Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics

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(1,494 words)

The term bināʾ is used in Arabic grammar to describe words which have fixed end-vowels. It may be generally translated as ‘indeclinability’, and is thus the antithesis of the term for ‘declinability’, ʾiʿrāb. This meaning most probably developed from the sense of ‘phonetic structure’, which bināʾ (pl. ʾabniya) indicates in expressions like bināʾ li-l-majhūl ‘passive form’, ʾabniyat al-jamʿ ‘plural patterns’, etc.

The centrality of bināʾ to grammatical theory is best demonstrated by its discussion, along with ʾiʿrāb, by Sībawayhi (d. 180/796) in the very early parts of his Kitāb (I,…

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Ramzi Baalbaki, “Bināʾ”, in: Encyclopedia of Arabic Language and Linguistics, Managing Editors Online Edition: Lutz Edzard, Rudolf de Jong. Consulted online on 13 August 2022 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1570-6699_eall_EALL_COM_0044>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004177024, 20090831

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