Imperative: doubly weak verb وَفَى - فِهْ

Discussion in 'العربية (Arabic)' started by HermanTheGerman, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. HermanTheGerman Senior Member

    According to a German university grammar book, the second person masculine imperative of وفى should be فه (i.e. ف with a silent ه added, because single letters are "frowned upon"). I didn't find this recommendation in any other grammar book, though. Has anybody actually seen something like فِهْ بِوَعْدِكَ in real life or another grammar book?
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2012
  2. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

    أرض الأنجل
    عربي (مصر)ـ | en (gb)
    I think that in Modern Standard Arabic, two letter verbs (without a Shaddah) are effectively 'frowned upon'. So users avoid them and say things like أوفيه
  3. HermanTheGerman Senior Member

    Do you happen to know any grammar (in English or Arabic) that deals with this phenomenon in more detail and/or have you ever seen examples of these types of irregular imperatives in MSA, the Qur'an, Hadiths or other literary works considered normative?
    I'd also be interested in lists of irregular imperatives where the imperative is not derived from the same root in MSA. E.g. أتى / جاء => تعال
  4. Abu Talha Senior Member

  5. HermanTheGerman Senior Member

    Thanks for your very helpful post. I found the Google answers links very interesting. However, the answerers didn't cite any references and I'm still somewhat skeptical regarding single letter imperatives. For example, I've never seen رَ in any written text, and most MSA grammars usually recommend using imperatives of synonymous verbs (e.g. رَأَى => اُنْظُرْ) instead of رَ , which I've never seen.
    Last edited: Feb 19, 2012
  6. Abu Talha Senior Member

    You're welcome, Herman. I think a couple of references are cited vaguely like ابن مالك and الأزهري and it may be worth tracking them down. But I agree with you that single letter imperatives are very rare in MSA. As for Classical Arabic, in what little I've read of hadith, I've only seen انظر as an imperative and not رَ .

    Having said that, I think you'll find قِ نَفْسَكَ used here and there even in MSA in religious contexts.

    As for cited references لسان العرب has this under «وقي» :
    Perhaps more examples could be found in لسان العرب under roots for some of the other verbs mentioned in the Google answers link.
  7. إسكندراني

    إسكندراني Senior Member

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    Sorry, I am not a grammarian. If you hang around maybe someone knows some useful resources.
    I saw a رَ on the Arabic Wikipedia and found it so strange that I opened a thread on it here a few months back. Since then I have seen it in poetry.
  8. Finland Senior Member

    One example that one sees occasionally is the imperative of وقى with an attached pronominal object. E. g. قنا من, 'protect us from'.

  9. Jamal31 Banned

    American English
    Is that also the case in CA Fusha?
  10. Matat Senior Member

  11. Jamal31 Banned

    American English
    Thanks for the clarification

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