►II.6. TERMINAL TȂʔ
The letter tȃʔ ت has two forms at the end of words:
- an “open” form ـت
- a “tied” form ـة / ة
The tied tȃʔ (tāʔ ligatum) الْتَّاْءُ المَرْبُوْطَةُ is always part of a suffix that has the form –at. This suffix occurs in substantives (nouns and adjectives) and non-finite verbs (gerunds and participles). The open tȃʔ (tāʔ apertum) الْتَّاْءُ الْمَفْتُوْحَةُ can be part of word roots or part of suffixes, the most common of which are –t and –ȃt.
The difference between the tied tȃʔ and the open tȃʔ has to do with pronunciation. The open tȃʔ is always pronounced and never dropped in speech, whereas the tied tȃʔ is dropped in speech when it is terminal, that is, followed by a pause. This is somewhat similar to the French liaison.
|t||∅||ـة / ة|