TAFKHEEM AND TARQEEQ (التفخيم والترقيق)3 min read

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TAFKHEEM AND TARQEEQ (التفخيم والترقيق)




Thickening or making heavy – giving the letter a quality of heaviness by elevation of the tongue. i.e., the Iste’laa (الاستعلاء) Letters having the quality of elevation. are also called letters of tafkheem, (خص ضغط قظ) letters (heaviness) because all of them are heavy whether accompanied by a short vowel or a sukoon. The heaviest of (ص ض ط ظ) which are, (الإطباق) them are those of closing since the tongue is then in the highest position against the roof of the mouth. Tafkheem is most emphasized in any given letter when it carries a fathah followed by alif, next when it carries only a fathah, next when it carries a dhammah, then sukoon, and least of all with a kasrah.

Practice saying:

خالدين, صادقين, خاطئة, صبر, ضرب, صادقين, الضالين, أظلم, قال ,القرآن ,الصلاة ,الطعام ,طباقا ,إخراج, طفقا, طاف ,عليهم, طايف ,خلق ,قدر, ظه


Thinning or lightening – giving the letter a quality of lightness by lowering the tongue away from the roof of the mouth. i.e., the, (الاستفال) Letters having the quality of lowness remaining consonants, are called letters of tarqeeq (lightness) and must always be pronounced with the tongue lowered (except for the letters and which, in certain circumstances, alternate between tarqeeq and tafkheem.

Practice saying:

التابيون, العابدون, الحامدون, الساجدون, أنعمت، الآمرون ،الناهون ،حمل، كتب

The madd letter (long vowel) alif takes on the quality of the letter preceding it; if heavy, the alif is also pronounced with tafkheem, and if light, with tarqeeq. Say:

التابيون ، طابقةً، کان ، قال، ساجدین ، صادقين

Read: Surah al-Aḥzāb, ayah 35; Surah an-Nazi’at, āyāt 1-14 and Sürah al-Ghāshiyah, ayāt 11-12.



Laam (ل) is normally a light letter, the only exception (ل) Laam being when it occurs in the divine name. If the divine name is preceded by a kasrah (.) or yaa saakinah (s), the laam is pronounced with tarqeeq, as in:

الحمد لله ،في الله، أعوذ بالله، قل الله

But if it is preceded by fathah, dhammah or waaw saakinah, or the reader begins with the divine name, the laam is pronounced with tafkheem, as in:

قال إني عبد الله ، الله نور السموات والأرض، سبحانك اللهم ، وإذ قالوا الله



The letter raa (ر) alternates between tarqeeq and tafkheem according to the short vowel accompanying it, or in case of Sukoon the vowel preceding it. Therefore, Raa is light (i.e., with tarqeeq) when it is accompanied by kasrah or by sukoon and preceded by kasrah, as in:


It is also light when one stops on it (at the end of a word thereby omitting the final short vowel) but is preceded by yaa saakinah, as in:

الرقاب ،الصابرين، واصبر

Raa is heavy (i.e., with tafkheem) when it is accompanied by fathah or dhammah, or by sukoon but preceded by fathah or dhammah, as in:

قدير، حاضرا، رأوا، رزقنا، خردل ،غرفة، القرآن

It is also heavy when one stops on it while it is preceded by alif saakinah or waaw saakinah, as in:


it is heavy when preceded by a connecting hamzah (همزة الوصل) in any circumstance, as in

إن أرتبتم، أم أرتابوا ،لمن أرتضى، فارتقب، اركعوا، أرجعوا

(الفجر) and (القدر) Sometimes a stop will cause two successive sukoons, as in Here, look to the short vowel preceding them both and apply the rule. And finally, it is heavy when raa itself is saakinah and although preceded by kasrah, it is followed by a heavy letter carrying fathah or dhammah, as in:

مرصاد، قرطاس

Read for practice: Sürah Hūd, āyāt 96-99 and Surah al-Qamar.

JazakAllahu Khairan for reading. If you have found this information beneficial, please share it with your loved ones and friends. May Allah reward you abundantly for your efforts.

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Hassan Ali

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