Arabic/LearnRW/Row 3 and 1

ه, ك, م, ي

The letters written above are called (again from the right) Haa, Kaff, Miim, and Yaa.

  • Haa (ه) makes the [h] sound like the first sound in "hat". It is never silent.
  • Kaaf (ك) makes the [‎k] sound. This is almost the same as the 'k' in "kill" or the 'c' in "cap".[1]
  • Mem (م) makes the [m] sound like the first sound in "mom".
  • Yaa (ي) makes the [j] sound. This is not the normal English 'j' (as in 'jam'). It is like the 'j' in "fjord". In English this is usually written with the letter 'y'; [j] is the first sound in "you" and "yes".

The unique thing about ه (haa) is that in most styles of writing all its forms look different. Recall that every Arabic letter has 4 forms (usually only 2 significantly differing forms).


Three times Twice End Middle Start Alone Name Phonetic
ههه هه ـه ـهـ هـ ه Haa [h]
ككك كك ـك ـكـ كـ ك Kaaf [k]
ممم مم ـم ـمـ مـ م Mem [m]
ييي يي ـي ـيـ يـ ي Yaa [j]



  1. The only difference is that it is not aspirated. Normal English speakers can't tell the difference and it's unlikely Arabic speakers can either
Last modified on 18 November 2013, at 00:51