The Quran, the holy book of Islam, holds immense significance for millions worldwide. Its teachings guide, inspire, and solace believers, making it a cornerstone of their faith.  Understanding the Quran in its original language, Arabic, allows for a deeper connection with its profound message. 

While many individuals may rely on formal classes or teachers to learn Quranic Arabic online, there is a growing trend of self-learning driven by the desire for flexibility, independence, and a personalised approach to studying this sacred language.

Guide to Learn Quran Arabic by Yourself 

In the following article, we will discuss effective study techniques that help you learn Quranic Arabic by yourself and stay motivated. Keep reading.

  • Read Various Translations

Reading multiple translations helps you grasp the context of Quranic verses since they often include explanatory notes, footnotes, or commentaries that shed light on these contextual elements. Reading it helps you understand the intended meaning of the verses you read.

Similarly,  Reading various translation help you expand your Quranic vocabulary as different translators employ different linguistic approaches, word choices, and styles. By comparing and contrasting these translations, learners can expand their Arabic vocabulary and gain a deeper insight into the linguistic intricacies of the Quranic text.

Remember that Every translation carries the biases and blind spots of the person(s) doing the translations. Read at least three different translations. And never forget that none of them represents the authentic interpretation of the holy book.

  • Focus on Relevant Arabic Vocabulary

Play those techniques to learn the most relevant Arabic vocabulary.

  1. Identify the most frequently used words in the Quran

These words will likely appear in multiple verses and will form the foundation of your Quranic Arabic vocabulary, like Allah, Jannah, Jahanam, Insan, al nas. You can resort to  Resources such as word frequency lists or Quranic Arabic dictionaries, which can help you in this process. 

  1. Study word roots

 Arabic words are often derived from a three-letter root added to some suffix to signify their state. Understanding these roots can help you recognise patterns and meanings across different words. For example, the words مسلم  ، إسلام، مسلمين ، مسلمة ، أسلم all are derived from the three-letter verb سَلَم.

  1. Use context clues

While reading Quranic verses, pay attention to the context in which words are used. Studying the context will help you understand the intended meaning and usage of the word in that specific verse.

  1. Create flashcards or vocabulary lists

This technique has proven successful in fixing the new vocabulary in your mind. When you encounter new words,  Include the word in Arabic, its meaning in your native language or a language you are comfortable with, and the verse(s) where you found the word. Regularly review these flashcards or lists to reinforce your vocabulary.

3. Study Arabic Grammar

Grammar is the backstone of the Arabic language. You won’t understand the verses’ meaning without a solid understanding of it. Though Arabic grammar is a bit complex, you can take it step by step by reading the most straightforward rules, understanding them, and practising them well before moving forward to the moderate and advanced level of Arabic grammar.

Below is a list of some of the highlighted  Arabic grammar books you can use to self-learn. However, we recommend you take the best online Arabic course with qualified native Arabic tutors in this regard as it will give a more structured plan 

  1. “Arabic Grammar: A First Workbook” by Mohammad T. Alhawary – 
  2. “A New Arabic Grammar of the Written Language” by John A. Haywood and H.M. Nahmad – 
  3. “Modern Standard Arabic Grammar: A Learner’s Guide” by Mohammad T. Alhawary 
  4. “A Reference Grammar of Modern Standard Arabic” by Karin C. Ryding 
  5. “Arabic Grammar: A Quick Reference Guide” by Daniel L. Newman
  6. “Easy Arabic Grammar” by Jane Wightwick and Mahmoud Gaafar 

4. Use Arabic Dictionaries 

Arabic dictionaries provide you with the meanings, synonyms, antonyms, and various shades of meaning for words in the Quran. By using dictionaries, you can expand your vocabulary and develop a deeper understanding of the words used in the Quran.

However, it’s important to choose reliable and reputable sources that specialize in Quranic Arabic. Below are some of the most renowned Arabic dictionaries you can use.

  1. Hans Wehr Arabic-English Dictionary: This is a widely used and respected Arabic-English dictionary. It provides comprehensive coverage of vocabulary, including words commonly found in the Quran. You can access it online or as a mobile app. 
  2. Arabic-English Lexicon by Edward William Lane: Originally published in the 19th century, this dictionary is a classic resource for studying Arabic. It offers detailed explanations, historical references, and examples of word usage. 
  3. Al-Mawrid: a popular Arabic-English dictionary available online. It provides definitions, synonyms, antonyms, and examples of word usage. It also includes audio pronunciations for some words.
  4. WordReference:  an online Arabic-English dictionary that offers translations, definitions, and examples of word usage. It includes a user-friendly interface and a discussion forum where you can ask questions and seek clarification.
  5. Reverso Context:  an online translation tool that provides translations and examples of word usage in context. It offers translations from Arabic to various languages and vice versa, which can help understand the meaning of Quranic words.

 Remember to cross-reference and verify information from multiple sources to ensure accuracy and reliability. Additionally, use mobile apps like “Arabic Dictionary” or “Arabic Dictionary & Translator” to quickly access Arabic dictionaries.

5 . Practise, Practise, Practise

Overall, nothing can reach you to a high level of mastery when it comes to reading Quranic Arabic if you’re unwilling to put the time and effort into it. So, each day, Make a habit of reciting Quranic verses daily. Start with shorter verses and gradually progress to longer ones. Search for the meaning of vocabulary you don’t know and try to guess it yourself before turning to dictionaries.

Stimoulously, Work on grammar exercises to strengthen your understanding of Arabic grammar rules and structures. Use grammar workbooks, online resources, or language apps that provide grammar exercises and explanations. 

You can also study Tafsir (exegesis) and commentaries on the Quran. These resources provide deeper insights into the meanings and interpretations of Quranic verses. They can help you understand the linguistic nuances and historical context behind the verses, enriching your Quranic Arabic learning experience.

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