Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by Mahaodeh, Aug 24, 2010.
Does anyone have a link to a video or audio file that shows the correct pronunciation of ضاد?
I don't think any modern rendition of fuṣ7a or any modern dialect pronounces the letter ض as the lateral fricative it is hypothesized to have been in Classical times. The pronunciations are either just as ظ or as an emphatic version of د [ḍ] or [D] in transcription.
However, if you want to know what a lateral fricative sounds like, here is a description and an audio sample. However, the wiki entry is to a "plain" lateral fricative. Mind you, we presume that the Arabic ضاد was also مفخمة. So you'll have to add this quality in your mind, I suppose. I can't find a sample right now.
It is indeed a curious sound, making the title لغة الضاد most appropriate. You can also see how this sound is more similar to ظ than the modern ض is - which is probably part of the reason why they merged together in so many dialects.
I recently learnt that it's not actually what I thought it was (the way it's pronounced in Levant Arabic). I looked up many descriptions, but I'm not quite confident that I was able to pronounce it properly.
I'm even less confident about the link, it doesn't really seem like a ضاد at all and if it were to be merged with any letter I would suppose it seems closer to a زاي, whereas it should be closer to a ظاء.
I also have a problem with "the sound coming out of one side, either left or right", with me it comes out from both sides, that's why I think I'm pronouncing it wrong. Maybe a sketch would be useful, at least to show where the tong should be and how to "twist" it
The reason it sounds closer to a زاي and not a ظاء is because the link is not a sound which is مفخم. Like I said above, you'd have to try to add the emphatic quality (by raising and pulling back the back of the tongue) in order to get the sound.
I'll try to make my own recording later and attach it to this thread, to the best of my own ability of course.
Also, you shouldn't expect this to sound at all like what you think is a ضاد .
Actually with lateral sounds (even the sound ل which is also a lateral sound), I believe people fall into three types: those who make it come out one or the other side, and those who make it come out of both sides. The same is true of ر. Some people roll the [r] with their tongue bent to the right, some to the left, some straight on. I think this nuance is idiosyncratic and not essential to the production of the sound itself.
There are reports about the ضاد having a lateral quality in a certain region of Yemen (don't know what region, though).
MSAL apparently preserve the ancient Semitic lateral fricatives, the emphatic voiced one and the voiceless "samekh" one, which was also lost in Hebrew!
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