The Arabic letter غ (Arabic: غينghayn or ġayn) is the nineteenth letter of the Arabic alphabet, one of the six letters not in the twenty-two akin to the Phoenician alphabet (the others being thāʼ, khāʼ, dhāl, ḍād, ẓāʼ), it represents the sound /ɣ/ or /ʁ/. In name and shape, it is a variant of ʻayn (ع). Its numerical value is 1000 (see Abjad numerals). In Persian language it represents [ɣ]~[ɢ] and It is the twenty-second letter in the new Persian alphabet.

A voiced velar fricative /ɣ/ or a voiced uvular fricative /ʁ/ (usually reconstructed for Proto-Semitic) merged with ʻayin in most languages except for Arabic, Ugaritic, and older varieties of the Canaanite languages. Canaanite languages and Hebrew later also merged it with ʻayin, and this merger was complete in Tiberian Hebrew. The South Arabian alphabet retained a symbol for ġ, 𐩶. Biblical Hebrew, as of the 3rd century BCE, apparently still distinguished the phonemes ġ /ʁ/ and ḫ /χ/, based on transcriptions in the Septuagint. (example: Gomorrah is represented in Hebrew as עֲמֹרָה, which sounds like ‘Ămōrāh in Modern Hebrew; however, the Greek transcription of Γομορραν, Gomoras, suggests that at this point in time the Hebrew lemma was still pronounced as Ġămōrāh)

The letter ghayn (غ) is sometimes used to represent the voiced velar plosive /ɡ/ in loan words and names in Arabic and is then often pronounced /ɡ/, not /ɣ/. Other letters, such as ج, ق, ک/ك (also گ, ݣ, ݢ, ڨ, ڠ, instead of the original Arabic letters), can be used to transcribe /ɡ/ in loan words and names, depending on whether the local variety of Arabic in the country has the phoneme /ɡ/, which letter represents it if it does, and on whether it is customary in the country to use that letter to transcribe /ɡ/. For instance, in Egypt, where ج is pronounced as [ɡ] in all situations, even when speaking Modern Standard Arabic (except in certain contexts, such as reciting the Qur'an), ج is used to transcribe foreign [ɡ] in virtually all contexts. In many cases غ is pronounced in loan words as expected—/ɣ/, not /ɡ/—even though the original language had /ɡ/.

When representing this sound in transliteration of Arabic into Hebrew, it is written as ע׳.

In English, the letter غ in Arabic names is usually transliterated as ‹gh›, ‹ġ›, or simply ‹g›, e.g. بغداد Baghdād 'Baghdad', or غزة Ghazzah 'Gaza', the latter of which does not render the sound [ɣ]~[ʁ] accurately. The closest equivalent sound known to most English speakers is the Parisian French "r" [ʁ].

Ghayn is written is several ways depending in its position in the word:

Position in word: Isolated Final Medial Initial
Glyph form:
غ ـغ ـغـ غـ
Proto-Semitic Akkadian Arabic Canaanite Hebrew Aramaic South Arabian Geʻez
ġ - غ gh Phoenician ayin.png ġ, ʻ ע ʻ ע ʻ Himjar ghajn.PNG ġ ʻ

Character encodings

Character غ
Encodings decimal hex decimal hex decimal hex decimal hex decimal hex
Unicode 1594 U+063A 65229 U+FECD 65230 U+FECE 65231 U+FECF 65232 U+FED0
UTF-8 216 186 D8 BA 239 187 141 EF BB 8D 239 187 142 EF BB 8E 239 187 143 EF BB 8F 239 187 144 EF BB 90
Numeric character reference غ غ ﻍ ﻍ ﻎ ﻎ ﻏ ﻏ ﻐ ﻐ

See also

  • Arabic phonology
  • Ghayn, the corresponding letter in the Cyrillic orthographies for several Central Asian languages
Abjad numerals

The Abjad numerals, also called Hisab al-Jummal (Arabic: حِسَاب الْجُمَّل‎, ḥisāb al-jummal), are a decimal numeral system in which the 28 letters of the Arabic alphabet are assigned numerical values. They have been used in the Arabic-speaking world since before the eighth century when Arabic numerals were adopted. In modern Arabic, the word ʾabjadīyah (أبجدية) means 'alphabet' in general.

