Arabic/LearnRW/Row 5



These letters have the hook tail which looks like this: L. Remember tails only show up in the end and the lonely form of the letter.

  • Jem (ج) makes the [d͡ʒ] sound.[1] In English this is usually written as "j" as in "Juliet". With a good Arabic accent it sounds slightly different than the English version of this sound.
  • Hžaa (ح) makes [ħ], a non-English sound. People who are new to Arabic often confuse it with [h], the sound that the letter ه (haa) makes. Although they sound similar, they are different. ح (Hžaa) is pronounced further up in the throat. To produce this sound, leave your mouth open and constrict your throat a bit. Then breathe out. It will sound something like the noise Darth Vader makes when he breathes. All Arabs pronounce this properly; mispronouncing this letter will make your Arabic very difficult to understand. Never pronounce it the same as خ (kħaa). Some beginners make this mistake.
  • Kħaa (خ) makes [x], a non-English sound. Many languages have this sound. German has it in the "ch" in "Bach", Russian has it in the "ch" of Rachmaninoff, and Scottish English has it in the "ch" of "loch." It is similar to the sound people make when preparing to spit.
  • Rħayn (ع) makes [ʕ], a non-English sound. Non-Arabs confuse it with ء (hamza), the glottal stop. Rħayn is the voiced version of ح (Hžaa). It is often referred to as the "choking sound", it sounds like an odd sort of growl. Mispronouncing this sound will make you incomprehensible in Arabic.
  • Gayn (غ) makes [ɣ], a non-English sound. It is the voiced version of خ (khaa). It is similar to the sound everyone makes when they gargle water. In Arabic, the tongue is somewhere between the location [k] (ك) and [q] (ق).


Three times Twice End Middle Start Alone Name Phonetic
ججج جج ـج ـجـ جـ ج Jem [dʒ]
ححح حح ـح ـحـ حـ ح Hžaa [ħ]
خخخ خخ ـخ ـخـ خـ خ Kħaa [x]
ععع عع ـع ـعـ عـ ع Rħayn [ʕ]
غغغ غغ ـغ ـغـ غـ غ Gayn [ɣ]



  1. In some dialects this is pronounced as [ɡ] as in "good".