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Copto-Arabica: The Phonology of Early Islamic Arabic Based on Coptic Transcriptions

Marijn van Putten

Pages 81 - 100


This paper builds on the important work that has been done in recent years on the phonology of pre-Islamic and early Islamic Arabic based on the transcriptions of names in Greek papyri. This paper expands the view by looking at transcriptions of Arabic names in the early Islamic period based in Coptic papyri. It confirms many of the findings already found in the Greek papyri such as the retention of the fourth long vowel and the i-umlaut of *a to i in CaCīC nouns. But it shows certain developments and new findings as well. Coptic material confirms a palatal realization of the Arabic *g, the fricative nature of *f and the realization of the feminine ending as /-a/ rather than /-ah/.


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