In the Abjad system, the first letter of the Arabic alphabet, ʾalif, is used to represent 1; the second letter, bāʾ, is used to represent 2, etc. Individual letters also represent 10s and 100s: yāʾ for 10, kāf for 20, qāf for 100, etc.

The word ʾabjad (أبجد) itself derives from the first four letters (A-B-J-D) of the Semitic alphabet, including the Phoenician alphabet, Aramaic alphabet, Hebrew alphabet and other scripts for Semitic languages. These older alphabets contained only 22 letters, stopping at taw, numerically equivalent to 400. The Arabic Abjad system continues at this point with letters not found in other alphabets: thāʾ= 500, etc.


Aitou (also Ayto, Aytou, Aytu, Aïtou, Aito, Itoo, Arabic: أيطو‎) is a village located in the Zgharta District in the North Governorate of Lebanon. Its population is Maronite Catholic.

Ancient South Arabian script

The Ancient South Arabian script (Old South Arabian 𐩣𐩯𐩬𐩵 ms3nd; modern Arabic: الْمُسْنَد‎ musnad) branched from the Proto-Sinaitic script in about the 9th century BC. It was used for writing the Old South Arabian languages of the Sabaic, Qatabanic, Hadramautic, Minaean, Hasaitic, and Ge'ez in Dʿmt. The earliest inscriptions in the script date to the 9th century BC in the Northern Red Sea Region, Eritrea. There are no letters for vowels, which are marked by matres lectionis.

Its mature form was reached around 500 BC, and its use continued until the 6th century AD, including Ancient North Arabian inscriptions in variants of the alphabet, when it was displaced by the Arabic alphabet. In Ethiopia and Eritrea it evolved later into the Ge'ez script, which, with added symbols throughout the centuries, has been used to write Amharic, Tigrinya and Tigre, as well as other languages (including various Semitic, Cushitic, and Nilo-Saharan languages).

Arabic alphabet

The Arabic alphabet (Arabic: الْأَبْجَدِيَّة الْعَرَبِيَّة‎ al-ʾabjadīyah al-ʿarabīyah, or الْحُرُوف الْعَرَبِيَّة al-ḥurūf al-ʿarabīyah) or Arabic abjad is the Arabic script as it is codified for writing Arabic. It is written from right to left in a cursive style and includes 28 letters. Most letters have contextual letterforms.

Originally, the alphabet was an abjad, with only consonants, but it is now considered an "impure abjad". As with other abjads, such as the Hebrew alphabet, scribes later devised means of indicating vowel sounds by separate vowel diacritics.

Arabic calligraphy

Arabic calligraphy is the artistic practice of handwriting and calligraphy based on the Arabic alphabet. It is known in Arabic as khatt (Arabic: خط‎), derived from the word 'line', 'design', or 'construction'.Kufic is the oldest form of the Arabic script.

Although most Islamic calligraphy is in Arabic and most Arabic calligraphy is Islamic, the two are not identical. Coptic Christian manuscripts in Arabic, for example, may make use of calligraphy. Likewise, there is Islamic calligraphy in Persian.


Ayn may refer to:

Ayin or ʿayn, a letter in many Semitic scripts

Ayn, Savoie, a commune of the Savoie département' of France

Ayn, Somalia (or Cayn), a region carved out of the Togdheer province in northwestern Somalia

Ghayn (Cyrillic) (Ғ,ғ), a letter used in the Bashkir, Kazakh, and Tajik alphabets

