In normal writing-text vowel-marks (like Haraket: Fatah, Kasra & Dammah , etc are NOT written) Thus although Alif is sometimes written alone as ا (without any additional marks, Hamzah or Tashkil ) This is can cause confusion in the sense it may not be clear what sound the alone aif ا represents. However, let`s assume here want to write-show the correct vowel-marks etc So if we see and unmarked Alif - what is it likely to be / how should it be marked ? Note the position of the alone alif already gives an indication of what it represents or does not represent. 2.0 Unmaked alif ـا in the middle of a word: 2.1 it is likely to be a long-vowel aa (should be proceeded with a consonant carrying a fatah). As a long-vowel the alif should have a sukuon but here the sukun is not normally written. 2.1 it could be an alif consonant with harakat Alif just with Fatah اَ Alif just with Kasra اِ Alif just with dammah إ 2.2 it could be a alif carrying a hamzah Alif is the only possible carrier where hamzah is the first phoneme of a word (not eg waw or ya). If hamzah is added above the alif أَ called the alif-hamzh-fatah If hamzah is added above the alif أُ called the alif-hamzah-dammah Ih hamzah is added below the alif إِ called the alif-hamzah-kasrah all three x3 indicating that the letter so modified does indeed signify a glottal stop, and not a long vowel. 2.3 It could be written as an alif only with hamzah - but this is actually NOT formally correct, the hamzah SHOULD be written TOGETHER with a supporting vowel-ḥarakāt If alif is alone with hazmah at bottom إ it implies a missing Kasra If alif is alone with hamzah at top أ this is not so easy, it implies a missing Fatah or missing Dammah 2.4 could be the silent – unwritten alif For example take the word for “that” = ذلك masculine This is pronounced/sound as ذالك (incorrect spelling, just used as an example) ie, sound with a long-vowel aa but unwritten, as such its the invisible Alif 2.5 it could be an alif-madda آ Eg قُرْآن qurˈʔaːn The ʾalif maddah is, as it were, a double alif, expressing both a glottal stop and a long vowel: It has become standard for a hamza followed by a long ā to be written as two alifs, one vertical and one horizontal. [h=4]2.6 it could be a Dagger alif ــٰ[/h]The superscript (or dagger) ʾalif ⟨أَلِف خَنْجَرِيَّة⟩ (ʾalif ḫanǧariyyah), is written as short vertical stroke on top of a consonant. It indicates a long /aː/ sound where ʾalif is normally not written, e.g. ⟨الله⟩ (Allāh or ⟨هٰذَا⟩ (hāḏā) or ⟨رَحْمٰن⟩ (raḥmān). The dagger ʾalif occurs in only a few words, but these include some common ones; it is seldom written, however, even in fully vocalised texts. Most keyboards do not have dagger ʾalif. 2.7 Is it possible to have an Alif with a shadda ?? can someone please clarify 2.8 any more topics / possibilities ref alif in the MIDDLE of a word ?? Regards, David Note, all above relates to Alif in the MIDDLE of a word, See other/existing post ref summary of what alif can be as FIRST letter at the start of a word. Another separate thread will be started soon ref alif at end-LAST letter of a word.