Parts of speech in Arabic


In Arabic, what is considered a noun, a verb, or just a letter?

There are three main world classes (part of speech) in Arabic. Nouns, Verbs, and Letters. In this article there are detailed information about these three parts of speech.

Read these examples:

السَّمَاءُ صَافِيَةٌ>>> The sky is clear

الأَسَدُ مُتَوَحِّشٌ>>> The lion is wild

صَعَدَ أَحْمَدُ عَلَىْ الشَّجَرَةِ الخَضْرَاءَ>>> Ahmad climbed the green tree

عُمَرُ كَرِيْمٌ>>> Omar is generous

رَكِبَ مُحَمَّدُ القِطَار السَرِيْعَ>>> Mohammad got on the fast train

أَكَلْنَا سَمَكًا أَنَا وَحَنَانُ>>>Hanan and I ate fish

هَلْ كَتَبَ الطَّالِبُ وَاجِبَهُ؟>>>Did the student write his homework?

تَعِيْشُ عَائِلَتِيْ فِيْ مِصْرَ>>>My family live in Egypt

يَشْرَبُ الطِّفْلُ حَلِيْبًا>>>The child is drinking milk

أُحِبُّ أَكْلَ التُّفَّاحِ وَالبَنْدُوْرَةَ>>>I like eating apples and tomatoes

اِشْتَرَىْ وَالِدِيْ بَقَرَةً>>> My father bought a cow

In case you are curious about the maximum numbers of letters in a single word, press this link


In the previous lesson we knew that the complete/useful sentence that gives a useful meaning consist of words.

Here, in this lesson will get a grasp of the word kinds in Arabic. Let’s start and read dissect the above Arabic sentences.

What is the Noun Class (part of speech)?

  • The words “أَحْمَدُ” and “عُمَرُ” and “حَنَانُ”  and “مُحَمَّدُ” are names of humans.
  • The words “الأَسَدُ” and “سَمَكًا”  and “بَقَرَةٌ” are names of animals.
  • The words “قِطَارٌ” and “السَّمَاءُ” and “حَلِيْبٌ” are names of objects.
  • The words “شَجَرَةٌ” and “تُفَّاحَة” and “بَنْدُوْرَة” are names of plants .

All these wards are names of something or someone and therefore all these words are nouns “اِسْمٌ”. Then, “الاِسْمُ” is a word that names something or someone.

What is the Verb Class (part of speech)?

  • The words “رَكِبَ” and “صَعَدَ” and “شَرِبَ” and “أَكَلَ” and “تَعِيْشُ” and “كَتَبَ” are all describe an action that has been done by someone and gives information about the specific time that the action has been done in.

Therefore, each word that gives information on the time period that an action has been done through is called “verb” (فِعْلٌ).

What is the Letter Class (part of speech)?

  • Finally, the words “عَلَىْ” and “في” and “وَ” and “هَلْ” do not give a meaning without a sentence. They do not describe an action, nor a name of something or someone.

Therefore, each word that cannot give a meaning without a sentence is called “letter” (حَرْفٌ)


In conclusion: there are three kind of words in Arabic:

  • Noun (اِسْمٌ):

each word that names a person, animal, thing, object, plant, or anything else that should have a name. For example: (George, lion, flower, etc.)


  • Verb (فِعْلٌ):

each word that describes an action that happened in a specific time. For example: (Go, drink, climb, etc.)

Here, in this link you fine a detailed article about verbs, but without inflection with Arabic pronouns. In the following days inflection would be discussed 

  • letter (حَرْفٌ):

each word that does not have a meaning without a sentence. For instance: (In, on, at, etc.)

Do not get confused between the 28 letters that make up the Arabic Language and the word category “Letter”


Read the following three sentences and distinguish the nouns that refers to human, animals, and objects.

ذَهَبَتْ سَلْوَىْ إِلَىْ المَزْرَعَةِ لِكَيْ تَرَىْ الأَبْقَارَ وَالخِرَافَ >>>Salwa went to the farm to view the cows and sheep

البَحْرُ الأَزْرَقُ خَلْفَ الجَبَلِ المُرْتَفِعِ>>> The blue ocean is behind the high mountain

رَكِبَ الأُسْتَاذُ فِيْ القِطَارِ >>> The teacher get on the train


اسْمُ الإِنْسَانِ: سَلْوَىْ, الأُسْتَاذُ |||| اسْمُ الحَيْوَانِ: الأَبْقَارَ, الخِرَافَ |||| اسْمُ الجَمَادِ: المَزْرَعَةِ, البَحْرُ, الجَبَلِ, القِطَارِ

Read the following three sentences and distinguish the nouns, verbs, and letters.

فَتَحَ أَحْمَدُ البَابَ >>> Ahmad opened the door

كَسَرَتْ سَلْوَىْ الكَأْسَ >>> Salwa broke the glass

ذَهَبَ مُحَمَّدٌ إِلَىْ المَدْرَسَةِ ثُمَّ إِلَىْ المَنْزِلِ >>> Mohammad went to the school then to the house


الِاسْمُ: أَحْمَدُ, البَابَ, سَلْوَىْ, الكَأْسَ, المَدْرَسَةِ, مُحَمَّدٌ, المَنْزِلِ |||| الفِعْلُ: فَتَحَ, كَسَرَتْ, ذَهَبَ |||| الحَرْفُ:  إِلَىْ, ثُمَّ