Ayn Rand, Russian-born American novelist and philosopher

Anyang Airport, China, IATA code AYN

San'ani Arabic (ISO 639-3 ayn), an Arabic dialect spoken in Yemen

Al Ain, a city in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates

Cyrillic script

The Cyrillic script is a writing system used for various alphabets across Eurasia, particularly in Eastern Europe, the Caucasus, Central Asia, and North Asia. It is based on the Early Cyrillic alphabet developed during the 9th century AD at the Preslav Literary School in the First Bulgarian Empire. It is the basis of alphabets used in various languages, especially those of Orthodox Slavic origin, and non-Slavic languages influenced by Russian. As of 2011, around 250 million people in Eurasia use it as the official alphabet for their national languages, with Russia accounting for about half of them. With the accession of Bulgaria to the European Union on 1 January 2007, Cyrillic became the third official script of the European Union, following Latin and Greek.Cyrillic is derived from the Greek uncial script, augmented by letters from the older Glagolitic alphabet, including some ligatures. These additional letters were used for Old Church Slavonic sounds not found in Greek. The script is named in honor of the two Byzantine brothers, Saints Cyril and Methodius, who created the Glagolitic alphabet earlier on. Modern scholars believe that Cyrillic was developed and formalized by early disciples of Cyril and Methodius.

In the early 18th century, the Cyrillic script used in Russia was heavily reformed by Peter the Great, who had recently returned from his Grand Embassy in western Europe. The new letterforms became closer to those of the Latin alphabet; several archaic letters were removed and several letters were personally designed by Peter the Great (such as Я, which was inspired by the Latin R). West European typography culture was also adopted.

Gautham Karthik

Gautham Karthik (born 12 September 1989) is an Indian film actor who works in the Tamil film industry. He made his acting debut in Mani Ratnam's Kadal (2013).

Ge (Cyrillic)

Ge or Ghe (Г г; italics: Г г) is a letter of the Cyrillic script. It is also known in some languages as He. It commonly represents the voiced velar plosive /ɡ/, like ⟨g⟩ in "go".

It is generally romanized using the Latin letter G, but to romanize Belarusian, Ukrainian and Rusyn, the Latin letter H is used.

Ge with middle hook

Ge with middle hook (Ҕ ҕ; italics: Ҕ ҕ) is a letter of the Cyrillic script used in the Abkhaz and Yakut languages to represent the voiced velar fricative /ɣ/. In Unicode, this letter is called "Ghe with middle hook". The letter was invented in 1844 by Andreas Johan Sjögren for the Ossetian language from the contraction of Cyrillic Г and Gothic .

Ge with stroke and hook

Ge with stroke and hook (Ӻ ӻ; italics: Ӻ ӻ) is a letter of the Cyrillic script, formed from the Cyrillic letter Ge (Г г Г г) by adding a horizontal stroke and a hook. In Unicode this letter is called "Ghe with stroke and hook". Also despite having a similar shape, it is not related to the Latin letter Ƒ.

Ge with stroke and hook is only used in the Nivkh language, where it represents the voiced uvular fricative /ʁ/.


Geresh (׳ in Hebrew: גֶּרֶשׁ‎ or גֵּרֶשׁ‎ [ˈɡeʁeʃ], or medieval [ˈɡeːɾeːʃ]) is a sign in Hebrew writing. It has two meanings.

An apostrophe-like sign (also known colloquially as a chupchik) placed after a letter:

as a diacritic that modifies the pronunciation of some letters (in modern Hebrew),

as a diacritic that signifies Yiddish origin of a word or suffix, (examples below)

as a punctuation mark to denote initialisms or abbreviations,

or to denote a single-digit Hebrew numeral

A note of cantillation in the reading of the Torah and other Biblical books, taking the form of a curved diagonal stroke placed above a letter.

Ghayn (Cyrillic)

Ghayn (Ғ ғ; italics: Ғ ғ) also known as Ge with stroke, or as Ayn (in Kazakh), is a letter of the Cyrillic script. In Unicode this letter is called "Ghe with stroke".It is used in the Bashkir, Karakalpak, Kazakh, Uzbek and Tajik languages, where it represents the voiced uvular fricative /ʁ/. Despite having a similar shape, it is not related to the Latin letter F (F f) or the Greek letter Digamma (Ϝ ϝ). In Kazakh and Tofa, this letter may also represent the voiced velar fricative /ɣ/. In Nivkh, ғ represents /ɣ/, while /ʁ/ is represented by ӻ, which looks like ғ with a hook. The Khakas language also uses ғ.

In earlier, Arabic-alphabet-based orthographies for some of these languages, the same sound was written with the letter ﻍ (ġayn/ghain).

