Ṣifāt is the plural of ṣifah. Literally, it means qualities or characteristics. Technically, ṣifāt are those characteristics affixed to the pronunciation of a letter whether intrinsic or circumstantial.
The Ṣifāt ʿĀriḍah
These characteristics are temporary i.e. sometimes they are found in a letter and sometimes they are not. They are all 11 in number:
THE RULES CONCERNING THE NŪN ن AND THE MĪM (م)
If the ن or the م are mushaddadah, they will be read with ghunnah (a nasal sound). Example- إنّ,
THE MĪM SĀKINAH
The mīm sākinah has three rules: ْ
2 ِ Iṭḥ-hār
Ikhfāʾ – It literally means to conceal or hide. If a bāʾ follows the mīm sākinah م then ikhfāʾ will take place; the م will be covered and it will be read with ghunnah. Example- تَرْمِيهِم بِحِجَارَةٍ مِّن سِجِّيلٍ
NOTE: Shafa means lips. Shafawiyyi would refer to a labial pronunciation. It is called because the م is pronounced from the lips.
Idghām – It literally means to assimilate or incorporate. If the mīm sākinah م is followed by another م (idghām will take place i.e. the first mīm م will be assimilated into the second mīm م and it will be read with ghunnah. Example- أَوْ كَصَيِّبٍ مِنَ السَّمَاءِ
Iṭḥ-hār – It literally means to make clear or apparent. If the mīm sākinah م is followed by any letter beside the bāʾ of ikhfāʾ or the mīm (م) (of idghām) then iṭḥ-hār will take place i.e. the mīm م will be read clearly without any extra ghunnah (nasal pull) in it. Example- ٱلْحَمْدُ