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Lesson 2: Makhārij (Letters of the Empty Space & Throat)

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The Makharij

Makhārij is the plural of makhraj. It literally means a place from which something exits. Technically it is an articulation point i.e. that place from which the sounds of the letters are articulated.


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There are 17 makhārij (articulation points) according to Khalīl Ibn Aḥmad al-Farāhīdī:1

1) The empty space in the mouth and throat. The three lengthened letters (madd letters) are pronounced from here. Wāw sākinah preceded by a ḍammah, yāʾ sākinah preceded by a kasrah and alif.


The alif never takes a ḥarakah and is always preceded by a fatḥah

2) The lower throat. This is the part of the throat closest to the chest and furthest from the opening of the mouth. The hamzah ء and hāʾ ه are pronounced from here.

3) The middle throat. The ʿayn ع and ḥāʾ ح are pronounced from here.

4) The upper throat. This is that part of the throat which is closest to the mouth. The ghayn غ and khaa خare pronounced from here.

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