Gulf Arabic

Gulf Arabic (خليجي Khalījī local pronunciation: [χɐˈliːdʒi] or اللهجة الخليجية el-lahja el-Khalijiyya, local pronunciation: [elˈlɑhdʒɐ lχɐˈliːdʒɪj.jɐ]) is a variety of the Arabic language spoken in Eastern Arabia around the coasts of the Persian Gulf in Kuwait, Bahrain, Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, as well as parts of eastern Saudi Arabia (Eastern Province), southern Iraq (Basra Governorate and Muthanna Governorate), and south Iran (Bushehr Province and Hormozgan Province) and northern Oman.

Gulf Arabic can be defined as a set of closely related and more or less mutually intelligible varieties that form a dialect continuum, with the level of mutual intelligibility between any two varieties largely depending on the distance between them. Similarly to other Arabic varieties, Gulf Arabic varieties are not completely mutually intelligible with other Arabic varieties spoken outside the Gulf. The specific dialects differ in vocabulary, grammar and accent. There are considerable differences between, for instance, Kuwaiti Arabic and the dialects of Qatar and the UAE—especially in accent, that may hinder mutual intelligibility.Gulf varieties' closest related relatives are other dialects native to the Arabian Peninsula, i.e. Najdi Arabic and Bahrani Arabic. Although spoken over much of Saudi Arabia's area, Gulf Arabic is not the native tongue of most Saudis, as the majority of them do not live in Eastern Arabia. There are some 200,000 Gulf Arabic speakers in the country, out of a population of over 30 million, mostly in the aforementioned Eastern Province.

Judeo-Arabic languages

The Judeo-Arabic languages (Arabic: عربية يهودية‎, Hebrew: ערבית יהודית‎) are a continuum of specifically Jewish varieties of Arabic formerly spoken by the Jews of the Middle East and North Africa. The term Judeo-Arabic can also refer to Classical Arabic written in the Hebrew script, particularly in the Middle Ages.

Many significant Jewish works, including a number of religious writings by Saadia Gaon, Maimonides and Judah Halevi, were originally written in Judeo-Arabic as this was the primary vernacular language of their authors.

Karthik (actor)

Murali Karthikeyan Muthuraman (born 13 September 1960), best known by stage name Karthik, is an Indian film actor, playback singer and politician who works mainly in Tamil cinema. He is the son of actor R. Muthuraman. He was first introduced by Bharathiraja in the film Alaigal Oivathillai (1981). He has primarily appeared in lead roles in Tamil films, who was also known as Navarasa Nayagan (multi-talented). He has also appeared in some Telugu films. Karthik acted more than 125 films. He has been the recipient of the Tamil Nadu State Film Awards and the Nandi Award. He won four Filmfare Awards South.

Mizrahi Hebrew

Mizrahi Hebrew, or Eastern Hebrew, refers to any of the pronunciation systems for Biblical Hebrew used liturgically by Mizrahi Jews: Jews from Arab countries or east of them and with a background of Arabic, Persian or other languages of the Middle East and Asia. As such, Mizrahi Hebrew is actually a blanket term for many dialects.

Sephardi Hebrew is not considered one of these, even if it has been spoken in the Middle East and North Africa. The Sephardim were expellees from Spain and settled among the Mizrahim, but in countries such as Syria and Morocco, there was a fairly high degree of convergence between the Sephardi and the local pronunciations of Hebrew. Yemenite Hebrew is also considered quite separate, as it has a wholly different system for the pronunciation of vowels.

The same terms are sometimes used for the pronunciation of Modern Hebrew by Jews of Mizrahi origins. It is generally a compromise between Modern Standard Hebrew and the traditional liturgical pronunciation as described in this article. A common form of such compromise is the use of [ħ] and [ʕ] for ח and ע, respectively, with most or all other sounds pronounced as in Standard Israeli Hebrew.


Ğ (g with breve) is a Latin letter found in the Turkish and Azerbaijani alphabets as well as the Latin alphabets of Laz, Crimean Tatar and Tatar. It traditionally represented the voiced velar fricative /ɣ/ or (in case of Tatar) the similar voiced uvular fricative /ʁ/ in all those languages. However, in Turkish, the phoneme has in most cases been reduced to a silent letter, serving as a vowel-lengthener.

Notable varieties

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