Arab World English Journal (AWEJ) Volume.8Number.2 June, 2017                  Pp.  252-267

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An Autosegmental Analysis of Arabic Passive Participle of Triliteral Verbs

Majd S. Abushunar
 Language Centre, Hashemite University, Zarqa, Jordan

Radwan S. Mahadin
Department of English Language and Literature
Faculty of Foreign Languages, the University of Jordan
Amman, Jordan


This study aims to analyze the passive participle in Standard Arabic within the framework of autosegmental phonology. It focuses on the pattern of non-derived, triliteral verbs /maCCu:C/. The sample of the study is collected from three sources Wehr (1994), Wright (1996), and Al-waSi:T Dictionary (2004). The study discusses strong, weak, geminated, and glottalized verbs using the X-skeleton of autosegmental phonology. It considers the imperfective stem as the basic form from which other forms are derived. The findings indicate that strong, geminated, and glottalized stems show regularity to the pattern /maCCu:C/. Nevertheless, irregularities from the general pattern are observed with weak verbs due to the unstable nature of glides in Standard Arabic. Also, the study shows that autosegmental phonology provides an adequate analysis for the passive participle.
Key words: Arabic passive participle, autosegmental, phonological analysis, X-skeleton

Cite as: Abushunar, M.S.,& Mahadin, R. S(2017). An Autosegmental Analysis of Arabic Passive Participle of Triliteral Verbs.
Arab World English Journal, 8 (2).


Radwan Salim Mahadin is a Professor of linguistics at the University of Jordan, Amman, Jordan. He
received his BA in English Language and Literature from the University of Jordan in 1976 and his PhD in
Linguistics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1982