasra:

 

يْنِ -ِ

 

in both the accusative and genitive cases for masculine nouns.

 

 

Masculine dual

 

Examples  

 

Nominative case:

 

  Singular

مُسْلِمٌ – a muslim  

   

Dual 

مُسْلِمانِ – two muslims

 

Accusative case:

 

Singular 

مُسْلِمًا – a muslim  

 

مُسْلِمَيْنِ – two muslims  

 

Genitive case:

 

Singular –

مُسْلِمٍ – a muslim  

 

Dual – مُسْلِمَيْنِ – two muslims

   

 

Example from the Quran:  

وَأَمَّا الْجِدَارُ فَكَانَ لِغُلَامَيْنِ يَتِيمَيْنِ فِي الْمَدِينَةِ

“And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the city” (18:82)

Feminine dual

 

For feminine in Arabic, the nouns end in (Ta Marbouta):

ة

This changes in dual to an ordinary (Ta maftooha):

ت

The suffixes:

انِ -َ يْنِ -ِ

will be added as in masculine duals.  

 

Examples:  

 

Nominative case:

 

Singular

 مُسْلِمَةٌ

A muslim

 

Dual 

مُسْلِمَتَانِ 

two muslims

 

 

Accusative case:

 

  Singular

مُسْلِمَةً

A muslim  

 

Dual 

مُسْلِمَتَيْنِ

Two muslims  

 

 

Genitive case:

 

Singular

مُسْلِمَةً

A muslim  

 

 

Dual

مُسْلِمَتَيْنِ

two muslims

 

Examples from the Quran:

 

جَعَلْنَا لِأَحَدِهِمَا جَنَّتَيْنِ مِنْ أَعْنَابٍ

We granted to one of them two gardens of grapevines (18:32)

 

وَلِمَنْ خَافَ مَقَامَ رَبِّهِ جَنَّتَانِ

 

But for he who has feared the position of his Lord are two gardens (55:46)

This Arabic lesson is now finished. The next one will be insha’Allah about the plural in Arabic.

 

Al-dirassa center offers you the possibility to study the Arabic language easily with a qualified teacher. If you are interested, do not hesitate to consult us.

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