Sun and Moon Letters

February 1st, 2010

The Lebanese language has 2 types of letters, the sun letters also called solar ( L aḣrof ccamsiyye) and the moon letters also called lunar (L aḣrof l amariyye). The reason these letters are called like this is because of the two words sun (camis) and moon (amar), and the properties of their first letters.

This characteristic affects the spelling of the words in relationship with the article “the” in Lebanese. The identifier “the” comes in two forms depending on the first letter of the word following it. There are two rules that govern this property in the Lebanese language.

1- If the first letter of this word begins with a solar, then the first letter is stressed, and it is spelled as double.

Cams means sun. To say “The sun”, you would say “ccamis”, because the “c” is a solar letter

Amar means moon. To say “The moon”, you would say “l amar”, because the “a” is a lunar letter. “L” means “the”.

Refer to the alphabet table to learn which are the sun letters and which are the moon letters.

Try to use the article “the” with the following words:

Dikken (Shop)

Ṫiyyara (Plane)

Banadura (Tomato)

Piano (Piano)

Namle (Ant)